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New Mom Need Help: Hound Very Gassy And Loosing Weight


Guest Wasabi303
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Guest Wasabi303

Hi All-

 

Brand new greyhound mom here. I have had my pup for about 2 months. I took her to the vet the other day to get eyedrops for a very minor infection, and I was informed that not only had she lost 3 lbs in a month (she was fairly skinny to begin with), but the vet told me that she could hear gut sounds will trying to listen to her heart! She has been very gassy since I got her and her poops vary from very loose to good, depending on the day. I confirmed with the vet that I was definitely feeding enough. The vet recommended that I get blood tests done to see if she had inflammatory bowel issues. I decided to see of I could fix it with diet first and spare myself the cost.

 

I switched her over from TOTW to a brand that was recommended to me called Lotus, and I have added FortiFlora to her food once a day. I am hoping that will do the trick, but I wanted to know if anyone else had had similar issues, or had a dog with inflammatory bowel problems. I have also tired adding plain yogurt to her food and pumpkin, the latter made it much worse, the former seems to have very little effect.

 

Are very loud gut sounds, bad and frequent gas, loose poops, and weight loss common during the adjustment period? How long should I hold out before getting the blood tests (if nothing improves)?

 

Any advice welcome!

 

-Katie and Wasabi

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Hi There, The first thought that came to my head was worms. I would deworm again, if this were my pup, before looking into IBD and such.

 

Good luck, let us know!

Tin and Michael and Lucas, Picasso, Hero, Oasis, Galina, Neizan, Enzo, Salvo and Noor the Galgos.
Remembering Bridge Angel Greyhounds: Tosca, Jamey, Master, Diego, and Ambi; plus Angel Galgos Jules, Marco and Baltasar.

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You may have to face the possibility that your girl isn't meant for a rich, high-protein, wholistic kibble. If you go back through this forum, you'll see that many of us have tried to make premium brands work and failed miserably. I'd switch to a mid-range kibble, IAMS green bag, Purina, Kirkland before doing anything else. It's very unlikely that you need to pursue other expensive and invasive testing for IBD (which is only diagnosable by sedating the dog and surgically removing a piece of the intestinal tract for biopsy). A very small percentage of dogs legitimately have IBD.

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If you are giving a separate pro-biotic like FortiFlora you don't also have to give yogurt. Many dogs are lactose intolerant and this may be contributing. If you want to try and add fiber, use a non-soluble one like unflavored Metamucil. My vet said 3 TBLS per meal, which is a LOT, but that's what's recommended for dogs. Iams Green Bag formula has a higher percentage of a substance called "beet pulp" which is essentially insoluble fiber.

 

I'm surprised the vet did not check for worms. It was my first thought, as well. They can be very hard to get rid of, and may be hard to test for if you don't get them in the right part of their life-cycle.

Chris - Mom to: Lilly, Felicity (DeLand), and Andi (Braska Pandora)

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Angels: Libby (Everlast), Dorie (Dog Gone Holly), Dude (TNJ VooDoo), Copper (Kid's Copper), Cash (GSI Payncash), Toni (LPH Cry Baby), Whiskey (KT's Phys Ed), Atom

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De-worm first, even if she was de-wormed by the adoption group. It's not unusual to have to de-worm a couple of times for a dog off the track. If your vet is not used to dealing with hounds off of the track, they may not be aware that this is a fairly regular occurrence. I would try this before proceeding with any tests. Be aware that worms will not always show up in a fecal test, so de-worming is more of a "just in case" measure. Check with your vet to determine his/her preferred de-wormer and procedure.

 

I would also give her a bland diet for a day or two to settle her tummy before switching any foods. Boiled ground beef or chicken with the fat drained off mixed with over-cooked mushy rice or pasta for a few days will also help settle things down. I usually switch to 4 smaller meals of this rather than twice a day feedings just so the tummy doesn't have to work so hard and the hound won't be as hungry between feedings.

