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Kimba is a 6 year old female cow greyhound, so beautiful and just wonderful in every way. When she first came to me, about a year ago, she was equipped with a special bowl to prevent her from eating too quickly. She soon abandoned that bowl as her eating speed became perfectly moderate, but she always has eaten with enthusiasm. She was also a little on the chunky side. She had been bounced after a year with an adopting family, and when she was returned (for reasons no one can understand) her wonderful foster parents helped her to trim down a bit. She had surgery for a very badly stretched ligament coming off the track, which doesn't seem to bother her; she limped occasionally when she first came to me, but has not limped for quite some time. She was getting glucosamine and chondroitin when she came to me, and I have continued it. Several months ago she developed a painful corn in one front toe, which we treated and hulled, and this seemed to help the pain. Now I can see that she has that one growing back, and two more. Horrible, horrible corns, I hate them. As both front paws are now affected, she may not know which to favor, and may be walking with discomfort all the time. It isn't clear from her gait that this is so, however.

 

Another strange behavior of recent vintage is that in the morning when we go outside for our first letout, Queen Kimba usually prefers to stay inside. She will go out after a half hour or so. Fred thinks this is elegant, so he, too, is postponing his first pee for a half hour. Only Henry takes advantage of the open door and pees away with vigor.

 

In this context, for the past four days, she has refused her breakfast three times. At dinner, I refresh the morning meal with some warm water and some stinky fish and she eats it eagerly -- clearly she is pretty hungry by dinner time, as she lurks in the kitchen uriging me to move things along more quickly, which she never does, as a rule. I cannot leave her breakfast out for her to eat later, because if I did, her brothers Henry and Fred would soon have dealt with it and they are well fed already! She doesn't vomit, and her stool is fine.

 

I scheduled a vet visit for her tomorrow. I am worried that something beyond the corn discomfort might be interfering with her appetite. Booker, my first grey, would stop eating when his hookworms that had been encysted came out and he needed to be wormed; when that would happen, as it did several times, he would have very bad pain in his intestines that was obvious upon examination. Also when his spleen grew to the size of a soccer ball, he stopped eating because there was no room for his stomach to expand.

 

Am I being silly to rush to the vet? Believe me, I could find other uses both for the time and the money, but I cannot bear to think that Kimba is in pain, and really ill.

 

Thanks for your input!

bth_FredandKimbaGreytalksignature1.jpg?t

Loving Kimba & Fred, missing Booker & Polly, first greyhounds, never forgotten.
"I am in favor of animal rights as well as human rights.
That is the way of a whole human being."
Abraham Lincoln

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I always get concerned when a good eater is off her food. I can suggest lots of ideas (including that maybe her feet bother her more in the morning), but I'd be inclined to take her in for a checkup if I couldn't find a reason fairly quickly.

Standard Poodle Daisy (12/13); Greys Hildy (Braska Hildy 7/10), Toodles (BL Toodles 7/09), Opal (Jax Opal 7/08)
Missing Cora (RL Nevada 5/99-10/09), Piper (Cee Bar Easy 2/99-1/10), Tally (Thunder La La 9/99-3/10), Edie (Daring Reva 9/99-10/12), Dixie (Kiowa Secret Sue 11/01-1/13), Jessie (P's Real Time 11/98-3/13), token boy Graham (Zydeco Dancer 9/00-5/13), Cal (Back Already 12/99-11/13), Betsy (Back Kick Beth 11/98-12/13), Standard Poodles Minnie (1/99-1/14) + Perry (9/98-2/14), Annie (Do Marcia 9/03-10/14), Pink (Miss Pinky Baker 1/02-6/15), Poppy (Cmon Err Not 8/05-1/16), Kat (Jax Candy 5/05-5/17), Ivy (Jax Isis 10/07-7/21)

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No, you're being sensible. Have a blood work done so that you know liver and kidneys are working OK. Make sure the vet knows the special Greyhound kidney levels which are higher than normal and higher still if the dog has been exercizing prior to the test. Take in a fresh morning catch of urine too as that helps confirm the kidney results.

 

Now it may be just that the weather got warmer and appetance eased back a bit... it may be the corns... either way your vet won't be critical of you.

