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I have a few questions about my 4 year old Greyhound. She had Hookworms when I adopted her but has been cleared of them for 8 months. When I adopted her I was having issues with her having a chronic upset stomach, that at one point was so severe she had to spend several days at the vet for fluids. Her vet explained away her symptoms as being from the hookworms at first but symptoms continued after the hookworm was clear and when I took her back to her vet, they said they didn't know what was wrong with her. From what I have been able to figure out it seems she has to have some sort of a meal approx. every 5 hours. This poses a problem at night, where she will either throw up in the middle of the night or more commonly I have to spoon feed her breakfast because she feels so crummy she refuses to eat it. I do give her a meal before bed but then sometimes she has to go out in the middle of the night or it is too long and she still won't eat breakfast. Usually if she refuses to eat I give her a pepsid prior to feeding her, and that seems to help. Also I will feed her at approx. 4 in the afternoon and by 6 or 8 she is starving. I am feeding her Merrick Limited Ingredient Lamb wet food  mixed with Merrick Wilderness Blend wet food, 1 can 2X a day. She is free fed 1 cup of Merrick Limited Ingredient Lamb dry as often as she wants. Which brings me to what I suspect is her other problem. I leave the dry on a plate (or sometimes just on the floor) and eventually, sometimes after 3 days she will eat it. If I approach her with a bowl with dry food in it she panics and runs in her crate. She is very calm if there is wet food in the bowl but will get nervous sometimes after I put the bowl down like she is checking to make sure it is safe to eat. She will panic and refuse to eat if there is dry food mixed with her wet food, even if it is just a few kibbles. I have tried several sizes of bowl and plastic and metal, the response is the same. Because of her stomach issues she can't be outside alone or off leash (my yard is fenced) because she becomes obsessed with eating giant clumps of grass as soon as she gets out the door. These extra meals are causing her to gain weight and has put on 10 pounds since I adopted her, she is starting to look a bit round. I was wondering if anyone has come across this before or has any suggestions. Any information is appreciated. Thank you.

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Sounds like it's time for another vet visit.  She needs a repeat fecal - just to make sure she's still hook free.  She needs bloodwork to rule out any organ issues, and to check that her gut is absorbing nutrients properly.  Lastly, she needs to have a good physical exam, particularly listening to her heart.  My vet would probably also think about doing xrays and/or an ultrasound of her chest and abdomen to see if there's anything visible worng.   She could have something as simple as another hook outbreak or something as complicated as IBS.  If your vet can't offer you any further help, ask for a referral to a internal specialist in your area.

I will also say, there's no law that says a dog *must* be fed kibble.  Kibble is just a convenient, cost effective way for humans to feed dogs, not necessarily something they need.  I have an IBS dog that only eats canned foods because she can't tolerate kibble and she does just fine.  Make sure you are feeding a canned food that says it's complete nutritionally by the FDA.

Read through the article in the thread down below on Nutritional DCM (Dilated Cardio Myeopathy).  You're feeding a grain free product, high in legumes, to pump up the protein level.  These kinds of foods have been linked with serious heart issues, up to and including heart failure.  Talk with your vet about the issues with grain free foods and consider switching her to a different product.

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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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The thought from Chris was mine as well - the first thing that jumped out at me was the Limited Ingredient diet. I would get her off that and onto something else. What else? So many kibbles from which to choose. What has worked for my dogs, both young'uns and seniors, are two:  IAMS Mini-Chunks and Purina Natural Dog Chow. I have three each on those two brands and everyone is doing great. I've fed the IAMS for years. Purina we started last year - it is essentially Dog Chow without the crap. One of our vets feeds Purina to her dogs (I think also to some of her horses).  We've not had any transition issues whatsoever and the poop (gotta talk poop lol) is beautiful. If you decide to try another kibble, you could pulverize it in a blender or even a hammer to mix in with her wet food until she (hopefully) discovers that she enjoys it. 

I think, too, that it is time for a second opinion.

Hang in there. Best of luck and please let us know how she's doing. What is her name?