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Camp Broodie. The current home of Mark Kay Mark Jack and LaVida I've Got Life.  Always missing my boy Rocket Hi Noon Rocket,  Allie  Phoenix Dynamite, Kate Miss Kate, Starz Under Da Starz, Petunia MW Neptunia and Diva Astar Dashindiva 

 

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I would worm even if your dog has already been dewormed and even if the stool sample is/was negative. The cycle of worms is hard to eradicate. While doing that I might just offer a bland diet such as hamburg or chicken until everything quiets down and reintroduce the food so you don't complicate the picture by changing food.

Edited by riverbosun

Barbara
Majestic and Ranger

"If you want to hear the patter of little feet I'll put shoes on my dogs."

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Your dog should have settled to her new diet within a couple of weeks.

Worming is your first step, in the UK I use Milbemax.

 

After that's had a chance, get some Zantac 75 and give that twice a day half an hour before feeding. You could also use Buscopan 10mg (1 and a half human tablets) for a while. As your dog settles over the next couple of weeks cut the Zantac and Buscopan back by half and eventully to nothing. If that, with a more appropriate diet... see below*, doesn't hold her stable and allow weight gain, then have a full set of bloodwork done including liver and kidney function. Also test for parasites like Giardia and even some tick borne diseases.

 

* I've had irritable bowel/ulcer issues with Peggy and she does not tolerate high protien foods or those with a lot of grease like lamb. Currently she is doing OK on Burns Duck & Brown Rice Kibble ( the next level above mid-range ). She's been on Iams proactive (green bag) before and had good poops that were neither 'museum-grade coprolite' nor pudding poops, but stinky gas was sometimes still an issue.

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If she's losing weight and she isn't fat .... she isn't getting enough food. It's that simple (barring something like pancreatic insufficiency, which is possible but uncommon in the breed).

 

Worms/giardia can contribute to inconsistent stool quality and gas but aren't all that likely to affect weight unless there's a severe infestation with severe ongoing diarrhea.

 

What was her racing weight? Which Taste of the Wild were you feeding, and how much?

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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Guest Wasabi303

Thanks everyone for all the advice. I will get her dewormed again and stick to this food for a few weeks to see how she does. Glad to hear my vet was likely over-reacting (but also not because I need a vet who knows greyhounds better). After that I will start trying less rich foods.

 

Batmom- She was getting four cups a day of the High Prairie food and 1/4 can of wet food on top. So yes, she was getting enough food, it was just moving through her system too fast for her to absorb all the nutrients. When she came to me she was 64lbs, had been off the track for about three months.

 

Hopefully I will have good news to report back in about a month!

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Wasabi303 -- welcome to Greytalk!

 

Just wanted to let you know that my hounds ate 5 cups of food for the first month off the track (once they started eating ... they tended to not eat the first few days). And I don't remember reading how you transitioned food ... if you switch brands of food (not protein sources within the same brand), please gradually shift from one to the other (over ~2-3w) to avoid gassy tummies and runny poop.

 

looking forward to hearing good news ... and seeing pictures of your pup!!!!

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Your girl is beautiful! One additional thought...I know you mentioned that your girl was skinny to begin with, but it's possible that some of the weight loss could be from muscle loss. She's probably not quite as active now as when she was racing. I also wanted to address the general concept of determining how much food is "enough".

 

If she's losing weight and she isn't fat .... she isn't getting enough food. It's that simple

 

Batmom- She was getting four cups a day of the High Prairie food and 1/4 can of wet food on top. So yes, she was getting enough food, it was just moving through her system too fast for her to absorb all the nutrients.

 

I'd have to agree with Batmom. Generally speaking, if a dog is losing weight, s/he is not getting enough food. Every dog is different, and many other factors affect caloric needs, so you can't look at a certain amount of food and determine that it's "enough" for that particular dog, at that particular time. Other factors, such as parasites and diarrhea may affect whether nutrients are being absorbed properly, but until you get those issues cleared up (which can take time), you need to feed more to at least maintain weight. After those issues are resolved, the food can be decreased again, but you don't want the dog to continue to lose weight in the meantime.

