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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm needing help and clarification. Sorry this will be long, but I want to make sure I get the back story and reason for the questions. Ripley eats Taste of the Wild and I rotate the protein with every bag. Two weeks ago she started vomiting. Couldn't even keep down water. Went to the regular vet. They said "she probably ate something she shouldn't have" and gave her meds for nausea. Now we have a trash can with a click lid and an invisible fence, what did she get? Better for a day, then more vomiting, 5 times before the vet opened for me to call. Put her on IV fluids, x-ray showed gas pockets, blood test showed liver numbers up. Again "she ate something she shouldn't have" like spoiled meat that sent toxins to her system. Kept her overnight and sent her home the next afternoon. Her spirits were better and her liver number had gone down. Plus it was a holiday weekend and she would have to stay till Tuesday when I brought her in on Friday. Sunday she was BAD couldn't keep anything down. Took her to the E-vet in the am. The pm vet did a series of x-rays finding her whole intestines were filled with gas. He did surgery removing two plastic squeakers and 10" of intestines. ( I've beaten myself up over her swallowing plastic. She is crated when I'm not home, so I don't know when it happened. ) she did great for two weeks. This past Friday we had my father-in-law and his two dogs over. I feed her earlier knowing the three of them would run around like maniacs. They did fine and she even pooped that night. Saturday 6 am she had breakfast. When I came home from work my husband said she had vomited around 11 am. She kept water down. Fed her around 4:30 pm and she vomited around 9 pm. She pooped Saturday as well.Took her back to E-vet. X-ray showed gas again. They kept her and did a Barium test (the liquid dye that coats the digestive system) it passed thru fine so no obstruction. She stayed the day and I picked her up around 10 pm. The regular vet called to check on her today and wants her to eat Hills ID for two weeks. I've been feeding her boiled chicken, brown rice, and cottage cheese. Which is what the E-vet said to feed her after surgery. Feeding three times a day right now too. The regular vet said that did not have the nutrition she needed. I don't get it, how is actual chicken meat worse then processed kibble? They would rather me change her food several times, which I've always read was hard on them. Plus she weights about 62 lbs so they want me to buy a 17 lb bag that cost $45! There's no way I'd spend $45 on two weeks of chicken. I looked up the ingredient list of Hills ID. This is what it said:
Ground Whole Grain Corn, Brewers Rice, Dried Egg Product, Chicken By-Product Meal, Corn Gluten Meal, Pork Fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols and citric acid), Soy Fiber, Dicalcium Phosphate, Chicken Liver Flavor, Iodized Salt, Potassium Citrate, Choline Chloride, Calcium Carbonate, Potassium Chloride, Soybean Oil, vitamins (Vitamin E Supplement, Niacin, Thiamine Mononitrate, Vitamin A Supplement, Calcium Pantothenate, Biotin, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Riboflavin, Folic Acid, Vitamin D3 Supplement), Taurine, minerals (Ferrous Sulfate, Zinc Oxide, Copper Sulfate, Manganous Oxide, Calcium Iodate, Sodium Selenite), Ethoxyquin (a preservative).*
REALLY! That has better nutrition then boiled chicken!? Am I over reacting? What would be recommend to add? Especially on keeping the gas build up to a minimal. Since that was all that happened the last time. Thanks for any thoughts or opinions.
 

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I'm no vet, but personally I can't stand Science Diet. It's crap food IMO and a gimmick. When I worked for a vet, she would constantly sell the rx food and rarely did it ever help. It made her a nice profit though... I would voice your concerns to the vet. Paying that much for food when the first ingredient is corn sounds like a ripoff to me.
 

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Hmmm, really wish one of our vet members would speak up. How long are you supposed to feed her the chicken & rice? I cant see it hurting to feed her the C&R for a couple or three weeks. You might add a teaspoon of crushed eggshell to provide calcium if you keep her on it for more then two weeks. If you can find Pet Select, think thats the name, in a cooler in the pet food section of your grocery, you could move her to that before going back to kibble. It is a good food as close as you can get to raw, imo. Comes in logs like the hamburger meat you see. Now, about that Hills kibble. Cant see why you should feed it. Ethoxyquin, really!?! It is/was used as a fish preservative and most dog food companies dont buy fish preserved with it anymore as people know to watch out for it. Never seen it listed on a bag of kibble before. I would listen to the vet that did the surgery, myself. You might get back w/him about when to change her diet.
 

