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Jaxy's Mom
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone!

I've been a lurker for a while now, ever since I got my Golden puppy, Jax, back in January. Now I'm hoping to get some opinions on a recurring issue I've been having with my baby. Sorry for the long post, I don't want to leave out any details that may be important.

When he was a young pup, I fed Jax Orijen Large Breed Puppy (what the breeders gave him). The main ingredients were fish and chicken. He didn't have diarrhea, but his stools were never really the firmness I wanted them to be, always kind of wet and loose.

Now that he's 9 months, I decided to switch him from his puppy food to an adult food, Orijen Six Fish (breeder's recommendation). I gradually switched his food over the course of a couple of weeks as recommended. Well, something in the Six Fish isn't agreeing with him and I'm pretty sure it's the fish lol. His stool is complete mush. It gets on the lovely fluff on the back of his legs and sometimes even his tail every time he goes, so I have to wipe him down after every poo. Unfortunately for everyone involved, the poos are frequent. I'd say about four times a day, while my brother's dog goes only twice—once in the morning and once at night.

Of course I've taken Jax to the vet to rule out parasites and other problems. And he still acts his total goofy, playful self. He's not lethargic and he's never lost his appetite. So I'm left with switching foods. I'm currently fasting him for a bit just to help his system settle, then I'll give him a bland diet for a while until his stools firm up. Here's where I need help.

When deciding on his bland diet, should I not feed him chicken just in case? Should I go with lean boiled beef or something else? What are your thoughts on feeding sweet potato, plain oatmeal or rice?

Then when it's time to start incorporating kibble back in and then switching foods, how should I go about doing it? Should I feed him Six Fish again, and then from there start incorporating the new food? I'm thinking about feeding Nutro Limited Ingredient Venison and Sweet Potato...what are your thoughts? The only thing I'm afraid of with putting him back on Six Fish before the new food is the diarrhea coming back...but if it's what I have to do I'll do it. I know you're not supposed to switch them cold turkey.

Thanks so much in advance for everyone's help... I know I asked a lot of questions, I just want to help my baby get better. Also, I'm running out of baby wipes lol
 

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Hi!

Holy smokes Jax is beautiful. Stunning.

I'm not comfortable commenting too much on what food to switch to/how to switch, I know there are more educated posters here on that topic. It's entirely possible Orijen in general is too rich for him. Personally, I'd just make the switch after the bland diet but I'm not sure that's the best advice.

But re: alternatives to chicken...We have a chicken sensitivity here and do pork tenderloin or trimmed pork chop. Pork and salmon are the two proteins I know he absolutely tolerates no matter what and salmon is a little too high fat for these times :) We always do rice, massively overcooked, until it's basically rice water pudding. There are actually a number of reasons why vets recommend rice over other starches, but of course sweet potato is generally a safe alternative if you are opposed to rice or if they have a sensitivity to rice.
 

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I would try a bland diet of chicken and rice - just chicken and rice. Don't mix it up with beef and sweet potato. Chances are, the Orijen was just overall too rich for him - and it had nothing to do with the chicken. If he does well on the chicken and rice (do it for at least a week and don't give him other treats for the duration), I'd move to a food that is similar in its composition (ie. chicken and rice based).
 

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Jaxy's Mom
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Update!

Thanks for the comments and advice! Jaxy has been on chicken and rice for about five days now and seems to be improving. I had a feeling it wasn't the chicken giving him a problem; glad to be sure of that now! :) Would y'all recommend starting him on a probiotic? I'm reading into Purina Fortiflora.

My major concern at this point is finding him a good, reputable food to switch to. Does anyone have any recommendations? I've been looking into Fromm, Purina Pro Plan, Wellness Core, and loads of others all while trying to stick to something primarily based on chicken and rice but it's getting a tad overwhelming (especially with this whole taurine business spooking the heck out of me). What do y'all feed your pups?

Thanks again for the help!
 

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My boy was having stomach issues when I adopted him at age two 7.5 years ago and he was underweight 15-20 lbs. on top of it.

I tried several different brands and formulas with no success. Members here on the forum recommended the Purina Pro Plan for Sensitive Skin and stomach. I am feeding the salmon, it also comes in lamb. Within a couple of days I saw a difference in his stools and he gained the needed weight within about 4-5 months. His coat was really thin too, since he's been eating the PPP SSS, his coat and feathering came in and it's much thicker than it was.

