CIL: How to find a Veterinary Specialist

Owners of dogs with intestinal lymphangiectasia can find themselves in a tough spot.  The disease is relatively rare, and the literature paints a fairly gloomy picture of prognosis.  What this means, in practical terms, is that your general medicine veterinarian may have never seen a case of this disease, and may not believe, in her heart of hearts, that there is much she can do for your dog.

Generalists are very good at what they do, which is to identify and treat the most common diseases, but when your dog has an unusual problem, they may not know how to proceed, or even what disease to look for.

In our case, our general vet, whom we dearly loved, was simply stumped.  We had to turn to specialists to get answers, and to find a vet who was willing to believe that we could achieve remission of symptoms.  You may, too.

There are several ways to find a veterinary specialist in your area.  For suspected or confirmed CIL cases, the specialist you want is the small animal internal medicine specialist.  If you are in the US or Canada, you can use this link:

Or you can find a veterinary teaching hospital within driving distance, and get an appointment with a faculty member there in the internal medicine department.

Diagnostics to confirm CIL can be expensive, but having a solid diagnosis can make a big difference.  Having a vet that believes your dog can get well can make all the difference.

–Louie’s Mom

5 comments to CIL: How to find a Veterinary Specialist

  • Melissa

    Thank you for the link. I am in the search for a specialist in my area(Las Vegas). I hope to find someone in town that can give me more information about my little guys condition. Thank you for taking the time to share your knowledge. This link will hopefully open the door to getting my Rocky better.

  • Joanne

    My little 1 1/2yr old Papillon Molly is still in the hospital after finding out she most likely has CIL. I am freaking out that she is so sick. This site has really calmed me down to think about how I can help her. I am in Central New Jersey and would like to find a specialist or at least a canine nutritionist. If someone out there can help me, I would so appreciate it. Bless all of you!

  • Anya Harriet Connolly

    It has taken our vet literally over a year ti diagnose him with CIL his
    Insurance has run out and now are paying the price. We ate in our second year with
    Out a proper diagnosis. We then took it further to a specialist at a university teaching hospital
    After this we have had so many dietary foods and medicines to treat this that we niw reckon that the pathologist may have wrongly diagnosed him leaving us in a dark hole with no where to turn.
    I am having some other tests done for thyroid and skin and other hormone conditions.
    Is there any other foods we can try apart from the Royal Canin low fat dry we have been prescribed thank you

  • Louie's mom

    Hello Anya,

    There are several posts on this blog about feeding. Just scroll up to the top of the page, and under categories click CIL. You should get a list of all the posts about the disease, including some about feeding.

    Good luck with him– I know it’s frustrating but if you can get him stable it will be so worth it.

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