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Thank you for the information. Her name is Trini (short for Trinity). She tested negative to hookworms Sept. 2018 and Jan. 2019. She had bloodwork done Feb. 2018, she may have had x-rays done then too. I have the x-rays just not sure when they did them. May 2018 she had some sort of weird seizure and she had a full workup at the emergency vet and saw a Cardiologist. Her heart was beating abnormally fast but the Cardiologist said everything was normal. The rescue that I got her from recommended Purina One, but it gave her horrible diarrhea. I switched her to I/D for a while but didn't want to feed that long term. It wasn't until after I switched Trini to Merrick that I heard grain free wasn't good for dogs. Last winter I took Trini to training classes and the trainer said that she should only be eating dry and that I should get her off the wet food. At 2 cans a day I am going through wet food like crazy, I am really going to be going through it if I have to keep giving her 4 meals a day so I was hoping to mix in the dry so it doesn't use so much of the wet.  My previous Greyhound had a multitude of medical issues but one was IBD, made worse by chicken. At the time I found out about it I was feeding him I/D, which is pretty much all chicken :(. 

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 your trainer is not a vet, a person who is well experienced in training not nutrition. work with your vet, ask about either pecid ac twice a day to help w/ her tummy.more gh are on pecid than you can imagine.  she is self medicating eating grass. zofran is great for nausea as well, there is obviously something going on, but do work w/ a professional. have you tried plain boiled rice and one source of protein to see if you can figure out what agrees- that is if you vet supports the idea. then work your way into resetting her eating and as mentioned keep up w/ the worm check. 

10 lbs is a lots for a dog of any size to gain! so, being picky she will not starve to death. a simple food, not high in fats, not high in protein level might eventually become your dog's best friend. but settle her digestive track first. it might behoove you to take her records to another vet and start all over.and why would your vet have taken x-rays in feb? what was the problem. something is not right there. blood work, yes....x-rays? human's blood pressure and heart rate soar after a seizure, of course her heart was racing after her seizure. run to a cardiologist? did this reoccur a couple of times? huh???

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Back to the vet (probably a different one) for sure.

Are these issues only on the "front end"? Or are you seeing bowel movement symptoms as well? Our former grey was a bile barfer with a poor appetite who also needed his meals broken into 3per day, but after a two week course of omeprazole (with the ok of our vet) his flare ups would die down a lot. But, he definitely was not as bad as this sounds. Something for nausea seems past due in this case.

As far as food, I'm also a broken record for people to educate themselves on DCM and choose a food according to those recommendations.

10lbs is a lot, and definitely for a grey. I'd start to worry about her cardiac and joint health, generally, with that kind of weight gain. If you feel the multiple feedings are absolutely necessary you should really cut down on the calories per feeding - whether that means less volume of a high calorie food, or switching to a lower calorie food so you can give the same amount. 

On 6/4/2019 at 10:51 AM, ladybugz19 said:

If I approach her with a bowl with dry food in it she panics and runs in her crate. She is very calm if there is wet food in the bowl but will get nervous sometimes after I put the bowl down like she is checking to make sure it is safe to eat. She will panic and refuse to eat if there is dry food mixed with her wet food, even if it is just a few kibbles.

Honestly, this is weird and sounds mental to me. Like at some point someone threw a metal bowl full of kibble at her while in her kennel or something similarly scary (who knows). Previous comments are correct, there's no rule that a dog has to eat dry kibble (though it does help keep their teeth cleaner), but once the underlying issue is dealt with 1)this fear might abate 2)you may be able to work with some behavioral guidance on lessening this aversion if it doesn't.

How are her teeth? Obviously there is more going on than just teeth, but it is possible that the dry food hurts her mouth and she knows she doesn't want that.

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I probably should have specified that I was at 2 separate vet appointments (we have had many vet appointments). The first one was in Feb.2018 I brought her in because she hadn't eaten in 2 days, the vet gave her Cerenia and she ate dinner that night. She then didn't eat for 3 more days and her diarrhea had progressed to just being a puddle of blood so back we went. The vet suspected a blockage and did a bunch of tests including bloodwork and x-rays. They couldn't find a blockage and diagnosed dehydration because she ate a little after being there all day. I was sent home with Cerenia to give as needed. The second vet appointment was in May 2018, I took her out at midnight and leash walked her around our very dark yard (I am working on getting lights put in). When we came in she was swaying her head back and forth like she was dizzy, she was tripping over things, and she didn't seem to recognize me. I took her to the Emergency Vet. They kept her all night and all the next day. The vet didn't notice the neurologic symptoms and said that if they continue she would have to see a neurologist (they lasted 24 hours, unknown cause). The Emergency Vet did notice her heart beating very fast and irregular and set her up with their in house cardiologist that was there the following day. After the Cardiologist checked her out she said that Trini's heart was normal. 

