View Full Version : Diet help & opinions.

29th May 2007, 08:38 PM
When we got Aoife at eight weeks I asked about her diet as you do, & didn't change that aside from not feeding her mince (it's a bit too expensive for me at the moment, anyway). I fed her solely Iams' puppy dry food for a week - she was a bit indifferent to it, she'd sniff at it & walk away but occassionally would pick at it & let it roll out of her mouth & proceed to play with the kibble bit until she was hungry & would eat it. Her poo (God, the one thing I hate about owning & caring for a dog is talking about poo so much) was fine when she arrived but went down hill & became softer & softer. Eventually, I gave in since I was aware that she was the smallest in her litter & bought Pedigree wet puppy food for her, I added this with the kibble & she was much more interested. I haven't had problems with her wanting to eat since. The day after, she was wormed & then for a week to a week & a half she was so bad poo-wise. She was dripping it across the floor (she's paper trained due to me living in an apartment) & there were blood drips as well. I phoned the vet a couple of days after this was happening who said it was normal for puppies to do this after worming - & would be alright even if she carried on until the end of a second week - thankfully she didn't. She never really got better than the really wet, loose, drippy stools so I told the vet when she had her last vaccination. He prescribed a Hill's diet on the basis of what she was eating was too rich for her. She loved that, she was much better on it, no drips but still really soft. He said to feed her this for three to five days & put her back on the other stuff, which I did. She's back on the other stuff now as of Saturday & is heading the same was as before I believe with a really bad stools today.

This is where I need help and/or opinions. Do I buy more of this Hills diet food, for those of you who want to know what it is (http://www.bestpetpharmacy.co.uk/detailed_product.asp?id=691), or do I do as the vet said & feed her this "richer" food? I fear that if I carry on the Hills diet that she always will & it's really quite hard to get for me & actually quite expensive when it could be something she will get used to in time since she's only a puppy now. To be fair she is due a worming within the next week or so which might have an affect on all of this too.

29th May 2007, 08:52 PM
The I/D is typically what they put dogs on when they are having tummy issues since it's a really bland, plain food. Oliver is prone to diarrhea--just went throught this 2 weeks aago--and they again gave him I/D until he was feeling better, then back to his regula food. I feed Innova and he really does well on it.

I'm sure other people will reply with advice for you, but from what I know, the foods you mention aren't all that great because they have a high "filler" content--grains and things. When I am comparing foods for Oliver I laways look for a food that lists meat, rather than grains or meal, as the first few ingredients. You usally can't find these types of foods in a grocery store, at least not where I live-I go to a store that specializes in pet food. The cost isn't that much more.

I hope your puppy is feeling better soon... I know it's upsetting when they are sick! :)

29th May 2007, 09:03 PM
I've read up & am aware of the issues with the food that I do give her but the problem is that I do not live near a pet store nor have a car or access to one to get to such a store. I have looked into buying online, but the charges for small purchases to be delivered is extortionate on top of me having countless issues of couriers not bothering to find the front door of my apartment & leaving cards on the floor in the foyer.

These are obviously excuses not to sort out her diet. I would if they were not there, if it was easier, without even having the above problem to persuade me to do so. I'm a little bit stuck in this respect. :confused:

29th May 2007, 09:15 PM
Maybe you could mix some of the kibble with some of the home-cooked? There are lots of threads about that on here with recipes. I think people cook for the week and freeze it and it sounds like it's not too much trouble or expense. I am sure lots of people will reply with great advice for you! :)

30th May 2007, 02:20 AM
You probably need to get back to your vets about it and let him guide you. It does sound like his old diet was not agreeing with him so maybe not wise to keep him on that.

What did your vet mean about it being too rich? Is he talking about the fat content? If so, then you could read the labels on some of the other better quality brands of dog food to compare fat content.

But honestly, I think you should run this by your vet.

30th May 2007, 02:33 AM
I agree that you should speak to your vet. But you are in a bit of a situation. I know some people feed their pups boiled rice and chicken when they are not feeling well, or have diarreah. But that is not a long term solution. I know that if I buy food for Maddy she is so small and eats so little that I could go to a specialty pet store for quality food and buy enough for several months. I do have to drive 8 miles to the nearest one. I understand you do not drive, but perhaps you can find one on the bus route or train route?
It would be cheaper than getting food from the vet I would think. Perhaps buy a quality kibble and some cans of quality wet food.
When I had my little yorkie who died last year at 14, he had a sensitive tummy. I did not realize that regular pet food was not that wonderful at that time. I found that the only food that was okay for his tummy was lamb and rice kibble. It is quite bland. As a last resort possibly you could try that?