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Well, again this evening she finished her breakfast for dinner, at an extremely deliberate pace. We're off to the vet tomorrow, with whatever samples I can collect, and I presume the vet will do blood tests for things related to appetite and the gastrointestinal tract. I gave my vet the chart of normal blood levels for hounds many years ago, and when she reports back to me, I always review the results against the charts that are pinned here on Greytalk. It actually has not been terribly warm here in northern Westchester, NY lately, quite the contrary really, and because Henry insists on keeping the AC at 70 degrees, no one is hot here! So I don't think she could be reacting to the heat yet. And when it does get really hot, walks in the heat of the day are very limited in duration.

 

Now all that remains to decide is whether Kimba and I go to the vet with or without the boys! They will not be pleased to be left behind.

bth_FredandKimbaGreytalksignature1.jpg?t

Loving Kimba & Fred, missing Booker & Polly, first greyhounds, never forgotten.
"I am in favor of animal rights as well as human rights.
That is the way of a whole human being."
Abraham Lincoln

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Your vet will probably do this, but just in case: check for pain too. Betsy was less enthusiastic about her meals recently--she ate, but not as quickly. I put the bowl higher and she polished the meal off. Bingo: not gut but pain. I wasn't sure if it was her sore shoulder or her tricky neck. It was her neck.

Standard Poodle Daisy (12/13); Greys Hildy (Braska Hildy 7/10), Toodles (BL Toodles 7/09), Opal (Jax Opal 7/08)
Missing Cora (RL Nevada 5/99-10/09), Piper (Cee Bar Easy 2/99-1/10), Tally (Thunder La La 9/99-3/10), Edie (Daring Reva 9/99-10/12), Dixie (Kiowa Secret Sue 11/01-1/13), Jessie (P's Real Time 11/98-3/13), token boy Graham (Zydeco Dancer 9/00-5/13), Cal (Back Already 12/99-11/13), Betsy (Back Kick Beth 11/98-12/13), Standard Poodles Minnie (1/99-1/14) + Perry (9/98-2/14), Annie (Do Marcia 9/03-10/14), Pink (Miss Pinky Baker 1/02-6/15), Poppy (Cmon Err Not 8/05-1/16), Kat (Jax Candy 5/05-5/17), Ivy (Jax Isis 10/07-7/21)

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Well, the vet did a thorough exam, and believes that Kimba's intestines feel "thick", "ropy", which translates as "inflamed." She took blood for tests, is doing a fecal and a urine culture, put Kimba on Hills I/D, asked me to discontinue anything else she was getting (probiotics, glucosamine/chondroitin, and Vitamin B.) She did an x ray of Kimba's abdomen, which to her educated eye did seem to indicate inflammation in her small intestine. She prescribed Flagyl for Kimba as well. Had I thought of it at the time (I was wrangling Fred and Henry, who would never pass up a visit to the vet) I would have asked her if Tylan would do as well, because that was a wonder drug for my Booker when he was recovering from his frequent hookworm attacks. We will see how the Flagyl does. I am a little worried about side effects. The vet also gave Kimba an injection to reduce any feelings of nausea she might be experiencing (she hasn't vomited) on the theory that she might be feeling nauseated and that might be why she wasn't eating her breakfast. We'll be anxiously awaiting the test results, and seeing how Kimba eats tomorrow.

 

Well, Kimba enjoyed the I/D just fine. Since then, she's been stretched out on the couch in wild abandon, sleeping like a log. I suspect that the anti-nausea injection and the flagyl might have tired her out a bit.

 

On Memorial Day we bought a minivan because our old CRV wasn't really big enough for all three dogs to stretch out in the back. The plan is to take out the middle range of seats, which will leave the three greyhounds with an 8x4 space to stretch out in, However, Kimba has a better idea. Because she now has access to the front seats, while I was picking up dinner, she planted herself in the shotgun seat and looks as though she has staked that out as her seat for ever and aye. Here she is:

 

CopilotKimba.jpg

bth_FredandKimbaGreytalksignature1.jpg?t

Loving Kimba & Fred, missing Booker & Polly, first greyhounds, never forgotten.
"I am in favor of animal rights as well as human rights.
That is the way of a whole human being."
Abraham Lincoln