 

As an example I spoon fed Trini breakfast (wet food) yesterday because she wouldn't eat it. I gave her lunch (small amount of wet food) no problem, she ate it out of the bowl. Then would not eat dinner (wet food), so I had to spoon feed it to her. I don't think I fed her before bed last night but I'm not sure. She would not eat breakfast this morning, so I spoon fed it to her. I fed her lunch at 3pm today, which is later than usual, and she ate it out of the bowl without issue. Usually she eats her dinner so that was a little unusual yesterday but it so random whether she will eat or not every day is different. 

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First thought is buy a plastic bowl.   Second thought is wetting with chicken stock.   Many greys do best on middle of the range foods.  FWIW I do know the Garth Merrick story from before he reinvented himself and would never spend a penny for his food.  My secondary email is houndkeeper @sbcg,net.  I'll tell you why.

Broken record here.  Rex had ulcerative colitis and I came home one Easter to a kitchen full of bloody runs.  I could never get anything out of him that I could pick up as opposed to hose in the yard.  I tried every highend food on the planet and we wormed and fecaled him within an inch of his life. Hate to rerun it for the zillionth time but I got so fed up at the $$$ dog store I went to the "store brand" aisle and tossed a green bag of Iams in the cart.  Magically fixed.  Its the beet pulp - it balances the water in the intestines..  You can buy beet pulp alone but it comes in huge bags for horses.  Aaron on here bought a bag years ago and was sharing for shipping.  :)
 

Edited by Hubcitypam
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With 10 extra pounds on her you probably don't need to worry too much about whether she's eating every meal (as long as she's staying hydrated); is the Cerenia working to keep the nausea/vomiting to a minimum? Has the diarrhea stopped?

If you're continuing to have both upper and lower GI issues with her, I'm surprised your vet hasn't recommended a hydrolized/hypoallergenic food (not the same as i/d) just to try to reset her system with something that shouldn't irritate it. You might ask about that (there are wet formulas). Did they run an EPI or malabsorption blood tests?

At any point did they have you fast her and do a rice/protein diet for a few days? Did that calm things down?

Are you in sort of a "wait and see" period with your vet as far as these digestive things go? We're in the middle of the lengthy process of diagnosing some yet unknown small intestine "thing" so I know the struggle of waiting, but I'd hope that if this not eating/vomiting has been going on since Jan that your vet would be pushing you toward scoping the stomach or trying some meds to rule out various stomach/upper intestinal things.

With our experience with an ongoing (neverending :() diagnostic process one thing I definitely recommend anyone do is keep a journal of everything that's been done with the vet and notable things that may have happened at home. Accidents/food changes/life events/weather shifts anything worth noting, is well, worth noting. And try to acquaint yourself with everything your vet has done, and why (even if you have to call and ask them - any decent vet will be glad to talk through it), up to this point and jot down things you have read or heard about to ask them about moving forward. It's a lot of digest but it makes getting through the process, and feeling the teensy bit more in control of it, a lot easier.

 

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Hubcitypam - She was originally fed from a metal bowl but when she seemed afraid of it I switched to a plastic and she has been better with it. 

Bizeebee - The Cerenia worked great at first but now the Pepsid seems to work better. She maybe nauseous often, sometimes I'm not sure. She doesn't really vomit all that often, but when she does it is in the middle of the night. The diarrhea comes and goes, 1 day it will be fine the next it will be loose the next it will be fine etc. I sort of got a bit side tracked, since November I have lost 2 guinea pigs and a cat, all 3 of which had substantial vet bills and needed constant monitoring during their illnesses. My vet did mention a hydrolyzed diet (my previous greyhound was on one) but then when I said she had hookworms the vet was like oh nevermind that is probably the cause. We haven't been to the vet since she said she didn't know the cause and suggested a scope as my next step. I was going to run a pancreatitis test but the vet changed their mind when they heard that she had hookworms. We have seen all 3 vets at the practice multiple times but you kind of have to start over every time you see a different one. At this point I am not sure what tests were run when. I have the fecal results, bloodwork results and x-rays but other than that I don't remember what else was done. I was going to get her records from the Emergency Vet too since I have no idea what tests they ran (It's probably on my bill but that doesn't tell me results or notes or anything). When I first adopted Trini and I was feeding her the Purina One she would have terrible diarrhea, I would stop and give chicken and rice and then her poop would be normal so I would give her the Purina One again and she would have terrible diarrhea, so I would go back to chicken and rice and it would normalize and then back to the Purina One etc. That went on for a while because I didn't put together that it was the Purina One that was upsetting her stomach at first. Then after a while she refused to eat the chicken and rice, I think that might have been when I switched her to I/D.