I've never given any probiotics, quite a few members do. Did your Vet recommend them?

Jax is a good looking boy.
 

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I would stay away from forti flora. Instead look at RX probiotics (make sure to refrigerate) or Proviable. Also check his Nutriscan via Dr Dodds. You will have a much better idea of what his sensitivities are. Then you can switch food accordingly.
 
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Thanks for the comments and advice! Jaxy has been on chicken and rice for about five days now and seems to be improving. I had a feeling it wasn't the chicken giving him a problem; glad to be sure of that now! :) Would y'all recommend starting him on a probiotic? I'm reading into Purina Fortiflora.

My major concern at this point is finding him a good, reputable food to switch to. Does anyone have any recommendations? I've been looking into Fromm, Purina Pro Plan, Wellness Core, and loads of others all while trying to stick to something primarily based on chicken and rice but it's getting a tad overwhelming (especially with this whole taurine business spooking the heck out of me). What do y'all feed your pups?

Thanks again for the help!
We just started Proviable by Nutramax on our vet's recommendation. All good so far, and I definitely think it helped settle our recent stress colitis episode faster.
 

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If he is doing well on chicken and rice, you will probably do well transitioning to Pro Plan Chicken and Rice (not the shredded formula). My girl did very well on it after dealing with giardia and coccidia. Unless your boy has been on antibiotics for gastro issues, you probably don't need a probiotic, but I'd ask your vet. We also had very good results from FortiFlora, but Shala had been on lots of meds and definitely needed the bacteria in her gut rebalanced.
 

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If he is doing well on chicken and rice, you will probably do well transitioning to Pro Plan Chicken and Rice (not the shredded formula). My girl did very well on it after dealing with giardia and coccidia. Unless your boy has been on antibiotics for gastro issues, you probably don't need a probiotic, but I'd ask your vet. We also had very good results from FortiFlora, but Shala had been on lots of meds and definitely needed the bacteria in her gut rebalanced.
Please ask your vet to advise why animal digest is good for your dog. https://truthaboutpetfood.com/popular-vet-recommended-supplement-contains-questionable-ingredient/
 

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Jaxy's Mom
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks to everyone for the suggestions. Claudia, I read through the article and skimmed the comments. I'll stay away from FortiFlora, but it would seem that most dry dog foods contain animal digest even if they don't say it outright in the ingredients...which is worrisome.

As for Jaxy, there was some setback today. I found myself cleaning mushy poop off his bum again :( It looks like when he did his business, the first poo was nice and solid but the rest was mush. I don't really know what to do... I'd like to get the NutriScan done but I have to save up a bit first. What should I do in the meantime? If his mushy poop continues I'll take him to the vet and insist on some more investigating. Feeling a little discouraged as he was doing well up till now.
 

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Thanks to everyone for the suggestions. Claudia, I read through the article and skimmed the comments. I'll stay away from FortiFlora, but it would seem that most dry dog foods contain animal digest even if they don't say it outright in the ingredients...which is worrisome.

As for Jaxy, there was some setback today. I found myself cleaning mushy poop off his bum again :( It looks like when he did his business, the first poo was nice and solid but the rest was mush. I don't really know what to do... I'd like to get the NutriScan done but I have to save up a bit first. What should I do in the meantime? If his mushy poop continues I'll take him to the vet and insist on some more investigating. Feeling a little discouraged as he was doing well up till now.

Ask your vet for the Proviable combo pack. It is a paste and 10 daily probiotic capsules. You can get it on Amazon but the extra you pay at the vet at least will get it in him sooner. THis is what it looks like - https://www.amazon.com/Nutramax-Pro...pID=41W8Gglq4CL&preST=_SY300_QL70_&dpSrc=srch

Has he been checked for giardia? It is hard to get a positive test on that - a friend had 4 tests done before it showed positive. Luckily she has already started the Panacur on her pup.
 

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Jaxy's Mom
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Has he been checked for giardia? It is hard to get a positive test on that - a friend had 4 tests done before it showed positive. Luckily she has already started the Panacur on her pup.
When I took him in initially the vet did a fecal sample and everything came back clear—BUT he still did give us a round of Panacur and some antibiotics to be safe. Now that I'm thinking about it, could the antibiotics have made his diarrhea worse? Maybe unbalanced something in there? It's been a couple weeks since he finished those meds and like I said he'd been improving on his chicken and rice diet till today... I think I'm going to take him back to the vet tomorrow, ask some questions and see about the Proviable.