 

I fostered a 70-lb male who was under his racing weight when I got him and lost weight in the first week even though I was feeding 6 cups/day. It wasn't until I increased him to 8-8.5 cups/day that he started gaining back the weight he needed. In his case, several factors probably contributed to him needing so much food. He was healing from a broken leg, adjusting to a change in environment (stress), having some loose stools, and he was also not neutered yet. After about a month weeks, he'd gained weight, and I was able to gradually back down his food and maintain his weight on 6-6.5 cups/day. By that time, he'd settled in, his leg was mostly healed, and his diarrhea had cleared up.

 

Even without any health issues, many hounds that are fairly newly retired will need more food for the first few months. It takes time for the hormones to dissipate after their spay/neuter and for their system to adjusts to no longer being in race training. The stress of transition to a new home and environment also increases caloric needs. Most of my fosters start off needing 4-6 cups/day for at least the first 2-4 weeks. After they settle in, most can be decreased to 3-4 cups/day, and my older greyhounds only need about 2.5-3 cups/day to maintain weight.

Jennifer &

Willow (Wilma Waggle), Wiki (Wiki Hard Ten), Carter (Let's Get It On),

Ollie (whippet), Gracie (whippet x), & Terra (whippet) + Just Saying + Just Alice

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Guest Wasabi303

Thanks for all the info, learning a lot! My vet had told me that I was feeding her enough, but as demonstrated, my vet doesn't seem to be that familiar with greyhounds! Interesting that you mention hormones, my girl was spayed in the last 3 or 4 months, I did not even consider residual effects.

 

I weighed her at the pet store yesterday and she had already gained back a pound from her low point, so I am hoping we are on the right track. I wormed her again yesterday too.

 

Thanks for all the help and the warm welcomes. :beatheart

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There is also the factor of 'new home' stress. You've only had your new dog for two months. Many new adoptees lose weight - sometimes quite dramatically - before starting to put it back on once they realise they're in a good situation and it's all OK, even though it's so different from what they're used to.

 

I'd certainly worm again, but I'd be cautious about ramping up the food intake too quickly because that in itself can cause digestive issues. The rule is to make changes slowly, whether it's the type of food or the amount you're feeding. :)

 

I'd also agree that with the Forti-Flora you don't need yoghurt as well, though it does add a few calories and if your girl likes it, and it doesn't make her worse, why not?

 

And yes, I have had several dogs who do better on the more basic foods than the premium stuff. Conversely, I have one now that needs the higher quality stuff or he becomes skeletal, because he won't eat enough to get the calories into him. If I offered him 8 1/2 cups of anything it would be a joke. He'd maybe eat two, no matter what it was, and walk away.

 

The bottom line is that there are several things you can try, but not everything works for all dogs. And if after your dietary adjustments, worming, giving her time to settle into your home etc doesn't work, then you may have to return to the vet and do the bloods. A blood panel is always a good idea for new dogs anyway because it gives you a bseline to refer to in future.

Edited by silverfish

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The plural of anecdote is not data

Brambleberry Greyhounds My Etsy Shop

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Guest normaandburrell

Plenty of good advice. Agree that worming is needed. I have a very greyhound savvy vet, and he had my dog rechecked for worms after initial worming. Wouldn't you know it, we had to retreat. Also, greyhounds can double their metabolic rate depending on their activity. Being anxious after adoption will result in higher nutritional needs. I've had my new dog two months, he has adjusted very quickly, and I just had to decrease his food as he is putting on weight. He was losing initially. So give more food until his weight is back where you want. We weigh our dog at Petsmart frequently, so we can stay on top of it.

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Guest beetle_slayer

My boy came to us on antibiotics which can cause tummy troubles. After giving it a weeks or so to clear up, which it didn't, we gave him a bland home cooked chicken and rice meal. BIG mistake. Water mess shooting out all over the place. The home diagnosis: grain allergy. After trying several GF foods, we settled on nutria-source GF chicken. Others are great foods but his sensitive tummy couldn't handle them or my girl didn't like them. This took a few months to find the right one. About a month ago, my girl was diagnosed with cancer and I started home cooking turkey eggs broccoli, and salmon egg sweet potato broccoli. Her stool is still firm as always and his is as firm as ever with a 1 cup kibble 1 cup home cooking.

