I have a 15 month old Bullmastiff who underwent surgery for a congenital diaphragmatic hernia at 5 months old. By the time they discovered the hernia and did the surgery, they found his intestines were packed up inside his chest cavity, and they told us they pulled them back out and that he only had “minor adhesions” as a result. We’ve had him in to the vets several times since for x-rays and ultrasounds, which they always told us were “perfectly normal” but I could tell he was having abdominal discomfort and pain, and was desperate to find help for him. I had him on Gastriplex and was giving him Pepcid, which seemed to help a little. But I’ve noticed that whenever he’s having pain and discomfort, he starts eating foreign objects, as if he thinks that might help his abdominal discomfort. Last week he stopped eating, and when we brought him in to the vets, they had to do emergency surgery for a bowel obstruction. While they had him opened up, the surgeon discovered that he had SEVERE adhesions, from the diaphragmatic surgery he had as a puppy, and that his intestines were all “packed into a ball.” Although he wasn’t expected to survive the surgery because his intestines were so damaged, he has survived and is coming home today. The surgeon has him on a special “low residue” prescription diet for a week, and said that he can start a “regular diet” after that. The surgeon told us he would always have chronic gi problems due to the adhesions, and I was wondering if anyone else has had this problem, and what they feed their dog? I would prefer to have him on something easily digestible that won’t irritate his intestines. And obviously he will be under strict watch to make sure he doesn’t eat any more foreign objects, but I think if we can help keep his gi tract calm, it will help a lot.
Thanks for any advice anyone can give us!
- This topic was modified 5 years ago by Frena H.
Hi, my Patch has IBD & gets pain we think its either his Pancreas or his stomach he had Endoscope & biopsies done & it come back he has Lymphocytic Gastritis with associated spiral bacteria infection, (Helicobacter-Pylori), Vet thinks he’s getting the pain in his Stomach from having the Helicobacter for years & being left untreated he was a rescue that I rescued at the age of 4 yrs old vet also thinks he may of chewed things & might have chew steal or something that wreck his bowel, now when he gets his pain he start whining & wants me to rub his chest & stomach area, he gets his balls & chews & chews….
When I first got him, he was put on Vet Diet Eukanuba Intestinal low Residue diet it has better ingredients then the Iams Intestinal & less fiber only 1.7 % fiber..
but cause the Eukanuba Intestinal had corn he was getting skin problems red itchy paws
that’s when I started looking for another kibble but its hard…
Now I do the kibble test when you want to try feeding a new kibble try & get samples…I get about 2 kibbles & put them in a glass of warm water & see how long it takes for the kibbles to go soft & swell up… a good kibble only takes about 20mins to 50mins to go soft Patch doesn’t get his bad pain when the kibble goes soft quick & when the fat & protein is low…I found these kibbles go soft around 20mins…
Eagle Pack Lamb & Rice
Earthborn Ocean Fusion
Holistic Select the flavours with rice & oats I haven’t tried their grain free kibbles
Wellness Simple Lamb & Oatmeal takes about 50mins to go soft..
When I have bought a bag of kibble & it didn’t go soft within 1 hr, I was soaking the kibble in warm water in a bowl, when the kibble was all soft, then I drained all the water out of bowl & I’d cuff small amounts of the soft kibble in the bowl & my palm of my hand to drain all water out of the soft kibble then I put all in blender & blended for a few seconds this helped Patch but you have to drain all the water cause they can get acid reflux from too much water being in the kibble, this way the kibbles have all swollen up so there’s no pain when the kibble is in their stomach & dog drinks water then the kibbles start to swell up in stomach…. I found kibbles with Peas gave wind pain, I’ve never feed kibbles with lentils, chickpeas or legumes but I assume they’ll cause wind pain like peas do, so I stay away from grain free kibbles plus they are full of starchy carbs…
If you can replace 1 meal with cooked meal chicken, potato, broccoli & zucchini that will help reduce the kibble…also Honest Kitchen has their Zeal its suppose to be good, I live in Australia & can’t get the Honest Kitchen….
