I have a 55lb, “mature”, German shepherd mix of some kind that was rescued off the streets. I’ve had her for about 1.5 years now. She’s been great except about 4 months ago she began having diarrhea and she was diagnosed with hookworm (despite being on Hartgard Plus but whatever).
Fast forward to now, about 4 months after treatment for the hookworm, I seem to be able to keep the diarrhea at bay with a probiotic supplement, but she still will have diarrhea if I forget to give her the supplement one day or she gets a little taste of the cat’s food (she stole it off the counter one time). Really bad diarrhea she can’t control and will often go in the house because she has to go so often when it happens.
Has anyone else dealt with hookworm? My vet says that hookworm can play a number on the gastrointestinal tract and cause a lot of inflammation and it may take many months to recover. So I’m just biding my time and hoping for the best and hoping the probiotic continues to work, but has anyone else had experience with the aftermath of hookworm?
I’m also thinking to start switching her off the royal canin LF/gastrointestinal health formula to something like a low fat but better brand of food. She also gets boiled chicken and rice once a day. She had been getting Fromm classic supplemented with a Stella and Chewy’s frozen patty before this all happened. I was thinking to go back to the Fromm but maybe the senior or weight management one. She’s not overweight but I think it would be better to keep the fat and fiber content low for her digestion…
“Has anyone else dealt with hookworm? My vet says that hookworm can play a number on the gastrointestinal tract and cause a lot of inflammation and it may take many months to recover.”
I had a litter almost wiped out by the little devils, and on a very rare occasion had a hound or two contract them from wild rabbit.
And they are half impossible to get rid of. Hartgard is useless for the prevention or treatment of hooks, as the medications are only effective for heartworms and roundworms. For hooks, you need fenbendazole (panacur), and regardless of negative fecals, which can be misleading if worms or eggs are not present in that particular stool sample, you MUST continue to de-worm on a regular basis for the next several months. Believe me, they will never go away otherwise.
Hookworms wreak havoc on the GI tract, so you might want to consider giving anti-inflammatory meds or supplements (turmeric in small doses is helpful sometimes), and forget the yogurt because an overwhelmed digestive system does not need more bacteria or irritating milk proteins. Also, for certain types of digestive issues, lowering dietary fat sometimes works because higher fat = more lubricated bowels :/
If you want my unorthodox recommendation for foods, I’ll say this. My litter with hookworms had not only ongoing digestive upsets, but a skin condition that caused open, bloody, purulent sores. In that instance, I had excellent results switching off “designer” food and onto Purina ONE, which cured the sores and internal damage in a matter of days. However, any dog I’ve ever owned with any sort of digestive issue, from mild maldigestion to inability to handle food due to starvation, to a life threatening case of ulcerative colitis, have all responded beautifully to Pedigree. My 2 cents.
You wrote, I have a German shepherd mix of some kind that was “rescued off the streets”. When you rescued her what condition did she come in & was she wormed then wormed again 2-3 weeks later?? she may of had the hook worm when you rescued her?
I rescued a English Staffordshire Bull Terrier in very poor condition, weeing blood then pooing blood, he had Stomach & bowel problems but I didnt know about his intestinal problems till he ate certain foods & was doing sloppy, jelly poos with blood streaked thru his poo & then he’d have like your girl had Diarrhea he couldn’t control from Food Sensitivities… Lentils & boiled Rice, boiled rice irritates his bowel, he does best eating Sweet potatoes & Potatoes as main carb in dry kibbles…also Boiled sweet Potato with his pork rissoles I make or I buy a dog food in pet fridge section that is Lamb, Coconut & veggies balls & it has sweet potato….he eats these foods for lunch..
I put my cat food up on a scratching post/tree now, the scratching post thing has ground level, a middle level & a top section where there’s a big shelf, I have put a big ceramic tile there & I feed Indy all her foods on her scratching post shelf this way Patch can not get tempted & eat any of her food & then have one of his IBD flares.
Has your vet put her on Metronidazole for 21-28 days? Metronidazole is excellent for inflammation of stomach & bowel & bad bacteria over growth, I think she needs more then the probiotic to help heal her intestinal tract. My vet writes Patch repeat scripts of Metronidazole to keep at home so when I see he’s becoming unwell again I start him on Metronidazole x 200mg tablet every 12 hours with a meal for 21 days…
I would change her diet & would start her on a dry food that has just 1 novel protein & 1 carb, has medium protein % around 28-34% & is medium in fat around 12 to 15% fat & low in carbs 32% less or start her on a Hypoallergenic vet diet & do a food elimination food diet to work out what foods she might be too?? the vet diet she is eating at the moment could be making her Intestinal tract more inflammed if she is sensitive too certain ingredient in the vet diet she is eating, ask your vet can put her on a 21 day course of Metronidazole & can you change her vet diet? not all vet diets suit all dogs health problems, my boy tried all the Hills & Royal Canine Intestinal vet diets, none of them helped him till we tried Eukanuba/Iams Intestinal Low Residue dry kibble, this helped his IBD, then after 9 months when his bowel had healed I started introducing a grain free dry kibble that had Lamb only protein & Sweet Potatoes, Potatoes, Egg & Peas & he did really well with his skin & intestinal tract…..
