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Hi everyone.. So I've been searching and searching through GreyTalk for topics on feeding and though there's a lot of good info I still can't find exactly what I'm looking for. I'd also like more specific advice if anyone wants to chime in. So here's the low down. I have 2 Greyhounds Hound #1, Gambler is a 5yo (will be 6 in February 2016) male. He weighs around 67-69. Coincidentally this was also his racing weight (If I'm reading the charts correctly). I will have had him for 3 years in January. I'm not deliberately trying to keep him at his racing weight, this just seems to be his normal maintenance weight. He usually gets about 3 cups (all together) of Taste of the Wild Pacific Stream dry kibble with a couple tablespoons of TOTW canned Southwest Canyon or High Prairie mixed in since he gets bored with his food. He typically eats a little less than this during summer when he's not exercising as much and a bit more during winter when he exercises and runs more. I was always able to free feed him and he was never one of those dogs that would eat until they pop or when they were already full. HOWEVER... in the past couple months.. his poop isn't very firm anymore (it's never been very firm). He's taking much more time than usual to go. He's normally picky about where he goes, but all the sudden it takes 2-3 times longer for him to find a spot, and he strains more. He doesn't have diarrhea but its more like.. over ripe banana soft. And light green. He was healthy on his recent vet check. I'm inclined to think TOTW changed something. Even if they didn't I'd like to change feed since obviously something isn't agreeing with him. --When I first adopted him, I fed Iams sensitive because I couldn't find anything that would firm up his poo. That worked great for a long time. At least I thought so. --6 or so months ago I started feeding TOTW Pacific Stream and he was much less "snarky", had more energy and was more calm in general. I don't want to go back to Iams for this reason. --I'm on the fence as to whether he's sensitive to chicken. The first months of adoption a chicken based food made him nauseous, as did any pieces of chicken we gave. Chicken was stopped, he was switched to fish based food and I avoided all chicken. However a few months ago he at some chicken jerky at a restaurant and was completely fine after. --I do know he absolutely CANNOT have dairy. No Yogurt, no cheese, nothing. --Pumpkin does nothing but make his diarrhea orange. --Fish oil/ any oil added gives him an upset stomach (even if just a little) Here's a recent pic: Hound #2 is Holly, She just turned 3 on November 1st, weighs about 55lbs and I've had her since.. her birthday on the first this year She was eating Authority Chicken kibble at her foster home (which she was at for about 9 months). And did fine on that. I transitioned her over to TOTW these past few weeks because it's just easier to feed them both the same thing. She eats pretty much the same as Gambler, 3 cups a day. She doesn't get the wet food as much as I don't want to throw too many ingredients in her food yet. She however is a canine vacuum and will eat and eat and eat and always seems hungry. She isn't as sensitive as he is. She definitely has more energy than Gambler. However with the TOTW food, her poops are much softer, a little greenish, and she poops much more. I understand it hasn't been long and she could still be transitioning, but it makes me suspicious if they are both having issues. Here's a pic of her (and me) Their Exercise: I live in an apartment so playing in a yard is not an option yet unfortunately. They get a 30-40 min walk in the morning. 15-20min in the evening, and another 30 or so around 8-9pm. I take them to a baseball field to run until they're tired once a week. Sometimes I can get there twice a week. Ideally I'd like to give them the same food to make it easier, but is there a good chicken (and other bird) free dry food that's good and gentle on the stomach??? I would love to switch them to a raw diet but I'm worried about the cost / chicken element / space ( I live in an apartment). I'm still researching raw but need something they can thrive on in the meantime. Thoughts??