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I'm no vet, but personally I can't stand Science Diet. It's crap food IMO and a gimmick. When I worked for a vet, she would constantly sell the rx food and rarely did it ever help. It made her a nice profit though... I would voice your concerns to the vet. Paying that much for food when the first ingredient is corn sounds like a ripoff to me.
I'm not a vet, but have a Master's in dog nutrition. I have similar feelings about most of the Science Diet, heck any brand of Rx food except for the renal, liver, and some of the cardiac formulas. The rest are big fat rip offs in my opinion.

Anywho, as to the chicken and rice not having the proper nutrition there is some truth to that in that those two ingredients aren't going to give her everything she needs especially in terms of vitamins and minerals but could be ok short terms until possibly getting her back on track. If you are planning to make it a long term feeding regimen, you will need to look into supplementing it with other things to meet nutrient requirements.


As to the gas, is she still having a problem with it on just C&R or are you still feeding cottage cheese too? I would really consider cutting out the cottage cheese a bit if you are still giving that to her and supplement calcium some other way (such as eggshells like Linda mentioned). If she has had some serious gut issues where she was pretty much cleared out, she could very well be lactose intolerant now causing the gas problems. There's also a good chance that she has a pretty serious gut microbe imbalance which could also be a main factor in the gassiness. The not so great gut bugs that tend take over are often sulfur producing bacteria = gassy dog. I would also definitely look into and discuss the possibility of giving her prebiotic supplements to help build her good microbe population up again. Lactobacillus and/or bifidobacterium would be ideal. They are sold both as veterinary supplements or for people at places like Walmart. I'm not 100% sure of the dosage for dogs vs. humans but it offers the benefits one can get from cultured dairy products without the potential side problems associated with dairy.
 

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I think that there is no justifiable reason to suggest your dog needs the prescription diet. The home cooked will be fine short term... it takes a considerable period of time for minor dietary imbalance to be any kind of issue at all.

I have a strong suspicion that there is something wrong with the bag of food you are using. Perhaps it has gotten wet and has become contaminated with fungus... something. Pitch the bag, (or better) reserve it for testing if it becomes necessary. Buy yourself something else and make sure it has a different lot number. Perhaps, just for fun, buy a different brand this time.

Switching foods will be less of a big deal to your dog since you have been rotating foods regularly. Difficulty transitioning from one food to another has a lot more to do with not switching often than with switching being a bad thing to do. Most dogs' digestive systems are "trained" to be inflexible by keeping the dog on one food all of the time. This is neither natural nor beneficial... take a look at how any species of animal eats (except maybe pandas or koalas)... eating the same thing every day is just plain weird!
 

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There's also a good chance that she has a pretty serious gut microbe imbalance which could also be a main factor in the gassiness. The not so great gut bugs that tend take over are often sulfur producing bacteria = gassy dog. I would also definitely look into and discuss the possibility of giving her prebiotic supplements to help build her good microbe population up again.
This is a good thought. I like iFlora brand of probiotics (the original formula); it should be available at better health food stores. I would give one capsule twice a day on an empty stomach an hour or so before meals... I think the label may say with meals, but before is really better.
 

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Now, about that Hills kibble. Cant see why you should feed it. Ethoxyquin, really!?! Never seen it listed on a bag of kibble before.
LOL! You obviously haven't been reading the back of Hill's Prescription Diet foods... I think they are all preserved with ethoxyquin. The way it was explained to me is that there is a relatively small market for these products (compared to, say, Science Diet) and therefore production is done less frequently and product must have longer storability. While that qualifies as a reason, I think it falls short as an excuse.
 

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Eek! I typed prebiotic when I meant probiotic. For shame :( Although both wouldn't be a bad idea hehe.
I saw that, but made one of my rare decisions to be nice and not mention it LOL! A spoonful of canned plain pumpkin would serve adequately as a prebiotic.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thank you all so much! It crossed my mind the bag of food had gone bad. However I also have a Chihuahua that is eating it too with no problems. I work at a bakery so getting eggshells is no problem :). Just crush those and mix them in? Yes the chicken and rice is a short term diet, two weeks. I have given her plain canned pumpkin before. I will exchange that for her cottage cheese.
 

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Thank you all so much! It crossed my mind the bag of food had gone bad. However I also have a Chihuahua that is eating it too with no problems. I work at a bakery so getting eggshells is no problem :). Just crush those and mix them in? Yes the chicken and rice is a short term diet, two weeks. I have given her plain canned pumpkin before. I will exchange that for her cottage cheese.
I dry them in the oven then use a coffee grinder to make a fine powder that I sprinkle on food at the rate of teaspoon of ground eggshell to each cup of food containing NO CALCIUM.

