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Hi everyone, I’m in need of help again
Crowley has been having loose stool issues for past 3 weeks on and off. To keep it shorter he has been tested twice for parasites with results coming back negative, fasting+ blend diet with pills for diarrhea and stomach coating (we thought at first it was because of him eating a stick) and I’ve tried adding a spoon of pumpkin puree. So it has been on and off but today in the morning it was fine (he is now on half blend half kibble diet) and at night had very runny diarrhea. I don’t know how to help him at this point. He acts perfectly fine like nothing happened. If you have any suggestions on what might help please let me know.

The only thing i can think of is that he might be allergic to chicken? He is 5 months old and now that i think about it he never had his stool really firm, it was always on a softer side but it was okay. He is on Nutri Source Large breed puppy food chicken and rice. Blend diet is rice with chicken so can this be the problem? I read multiple threads on here about puppies and diarrhea and food in general, and the only thing i took from all the threads is that all dobies seem to be doing good on Purina Pro Plan.. I’ve heard good things on here about Purina and heard that it causes cancer? I understand that everyone has a different opinion about everything but i need to make up my mind to help Crowley feel better, so i did some research and got food recommendations from different sources (mostly from here)
Some recommend Purina, some Canidae, everyone trashed Nutro, a lot of people recommend grain free Earthborn, Wellness, Innova.. but based on what I’ve read and thought dobies can’t be on high protein diet.. someone also said to look for food that does not have corn, wheat, soya, sugar, salt, beet pulp, animal by-products, poultry fat, ethoxyquin, bht, bha. All suggestions contradict each other and make me very confused. The only product that doesn’t have any of those ingredients is $140 for 25lb bag and is 40% protein Orijen. Also not to feed puppies puppy food, only adult or for all ages food.

Also if i am switching his food, and have to do it gradually what do i even mix it with if he has runny stool at this point from everything?

Please tell me what you feed your pups and if you had similar experiences and what helped

thank you!
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It doesn't seem terribly likely to me that he has a true food allergy at his age--but he could be sensitive to one or the other food sources. Another bland diet mixture I've had recommended to me was cooked white rice and well-browned hamburger meat. You should rinse the cooked hamburger a couple of times in water to remove some of the fat before mixing it with the rice. If your dog's problem is with chicken, perhaps he will tolerate beef.

If you think a food allergy is really at the root of the problem, you could also try a hydrolyzed protein dog food--all of the big proteins that dogs can be allergic to are broken down into smaller pieces that tend not to cause allergic reactions. It is a more expensive food and is generally available only by vet prescription.

Hydrolyzed Protein Dog Food (vetinfo.com)

Food trials can take a long time to run. The idea is that you find a limited protein source food or use a hydrolyzed protein diet and put him on that until he has no symptoms. Then you add in new proteins VERY SLOWLY (6-8 weeks between each addition) to identify if a particular protein source is the one he reacts to.

There is also more involved testing that can be done to look for things like IBD
Inflammatory Bowel Disease in Dogs | VCA Animal Hospital (vcahospitals.com)
but I don't know if you are truly at that point.

Does your vet have any further suggestions about cause/diet/treatment or do you think you've kinda tried all of the ideas he's come up with?


Rather obviously, the best food to feed your dog is one that he does well on--good poop, lots of energy, clear skin and a shiny coat. That may vary from dog to dog. It is not always the most expensive brand.

In general though, I would stay away from "designer" brands--they tend to follow the fads and charge accordingly, but they don't have years of science and testing to back up their food blends. Like you said, many of us swear by the Purina Sensitive Skin and Stomach (salmon and rice) kibble--it just seems to work well for many dobermans.

But I'm not a food expert and I don't follow the ins and outs of class action lawsuits and recalls perhaps as closely as I should. MeadowCat, I know, follows the issues more closely than I do. She had this to say in a previous post:

Pet food "trends" follow a few years behind human food "trends" and that's fairly easy to identify.

There are two blogs I follow that have a lot of good information on canine nutrition.

The first is the Science Dog. There are a lot of other interesting non-nutrition posts, but Linda Case is a canine nutritionists (master's degree in canine nutrition): The Science Dog Her book, Dog Food Logic, is available on Amazon and is a very good, easy read on nutrition. I highly recommend it.

This is another good blog, by a veterinary nutritionist: weethnutrition

I do think a lot of food companies formulating food purely based on formulas, not on actual feeding trials, hasn't necessarily put us in a good place. And the more we THINK we know, is not necessarily the more we know. The latest big topic, about grain free/specialty diets and DCM, is only the latest issue to pop up.
I'm sure people will chime in here who know more than I do.
 

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What was your breeder feeding your puppy when you got her?

I'll make one initial recommendation--I don't know how much you are feeding the puppy but one of the very common causes of diarrhea in puppies is overfeeding. Most puppies will eat quite a lot more food than they really need and the end result will be diarrhea.

Feeding pumpkin only works if the puppy needs more fiber and that's really all that pumpkin adds.

About a million years ago my vet made a recommendation for KISS when feeding puppies. (KISS--keep it simple stupid)--He said stick to the big manufacturers because they are the ones who use nutritionists to formulate the food they sell and who also keep colonies of dogs who test any formula they've developed and who have a track record when it comes to feeding suitable products.

That was back in 1959 and it's pretty much worked for me for a lot of years. I presently feed Purina Pro Plan and it has been my go to food for years. I usually feed the ProPlan Salmon and Rice (aka Sensitive Skin and Stomach) or the ProPlan Chicken and Rice or the Sport 30/20. The basic formulas and percentage of protein are similar enough that I can feed any one of those without having to worry about a long transition from one to the other.

This is the line that Purina used to call ProPlan Focus. It is NOT the part of the ProPlan line that was being called Savor (there is a salmon and rice and a chicken and rice in that line as well) it is now being called their shredded blend--it has small chunks of soy flavored with chicken or salmon--and I chose not to feed it because it does not have as much actual salmon or chicken in it as the food I feed.

So how much are you feeding her? How many meals a day and how much per meal. Any additives other than the kibble? At five months I'm usually feeding two meals a day.

When I first started feeding Dobes there wasn't much by way of puppy food except a general one that worked for small to medium sized breeds but didn't work so well for large or giant breeds where you don't want to feed very high protein kibble--because it encourages growth too fast and can lead to skeletal overgrowth problems.