Thankfully in the meantime Jax is still himself, bringing me his toys, excited for walkies and playing with his cousin (my brother's dog ;)) but I just want him to be tip-top shape.
 

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If I understand correctly the treatment for giardia is in two phases. 5 days of panacur and another 5 days repeated after two weeks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I had no idea! The vet only gave us five days worth of Panacur and antibiotics. I'll have to ask him about it tomorrow. Right now all sorts of things are running through my head and I'm stressing myself out :(
 

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I had no idea! The vet only gave us five days worth of Panacur and antibiotics. I'll have to ask him about it tomorrow. Right now all sorts of things are running through my head and I'm stressing myself out :(
Oh boy. I have been back for like three months and I'm already about to make myself wildly unpopular... please don't abandon me for this GRF! I need you! lol!

Don't stress yourself out! Deep breaths.

1. I think you would be hard pressed to find a veterinarian outside of the holistic community that has any issue with animal digest. I have yet to find a peer reviewed, evidence based study, academically supported study that contradicts the use of animal digest. There is no veterinary nutrition program that I have found that educates against the use of animal digest. Given this, whether or not animal digest should be fed to your pet is exclusively up to you. If you feel more comfortable not feeding animal digest, that is ABSOLUTELY okay, but do not worry that you are willfully feeding your dog something that goes against sound veterinary science. There is nothing wrong with preferring holistic veterinary medicine, but it does not negate the safetyof what is currently supported by conventional veterinary science.

2. Here's where I'm about to make some enemies. Dr. Dodds is a controversial figure in veterinary medicine. Her work on veterinary transfusion has been groundbreaking and an absolute gift to veterinary science (inarguable, clearly), and her work in thyroid treatment is shaping up to be equally groundbreaking (slightly more arguable). But please know that a great deal of the veterinary community is not entirely on board with her beliefs and methodologies, particularly as it pertains to NutriScan. As it is, for every Dr. Dodds, there is a SkeptVet. It is up to you to decide which "faction" you trust the most, but again, in making that decision please know that there are currently few (I'd like to say none, but I'll cover my butt here) practices in conventional veterinary medicine that are anything but rooted in stringent, rigorous, evidence based academic research. You will not be doing your dog any sort of disservice by not performing a NutriScan or anything like that. Currently, conventional veterinary science studies have demonstrated the only proven way to determine food allergies is through an elimination diet which should be performed under the guidance of your vet. It's up to you if you feel the NutriScan would provide you with valuable information. If you think that it would, go for it! Don't fret if it's out of your price range, or worry that your vet is not competent if they suggest a food trial instead.

3. Giardia is a freakshow of a parasite. For real. It took our kiddo down for the count. If you haven't followed up with your vet to communicate that the loose stools are still an issue, do so. A 5 day course of panacur may not be standard treatment for giardia but it is standard treatment for a plethora of other parasites and digestive issues (including colitis), and if your vet does not know you are still struggling, they have no reason to think treatment for giardia is necessary. It is not standard to automatically treat for giardia. You haven't done anything wrong!

If you would like to see a bit of an alternative to the holistic community, I'd point you to the AskVet reddit and their FAQ. There is nothing wrong with holistic treatments and choices, they are exceedingly beneficial for a great many dogs, the folks here that follow these practices are exceptional owners with great dogs. We're about to do experimental acupuncture for dementia, of all things! But I do get a pit in my stomach when I see good owners thinking they have done wrong by their dogs because they trusted their conventional vet. No stressing allowed! :)
 

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Oh boy. I have been back for like three months and I'm already about to make myself wildly unpopular... please don't abandon me for this GRF! I need you! lol!

Don't stress yourself out! Deep breaths.

1. I think you would be hard pressed to find a veterinarian outside of the holistic community that has any issue with animal digest. I have yet to find a peer reviewed, evidence based study, academically supported study that contradicts the use of animal digest. There is no veterinary nutrition program that I have found that educates against the use of animal digest. Given this, whether or not animal digest should be fed to your pet is exclusively up to you. If you feel more comfortable not feeding animal digest, that is ABSOLUTELY okay, but do not worry that you are willfully feeding your dog something that goes against sound veterinary science. There is nothing wrong with preferring holistic veterinary medicine, but it does not negate the safetyof what is currently supported by conventional veterinary science.