I have done the C&R thing in a puppy and yes it is a nutritional issue, but it is better than not holding down food and it stabilizes them. I bought NZymes and that is a good buy. You use such a tiny amount. I also was told to remove all dairy products from Yoda's food - cottage cheese, yogurt, etc. The ground chicken I use has fine bone in it and organs so it is more complete. I make sure he gets a dark meat as well each day to balance out the white meat. I rotate the meats and include raw sardines as well. A cooked egg may be good as well to help with nutrition. Cooked white provides more digestible protein that raw white and I don't bother unless I have a sick dog.

You need to provide cooked food while she is in reco9very since her immune system is probably compromised, given that her liver was affected as well. You can also feed more often with a tiny meal just before bed. I feed sick dogs 5 times a day - 7am, noon (DH is home), 4pm, 7pm, 10pm.
 

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I don't see the harm in feeding her chicken and rice either, short term. My Vet wanted Moj on the Rx formula for crystals....Prescription Diet...it said right on the can that it shouldn't be fed for more than 6 months, because of it's lack of nutritional value. For this my logic is saying, that chicken and rice would be FAR better than what is listed on that bag.

p
 

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The only thing I might do different is switch to white rice if she's still getting sick. Brown rice can be harder to digest. A few weeks, month of chicken and rice is just fine. Nutrition is about overall balance.

Now my problem would be there is still an underlying issue. This is just a band aid for the situation.

Pumpkni is just more of the band aid. I'd skip it myself and focus on finding the underlying issue.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I am feeding three times a day. I'm wondering if the last episode was more the fact she played to hard and drank to much water. I don't understand how she could go this long with no problems, then after the obstruction have a hard time getting to normal. And maybe she was always lactose intolerant, but now with what's happened I'm asking new questions. She was having fur loss on her face. Not much but I noticed. Thinking she needs be have digestive enzyme help. Wasn't to happy with the regular vet thru this whole ordeal as well. Tried to look up nutritionist and holistic vets in Indiana but no luck. Any sites recommended for this?
 

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My guess is it was too soon for her to start rough housing. You said only two weeks since her GI surgery right? That is WAY to soon for her to be rough housing. At that point I'd still be doing on leash walking (especially since she lost intestine too). It's very possible that the second episode was due to that.
Also, be very cautious about when she intakes water. If she is hot and panting, let her cool down before giving water. Water when a dog is very active or hot is just as bad as feeding them right away. I have always been told that if a dog is panting excessively, you should wait until they are more regulated before giving water.
 

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I would follow your vet's advice until she is stable then switch her food to California Natural. It is a very pure, holistic, limited ingredient kibble. It will help eliminate irritants she might have with TOTW.
 

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Adara beat me to the recommendation to switch from brown rice to plain old white rice--it's really much more digestable.

And I think the roughhousing at two weeks post surgery particularly when a section of gut was removed was just too early. Dogs who have had blockage surgery with sections of intestine removed can take months to get back to normal. Some never really do--canines have a much shorter GI tract than people (omnivores) do but with what you've described I'd be feeding a home cooked VERY bland diet. White rice and chicken fills that bill and shouldn't produce a lot of gas.

The prescription diets of Hills, Royal Canin and Purina all work if they are used for the purposes that they were intended for. Traveling with dogs when they are being shown causes enough stress that a lot of dogs develop stress diarrhea--I carry either Hills ID or Purina NF (both are bland diets which are easy on the gut of a dog who is having problems).

If I'm home I home cook--chicken and boiled white rice.

I think you've got a bag of food that isn't agreeing with your bitch--even if the chihuahua is doing OK on it it may just be that he's eating such a small quantity that it isn't affecting him. Take it back--on any of the better foods the vendors with take it back without a question and give you a refund. If they even quibble about it contact the manufacturer.

And I wouldn't worry a lot about an unbalanced diet over the short haul. Egg shells will provide a source of calcium if you are feeding a diet without any. But she's still very early days out of major surgery.
 

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I dry them in the oven then use a coffee grinder to make a fine powder that I sprinkle on food at the rate of teaspoon of ground eggshell to each cup of food containing NO CALCIUM.
The recommendation I usually see for ground eggshell is 1/2 teaspoon per pound (or, roughly two cups) of boneless meat. Too much calcium will cause constipation, and I am pretty sure a dog who has just lost a section of intestines doesn't need to be dealing with that! If it's just going to be a couple of weeks, I wouldn't worry about it. If it's going to be longer-term, I would opt for a bit of bonemeal over eggshell.
 
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