And while I did feed a puppy food for a few years when the bigger manufacturers came out with large breed formulas eventually I went back to simply feeding an adult formula or an all life stages formula.

I do not recommend grain free formulas--the evidence is still not advanced enough to tell why some of the grain free food seem to cause a dietary DCM in dogs who are not any of the varieties (like Dobes) where DCM is a genetic problem in the breed. The most recent theory seems to be that taking grain and substituting potato or lentles as the carb source may leave some micro nutrients lacking.

My puppies, when I get them are usually left on the diet the breeder has been feeding them. Even if I think the diet is terrible I can always add what I think will make it better but changing to a totally different formula tends to just give one more thing that the puppy has to adapt to. And I very rarely have problems with ongoing diarrhea.

Generally if I am not feeding the ProPlan as listed above I'd be feeding Eukanuba--adult, or Hills Adult or maybe their Sensitive Stomach. I've had very few problems with any of those three.

This has only been happening in the last three weeks? It's possible that your puppy might be allergic to chicken but food allergies are actually quite uncommon. And it take months rather than weeks for a puppy to get an actual allergy going. My cat who was allergic to food (all food) and who eventually ended up on hypoallergic diets and lived to be 19 on them--hypoallergic diets have all proteins--both meat and vegitable hydrolized into short protein links which the bodt doesn't recognize as an allergen. But he was was 18 months before the problem showed up--it took us 6 months to find the right prescription diets (all hydrolized) that he could eat.

So a food allergy wouldn't normally show up at 5 months. Some of what you've said (like stools getting runnier at the end of the day but generally reasonably solid in the morning) sounds a lot like too much food.

So how much are you feeding. And is the "blend" something you are making or is this something you buy? Chicken nd rice is one of the things that usually works to stop diarrhea where the diarrhea is caused by eating too much or tainted food.

If it's something you are making you could try rice and cottage cheese (1 part low fat cottage chees to 3 part boiled white rice).

If any Purina product is known to cause cancer that's news to me. I've been feeding their products long enough I'd surely have had at least one dog end up with cancer but to get real about it--that's a huge company that does a very good job of formulating all kinds of food for all kinds of animals.

The fact that they test their formulas on living animals to make sure they accomplish what Purina says they are supposed to accomplish is a big plus to me.

I shy away from products that are computer defined--there have been enough problems with some of them I'd rather go with the bigger manufacturers.

I'm sure you'll hear from other people and I know people who get downright crazy about what dog food should and should not contain.

But try something obvious first--cut the quantity of food down some and see if that helps. Also after hard exercise a lot of dogs will have a soft or sloppy stool--those are exercise related and do sometimes show up but this wouldn't be all the time which is what you seem to be seeing.

Good luck but one thing I'd do for sure is to pick something and stick to it for at least several weeks when you are trying to determine what is causing the problem.

dobebug
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
It doesn't seem terribly likely to me that he has a true food allergy at his age--but he could be sensitive to one or the other food sources. Another bland diet mixture I've had recommended to me was cooked white rice and well-browned hamburger meat. You should rinse the cooked hamburger a couple of times in water to remove some of the fat before mixing it with the rice. If your dog's problem is with chicken, perhaps he will tolerate beef.

If you think a food allergy is really at the root of the problem, you could also try a hydrolyzed protein dog food--all of the big proteins that dogs can be allergic to are broken down into smaller pieces that tend not to cause allergic reactions. It is a more expensive food and is generally available only by vet prescription.

Hydrolyzed Protein Dog Food (vetinfo.com)

Food trials can take a long time to run. The idea is that you find a limited protein source food or use a hydrolyzed protein diet and put him on that until he has no symptoms. Then you add in new proteins VERY SLOWLY (6-8 weeks between each addition) to identify if a particular protein source is the one he reacts to.

There is also more involved testing that can be done to look for things like IBD
Inflammatory Bowel Disease in Dogs | VCA Animal Hospital (vcahospitals.com)
but I don't know if you are truly at that point.

Does your vet have any further suggestions about cause/diet/treatment or do you think you've kinda tried all of the ideas he's come up with?


Rather obviously, the best food to feed your dog is one that he does well on--good poop, lots of energy, clear skin and a shiny coat. That may vary from dog to dog. It is not always the most expensive brand.

In general though, I would stay away from "designer" brands--they tend to follow the fads and charge accordingly, but they don't have years of science and testing to back up their food blends. Like you said, many of us swear by the Purina Sensitive Skin and Stomach (salmon and rice) kibble--it just seems to work well for many dobermans.

But I'm not a food expert and I don't follow the ins and outs of class action lawsuits and recalls perhaps as closely as I should. MeadowCat, I know, follows the issues more closely than I do. She had this to say in a previous post:



I'm sure people will chime in here who know more than I do.
So the vet is not coming up with many suggestions which makes me think i should change the vet, ibd is on my mind but I’m trying to think that he’s too young to have ibd and i know the vet would suggest to isolate everything to one protein which i heard is not good for dobermans? I’m not sure if that’s correct but I’ve seen it in multiple sources.. the diarrhea started when he was on the food that the breeder had him on, the vet suggested not to change it for couple days to see if it stops and if it doesn’t go on blend diet which also didn’t stop it. So i basically don’t have a food that he is doing good on.. I will probably try to go with Purina sensitive stomach and start adding it to the rice slowly to see if that helps
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
What was your breeder feeding your puppy when you got her?

I'll make one initial recommendation--I don't know how much you are feeding the puppy but one of the very common causes of diarrhea in puppies is overfeeding. Most puppies will eat quite a lot more food than they really need and the end result will be diarrhea.

Feeding pumpkin only works if the puppy needs more fiber and that's really all that pumpkin adds.

About a million years ago my vet made a recommendation for KISS when feeding puppies. (KISS--keep it simple stupid)--He said stick to the big manufacturers because they are the ones who use nutritionists to formulate the food they sell and who also keep colonies of dogs who test any formula they've developed and who have a track record when it comes to feeding suitable products.

That was back in 1959 and it's pretty much worked for me for a lot of years. I presently feed Purina Pro Plan and it has been my go to food for years. I usually feed the ProPlan Salmon and Rice (aka Sensitive Skin and Stomach) or the ProPlan Chicken and Rice or the Sport 30/20. The basic formulas and percentage of protein are similar enough that I can feed any one of those without having to worry about a long transition from one to the other.