2. Here's where I'm about to make some enemies. Dr. Dodds is a controversial figure in veterinary medicine. Her work on veterinary transfusion has been groundbreaking and an absolute gift to veterinary science (inarguable, clearly), and her work in thyroid treatment is shaping up to be equally groundbreaking (slightly more arguable). But please know that a great deal of the veterinary community is not entirely on board with her beliefs and methodologies, particularly as it pertains to NutriScan. As it is, for every Dr. Dodds, there is a SkeptVet. It is up to you to decide which "faction" you trust the most, but again, in making that decision please know that there are currently few (I'd like to say none, but I'll cover my butt here) practices in conventional veterinary medicine that are anything but rooted in stringent, rigorous, evidence based academic research. You will not be doing your dog any sort of disservice by not performing a NutriScan or anything like that. Currently, conventional veterinary science studies have demonstrated the only proven way to determine food allergies is through an elimination diet which should be performed under the guidance of your vet. It's up to you if you feel the NutriScan would provide you with valuable information. If you think that it would, go for it! Don't fret if it's out of your price range, or worry that your vet is not competent if they suggest a food trial instead.

3. Giardia is a freakshow of a parasite. For real. It took our kiddo down for the count. If you haven't followed up with your vet to communicate that the loose stools are still an issue, do so. A 5 day course of panacur may not be standard treatment for giardia but it is standard treatment for a plethora of other parasites and digestive issues (including colitis), and if your vet does not know you are still struggling, they have no reason to think treatment for giardia is necessary. It is not standard to automatically treat for giardia. You haven't done anything wrong!

If you would like to see a bit of an alternative to the holistic community, I'd point you to the AskVet reddit and their FAQ. There is nothing wrong with holistic treatments and choices, they are exceedingly beneficial for a great many dogs, the folks here that follow these practices are exceptional owners with great dogs. We're about to do experimental acupuncture for dementia, of all things! But I do get a pit in my stomach when I see good owners thinking they have done wrong by their dogs because they trusted their conventional vet. No stressing allowed! :)
WOW, where do I even start!?! Dr Dodds? The conventional vets that have very little nutrition knowledge provided by the big pet food industry, the conventional vets that actually have to go back to a book and read the protocol to treat giardia that a holistic vet actually knows? What studies are you referring to? The ones from UC Davis that are still struggling on getting normal ranges of amino acids for dogs while scaring people on Taurine levels and don't even know if Taurine is an essential, non essential (which is currently considered) or semi-essential amino acid? And when you ask about the full amino acid profile they tell you that they did not take biochemistry or if you want to know about it to take it yourself? How about those great conventional nutritionists that advocate for plastic food that sits on a shelf for over a year but it is everything your dog should thrive or should I say survive on with over 50% carbs in it? No wonder 1 in 1.65 dogs die of cancer and live shorter lives.

Keep on eliminating food and give something to your dog that they are sensitive to. How do you eliminate everything from their diet? How long will it take? Long enough for them to develop cancer? Long enough for them to be deficient or insufficient in vitamins and minerals?

You talk about conventional vets and vigorous stringent research... how about giving steroids and NSAIDs to a dog? What about those conventional vets that tell clients that Apoquel is the safest and best thing out there for allergies without even reading the clinical studies on what they prescribe because their trusted source told them so. And I can go on and on about it.

Unfortunately, you have to do your own research and challenge your vet, conventional and/or holistic and be your pet's advocate.

I took too long to run the Nutriscan, and once it was done and followed it my dogs have flourished. Including the one who is recovering from a Mast Cell Tumor and underwent radiation therapy. How fast can you count over $12,000 in vet bills?
 

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WOW, where do I even start!?! Dr Dodds? The conventional vets that have very little nutrition knowledge provided by the big pet food industry, the conventional vets that actually have to go back to a book and read the protocol to treat giardia that a holistic vet actually knows? What studies are you referring to? The ones from UC Davis that are still struggling on getting normal ranges of amino acids for dogs while scaring people on Taurine levels and don't even know if Taurine is an essential, non essential (which is currently considered) or semi-essential amino acid? And when you ask about the full amino acid profile they tell you that they did not take biochemistry or if you want to know about it to take it yourself? How about those great conventional nutritionists that advocate for plastic food that sits on a shelf for over a year but it is everything your dog should thrive or should I say survive on with over 50% carbs in it? No wonder 1 in 1.65 dogs die of cancer and live shorter lives.

