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I think where I’m confused is that having a high PH and having a UTI are different, and what is important is whether there is bacteria in the urine, not just that the PH is high. Have his habits gone back to normal and did your vet tell you if his urinalysis showed bacteria? A high PH means the urine is alkaline and struvite crystals are more likely with alkaline urine but you said that he showed no crystals, and in addition, struvite stones formation is rare unless bacteria is present. (the absence of crystals can be a deceiving comfort as there could be stones instead) I’ve never heard of using a food to reduce the urine PH or to deal with struvite crystals for that matter. Water helps a lot. PH alone also isnt as important than knowing the PH and the specific urine gravity. (should be less than 1.020)
Lisa S, may I ask a couple of questions please? Was your dog showing signs of or diagnosed with a UTI and that’s where the PH came into play? Are you saying that your dog had a UTI that was not corrected by two rounds of antibiotics?
I was told you do not have to treat struvite crystals with food change. They do respond to cranberry supplement and they have powder for so you don’t have to worry about the capsules.
Thank you for the info. She is so picky – for many years the only thing we could get her to eat was the frozen bil jac. We found this because she ate so little to the point that she was getting thin and we used this for behavior training and found she would eat it. About 6 mos ago it actually became toxic for her. Right now she was eating natures recipe chicken and rice easy to digest (vet said get an easy to digest food) but she picks at it also. I supplement that with ground chicken and rice. I was recently told that dogs with food allergies do well with lamb so I switched to their senior lamb and rice and she is much more interested in it. I have two other dogs so although she would be a great grazer she can’t do that in our house. I am not sure if all of this is related to chicken or if she actually has gerd and colitis. It came right out of nowhere. I still have her on medicine but would love to know that it’s food related.
Well back again and more confused than ever! It turns out after all of that, I had the wrong information. Spoke to my vet again and my dog does not have struvite crystals he has urate crystals. Apparenly a different story. Now trying to learn everything I can about purines in protein because I didn’t like the idea of a lower protein food because I know dogs need protein. I spent some time today at my pet health food store and came up with a grain free dog food from nutria source called tru vita turkey. The girl did some research for me and said that turkey’s purine number is 50 and that is in the low range. Also going to mix this with some Canidae ALS which I’m told has high quality protein. From what I am learning these have better ingredients than this hills prescription food that I really cant afford to feed him. My vet also wants to start allopurinol which apparently binds/removes the uric acid. Now that I have my crystals straight any other advice?
thank you for the feedback. I actually tried the raw diet, and the highest end foods with him prior to the issues and he will not touch them. He seems very picky and also will not eat canned food. I was just reading about the cranberry supplements and may give them a try. He eats IAMs large breed for ages 1-5 now because it’s the only thing he will consistently eat. I am confused about one thing I’m reading. I keep reading that the struvite crystals do not need treated unless there is an active infection. He does have an active infection and is on an antibiotic. My vet tested his urine a week after the begin of antibiotic and it was back to normal. I plan to keep him on the antibiotic for 4 weeks. Why does it say that the crystals are only dangerous if there is infection – is that simply because the infection needs treated? Or do the crystals behave differently or pose a different threat if accompanied by infection? So confusing!!!
A little more info. I found out that to feed this boy the prescription food would cost me $30 every 3-4 days because of his size. I hate to say but unless no other option I just cannot afford to do this. I have other pets with issues that also cost money and have to consider everything. Spoke again to my vet and he is going to put him on a medication to do what the food would do – said wasn’t his first choice but totally agrees not to spend that much for food change. He also suggested switching to a non-prescription lower protein food – any suggestions?
I’ve been reading these posts – could I get some info? I have a 3.5 year old dane mix who is a rescue. He has some pretty severe anxiety issues that are the worst in July with all of the firework activity. Two years in a row now he has developed severe UTI’s in July. These have become noticeable to me by seeing pure blood when he urinates. He has been carrying struvite crystals now since 2012. My vet suggested either an ultrasound to ensure no stones, (but with his anxiety issues is very concerned that this would be a huge ordeal for him) or a food change to the Hill’s U/D. He is a very large dog and eats at least 5 cups of food per day. His reasoning for the food change is the continued crystal readings and that they go up and down. He said that when the lab number decreases, it can either be because they have dissolved or that they have formed stones. I am very hesitant to put this dog through the ultrasound procedure at this point but he is showing a pattern of issues. What are thoughts on the food change for this situation? I think if I’m reading right, you guys do not agree for crystals alone but along with infection maybe a different story?
Thank you for all of the feedback. Think I still need help so will give more specifics in hopes that there might be some easy answers but I fear not cause things at my house are far too crazy! I live with my husband and adult daughter and between us we have 4 dogs. 3 of them have food issues that cause me questions:
Missy – 12 year old bearded collie – Would eat nothing but frozen Bil Jac her entire life until she got acid reflux issues 6 wks ago and changing her food was extremely tough. She is now eating (begrudgingly) one cup of natures’ recipe easy to digest chicken dry food, one half cup of rice and one half cup of either boiled ground chicken or boiled ground beef per day.
Max – 11 year old bearded collie – no health issues – will eat ANYTHING including what he finds in the back yard when he beats me to it. He is currently, happily eating two cups per day of the natures’ recipe easy to digest chicken dry food.
Frankie – 3 year old dane mix – he is currently eating IAMS large breed proactive years 1-5. Many days he wants nothing to do with it. Also concerned about what I am reading about IAMS testing on animals, but the plus is they do sell it in 50 lb bags at my Costco. I tried mixing in canned with the dry and he wants nothing to do with the wet food. He is having some teeth issues, with mild gingivitis and we are working on that so not sure if that is factoring in.
Last but not least my daughter’s new puppy Rerun – he is 4 mos old. Rerun is half beagle and half siberian husky – now 30 lbs – vet estimates will be around 60. She is currently feeding him Kirkland signature puppy. He does not seem to like it. He eats very little of it and wants no more.
I feel like 60% of my life right now revolves around feeding dogs and it is becoming more difficult to manage than I can handle. Of course with the 4 of them in the house, feeding is an event, not just an all day graze – you eat what you are given or you dont get any – but now that everyone but Max has decided to become picky – it now involves each of us coralled to a designated space with our charge for the better part of an hour to hour and a half while we coax whichever dog we have to eat so that we can go on with life.
I know that most might want to provide the advice that we just have too many dogs, and I’ve talked way long enough without going into why we have this many dogs at this time in our lives lol! I think I’ve read enough to have learned that the better the quality of food the less tasty. Do I need to find a middle of the road senior food that is palliative enough for my older dogs to eat and wont bother their stomachs? (is there such a thing?) If I can coax my dane to eat the IAMS for awhile longer, what happens when he gets to 6 years old – the bag says 1-5 and he’s almost 4 and weighs 100 lbs. What about this puppy – do we start trying other puppy foods to find one he likes? We tried adding canned (have only found adult canned where I shop) and he then eats the canned and spits out the dry. Very sorry for such a long post – and look forward to any suggestions!!