This is the line that Purina used to call ProPlan Focus. It is NOT the part of the ProPlan line that was being called Savor (there is a salmon and rice and a chicken and rice in that line as well) it is now being called their shredded blend--it has small chunks of soy flavored with chicken or salmon--and I chose not to feed it because it does not have as much actual salmon or chicken in it as the food I feed.

So how much are you feeding her? How many meals a day and how much per meal. Any additives other than the kibble? At five months I'm usually feeding two meals a day.

When I first started feeding Dobes there wasn't much by way of puppy food except a general one that worked for small to medium sized breeds but didn't work so well for large or giant breeds where you don't want to feed very high protein kibble--because it encourages growth too fast and can lead to skeletal overgrowth problems.

And while I did feed a puppy food for a few years when the bigger manufacturers came out with large breed formulas eventually I went back to simply feeding an adult formula or an all life stages formula.

I do not recommend grain free formulas--the evidence is still not advanced enough to tell why some of the grain free food seem to cause a dietary DCM in dogs who are not any of the varieties (like Dobes) where DCM is a genetic problem in the breed. The most recent theory seems to be that taking grain and substituting potato or lentles as the carb source may leave some micro nutrients lacking.

My puppies, when I get them are usually left on the diet the breeder has been feeding them. Even if I think the diet is terrible I can always add what I think will make it better but changing to a totally different formula tends to just give one more thing that the puppy has to adapt to. And I very rarely have problems with ongoing diarrhea.

Generally if I am not feeding the ProPlan as listed above I'd be feeding Eukanuba--adult, or Hills Adult or maybe their Sensitive Stomach. I've had very few problems with any of those three.

This has only been happening in the last three weeks? It's possible that your puppy might be allergic to chicken but food allergies are actually quite uncommon. And it take months rather than weeks for a puppy to get an actual allergy going. My cat who was allergic to food (all food) and who eventually ended up on hypoallergic diets and lived to be 19 on them--hypoallergic diets have all proteins--both meat and vegitable hydrolized into short protein links which the bodt doesn't recognize as an allergen. But he was was 18 months before the problem showed up--it took us 6 months to find the right prescription diets (all hydrolized) that he could eat.

So a food allergy wouldn't normally show up at 5 months. Some of what you've said (like stools getting runnier at the end of the day but generally reasonably solid in the morning) sounds a lot like too much food.

So how much are you feeding. And is the "blend" something you are making or is this something you buy? Chicken nd rice is one of the things that usually works to stop diarrhea where the diarrhea is caused by eating too much or tainted food.

If it's something you are making you could try rice and cottage cheese (1 part low fat cottage chees to 3 part boiled white rice).

If any Purina product is known to cause cancer that's news to me. I've been feeding their products long enough I'd surely have had at least one dog end up with cancer but to get real about it--that's a huge company that does a very good job of formulating all kinds of food for all kinds of animals.

The fact that they test their formulas on living animals to make sure they accomplish what Purina says they are supposed to accomplish is a big plus to me.

I shy away from products that are computer defined--there have been enough problems with some of them I'd rather go with the bigger manufacturers.

I'm sure you'll hear from other people and I know people who get downright crazy about what dog food should and should not contain.

But try something obvious first--cut the quantity of food down some and see if that helps. Also after hard exercise a lot of dogs will have a soft or sloppy stool--those are exercise related and do sometimes show up but this wouldn't be all the time which is what you seem to be seeing.

Good luck but one thing I'd do for sure is to pick something and stick to it for at least several weeks when you are trying to determine what is causing the problem.

dobebug
Ok, so the breeder was feeding Crowley a cup of Nutri Source chicken and rice and health extension chicken wet food as a topping for breakfast and then she would fill the bowl with Nutri source kibble only to keep it full i guess which I didn’t like and when i got him at 8 weeks I called a vet and she suggested feeding by instructions on the bag of food and adding the wet topping to each meal. I was told to feed the pup 3-4 times a day in small portions, and i went by that so he is about 45 lbs now and he still eats 3 times a day, each time a cup with wet topping, only in the mornings i started adding a raw egg instead of wet food. I take him for monthly checkups to a different vet (for heart worm and flee and tick preventions) and the bet always compliments on how great his coat and teeth are saying that everything looks good and whatever we are feeding him is going great.
So when diarrhea started he was on his usual food that he didn’t have problems with before, but now that i think about it his stool was never really firm, it was okay, not too soft but not very firm and it makes me question if that is actually a good food choice for him. When diarrhea didn’t end within couple days after a vet visit on his regular food plus diarrhea and stomach coating/calming medication i put him on blend diet (self made boiled white rice with boiled boneless skinless chicken) small portions up to 4 times a day. That also didn’t work for him, he still had loose stool so i decided to put him back on kibble by adding it little by little to each meal which helped for several days and then he started having diarrhea again. So right now he is on 3 times a day a cup of rice/kibble with boiled chicken. I always wait about 40 min to an hour to take him outside so the food settles and doesn’t cause the bloat.
I did notice that before this whole situation whenever he was too active he would have loose stool sometimes and read that it was normal if not constantly.
Also i read that the treats have to be all different (diff. Proteins) so he does usually get treats (when training mostly) that are different. Now I’m not sure if that’s the right thing to do..

And now since you’ve said that it might be overfeeding, I’m thinking it might be that.. I was told I should feed him up to 3.5 cups a day, 3 times a day until he is 1 y.o. And then it has to be up to 4 cups a day twice.
But again I’m no expert so I’m always looking for suggestions it’s just hard to pick the right one since there are too many opinions.
Please tell me how much should i feed him at this point and if i want to try Purina how should i introduce it to him since he doesn’t have at this point food that he is doing good on. Also should anything be added to the kibble? I see people always add eggs/veggies/raw meat/fruit/some powder for blablabla and it makes me think I don’t do enough but when i start researching there are again too many opinions.. The only thing that I’m sure of is i add fish oil and a little water to food so it’s more hydrating. Im against raw feeding just because i know I won’t make it as nutritious as it should be, it’s too easy to mess up and I don’t want to hurt him in any way.. If i call my vet i will just get more pills for diarrhea and it didn’t help first time so probably wouldn’t help again and I don’t want to give him pills just to give him pills.