I hope your boy gets better & make sure you hide things he can chew, he might need a muzzle so when your not home he cant destroy & eat things that can make him sick…Sue SMember
Frena, can I ask what the long term outcome has been for your companion? I am going through this with my 6 year old Doberman. She developed severe adhesions from a spay surgery in August. In February she became very sick and it turned out she had a blockage due to adhesions. She went through a 5 hour surgery. They had to untangle her intestines and the surgeon said he has only seen these types of adhesions twice in 20 years. 10 days later she had to have another surgery and they removed 3 inches of her intestines. Now here we are 5 months later and she just went though another blockage surgery and once again, severe adhesions. We cannot keep putting her through surgery every 5 months. But the surgeon has said that this is so rare that the few medications that have been tried do not have enough documentation for them to know if they are effective in preventing the recurrence of intestinal adhesions. This is so heartbreaking. Spay surgeries are elective and now I so wish we had never had it done.SusanMember
Sounds awful you’d stressing if & when it could happen again…
I found this post (Below) on the net so I copy & paste it..
I hope it helps, the vet recommends doing an Ultra scan but I would be doing an Ultra Scan every 3 months to be 100% sure another Intestinal Adhesions is not forming… Depending on how good the Vet is with using an Ultra scan machine, they can see if a dog has thickening of the bowel thru an Ultra Scan, I had an Ultra Scan done on my boy 2 yrs ago when I thought he had Pancreatitis & the vet ended up looking at his bowel as well to see if he had thickening of the bowel, so Ultra Scan will be able to see if any adhesions starting up again..
Here’s the post I found
**Poster- Has anyone dealt with intestinal adhesions in dogs I have
Has anyone dealt with intestinal adhesions in dogs???? I have a 3yr old dog who got spayed on 04/15/2010 and then formed an enormous intestinal adhesion,(almost died) had surgery to remove it and im horrified thinking that she might be getting another on (i think I feel a lump) does anyone have any ideas? or have ever dealt with this??? please only respond if it is something you are knowledgeable about. Thanks
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
**Vet- Hi there!
Intestinal adhesions are simply internal scars that the your dog’s body forms after surgery. Just like humans, each dog forms scar tissue differently and there is no way to control it.
Occasionally, intestinal adhesions can rarely cause intestinal entrapments, leading to an intestinal obstruction which requires surgery. Your vet hopefully did a good clean up of the adhesion when it was removed and flushed the abdomen well which is the only “treatment” that is thought to potentially help prevent adhesions again but there is no guarantee since some animals are just super-scar formers. There has also been some research using povoiodine solutions but this has not been used in a clinical setting and the results are not conclusive.
As I said, intestinal adhesion formation is rare but does happen and unfortunately there are no way for you or your veterinarian to prevent it. I work in a specialty/referral hospital where the ER doctors and surgeons do A LOT of surgeries and the good news is that I haven’t heard of it happening more than once to a patient. If your concerned that it may happening again, you can have your veterinarian evaluate Lily and potentially have an abdominal ultrasound which is a non-invasive way to look inside the abdomen and see what is going on. Even if an adhesions forms, as long it doesn’t entrap the bowel, it does not need to be removed and most dogs will reabsorb/break down the adhesion over time.
I hope this helps!
Dr J Veterinarian
My little Lhasa apso, had surgery for adhesions 2 years ago, caused when she was spayed. Yesterday she again had surgery for severe adhesions. The vet cannot gives us any hope that this might not happen again. We have had the week from hell as she was treated for gastritis rather than for what they finally discovered. Her small and large intestine were affected.anonymousMember
I would ask for a referral to a veterinary internal medicine specialist, asap.
Or, otherwise continue to work closely with your current vet.
