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Switched Food

Guest oldNELLIE

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Guest oldNELLIE

A couple of weeks ago Nellie was running out of food and I had the chance to get her some Kirkland food that we wanted to try her on. We mixed it for a week or so and she seemed to be doing fine.


After a couple of days of feeding her just the Kirkland I looked at her and noticed that she looked much heavier than normal. Looking down at her back there was hardly any definition between the bottom of her ribs and her hips. she was also having softer and larger bm's, but I thought this was normal for switching food. I thought the food must have many more calories than what we had been feeding her so we cut back from 3 heaping-ish cups a day to 3 leaner cups, probably 1/4 to 1/2 a cup less a day. In about 4 days she thinned out, you can see her ribs and her poops are firmer again.


Now looking back I think because the changes came so suddenly and went so suddenly that it may have actually been gas? She was spending more time sleeping upstairs, but didn't seem to be in any distress, just a little less social. She continued to eat, go on walks and sleep just fine.


What can I look for if this happens again? Do people give there dogs something for gas? Or could it have actually been extreme weight gain and loss? Of course I am always worried about things like bloat, but I am still unsure as to what causes it...and I gather that no one really knows. Does gas play a factor in it? She is back to her old self these days, back to sleeping on the couch with us and in the bedroom at night. What ever the problem was seems to have cleared up, but I am left wondering what happend!

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> What can I look for if this happens again?

Unusual tightness in the belly area even if it isn't obviously swollen could be a sign of gas. You would need to know what your dog normally feels like to tell this. It may not be apparent on a lean, well muscled dog. I would look for a sudden increase in size anywhere from ribcage back to hips. One of my dogs was so prone to bloating that we kept a "bloat tape" which was a tape measure with marks where his size normally was. We measured before meals, immediately after meals & then 1/2-1 hour later. Plus any ol' time I felt paranoid. Any deviation over an inch was cause for a recheck in 15-30 min. If his size had increased at all then we started treatment & rechecked every 15 mins. If he continued to get larger then it was off to e-vet.


> Or could it have actually been extreme weight gain and loss?

Don't know but I normally cannot see my dogs' weight gain in just a few days or a weeks time. Have you compared the number of calories in the old food versus Kirklands? What were you feeding? Variations in carbohydrate levels can make a difference.


> Do people give there dogs something for gas?

Simethicone is a standard. I usually tried to find Ultra Strength Phazyme or equivalent. Go with just simethicone without other additives. If you can find liquid simethicone that may work faster though I've had good success with the tablets. It could take 4-6 of them or more for severe problems.


> Of course I am always worried about things like bloat, but I am still unsure as to what causes it...

You and everyone else. Body shape, nervous personalities, stress, one big meal a day, hard exercise immediately after eating are all possibilities along with many others. Was it Purdue where the big bloat study was done? Can't remember off hand.


> Does gas play a factor in it?

Yes, it can but not always.


Definition of bloat: So many people use "bloat" in place of bloat & torsion or GDV, gastric dilatation and volvulus. Bloat is really just what it sounds like. The stomach fills up & gets bloated. Though the intestines can also fill with gas which seems quite a bit more painful. Extreme bloat on its on can be deadly but is easier to treat. Once it gets to the torsion or volvulus stage the clock is really ticking & you have no time to waste. Since there is no way that I know of to look at a dog & tell if they have torsioned, all bloat is considered an emergency. Usually I would fill Daniel full of simethicone & head off to the e-vet without even waiting to see if he would deflate on his own. Many was the time we got to the parking lot to find he had deflated on the way.


In spite of their body shape, Greyhounds really do not seem more prone to bloat than most other breeds. Any dog can bloat in the wrong circumstances. However, it is always good to take a few precautions like splitting up food into two meals a day & not allowing running for an hour or so after a meal. A nice leisurely walk is fine though & even was recommended by one e-vet. She described as a "stop & smell the pretty flowers" kind of walk. :) That as opposed to a power walk for exercise only.

Edited by kudzu
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Guest Energy11

I like Pepcid AC or "Gas-X" for "gassy dogs."


Might have been the change of food, causing gas. Yes, yogert mixed into the food is also a good idea.


I hear the Kirkland Chicken and Rice, is EXCELLENT, and wish I had a Costco nearby!


Good Luck!

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Guest oldNELLIE
I've always had good luck with yogurt for gas and put it in their food daily. Is the Kirkland chicken or lamb based?


We have tired yogurt as an add-in in the past, mostly because people here say their dogs seem to like it. For Nellie yogurt cause horrible, paint-peeling, clear the room gas (of course, she did love it :rolleyes: ). Looking back at the last few days this is not what was happening though. She just looked bloated I guess. I really thought it was just weight gain until it went away so quickly. It is the chicken variety.


Kudzu - Thank you for the information and thoughts! I really don't think Nellie was Bloating, she showed no obvious signs of discomfort. I never compared the actually calorie count because the feeding sugestions were the same (3 cups for a dog of Nell's size). She get a cup at a time, 3 times a day.


I think we will look into having some gas-x or the simethicone around in case it happens again. Hopefully it wont be needed!


And here is a picture of our "slim and trim" beauty :)


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