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pecid is for acid reflux- gerd

cerenia or zofran(cheaper) is for nausea. 

administer pecid -30 min before feeding

she may need a regime of Flagyl(or Tylan powder)- that stuff works wonders. as long as the dose is not too high then there should not be any neurological problems. annie who had colitis was on it for 6 months. it took that long for her system to settle down. but annie lost 10#s with in a 2-3 week period of colitis.

check on the fat content of the food your dog is currently eating- it just might be too rich. btw- pancreatic enzymes- how are they? loose stools, in appetite are all signs of pancreatitis, greyhounds are prone to it. yup, my male had it- in the beginning it was on and off loose stools, stomach cramps here and there, in-appetite.

again, i'll mention - rice! boiled beef or turkey or chicken- ground- mix together and try some clay. rx vitamins clay- amazon carries it.  pam is a firm believer in IAMS, me- Purina Pro Plan Focus- either the chicken or salmon and rice for sensitive stomachs. affordable and easy to purchase. but do check and see if your dog needs a low fat food. i can't believe the vet skipped the pancreatitis test. knowing the breed...huh???

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I agree with clepto here - it sounds like none of your three vets are particularly grey-savvy, and maybe not very savvy in general if they can't deign to look over previous records before seeing your dog (instead you having to go through everything every time you see a different person). If it was me I'd probably be finding a different clinic, maybe someone from your adoption group can refer you to a vet or clinic that is more grey-savvy.

That said, your original vet(s) aren't completely nutso, hooks (esp the ones out of FL) do recur and can cause the issues you are seeing - BUT the damage they cause can cause the upper GI flare ups that are basically IBD - which could be helped greatly by hypo food in tandem with hook treatment.

First step is probably a new fecal, it shouldn't be an expensive test and hopefully doesn't even require your dog going in. That way you know for sure, for sure that hooks(or other parasites) are not the problem.

Once you know it's not hooks I'd move on to a more specialist/savvy vet and go down the pancreatitis/EPI/malabsorption testing (all blood I believe) route. You'll learn a lot from those tests and any vet worth their salt will advise medication/diet changes to move your dog in the right direction.

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sounds like the cardiologist that i took my mom back to. first visit he couldn't take 10 min and read her history(everything is electronic on a universal portal). i provided an echocardiogram which he copied. forgot that he had a copy and complained that the hospital never sent it or the radioligist report over as he requested. i politely blew a gasket, he found the copy of the echo. the report was given to her primary who never entered any findings, fortunately she is "grossly normal" for her age. my mom and i agreed that he was logging in visits to keep his stats and billing up. trust me she will no longer waste her time there. 

if a dr. does not read records ,communicate w/peers,(all of her drs like your vets are in a practice together)  have a plan of action, ask questions, then who needs them?

btw- major reduction in stool volume when i changed the dogs to FOCUS.

do post your city so another gt member can share their vet- or are you close to Tufts?

 

Edited by cleptogrey
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A well established saluki breeder lived near Dennis I believe. How about some research re her vet. Lorraine Trenholm is the breeders name. She is now in Colorado. Salukis are almost as quirky as GH. But if you are not in her area the treck can be long. Some research? Or just ask around. I traveled an hr. To my vet for 30 years. 

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There are four things I would do:

 

(1) Change her food.  Get her off the Merrick and on to something like IAMS Lamb & Rice, Purina Beyond Simply9, or Royal Canin gastro.  One reason I say that is that I spent $$$ and much worry some years back trying to figure out why my dog vomited at least once and sometimes twice every day.  I changed foods for other reasons and it was like turning off a tap.  Never had the problem again.  Make a SLOW transition -- as in, add 1 tablespoon of new food for 3-5 days, then add another for 3-5 days, etc.  Add in some Fortiflora too.

(2) Get a muzzle with a stool cup so she can go out in the yard and you can not worry about her eating grass, dirt, etc.  You'll both be happier.

(3) Stop spoon feeding her.  Establish what seems to be the most acceptable feeding routine for her and stick to it.  She's gained more weight than she needs to carry, so she can afford to skip a few meals while you establish a new normal.

(4) If problems continue, get an appointment at Tufts.  They are one of THE authorities on food, and they'll help you. 

Hugs and best luck.  
 

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Thank you all for the suggestions, I think there is another greyhound vet in my area (other than the one I go to). I will have to look into it further. I am also looking into other diet options. She did poorly on pro plan but Iams might be one to try. I tried to post a picture of her, she doesn’t seem that overweight to me. 

Edited by ladybugz19
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