30th May 2007, 04:01 AM
I believe that pups are like human babies and feeding them a dried food is like feeding a human baby on formula.Basically they may not tolerate change in diet very well.My five month old puppy Daisy will only respond well to Arden Grange food and any attempt to alter the diet or add home cooked food resulted in soft runny stools.
I think if your puppy has blood in her stools,and she's not being ovefed, then it may be something like colitis or a digestive intolerance.That food you posted a link to is very expensive. I would recommend arden Grange
There's a good FAQ section there which recommends feeding a probiotic yogurt and half a mashed banana to the food in cases of colitis.
The other thing the breeder recommended is when introducing a new brand of feed, to mix the new feed with the old e.g. quarter new feed and three quarters old feed.This ratio can then be altered over a period of a week or so until the new feed is solely eaten.
I'd look for the opinion of another vet just to be cautious.It's very distressing when your puppy is having problems like that.

30th May 2007, 09:54 AM
What did your vet mean about it being too rich? Is he talking about the fat content? If so, then you could read the labels on some of the other better quality brands of dog food to compare fat content.

He didn't qualify what he meant by "rich" & just suggested the I/D food because it was bland. He said it was something a lot of puppies have problems with?

I think I will keep an eye on her for the next two days & see how she goes as this is what the vet told me to do. If it gets worse or is bad at all, I'll look at changing her diet to something better than she's on.

The blood in her stools disappeared two weeks ago now. It was definately worms related.

30th May 2007, 10:36 AM
I have experience in this area as i did everything u described with freddie when i got him!! My ma was minding him one day when i was in work and rang to say that he had really soft poo and that there was blood dripping :eek: , so i came straight home and went to the vet with him and the problem was that the food was WAY to rich for him meaning the pedigree that i was added to his kibbles, when i heard blood i was so worried!!

I took him off the pedigree, had to starve him for the day and gave him boiled rice and boiled chicken for i think it was 2 days and then i slowly put him back on the kibbles!! Touch wood, i have never had that problem again when i cut out the pedigree he was much much better!

Sorry forgot to say this happened twice to me, it was my first pup i have learned from my mistakes :rolleyes:, they gave us that i/d food and i have to say that it was very good and did the job!

Sorry it's a long post, hope some of it helps u and i hope that aoife is feeling better soon!! :flwr: :flwr:

30th May 2007, 11:07 AM
When you changed the food over did you do it gradually over a week, if you just change to a new food that can cause runny poo and blood in it. I had Barney on pedigree as that is what the breeder had him on he loved it but it caused him to have scurf/dandruff although his poos were ok. He is on James Wellbeloved now but he prefers wet food, especially the cats.:rolleyes: :D

30th May 2007, 11:10 AM
If the pup had worms he may still have worms -- it often takes two wormings to get rid of them. Bleeding and diarrhea are two signs you can see when there ARE worms so you may well find the problem stops with s second worming. Often vets will do two wormings, then try different things to solve gastric problems like this.

Puppies do seem to be more prone to getting the runs and can be more sensitive to food changes -- I've found this really starts to resolve itself as the pup gets older. So in one way I wouldn't be overly concerned but at the same time, you do need to watch puppies with the runs as they can dehydrate and become ill very quickly.

You've had some food recommendations (and many of us will have followed the route often recommended by vets, as outlines by coconut -- withhold food for 12 hours, give a little boiled chicken and rice for a couple of days in very small meals, then reitroduce regular food). I'll add James Wellbeloved which is widely available in pet shops (not supermarkets -- supermarket food is generally very poor quality. If you want to add something tinned I'd only use Butchers which doesn't have colourings and preservatives). TKC (dog trainer on this board who does general dog rescue) and I (I run Irish Cavalier Rescue) regularly put dogs with upset stomachs on James Wellbeloved with very good results. They do a puppy food if you prefer a puppy food though many feel an adult food is fine and indeed many have found gastric problems in puppies often clear when they are put on the adult food.

There are many good dry and wet foods available at only a small to no delivery charge from zooplus.co.uk, by the way. Some good foods on their site include Royal Canin for small breeds, Bozita, Almo Holsitic, Defu, Orijen, Bosch, Yarrah, Markus Muhle. These are all very good high quality European brands at very good prices. Zooplus has excellent service and prices. I never thiught I'd be buying food online but just got a shipment of cat food that the cats went wild for; Swedish brands not available in Ireland.

