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Gas In Dogs


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This thread in Food and dietary got me thinking about gas in Greyhounds.

 

When we first adopted Naples, we had a few issues with gas, and I was not terribly surprised. Once she got settled in, and her gut got used to the food, she was fine. Then we adopted Gunnar. He was about 9 at the time, and had gas like you would not believe. We tried many different foods, probiotics, medical check-ups, the works. Nothing could pinpoint a problem, so we assumed it was just him.

 

Now that Naples is older (will be 10 in December), she has started to have gas like his. It's not constant. It's not everyday. As one would expect, it gets worse when she has to defacate. But it is more than it used to be.

 

She has not had a food change in two years. There have been a few upheavals in the home (new additions, canine and feline), but she always deals with changes like that without a blink of the eye - she's very adaptable like that.

 

So, my question is, is this something that can be expected of older Greyhounds? or, as suggested in the thread posted above, could this be a sign of something else? She is very bright and active, as usual. No other changes, other than a little slowing down, due to her age.

 

Thoughts?

Sarah, the human, Henley, and Armani the Borzoi boys, and Brubeck the Deerhound.
Always in our hearts, Gunnar, Naples the Greyhounds, Cooper and Manero, the Borzoi, and King-kitty, at the Rainbow Bridge.

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Guest Energy11

Hummmm.... Curfew has HORRIBLE gas, but he is also on two medications, Soloxine for his thyroid and Enalapril for his high blood pressure. I automatically give him a Pecid AC and a Gas-X with both of his daily doses, which does help.

 

Hard to say on the gas. If EVERYTHING else seems fine, just could be plain "garden-variety gas." I'd be sure the vet thinks everything in his GI (Gastro-Intestional Tract) is okay, and maybe the Gas-X will help.

 

Good Luck. Gas is never a "pretty" subject, ... DH Inst too much different :-)))))))))

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Guest Energy11
A spoon-full of yogurt can do wonders.

Yeppers! I am a HUGE fan of yogurt here, too! Mine get it with their nighttime meals. Non flavored, non-fat. The love it!

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She gets probiotics daily. Not in the form of yogurt, but in a powder.

 

I'm not directly concerned with curing the problem. That is not what I asked about. Instead, I am curious to know if this is simply an "old Greyhound" thing, that can develop over time, or something else.

Sarah, the human, Henley, and Armani the Borzoi boys, and Brubeck the Deerhound.
Always in our hearts, Gunnar, Naples the Greyhounds, Cooper and Manero, the Borzoi, and King-kitty, at the Rainbow Bridge.

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Not an old greyhound or old dog thing. It's a case of something in the food changed, or something in the dog's metabolism or gut bacteria changed.

Star aka Starz Ovation (Ronco x Oneco Maggie*, litter #48538), Coco aka Low Key (Kiowa Mon Manny x Party Hardy, litter # 59881), and mom in Illinois
We miss Reko Batman (Trouper Zeke x Marque Louisiana), 11/15/95-6/29/06, Rocco the thistledown whippet, 04/29/93-10/14/08, Reko Zema (Mo Kick x Reko Princess), 8/16/98-4/18/10, the most beautiful girl in the whole USA, my good egg Joseph aka Won by a Nose (Oneco Cufflink x Buy Back), 09/22/2003-03/01/2013, and our gentle sweet Gidget (Digitizer, Dodgem by Design x Sobe Mulberry), 1/29/2006-11/22/2014, gone much too soon. Never forgetting CJC's Buckshot, 1/2/07-10/25/10.

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We do one called Probios. We find it at our local farm and fleet store, in the horse and cattle section. It's very inexpensive, and the dogs love it!

Sarah, the human, Henley, and Armani the Borzoi boys, and Brubeck the Deerhound.
Always in our hearts, Gunnar, Naples the Greyhounds, Cooper and Manero, the Borzoi, and King-kitty, at the Rainbow Bridge.

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A spoon-full of yogurt can do wonders.

 

Or, if your dog is like George, give it diarrhea!

 

I think that ALL older dogs tend to get gassier. It's not an issue unique to Greyhounds.


Hamish-siggy1.jpg

Susan,  Hamish,  Mister Bigglesworth and Nikita Stanislav. Missing Ming, George, and Buck

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We know that as humans age, the ability to produce lactase- the enzyme that breaks down the disaccharide lactose, or milk sugar- tends to decrease. Lactose intolerance is the usual result. Of course, we have an entire suite of enzymes to process food, starting with those in the salive that are imparted during chewing. I don't think anyone has studied whether the concentration of these enzymes diminishes with age.

 

From this, we're left with a big hanging question: as animals age, do they have the same ability to digest food as they did when they're younger- or is lactose absolutely, positively the only one? I doubt it, but there's no evidence either way.

 

Then the question becomes- what happens if these undigested dietary components go a-travelin' down the ol' alimentary canal? As with beans in humans, they ferment- producing gas. From this, we know microbiological populations can change- sometimes startlingly quickly- to adapt to the "new" food items that come to, er, pass. Many people who consume beans on a a regular basis adapt to this change over a period of days or weeks.

 

The problem comes when the host is sensitized to these unnatural populations. We know that some digestive disorders- in humans- carry with them the risk of forming antibodies to specific organisms. This seems to happen under specific conditions under which the host has been fed large quantities of carbohydrates- primarily from grains. A similar thing happens with dogs, although the data are much shakier for that. However, we know that IBD and IBS occur in dogs quite frequently, causing owners to change foods and, if that's not enough, go the route of medical intervention with prednisone and other immunosuppressants in order to keep the interactions between bacteria and host from eventually destroying the animal's capacity to digest food and eventually waste away. This does not happen in all cases, obviously, but a select few animals will go down this route.

Coco (Maze Cocodrillo)

Minerva (Kid's Snipper)

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ahicks51, do you think that adding digestive enzymes would help?

 

That's a good question; I've honestly not studied the subject of supplementation with digestive enzymes too much. However, because that's what the different bacteria in yogurt probably do (as well as physically displace less desirable bacterial species), it may be worth a shot.

Coco (Maze Cocodrillo)

Minerva (Kid's Snipper)

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Guest mcsheltie

Digestive enzymes and Probiotics do different things. Yogurt/Probiotics replace the good bacteria in the gut which affects so many things, including the immune system. Digestive enzymes aid in the breakdown and proper digestion of food. Digestive enzymes aren't usually needed unless the dog has a medical problem, say pancreatic deficiency so they are not producing enzymes. And I would think old age could also affect enzyme production. So I would try it.

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Cali is almost 15 and doesn't have gas, ever. Never has. Actually my dogs rarely even pass gas, they never have. They are all over 8. They eat Diamond and I put rice in it. When I fed them raw, they were younger and never ever passed gas.

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