What makes you think that anonymous strangers on an internet forum, that may or may not have any veterinary healthcare experience would have anything of value to offer?
I just thought that others might have come across this before and would like to know what happenedanonymousMember
Well, best of luck.TyrionthebiscuitMember
You may be able to find a support forum on Facebook for your specific problem. There’s never a clear cut answer, but you can read other experiences and learn from them. Not everyone is as bitter about it as anon101 so don’t get discouraged. Unfortunately there doesn’t seem to be a lot of information on a diet, though
Thank u, I will take a look into FacebookFrena HMember
I’m so sorry, Sue — I didn’t realize anyone was responding to my post — just got a notification today for the first time. Our guy was touch and go for another year after his surgery, he had to have another surgery for obstruction in December of 2016 — the vet told us at that time that the obstruction was caused by a TINY piece of stuffing from a toy that he had played with — they said the obstruction was so miniscule that any other dog would have passed it with no problems at all — but his intestines are a “tightly packed ball” with lots of “V” shaped turns. Like everyone else’s vets here, they said there is really nothing that they can do for the adhesions. That said — after his last surgery he has done very well. I think they might have taken out the worst of the V-curves during that surgery because before the surgery his bms were always pencil thin, afterwards they were a lot more normal sized and normal looking. I retired in January of 2017 so now I’m able to keep a very close eye on his activities, no toys and no chewing on anything allowed. I keep his diet as low in fiber as I can — he’s a very picky eater and will eat only a very few things (i.e. I offered him some steak last night and he said “NO”) — so i just give him what he likes — he’s especially fond of Polly-O cheese sticks and boiled chicken. He also likes Wellness Core Raw Rev kibbles and Real Meat Dog Food Company kibbles that are more like jerky. Since I’ve retired I’ve found that he does MUCH better if he eats several small meals a day and he will only eat small amounts at a time — he frequently stops and checks in with his stomach to see how it is reacting, and if it is bothering him, he will stop eating. If it feels okay, he’ll continue eating. So I pretty much feed him several times daily and on demand whenever he asks for food and give him however much he feels he can tolerate. The vet also gives me a prescription for Sucralfate, which I keep on hand at all times since it seems to soothe his stomach and intestines. Charlie has learned to ask me for it whenever his stomach is bothering him, and he almost always feels better once he has had it. We just take it “day by day” and that’s about all we can do! We can go for weeks and even months eating great and feeling great — then have a few days or weeks where he doesn’t want to eat and needs to have Sucralfate until he feels better. Plus our vets are always on call if we need an emergency visit, but we haven’t had one in about a year now. All the local vets use a “travelling” sonographer with the ultrasound machine, so if he has an emergency, I go to the vet where the sonogram is or will be soon. Our emergency vet says that Charlie has a “complicated relationship with food.”
I also did some research on “human” intestinal adhesions, and apparently there is really nothing that can be done, except diet and medications that can help soothe the intestines, which is basically what we are doing. The Facebook idea is great — I doubt there is a dog intestinal adhesion group, but there may be a human group, which would help me understand what they are going through and what helps.Sheila JParticipant
My boxer, Walter has had 2 surgeries, and has severe adhesions. They can’t do anything about it because it’s where his pancreas, stomached, and intestines all meet. His scar tissue has even started to grow blood vessels in which his pancreas is feeding. He’s slowly starving. I have found 1 thing that might work. It’s the only thing left, unless we can find a specialist to operate, but with the blood vessels growing in the scar tissue, and the tens of thousands of dollars we’ve spent within the last 5 years to get no answers except allergies or pancreatitis, we don’t have it. So, castor oil is the last shot we have. I’ve found many incidents of it helping people, so why not animals? You rub it on their skin, put an undyed patch on it, or soak the patch I it, then put it I the area of problem, wrap with Saran wrap for an hour. Do this a couple of times a week, it’s supposed to soften the scar tissue. I am praying it works. Good luck to all of you and your fur babies
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