I’m not sure if it’s allergy or not, before i posted i was reading in one of the threads that puppies get food allergies suddenly around 6 months of age, and about purina and cancer also not my words i heard many people say that so I’m just trying to explore more..

please let me know what you think how much i should feed him and how to introduce new food.. sorry the response is all over the place, I’m trying to put it all together without forgetting something
 

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I don't think your puppy has a food allergy. It sounds like you're getting an overload of information and doing "too much". Your puppy is probably getting too much food, too.

I'm the same as Bug - I'd "keep it simple." I also feed Proplan. When you're figuring out how much food to feed, I start with the food recommendations on the bag, and sometimes you have to feed less than that. When people recommend how much to feed online, they have NO idea how many calories are in the food you're feeding...it varies from food to food, so saying "3 cups a day" or something like that is completely worthless - one food might have 400 calories a cup and another only 300 calories a cup, so if you're feeding the same 3 cups a day of each, one dog is getting WAY more calories than the other dog, you see? Plus, every dog is different - they have a different body size and metabolism, so they each have different needs. That's why you just start with what's recommended on the bag for your dog's size and weight and then you adjust up or down based on how your dog reacts to that. If your dog is getting a little too fat or has some diarrhea, feed less. If your dog is a little too skinny, you feed more.

What I would suggest is picking a food, and for now, just feed that food for a while until he gets stabilized. Don't add any "extras" for a while. Once he's doing well, you can slowly introduce the other stuff back in to make sure his system can handle it. And do it SLOWLY. One raw egg a week for a while. One that's going well, you can increase it a bit. Then try ONE new thing.

For treats, I'd also eliminate those until he's doing well. Again, with a puppy that isn't having normal stools, you want to get everything back to normal before you upset the system. And keep in mind if you feed a lot of treats for training, they can cause stomach upset (and, that you need to reduce his meals if you use a lot of treats - they can lead to overfeeding, too). I tend to use a lot of homemade treats or "people" types of foods with my dogs...cheese, boiled chicken, that type of thing. But again, until things are normal, I'd probably use the kibble.

I also feed Proplan.
 

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Well, I agree with MeadowCat and Melbrod--and you are getting a lot of information (too much I think and quite a lot of it is so much hogwash) Changing protein sources in the treats may have something to do with the reactions that are giving the dog diarrhea--the only time I think you do need to give different protein sources is if you are feeding a raw diet--and there are a number of web sources and forums dedicated to that and how to do it. But it is not convenient for me so I don't feed raw (I do give raw as treats given that I'm not trying to find or stabilize a dogs diet--and those are usually things like raw chicken gizzards, raw chicken hearts, small raw fish--like smelt. They are treats only in small quantity and are definitely not a major part of the dogs diet.

If any of those toppers you have been given are in the canned type I'd stop that immediately. I have seen and have had problems with canned foods (which dogs always love but!) they don't seem to work well with all dogs--and many puppies don't tolerate canned well at all--and immediately show up with off and on diarrhea.

I think--judging what you are seeing and the fact that it's recent I'd also ask the vet to check for coccidia and giardia--both can often cause intermittent diarrhea--and they have to be tested for by a different process that things like more common worms do (that would be round worm, whip worm and hook worm. and particularly whip can and often does cause intermittent diarrhea)

So I'd be inclined to first try reducing the quantity of food the puppy is getting--I can only tell you approximately what I feed puppies at various ages but as both MeadowCat and Melbrod have pointed out--different dog need different foods and different quantities. My Aussie who was somewhat oversized and weighed around 60 pounds as an adult in good condition and ate about 1-1/4 cups of ProPlan chicken and rice kibble (Focus) twice a day would have been rolling in fat if he got as much as the 2 cups per meal (2 meals a day) ProPlan chicken and rice or the salmon and rice.

I do give extras from the time the dogs are puppies and continue through their lives. Yogurt or cottage cheese, eggs (and I hard boil them because the dogs have to share them with me and I like egg salad sandwiches so I hard boil anything from 6 to a dozen eggs at a time and the dogs get one chopped up in their eventing meal. ) And if I find a hot buy of hamburger or ground turkey I'd buy that and cook in with a little water into something like sloppy joe consistency and add it to one meal. And I do give fish oil starting at 6 months and Vitamin E which you should be giving with fish oil at the rate of 400iu Vitamin E for every 2,000 mg of fish oil. The reason that I don't start that until 6 months is because the amount of oil can sometimes cause diarrhea on younger puppies.

I'd probably be feeding about 1-1/2 cups of kibble (with no extra's when trying to get something the puppy isn't having diarrhea on--and from what you are saying I guess you could try that with the kibble part of what you are feeding now--with a little warm water only--twice a day. No treats except the kibble itself. That, obviously works out to about 3 cups (measured please) per day--I'd try that for starters whether you decide to continue to use the food you've been feeding or switch to ProPlan.

When it comes to treats like Meadow Cat I use a lot of the dogs regular kibble for ordinary treats--dogs usually regard anything you hand them individually as big deal treats. For training new things I have a variety of home made treats that I use for things like tracking (where you end up using a lot of treats in the initial training) cheese--real cheese not the stuff that comers in cans--mostly string cheese actually and I know a lady who trained a dog all the way through Utility with cheerios. And I confess that I trained an Afghan Hound through Open with Pounce--which are very small individual cat treats. But while you are trying to get to the bottom of the intermittent diarrhea I'd cut out treats for at least 6 weeks and then add them in slowly.

I have never had a puppy suddenly develop food allergies at around 6 months--personally I think this falls into the category of the hogwash stuff you hear. Ditto for the need for Dobermans to have "different" proteins to stay healthy--I've had too many dogs who ate the same food, same protein, by the same manufacturer all of their lives--include the Doberman I lost recently at 14 years who was weaned on the ProPlan Sensitive Skin and Stomach (back when it was called Salmon and Rice) and ate that all his long life.

I don't think Purina makes a food that might cause cancer--but Dobes do have a tendency to develop a variety of cancers and Boxers are one of the cancer factory breeds along with Golden Retreivers. And sometimes thats how these speculative rumors get started.

I also judge how much food a puppy should get based on what they look like--not so much on what the scale may say or what Joe Blow down the street tells me his puppy eats. Puppies typically go through growth stages where on exactly the same amount of food per day they may look roly poly one day and three days later they'll have grown legs that look like something that belongs on an antelope and look like they are all bones--I add a little kibble if they are looking stagy and thin or take a few kibbles out of their meals if they are looking pudgy.

