food switching/diarrhea advice for senior dog w/ heart condition

Dog Food Advisor Forums Diet and Health food switching/diarrhea advice for senior dog w/ heart condition

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  • #32976 Report Abuse
    minit
    Member

    my 20lb, 13 yr old JRT suffers from mitral valve disease & an enlarged heart. He was eating Nature’s Variety Instinct dry until about 6 months ago when he started to lose his appetite. Switched to Instinct canned over the next few months until he stopped eating that as well. Have always hesitated changing his food too rapidly because of diarrhea & resulting anal gland issues, but have just taken the plunge & bought a variety of super premium wet foods in the hope of just keeping him interested. Added Swanson’s Dr.Langer’s 15 strain probiotics to his cocktail of drugs & supplements. He looks good & is gaining back a little weight, but the diarrhea, gas & noisy gut are worse. To put things in perspective, he’s outlived his life expectancy by 2 years since his heart disease was discovered. Every day we have is a gift at this point. He doesn’t seem to be able to keep large meals down (perhaps because his heart is so enlarged it reduces the capacity of his stomach) so I feed him 3 small meals a day. He likes canned pumpkin, but it doesn’t seem to help much w/ the diarrhea & I worry that he’s not getting enough protein & fat if I add too much to his small meals… I think I’m going to have to give up on the variety of canned foods & go back to just one for as long as he’ll eat it to stave off the diarrhea. What’s my best bet for high protein/fat yet not going to make his digestive issues worse?

    #32981 Report Abuse
    pugmomsandy
    Participant

    I’ll use a tablespoon or two of brown rice to help with loose stools sometimes. A canned food with few ingredients I like is Hound and Gatos and also Tripett. Then Merrick 96% cans and Wellness Core and Wellness stews. I actually keep a pot of brown rice ready to serve since I’ve been fostering so many dogs with various degrees of food transition issues. Sometimes I use ground psyllium, 1/4 teaspoon.

    #32986 Report Abuse
    theBCnut
    Member

    Add digestive enzymes too. He may not be producing enough of what he needs.

    #32987 Report Abuse
    pugmomsandy
    Participant

    Sometimes the dogs get a teaspoon of chia seed as well for loose stool.

    #33010 Report Abuse
    Susan
    Member

    I’d stay away from the high fat as this makes diarrhea worse..The noisey gut/bowel sounds, I was told is Colitis, my vet told me no fat or lower the fat content if u can..Have you thought of making his meals boiling him some pumkin but pumkin makes my boys diarrhea worse.. then freezing all the meals.. also a good probiotic I use {Protexin} I know this one really works but must be kept in fridge that helps their gut/bowel..google diets or food for Colitis..

    #33011 Report Abuse
    minit
    Member

    thank you everyone! Sandy: those are most of the wet foods I’ve tried. Wouldn’t psyllium have the opposite affect? also, any idea on the shelf life of Chia seeds? Patty & Sue: I used to give him Prozyme, but I’ll look into the Protexin. Ironically after reading this on another of your posts: “Metronidazole seems to fix things up but in about 3 months time it all happens again vomiting, bad wind, soft poos about 3 a day, he is also getting stomach acid with it too, I thought Stomach bacteria that gives you bad acid..” I wonder if he’s got a touch of SIBO. Does colitis respond to Flagyl and/or cause acid reflux? I think I’ll need to reach out to my vet for some more Flagyl as Tylosin can’t be taken with his heart meds…

    #33016 Report Abuse
    Susan
    Member

    Yes, the Metronidazole {Flagyl} stopped my boys acid on the second day, no more waking up 1am 4am swollowing & licking..I went to the librabry & borrowed a book called The Complete IDIOTS Guide to Digestive Health its for humans but Ive learnt more about SIBO the stomach bacteria goes wild if untreated & moves to their small intestine causing gas bloating vomiting & sloppy poos. Us humans have a hydrogen breath test to diagnose stomach bacteria {H-Pylori virus}but with dogs they cant have the Hydrogen breath test.. I think they test their poos & blood but must be done when dog is ill when the bacteria has gone wild…with Colitis my dog doesnt get acid & the flagyl does help their bowel if its inflamed..For 7momths my vet has been saying to me its IBD & Colitis now Ive read up on this SIBO Im pretty sure he has it, he has just finished his Antibiotics but next time as soon as I see him ill again Im getting the poo & blood test to be 100%..I read you need a low carb diet as the bacteria loves carbs & my boy got ill after trying another kibble with Potatos & fish Im giving him kangaroo tin food now as its high protein & low fat but Im still giving him his kibble, the kibble has made his poos excellent but I think this all started when he was put on this Intestinal kibble, he was a rescue dog & I dont know his past…

    #33024 Report Abuse
    pugmomsandy
    Participant

    psyllium absorbs water and makes the stool more formed and bulky.

    #33040 Report Abuse
    minit
    Member

    would you dose the psyllium by the food volume? split the 1/4 teaspoon over his 3 meals? would I be overdoing it if I included the pumpkin at the same time? I’m thinking of volume & being able to get enough protein & fat in him w/ the fiber…

    #33054 Report Abuse
    pugmomsandy
    Participant

    He can have psyllium with each meal. Start with 1/8 teaspoon per meal and see how he does and go from there. If the pumpkin isn’t helping him for diarrhea (BTW pumpkin is for both diarrhea and constipation), then I don’t see why you still can’t give it to him just because he likes the taste. For a 20 lb dog, I would normally use a tablespoon or two of pumpkin.

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