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Recurring Diarrhea

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About a year ago, my dogs starting having recurring diarrhea - at first for Uri (age 9 at the time) it was once a month...sometimes Doris (age 7) would get it too. The vet ran all kinds of tests and found nothing really wrong - he concluded it's colitis/irritable bowel. After each episode, I give a few days of chicken/rice bland diet, and a month's worth of Purina's FortiFlora probiotic powder daily.


Sometimes now the episodes are 6 months apart...most recently, though only 2 months apart. Uri seems to get it first, then Doris follows suit in about a week.


It's the frantic, urgent kind (and why does it always come on in the middle of the night?) Doris is not as frantic as Uri - Uri needs outings every 2 hours for about a day, and then he's done. Both clear up instantly on the chicken/rice and have no other symptoms. Their appetite remains normal.


When they don't have diarrhea, their stools are perfectly formed (so proud!). It's like night and day.


Just wanted to see if anyone else experience this coming on their senior-ish dogs. (They are now 10 and 8). Might it help if I give the FortiFlora probiotic powder dailly, forever? Has anyone had luck with a non-brand name probiotic powder that is not quite so expensive?


Also - I had been giving the dogs coconut oil in addition to their fish oil pill daily, for coat and because I read that helps with irritable bowel. They had their yearly vet check-up two weeks ago, and he suggested stopping the coconut oil - that it could be overkill with the fish oil. So I did. Then bam, within 2 weeks, both went down the diarrhea road again. So maybe it IS really good for irritable bowel? And stopping it caused a relapse? I might restart it again.



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Yes, I would give a probiotic daily. I like the Vetri-Science products, which you can get on Amazon. They have both pill and chewable forms of a daily probiotic, although I've been using Proflora instead recently because it's cheaper. Vetri-Science also has something called probiotic BD that is more supportive of gut health. I LOVE that product. Zuri got nasty diarrhea last week that wasn't clearing up and as soon as I started it his stool improved. They do have a mamaintenance dose on the bottle so you might just consider doing that daily.


The other thing to consider is a digestive enzyme. As dogs age they start to lose their ability to digest food as easily so a digestive enzyme sprinkled on their food can be helpful.


I do find the timing of the episodes and the fact that both dogs seem to get them odd though and wonder if there isn't something medical going on. You can easily miss parasites on fecals. You might talk to your vet about a prophylactic round of Panacur just in case there's something like worms or giardia going on (you'd had to do multiple rounds to be safe, initial, then 3 weeks, then maybe also at 3 months). And make sure they're on a heartworm preventative that covers worms, so Heartguard Plus instead of Heartguard, or Interceptor.

Edited by NeylasMom


Jen, CPDT-KA with Zuri, lab in a greyhound suit, Violet, formerly known as Faith, Skye, the permanent puppy, Cisco, resident cat, and my baby girl Neyla, forever in my heart

"The great thing about science is that you're free to disagree with it, but you'll be wrong."

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My vet suggested Proviable for my older hounds. It comes in capsule form and can be put in a pill pocket and given once a day. It's a great probiotic. My Pistol gets it daily to help keep his stools firm. I get it from Amazon or you can get it from most vets.

Judy, mom to Darth Vader, Bandita, And Angel

Forever in our hearts, DeeYoGee, Dani, Emmy, Andy, Heart, Saint, Valentino, Arrow, Gee, Bebe, Jilly Bean, Bullitt, Pistol, Junior, Sammie, Joey, Gizmo, Do Bee

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