On average my male puppies would be getting about 1-3/4 cup of kibble per meal and they'd be getting 2 meals a day at five months--to that I'd be giving a spoonful of yogurt or cottage cheese with the morning meal and and egg with the evening meal or maybe some of the hamburger or ground turkey sloppy joe stuff also with the evening meal--about 1/4 cup of that. When I make it I freeze most of it in pint containers keeping enough in the refrigerator for a few days.

And over the next month they'd be getting a little more so that by the time they hit six months they would be getting 2 cups of kibble per meal--two meals a day. And males tend to have growth issues between six months to a year and I'd had puppies who were getting over three cups per meal or more (six to 8 cups per day) during some of those growth periods. The adult males usually settle in at around 4 cups per day--a little more in the winter and a little less in the summer.

So good luck--hope something in these answers works for you and your puppy--keep us posted as you work through this--and maybe someone will come up with a brilliant, absolute answer for you and the puppy.

dobebug
 

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Hmmm--here's another thought--there is a thread going one about puppies who have been teething and have loose stools--that's another thing that might be going on--most Dobe puppies start teething at 4 month plus or minus a few days and that tends to go on for the next two to three months (although I had one boy who went through the entire process in a matter of about 5 weeks--he lost his first baby incisors (top and bottom in the very front of the mouth between the canine incisors) all in the same day--made him sick, ran an elevated temperature and wanted nothing to do with food at all for almost two days--I looked him his mouth the following week and said a number of unprintable things because it was sort of a big surprise that he'd lost all of the teeth at the same time both top and bottom. About t0 days later the same thing happened with his premolars--lost all of them over a three day stretch and again stopped eating, ran an elevated temperature and at the end of that he had all of his adult premolars coming in. About three weeks after that the molars came in and while they were pushing through his gums again he ran a temperature, didn't want to eat . The last thing to come in were the canine incisors (and that has been pretty typical for most of the puppies I've had since the beginning.)

With the dog that went through teething at the speed of a comet--I don't even remember if he had diarrhea at all--might not have because he didn't eat during each of the loss of puppy teeth to the eruption of the secondary teeth. But in general I don't remember the puppies having had diarrhea during the process. I didn't have Joey when most of his teething went on--his molars weren't fully erupted and he still had his upper baby canines when when he was loaned to me at almost 6 monthsl

But check the teeth and see what's going on there.

dobebug
 

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There is a class action lawsuit going on against Purina saying its foods contain glyphosate (a chemical found in Roundup weed killer, already the subject of multibillion lawsuits due to its apparent link to cancer) and that they are not disclosing it.

At least part of the lawsuit alleges that "although Purina marketed its products as “safe” for pets, several studies have found that the dog and cat foods may contain “an alarming amount” of glyphosate, a biocide and endocrine disruptor linked to liver damage and cancer in animals.

According to the case, Purina represents on packaging and through statements on its website that the safety and quality of its products are the company’s “top priority.” Assuring customers that Purina pet food undergoes “thousands of quality & safety checks,” the defendant insists that the dog and cat foods it sells will be “without risk” to pets, the lawsuit alleges."

One study I saw said that glyphosate is present, but in levels much lower than the standard human limit. I haven't dug around for more studies to see what they are quoting. It is believed that the glyphosate gets into the food from residual quantities in the vegetables that are used in their diet.

Anyway, a "Class Action" lawsuit based on the food not being entirely without risk? This seems to be a join the crowd "flavor of the month" type thing to me.
 

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The amount of ridiculous claims shared on social media about pet products lately are ridiculous. Whether someone wants to feed Purina or not ...that's fine. And there are sometimes recalls on food, sure, but I am extremely skeptical about the lawsuit you mention, Mel, and it doesn't take much these days to find a lawyer willing to try and get money out of a pet company.

I've also seen utterly ridiculous things shared lately about flea and tick products. Don't even get me started. It makes me want to pull my hair out. People need to stop relying on social media for "research."
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I don't think your puppy has a food allergy. It sounds like you're getting an overload of information and doing "too much". Your puppy is probably getting too much food, too.

I'm the same as Bug - I'd "keep it simple." I also feed Proplan. When you're figuring out how much food to feed, I start with the food recommendations on the bag, and sometimes you have to feed less than that. When people recommend how much to feed online, they have NO idea how many calories are in the food you're feeding...it varies from food to food, so saying "3 cups a day" or something like that is completely worthless - one food might have 400 calories a cup and another only 300 calories a cup, so if you're feeding the same 3 cups a day of each, one dog is getting WAY more calories than the other dog, you see? Plus, every dog is different - they have a different body size and metabolism, so they each have different needs. That's why you just start with what's recommended on the bag for your dog's size and weight and then you adjust up or down based on how your dog reacts to that. If your dog is getting a little too fat or has some diarrhea, feed less. If your dog is a little too skinny, you feed more.

What I would suggest is picking a food, and for now, just feed that food for a while until he gets stabilized. Don't add any "extras" for a while. Once he's doing well, you can slowly introduce the other stuff back in to make sure his system can handle it. And do it SLOWLY. One raw egg a week for a while. One that's going well, you can increase it a bit. Then try ONE new thing.

For treats, I'd also eliminate those until he's doing well. Again, with a puppy that isn't having normal stools, you want to get everything back to normal before you upset the system. And keep in mind if you feed a lot of treats for training, they can cause stomach upset (and, that you need to reduce his meals if you use a lot of treats - they can lead to overfeeding, too). I tend to use a lot of homemade treats or "people" types of foods with my dogs...cheese, boiled chicken, that type of thing. But again, until things are normal, I'd probably use the kibble.