All this to say, if the worms are out of the picture (could be microscopic), I would try to give simple foods at a time. See what works as it may be chicken or venison or salmon that you need. Gas is a sign of too much fat I believe. I feel your pain as I and many others have struggled with our hounds' diets. I personally wouldn't do testing at the vet until I did my own testing. In my limited experience, stresses only affect tummies for a few days.

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Guest sireltonsmom

Beetle-slayer - sorry for the news about your girl. I agree working with probiotics and food can help without all the vet bills. And, if it continues, the vet is always there.

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Guest beetle_slayer

We take it one day at a time here-anywhere. I struggled to find the right food for my boy. They are not all the same. My girl has an iron gut but picky picky. I hope the OP has found helpful answers. When we were new parents we were handed a bag and said, "here; this is what she has been on." It was wellness and she did great until a formula change and the gassiness almost killed us. We found Chicken Soup for the Dog Lovers Soul and she loved it. She always had good firm formed poop--museum quality!

In my VERY limited experience, it seems as the girls have better digestive systems than the boys.

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Hi There, The first thought that came to my head was worms. I would deworm again, if this were my pup, before looking into IBD and such.

 

Good luck, let us know!

:nod

 

Yes...check for worms before doing anything else!

Then check again in a month.

 

Nancy...Mom to Sid (Peteles Tiger), Kibo (112 Carlota Galgos).   Missing Casey, Gomer, Mona, Penelope, BillieJean, Bandit, Nixon (Starz Sammie),  Ruby (Watch Me Dash) Nigel (Nigel), and especially little Mario, waiting at the Bridge.

 

 

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Guest Wasabi303

Okay folks, time for an update. Wasabi's gas has gone down a lot, but she still has some, mostly in the evenings. She mostly has solid poops, except when it gets really hot out. She still looks a little thin to me, I have not had time to weigh her recently but I will update y'all when I do. How does she look?

 

cz97i9dl.jpgTaken this morning on our walk, she is watching squirrels.mqEzot7l.jpgxMrCJOpl.jpg

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If this is your first sighthound she is going to look too thin to you for a while. You'll realize one day that your perception has adjusted when every dog you see suddenly looks well overweight. (Oh.. and short, too! :lol )

 

DH, only a recent member of the greyhound cult world, still thinks that Sammi- my 11 1/2 yr old- is too thin. And she is a very big girl. She also lost a lot of her tuck 3 yrs ago when she was very sick and put on steroids (gained too much weight) + age. With her having a broken leg from her racing days, I have always been very careful with her weight. Group and 3 vets said that 75 is her ideal weight and that is where she has remained for over 8 years, minus the time when she was sick and dropped to 63 and then shot to 88. :eek Now that we have Lynni (omg so tiny!) and River (very fresh off of the track and more "normal" sized for a female) he can see that Sammi is a large boned Irish girl. He freaks about Lynni -his baby- not eating enough, yet she's gained weight since adoption and River has lost 2 pounds. :rolleyes: I think he is becoming an helicopter parent :lol

 

From what I can see in the pictures, I cannot see any sign of the last 2 ribs, but I can see her spine bumps. Some might say that she is on the high side of comfortable without the 2 ribs present. Some will say fine. Can you feel them just petting her side easily? Could just be the pictures & fact that she is brindled. (Even at 75 pounds and 11+ years, Sammi's last rib or 2 can be seen, all can be easily felt. She will also show you more ribs -and larger eyes- if you're holding something she has deemed yummy, and thus, wants. )

Edited by Gryffenne
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Guest Wasabi303

The ongoing gas and soft stools suggest there's probably a *better* food out there for her, but I wouldn't stress about her weight.

 

I had that thought as well. I am going switch her over to the chicken variety (she is currently eating lamb) of the same brand and see if that does something. If that doesn't do the trick, I will try the Iam's green bag y'all rave about.

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