Are you feeding 3 smaller meals a day, divide how much she should eat a day & split into 3 meals, so stomach/bowel works less digesting smaller meals, I feed 4 smaller meals a day 7am- under 1 cup dry kibble, 12pm-at lunch time Patch gets a small wet meal about 1/2 a cup, 5pm – under 1 cup dry & 8pm-1/3 a cup dry…..
Patch is doing well eating “Wellness Core” Large Breed Adult formula, it is low in Kcals-345per cup, this is what you need to look at, how high are the Kcals per cup & stay under 360 Kcals per cup, the higher the Kcals the more dense the dry kibble is, so more work on stomach & bowel to digest…also the lower the fat% & lower protein % is, the higher the carbs will be….
I asked Patches vet to do an Endoscope + Biopsies on Patch December 2013, you need the Biopsies so vet knows what is wrong & treat with medications if she still isnt better after 1 yr…. the first Endoscope & Biopsies Patch had 1 yr after I rescued him, Biopsies show he had moderate chronic lymphocytic gastritis with a lymphocytic nodule present in the deeper mucosa of one section, variable numbers of spiral bacteria present, (Helicobacter-Spiral bacteria) Some gastric pits are mildy dilated. He was always hungry & had dirrahea on & off..
Then Patch had another Endoscope & Biopsies done January 2018 this year when he went down hill real quickly after we moved, he stopped eating his favorite kibble & the whole time I’ve owned Patch he never refuses any food, only when he has his rumbling, grumbling loud bowel noises early hours of the morning, then he doesn’t want to eat, which isnt a bad thing, dogs are smart & they know when to rest their stomach & bowel… this time his poos were firm, then the next day sloppy, then diarrhea & he was eating the same dry food, he kept swolling & swolling wierd noises, he had bad acid reflux, crying with pain & wasn’t his happy go lucky self, he had a sore throat, I thought he had bowel or stomach cancer this time, biopsies showed he had mild lymphoplasmacytic and eosinophilic gastritis with spiral bacteria again…
but in the “Comment” section the Veterinary Pathologist wrote,
Sections of the small intestine could not be fully assessed because of inadequate sampling..
Patches vet said the flap between the stomach & Esophagus isnt closing properly so his stomach acids are washing back up into his throat & his wind pipe was badly inflammed & there’s nothing he can do to fix the flap, Patch was put on 21 day course of triple therapy meds… & I kept trying all different dry foods that wouldnt make him swollow as much, the Nutro grounded rice & lamb kibble work best but the kibbles that had grains were causing “big” sloppy poos or diarrhea, he needed to eat a grainfree diet without Lentils & Chickpeas which is very hard to find a grainfree dry kibble that are Legume free, finally in Australia we are getting new dry Kibbles that are Legume free which will be good for Patch but some are high in fat around 16-18% fat, this causes bad acid reflux.. 🙁
Once you find foods/ ingredients she can eat then she will get better, she needs ingredients that will not irritate her stomach & bowel more, sounds like her bowel is inflammed & she needs medication to help heal, a good diet that’s easy to digest so everything can heal…
Think back what was she eating & was doing really well on?? try that again or something similiar & feed 3 smaller meals a day, see does she settle down, also keep a diary just incase over the years she developes IBD & keeps having flares….
also becareful with weight loss/weight management dry kibbles as they are higher in fiber & carbs…around 12-14% fat isnt that high for a dog, when they eat raw diet its normally around 30-50% in fat… look at Freeze dried diets they’re heaps better then dry processed kibbles..
For hookworms you should treat with Panacur for 5 days, then repeat at 3 weeks (for 5 days) and then 3 months (treat for 5 days) to catch the hatching cycle.
Have you had a fecal done to make sure the hookworms are actually gone? Also have you been picking up the poop in your yard as soon as she goes? Hookworms can give in the ground for a long time. Also make sure you are not walking barefoot in your yard as hookworms are zoonotic and can cause cutaneous larva migrans.
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