I also feed Proplan.
I completely agree that I’m getting too much information and have no idea what to do with it.. The breeder is not much help, that’s why i try to research on my own, but there is too much information out there to pick out the right piece of it.
So i decided to go with Purina Pro plan sensitive stomach and skin because majority of people recommend it and hopefully that works, if not i will get back to trying other things. But now the question is if he is on rice and chicken right now do i start adding kibble little by little until he gets fully on kibble and leave it at that for a while? And about treats, we go to the training classes once a week, i skipped 2 weeks already beause this issue. They reward during class with treats, he is food motivated.. how do i go about that? Try rewarding with chicken i cook?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Hmmm--here's another thought--there is a thread going one about puppies who have been teething and have loose stools--that's another thing that might be going on--most Dobe puppies start teething at 4 month plus or minus a few days and that tends to go on for the next two to three months (although I had one boy who went through the entire process in a matter of about 5 weeks--he lost his first baby incisors (top and bottom in the very front of the mouth between the canine incisors) all in the same day--made him sick, ran an elevated temperature and wanted nothing to do with food at all for almost two days--I looked him his mouth the following week and said a number of unprintable things because it was sort of a big surprise that he'd lost all of the teeth at the same time both top and bottom. About t0 days later the same thing happened with his premolars--lost all of them over a three day stretch and again stopped eating, ran an elevated temperature and at the end of that he had all of his adult premolars coming in. About three weeks after that the molars came in and while they were pushing through his gums again he ran a temperature, didn't want to eat . The last thing to come in were the canine incisors (and that has been pretty typical for most of the puppies I've had since the beginning.)

With the dog that went through teething at the speed of a comet--I don't even remember if he had diarrhea at all--might not have because he didn't eat during each of the loss of puppy teeth to the eruption of the secondary teeth. But in general I don't remember the puppies having had diarrhea during the process. I didn't have Joey when most of his teething went on--his molars weren't fully erupted and he still had his upper baby canines when when he was loaned to me at almost 6 monthsl

But check the teeth and see what's going on there.

dobebug
Yes! Crowley is loosing teeth like crazy, he started at about 4.5 months i think and now at 5 months he looses 1-3 teeth in couple of days, his mouth is bloody for past couple days, and i can see that he has more new teeth coming in (I’m not sure which ones, English is my second language, I wouldn’t know all proper names for teeth)
So if that is the cause you might have solved it! He doesn’t loose appetite though. He would eat anything at anytime which I’m controlling (no treats from strangers, no picking anything from the ground, leaving nothing on the floor whether it’s edible or not)
 

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I think it's going to be a question of whether your pup is just having "soft" stool, or actual diarrhea, and you may need to talk with your vet, if that's possible (I know vets are really having a challenging time right now with trying to keep up with the huge amount of appointments during Covid). I'm not a vet, and I wouldn't want to advise you on what to do with a puppy who might be actually ill... I know what I'd do based on my own experience with my own healthy dogs.

My dogs train in classes with treats and food, too. I've often used boiled/roasted chicken for rewards in class. One trick is to use their normal kibble for reward and just mix in a little bit of chicken. If you put some chicken into a bag of kibble for a couple of hours ahead of time (stick it in your fridge), the chicken will make the whole bag of kibble much more appealing, because the scent of the chicken gets into the whole bag :) That way they aren't eating as much chicken :) But I've also brought a bag of TINY pieces of chicken that I've cut up, or, if you don't feel like cooking, I've bought bags of pre-cooked chicken from the refrigerator section in the grocery store and cut those pieces even tinier.

As far as switching to the Proplan, usually when my dogs are on a chicken/rice diet due to diarrhea, they are also on some kind of medication (typically metronidizole)...we tend to do a day or two of the chicken and rice and then switch back to kibble, and they are still on the medication at that time. I don't know if your puppy is on any medication or not, or how "soft" the stools are.

Remember that you really need to stick to one thing that you're trying for quite a few weeks...the more you switch things around the harder it's going to be to know if something works. It takes several weeks for the system to calm down and adjust to the changes. Don't give up after 2 weeks and think something isn't working.
 
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
The amount of ridiculous claims shared on social media about pet products lately are ridiculous. Whether someone wants to feed Purina or not ...that's fine. And there are sometimes recalls on food, sure, but I am extremely skeptical about the lawsuit you mention, Mel, and it doesn't take much these days to find a lawyer willing to try and get money out of a pet company.

I've also seen utterly ridiculous things shared lately about flea and tick products. Don't even get me started. It makes me want to pull my hair out. People need to stop relying on social media for "research."



That’s why I’m so confused with everything on top of trying to figure out what works for each dog individually. I get these problems by taking all of the information in and sprinkling some paranoia on top and here we are
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I think it's going to be a question of whether your pup is just having "soft" stool, or actual diarrhea, and you may need to talk with your vet, if that's possible (I know vets are really having a challenging time right now with trying to keep up with the huge amount of appointments during Covid). I'm not a vet, and I wouldn't want to advise you on what to do with a puppy who might be actually ill... I know what I'd do based on my own experience with my own healthy dogs.

My dogs train in classes with treats and food, too. I've often used boiled/roasted chicken for rewards in class. One trick is to use their normal kibble for reward and just mix in a little bit of chicken. If you put some chicken into a bag of kibble for a couple of hours ahead of time (stick it in your fridge), the chicken will make the whole bag of kibble much more appealing, because the scent of the chicken gets into the whole bag :) That way they aren't eating as much chicken :) But I've also brought a bag of TINY pieces of chicken that I've cut up, or, if you don't feel like cooking, I've bought bags of pre-cooked chicken from the refrigerator section in the grocery store and cut those pieces even tinier.

As far as switching to the Proplan, usually when my dogs are on a chicken/rice diet due to diarrhea, they are also on some kind of medication (typically metronidizole)...we tend to do a day or two of the chicken and rice and then switch back to kibble, and they are still on the medication at that time. I don't know if your puppy is on any medication or not, or how "soft" the stools are.

Remember that you really need to stick to one thing that you're trying for quite a few weeks...the more you switch things around the harder it's going to be to know if something works. It takes several weeks for the system to calm down and adjust to the changes. Don't give up after 2 weeks and think something isn't working.
Ok this trick with the chicken and treats in the same bag is perfect! I would definitely try this.
And about the stool he sometimes has very soft stool sometimes very loose but last night is was full blown watery mess after a few days been on a better side. He was on medication Endosorb for diarrhea and it did nothing for him. But i will try switching him to Purina giving small portions with rice during couple days then less times with bigger portions until he is on 2 meals of kibble and keep it at that and hopefully that fixes things. If not we will explore other options with vet
 

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I am skeptical of any class-action lawsuit. Even if there is an award in the case, the lawyers walk away with millions while the individuals who joined in the lawsuit get pennies.
 