Keep on eliminating food and give something to your dog that they are sensitive to. How do you eliminate everything from their diet? How long will it take? Long enough for them to develop cancer? Long enough for them to be deficient or insufficient in vitamins and minerals?

You talk about conventional vets and vigorous stringent research... how about giving steroids and NSAIDs to a dog? What about those conventional vets that tell clients that Apoquel is the safest and best thing out there for allergies without even reading the clinical studies on what they prescribe because their trusted source told them so. And I can go on and on about it.

Unfortunately, you have to do your own research and challenge your vet, conventional and/or holistic and be your pet's advocate.

I took too long to run the Nutriscan, and once it was done and followed it my dogs have flourished. Including the one who is recovering from a Mast Cell Tumor and underwent radiation therapy. How fast can you count over $12,000 in vet bills?
I feel like I worked exceedingly hard to be pleasant and respectful to a difference of opinion in my tone, while still attempting to reassure the OP that she does not need to fret. If you find the things I said offensive, even as I endlessly qualified that holistic vs conventional comes down to personal choice and that I am open to holistic practices myself, I'm not sure how else I could have worded it.

I was absolutely prepared for backlash. I left this community because my vet had to delicately and kindly counsel me on discontinuing Dr. Dodds thyroid protocol for my dog as he was chronically underweight and becoming symptomatically hyperthyroid many years ago and I felt like I would be shunned for following conventional medicine with my dog. I lost many years of support when I desperately needed it for my complicated dog. I still feel like I will be shunned for following conventional medicine for my dog. I don't want anyone else here to feel like that. I don't want anyone else to feel like they will be pitted between trusting their vet and trusting the feedback received here to be considered a good dog owner. Medical advice is overwhelming and it is okay to defer to your vet if that's what makes you comfortable and keeps your dog healthy.

I am, honestly, so grateful your dogs are doing well with the route you've chosen. I have no doubt you take excellent care of them, and that you make choices in their best interest. This is a hard, hard breed and it's so difficult to feel confident that you are making the right choice. If you have that found tools that give you that confidence and you see good results, your dogs will be better for it! For some of us, that means trusting a different set of tools. That's okay. It's not a fight. I've just been in the OPs shoes of worrying so much about doing the right thing, and I wanted to offer a different set of tools than is normally suggested here.
 

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https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2010/012623s061lbl.pdf Here is what the go to for the conventional vets is - Metronidozole. If you do not have time skip to the bottom of page 6 on carcinogenicity.

And here is another one - https://www.cambridge.org/core/services/aop-cambridge-core/content/view/S0317167100015870

And while they are prescribing the metronidozole 80% of them do not prescribe or recommend a probiotic to go with it.

The reason why you repeat after 2 weeks is due to the incubation period 5 to 14 days. Same reason why the cysts and spores may not show on a fecal flotation. So even if you re-test after the initial 5 days of panacur it is not necessary that they will be eliminated or detected. Giardia cysts are known to thrive outdoors for months making re-infestation quite plausible leading to a never ending battle.
 

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https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2010/012623s061lbl.pdf Here is what the go to for the conventional vets is - Metronidozole. If you do not have time skip to the bottom of page 6 on carcinogenicity.

And here is another one - https://www.cambridge.org/core/services/aop-cambridge-core/content/view/S0317167100015870

And while they are prescribing the metronidozole 80% of them do not prescribe or recommend a probiotic to go with it.

The reason why you repeat after 2 weeks is due to the incubation period 5 to 14 days. Same reason why the cysts and spores may not show on a fecal flotation. So even if you re-test after the initial 5 days of panacur it is not necessary that they will be eliminated or detected. Giardia cysts are known to thrive outdoors for months making re-infestation quite plausible leading to a never ending battle.
I appreciate you sharing a peer reviewed journal! As someone with a dog with neurological issues, I am always interested in how medication effects neurology. Metro can definitely be serious stuff.

For the OP's sake and so that she doesn't have to nerd out like we do, I'll recap it: this study was done on human patients, on significantly higher doses than what is given to dogs, and for significantly longer periods of time. I see a couple at 2yrs!! Holy smokes! I would be a disaster from that! I'm glad to see most of them had clinical resolution, so that if Iorek ever needs metro, it can be weighed against the risks, and that of the few that had issues from shorter treatments, there were frequently compounding factors (hepatic encephalopathy, for example).

Very cool journal! Neurology man :nerd:
 

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