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The vet called this afternoon and Kimba's blood tests, urine test, and fecal are all normal. Thyroid a little low, but appropriate for a grey. All that money and no answers. We will worm her just in case she might have hooks, although they didn't show up in the stool. I'll have her finish the flagyl, and keep her on the I/D for a few more days, before easing her back to her regular food. She did eat breakfast this morning.

bth_FredandKimbaGreytalksignature1.jpg?t

Loving Kimba & Fred, missing Booker & Polly, first greyhounds, never forgotten.
"I am in favor of animal rights as well as human rights.
That is the way of a whole human being."
Abraham Lincoln

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I am thinking that her corns are bothering her terribly, or that her teeth are hurting her. I will be working on the corns this weekend, and watching to see how she does,

bth_FredandKimbaGreytalksignature1.jpg?t

Loving Kimba & Fred, missing Booker & Polly, first greyhounds, never forgotten.
"I am in favor of animal rights as well as human rights.
That is the way of a whole human being."
Abraham Lincoln

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After you see how she is about her corns, if you still wonder about dental pain, you can run her kibble through a food processor, then give it to her mixed with Ensure or yogurt (if she's okay with lactose) or stirred into rice or oatmeal or just soaked in a bit of water. That will give her the nutrition she needs without giving her dental pain because she'll have a meal she can just lap up.

 

My 13-year-old refused his kibble for a while, and I ground his kibble (three cups a day) so I could be sure he was getting the proper nutrition. Left up to him, he'd suck off the yogurt and spit out the kibble. :P

 

His wasn't a dental issue--just a matter of being finicky--and he's gone back to eating his kibble. (I still throw in some Ensure on occasion.)

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Kathy and Q (CRT Qadeer from Fuzzy's Cannon and CRT Bonnie) and
Jane (WW's Aunt Jane from Trent Lee and Aunt M); photos to come.

Missing Silver (5.19.2005-10.27.2016), Tigger (4.5.2007-3.18.2016),
darling Sam (5.10.2000-8.8.2013), Jacey-Kasey (5.19.2003-8.22.2011), and Oreo (1997-3.30.2006)

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I had always wet my hounds' kibble with hot water, and added a half can of wet food to make the kibble more exciting. But I have just stopped the water because it occurred to me that they needed the crunch of the kibble to help clean their teeth. they all like bully sticks, so they get them frequently also to help with tooth cleaning.

 

Kimba is still getting the special I/D kibble and a half can of I/D canned, but she is eating it with enthusiasm (still not like when she first came to me, but fine) and the crunch of the kibble doesn't deter her. She';s very good about taking the Flagyl as well; I think she has two more days of that. Then I guess I will try to transition her to her regular kibble. She, and the other hounds, are eating Evanger's Grain Free Meatlover's Medley with Rabbit kibble. It is well rated on dogfoodavisor.com. She was on that for a few weeks before she stopped eating breakfast; before that she ate Purina Pro Plan Select Salmon and Brown Rice. Maybe she would like to go back to that instead. If all this worry was caused just because she didn't really like the Evanger's all that much, I'll feel kind of silly...

 

Fred ate a very good kibble with his foster family in upstate New York -- unfortunately the company went out of business a few months after he came to me, so we had to switch. It was a grain free kibble, so I switched him to Evanger's. When Henry the AKC dog came, he got the Evanger's too. So it seemed like a good plan to switch Kimba, too, and have to stock just one kind kibble for all of them. So when we were on our last bag of Kimba's kibble I transitioned her to the Evanger's too. That was at least a month before she started refusing her breakfast.

bth_FredandKimbaGreytalksignature1.jpg?t

Loving Kimba & Fred, missing Booker & Polly, first greyhounds, never forgotten.
"I am in favor of animal rights as well as human rights.
That is the way of a whole human being."
Abraham Lincoln

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Personally, I would keep her on the I/D for awhile longer-there's that ole saying--if it's not broke don't fix it. It's working-don't rock the boat just yet. As far as kibble helping her teeth clean-bogus-unless it's an oral care made kibble there's no benefit to feeding that to reduce tartar buildup. Brush her teeth instead.

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