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I guess that I'd do fairly slow switch from the chicken and rice to the ProPlan kibble (and I'd switch to the adult formula and wouldn't even do a switch to a puppy formula and then to the adult. I start with how ever much of the chicken and rice you are feeding and measure out a similar amount and every day I'd take a teaspoon of the chicken and rice away and instead add a teaspoon of the kibble. This is a radically slow switch but this is sort of an attempt to not upset the puppy's already upset gut. I'd do that until all the pup gets is kibble with a little warm water. And I think for training class treats I'd use the system of adding a very small amount of cooked chicken to a baggy of kibble a few hours before the class and stick it in the refrigerator until you go to class.

I would not add anything to the kibble once the puppy is on only kibble for meals until you are getting decent stools--during the teething process you may still have soft stools but once the teething is complete (probably in about 2 to 2-1/2 months if the stools are solid and you have controlled the amount of kibble so that you are pretty sure the puppy isn't getting too much food then you can try adding things. I'd add yogurt or cottage cheese first and see if that goes well for a couple of weeks--after that I'd add eggs. And after that you can try adding some meat. But these should all be in fairly small quantities--the kibble itself if supposed to provide most of the nutrition.

Also--I feed my puppies bites of this and that if they are hanging out in the kitchen when I'm cooking for me. So as puppies they get bits of tomato, lettuce (all the dogs really like romaine and any kind of cabbage) cucumbers, green peppers, almost any kind of fruit--I had a Dobe who would beg for and eat small slices of lemon--made faces the whole time but whatever--there are almost no fruits that my dogs wont eat.

There is a very short list of things that I don't give them at all and there is a ton of information on Google to find out why--onions, garlic, avocado pits and peels--the part of it you eat is fine--macademia nuts--are on the list and have been on the list for so long I can't even remember what it is about them that is bad for dogs.

So if the puppies want a taste of something--yes I give it to them--in very small quantity. It also goes for my cats and as a result I've had two cats that loved and ate peanuts. A cat that would eat almost any kind of a bean--black beans, kidney beans, navy beans--and that was a cat who wouldn't eat anything except the beans or his kibble.

Again, good luck with this--If you get better stools and when you start adding thing if something you give has the dog with very soft stools or frank diarrhea--quit giving it. That's why you want to add one thing at a time and feed it for at least several weeks before adding another item.

But it may turn out that most of this is a result of the teething and once the permanent teeth are in the whole problem will go away.

dobebug
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I guess that I'd do fairly slow switch from the chicken and rice to the ProPlan kibble (and I'd switch to the adult formula and wouldn't even do a switch to a puppy formula and then to the adult. I start with how ever much of the chicken and rice you are feeding and measure out a similar amount and every day I'd take a teaspoon of the chicken and rice away and instead add a teaspoon of the kibble. This is a radically slow switch but this is sort of an attempt to not upset the puppy's already upset gut. I'd do that until all the pup gets is kibble with a little warm water. And I think for training class treats I'd use the system of adding a very small amount of cooked chicken to a baggy of kibble a few hours before the class and stick it in the refrigerator until you go to class.

I would not add anything to the kibble once the puppy is on only kibble for meals until you are getting decent stools--during the teething process you may still have soft stools but once the teething is complete (probably in about 2 to 2-1/2 months if the stools are solid and you have controlled the amount of kibble so that you are pretty sure the puppy isn't getting too much food then you can try adding things. I'd add yogurt or cottage cheese first and see if that goes well for a couple of weeks--after that I'd add eggs. And after that you can try adding some meat. But these should all be in fairly small quantities--the kibble itself if supposed to provide most of the nutrition.

Also--I feed my puppies bites of this and that if they are hanging out in the kitchen when I'm cooking for me. So as puppies they get bits of tomato, lettuce (all the dogs really like romaine and any kind of cabbage) cucumbers, green peppers, almost any kind of fruit--I had a Dobe who would beg for and eat small slices of lemon--made faces the whole time but whatever--there are almost no fruits that my dogs wont eat.

There is a very short list of things that I don't give them at all and there is a ton of information on Google to find out why--onions, garlic, avocado pits and peels--the part of it you eat is fine--macademia nuts--are on the list and have been on the list for so long I can't even remember what it is about them that is bad for dogs.

So if the puppies want a taste of something--yes I give it to them--in very small quantity. It also goes for my cats and as a result I've had two cats that loved and ate peanuts. A cat that would eat almost any kind of a bean--black beans, kidney beans, navy beans--and that was a cat who wouldn't eat anything except the beans or his kibble.

Again, good luck with this--If you get better stools and when you start adding thing if something you give has the dog with very soft stools or frank diarrhea--quit giving it. That's why you want to add one thing at a time and feed it for at least several weeks before adding another item.

But it may turn out that most of this is a result of the teething and once the permanent teeth are in the whole problem will go away.

dobebug
This sounds very good to me. When he had normal stool i would give him veggies and fruit just to try and he loved all that but for now i will strictly focus on food food until it’s all resolved. Thank you so much for your help!
 

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For a high value training treat I use my regular kibble (Pro Plan Focus).place some kibble Into a baggie (2 cups)

Take a 2 strips of bacon and cook in the microwave until crispy not flimsy greasy.

Place the whole bacon strips into the bag and let it sit for a day In the Refrigerator.

Now you have regular kibble that to your dog smells like bacon!!!! Oh yeah........yum....

This 2 cups will last me for over a week as we do nosework games.

I find the more I stick with my regular kibble, less problems with the pooper.

Earlier I used Earthborn....no good For my dog. Skin was flaky.

My vet recommended Purina Pro Plan as their products are backed by science.

Now Pro Plan only.....I add nothing extra to the food.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
It doesn't seem terribly likely to me that he has a true food allergy at his age--but he could be sensitive to one or the other food sources. Another bland diet mixture I've had recommended to me was cooked white rice and well-browned hamburger meat. You should rinse the cooked hamburger a couple of times in water to remove some of the fat before mixing it with the rice. If your dog's problem is with chicken, perhaps he will tolerate beef.

If you think a food allergy is really at the root of the problem, you could also try a hydrolyzed protein dog food--all of the big proteins that dogs can be allergic to are broken down into smaller pieces that tend not to cause allergic reactions. It is a more expensive food and is generally available only by vet prescription.