Guest posted a topic in Health and Medical discussionFirst, I apologize for the long post. We are desperate to help our boy feel better and I wanted to make sure I provided all the details... In the 3 months we've had him, I can count, on my hands, the number of times Puddy has had a solid #2. He's been to the vet 4 times now and we're still at a loss. Before I take him back to the vet, I want to make sure I'm able to bring them enough information to work with. I'm hoping you can help. Here's a synopsis of what's been going on: Meds & Tests Puddy came to us half-way through a course of Heartguard, which we finished during his first dinner. At the time, he had pretty runny #2s, but we figured this could be attributed to any number of things. A week after being with us, Puddy was Rx'd a 6-week course of Drontal at the vet after a stool sample tested positive for hookworms. For about 72 hours after the last pill, poor Puddy was literally howling in pain every time he pooped, which was actually more like explosive diarrhea. Stools were a bit bloody (hematochezia) and very, very runny. Like melted ice cream. A couple of weeks went by after the last dose of Drontal and Puddy continued to have diarrhea pretty much every time we took him out. Sometimes it was bloody, too. Figuring it couldn't be the after-effects of the Drontal anymore, we were concerned and took him back to the vet. They did another fecal swab and determined that he still had hookworms. He was Rxd a second round of Drontal for the hookworms and metronidazole for the diarrhea and suspected colitis. Round 2 of Drontal had very similar effects to the first round- howling Puddy, explosive diarrhea, a little blood. The effects subsided after about 72 hours again, but the diarrhea remained. The metronidazole did not seem to have much of an effect of Puddy other than firming up his poop to the consistency of mashed potatotes (at best). Food Puddy was eating Purina One Chicken when he arrived at our house. We transitioned him slowly over to Acana Wild Prairie over the course of a couple of weeks. His poop was never solid, though we weren't sure if it was the worms, the dewormer, stress, or ??? Our vet recommended we switch to a different protein to see if perhaps his diarrhea was related to his food. We switched to Acana grasslands and had maybe a week of pretty good poops after 2 weeks of being on his new food. Then, without warning or any changes to his diet, those lovely poops eventually went back to diarrhea. Thinking his Acana was too rich, we recently switched to Taste of the Wild Pacific Stream, which has a lower protein content. He still has diarrhea (with blood occasionally), though the first couple of days on the new food produced some nice poops. Other things: We've played around with his portions, giving him anywhere from 4 cups total to 2 cups total (he's 80lbs) per day. It didn't seem to make much of a difference, unfortunately. Puddy has had a couple of stints (one weekend, one 12-day stint) in a boarding kennel while we were out of town. He is very happy there and I do believe that the people take great care of him, but he always seems to come back home with tummy issues. We've eliminated all treats. He only eats his kibble and two .75in pieces of string cheese (I shove his daily meds in those) a day. He has maintained an appetite and weight through all of this and drinks a seemingly normal amount of water His coat is shiny and soft, so it seems like he's at least getting those nutrients Even when he has diarrhea, he can typically wait to go until we're on our normal walks. There have been, however, about 8-10 instances where he's stood politely by the front door or whined so we would take him out to go. In those instances, it was pretty clear that it was urgent. He has had one accident in the house, and that was about 24 hours after his last Drontal pill. We've given him rice and ground beef and it seems to clear him up for a little bit, but several days after going back to his regular food, it starts up again We were giving him a couple of TBS of pumpkin with his breakfast (man, he loved that stuff), and it seemed to be firming things but, but I'm not sure if that's just masking his other issues. Questions: 1. Are we switching his food too quickly? Is it common to see improvement followed by a period of decline? Can we expect to see things bounce back? Are we not being patient enough? 2. Recently, his poops have gotten much darker in color. I am afraid there is something wrong higher up in his GI tract since it appears to be blood. Any thoughts? 3. Is it possible that he still has worms? With two complete rounds of Drontal under his belt, I'm wondering if we need to move to something stronger? But I'm also concerned about the havoc it could wreak on his tummy since he had such an uncomfortable experience on the Drontal... 4. Are there other things we aren't considering? 5. How long does a food typically stay in their systems? In other words, if we gave him boiled rice and ground beef for several meals and then switch him back to his regular kibble, would solid poops on day 1-3 back on his kibble be residual effects from the rice and beef? Or does it move quickly enough through their systems where we can confidently say that he's having good poops on his kibble? Any advice would be greatly appreciated! We just want Puddy to be comfortable and happy. We're willing to try pretty much anything but I want to make sure we're going about it the right way and not just making things worse for him. Please help!