Hydrolyzed Protein Dog Food (vetinfo.com)

Food trials can take a long time to run. The idea is that you find a limited protein source food or use a hydrolyzed protein diet and put him on that until he has no symptoms. Then you add in new proteins VERY SLOWLY (6-8 weeks between each addition) to identify if a particular protein source is the one he reacts to.

There is also more involved testing that can be done to look for things like IBD
Inflammatory Bowel Disease in Dogs | VCA Animal Hospital (vcahospitals.com)
but I don't know if you are truly at that point.

Does your vet have any further suggestions about cause/diet/treatment or do you think you've kinda tried all of the ideas he's come up with?


Rather obviously, the best food to feed your dog is one that he does well on--good poop, lots of energy, clear skin and a shiny coat. That may vary from dog to dog. It is not always the most expensive brand.

In general though, I would stay away from "designer" brands--they tend to follow the fads and charge accordingly, but they don't have years of science and testing to back up their food blends. Like you said, many of us swear by the Purina Sensitive Skin and Stomach (salmon and rice) kibble--it just seems to work well for many dobermans.

But I'm not a food expert and I don't follow the ins and outs of class action lawsuits and recalls perhaps as closely as I should. MeadowCat, I know, follows the issues more closely than I do. She had this to say in a previous post:



I'm sure people will chime in here who know more than I do.

What was your breeder feeding your puppy when you got her?

I'll make one initial recommendation--I don't know how much you are feeding the puppy but one of the very common causes of diarrhea in puppies is overfeeding. Most puppies will eat quite a lot more food than they really need and the end result will be diarrhea.

Feeding pumpkin only works if the puppy needs more fiber and that's really all that pumpkin adds.

About a million years ago my vet made a recommendation for KISS when feeding puppies. (KISS--keep it simple stupid)--He said stick to the big manufacturers because they are the ones who use nutritionists to formulate the food they sell and who also keep colonies of dogs who test any formula they've developed and who have a track record when it comes to feeding suitable products.

That was back in 1959 and it's pretty much worked for me for a lot of years. I presently feed Purina Pro Plan and it has been my go to food for years. I usually feed the ProPlan Salmon and Rice (aka Sensitive Skin and Stomach) or the ProPlan Chicken and Rice or the Sport 30/20. The basic formulas and percentage of protein are similar enough that I can feed any one of those without having to worry about a long transition from one to the other.

This is the line that Purina used to call ProPlan Focus. It is NOT the part of the ProPlan line that was being called Savor (there is a salmon and rice and a chicken and rice in that line as well) it is now being called their shredded blend--it has small chunks of soy flavored with chicken or salmon--and I chose not to feed it because it does not have as much actual salmon or chicken in it as the food I feed.

So how much are you feeding her? How many meals a day and how much per meal. Any additives other than the kibble? At five months I'm usually feeding two meals a day.

When I first started feeding Dobes there wasn't much by way of puppy food except a general one that worked for small to medium sized breeds but didn't work so well for large or giant breeds where you don't want to feed very high protein kibble--because it encourages growth too fast and can lead to skeletal overgrowth problems.

And while I did feed a puppy food for a few years when the bigger manufacturers came out with large breed formulas eventually I went back to simply feeding an adult formula or an all life stages formula.

I do not recommend grain free formulas--the evidence is still not advanced enough to tell why some of the grain free food seem to cause a dietary DCM in dogs who are not any of the varieties (like Dobes) where DCM is a genetic problem in the breed. The most recent theory seems to be that taking grain and substituting potato or lentles as the carb source may leave some micro nutrients lacking.

My puppies, when I get them are usually left on the diet the breeder has been feeding them. Even if I think the diet is terrible I can always add what I think will make it better but changing to a totally different formula tends to just give one more thing that the puppy has to adapt to. And I very rarely have problems with ongoing diarrhea.

Generally if I am not feeding the ProPlan as listed above I'd be feeding Eukanuba--adult, or Hills Adult or maybe their Sensitive Stomach. I've had very few problems with any of those three.

This has only been happening in the last three weeks? It's possible that your puppy might be allergic to chicken but food allergies are actually quite uncommon. And it take months rather than weeks for a puppy to get an actual allergy going. My cat who was allergic to food (all food) and who eventually ended up on hypoallergic diets and lived to be 19 on them--hypoallergic diets have all proteins--both meat and vegitable hydrolized into short protein links which the bodt doesn't recognize as an allergen. But he was was 18 months before the problem showed up--it took us 6 months to find the right prescription diets (all hydrolized) that he could eat.

So a food allergy wouldn't normally show up at 5 months. Some of what you've said (like stools getting runnier at the end of the day but generally reasonably solid in the morning) sounds a lot like too much food.

So how much are you feeding. And is the "blend" something you are making or is this something you buy? Chicken nd rice is one of the things that usually works to stop diarrhea where the diarrhea is caused by eating too much or tainted food.

If it's something you are making you could try rice and cottage cheese (1 part low fat cottage chees to 3 part boiled white rice).

If any Purina product is known to cause cancer that's news to me. I've been feeding their products long enough I'd surely have had at least one dog end up with cancer but to get real about it--that's a huge company that does a very good job of formulating all kinds of food for all kinds of animals.

The fact that they test their formulas on living animals to make sure they accomplish what Purina says they are supposed to accomplish is a big plus to me.

I shy away from products that are computer defined--there have been enough problems with some of them I'd rather go with the bigger manufacturers.

I'm sure you'll hear from other people and I know people who get downright crazy about what dog food should and should not contain.

But try something obvious first--cut the quantity of food down some and see if that helps. Also after hard exercise a lot of dogs will have a soft or sloppy stool--those are exercise related and do sometimes show up but this wouldn't be all the time which is what you seem to be seeing.

Good luck but one thing I'd do for sure is to pick something and stick to it for at least several weeks when you are trying to determine what is causing the problem.

dobebug
So we got Purina today and so far he had 2 tablespoons and he did have firm stool in the evening which makes me super happy, now i know it’s not a miracle but hopefully it’s a good start to the end of this issue. I will start taking him off of 3 meals per day to 2 meals slowly while transitioning to new food.
Also while i was in the store i was looking at other foods and ingredient lists and Acana seemed to have not a bad ingredient list. Anyone has any thoughts on it? I’m asking just in case i will ever need to change the food which i hopefully won’t
 
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