For some reason zooplus.co.uk doesn't display correctly for me but you can order from zooplus.ie as well -- it all comes from Germany anyway. Free delivery if yu purchase over €39 which is only about £25-28.

Just as a gentle aside -- owning dog *is* generally full of both upfront and hidden costs, epecially vet bills. If you are concerned about being able to manage these, I'd strongly suggest getting pet insurance -- there are some threads on the board recommending UK providers. A single emergency could cost hundreds to thousands of pounds and paying a small monthly amount for insurance can give great peace of mind. :)

30th May 2007, 12:04 PM
She is insured, that really isn't an issue. The issue really is where I live. I live in walking distance from Manchester's city centre & pet stores are really sparse would you believe & living in a flat seems to mean couriers give up trying to delivery anything because its easier to leave a card than try to find my flat or use the intercom.. I could order food for her but I could never guarantee that I would get it before she needed more food so would have to use supermarket food again.

I'm looking at worming her again within the next week, & I think I am definately going to drop the Pedigree wet crap she's been on - slowly, obviously. It seems to be more of the problem than the Iams dry or anything else & it is always that that seems to set her off really badly. She's absolutely 100% otherwise, she's energetic, she eats regularly, her coat has been looking really healthy & so on. She just occassionally has really soft/wet stools. She even had fairly soft stools on the I/D.

30th May 2007, 01:32 PM
I don't think blood after worming is considered normal. What wormer was it?

Suggest you phone another vet for an opinion

30th May 2007, 01:51 PM
Both hookworms and whipworms cause blood in stools and this may continue briefly after a puppy is wormed as in one case the worm produces an anticoagulant and in another the lesion where they attach in the stomach can continue to bleed even after the worms die, detach and pass through in stools. Depending on what wormer isused, some puppies doreact with some small amounts of blood in the stool. Something like Panacur is considered a milder wormer but blood is not unusual in stools for puppies with worms. In rescue (I do both cats and dogs) we see it frequently in adults and pups with worms and occasionally after worming. Just always be sure a vet is aware of the blood and the amounts as they will take other action if this is of concern.

If you are worming only do this under the guidance of your vet with their own products, especially with puppies, as you are putting pesticides through a small animal when you worm and this needs to be done with caution and under advice. There are some very harsh products on sale over the counter. :thmbsup:

PS If soft stools are just occasional I really wouldn't worry. Puppies have them on and off and never seem to be suffering from anything in particular. Depending on what I feed my adults can have softer or firmer stools. Jaspar often had soft stools as a pup; still has them more often than the others.

30th May 2007, 02:51 PM
I had phoned the vet about the blood as originally I was aware of how bad blood in stools was (I have had a puppy die who who had blood in their stools) & they said it was not unusual for it to happen.

As for her stools, they are inconsistent. They are never to rarely firm, occassionally very wet. I suspect it is the Pedigree I feed her that causes the worst ones (blood aside, that was the worming) as they are much more prevalent when she has been eating that than anything else. I think she's just generally sensitive, which may account for why she was the smallest in her litter when I picked her up. As I said before, she's very lively & normal for a puppy otherwise.

I decided to go & see where the nearest pet store was a couple of hours ago since I found one, which was a half hour walk away. When I got there, they only had Bakers, Pedigree & a few cheaper brands I hadn't heard of. Not even a selection to rival Sainsbury.

30th May 2007, 03:17 PM
That's frustrating about the selection (and BTW I have had a bad experience too with my dogs being given pedigree at kennels -- definitely larger and messier stools; there's a lot of colouring, fillers and preservatives).

Zooplus will deliver to a workplace if that is an option for you. For some I know it won;t be!

30th May 2007, 03:21 PM
Might be worth having a faecal test done, some worms require a different dose or period of worming than the 'routine' dose i.e they have a specific treatment schedule. If these worms aren't killed fully and slowly by the appropriate dose, particularly in the case of a heavy worm burden, the bleeding can be a symptom of disseminated intravascular coagulation. DIC is known to cause sudden deaths by intercranial bleeding or arterial thrombosis without obvious continued blood in stools. Other symptoms of DIC caused by worming to be aware of are bloodshot eyes, prolonged bleeding at the site of blood tests, coughing up blood, blood in vomit and abnormal gait. Shortness of breath due to post treatment pulmonary oedema can also occur. The faecal counts of some larvae can be increased after worming so it's a good time to identify them:thmbsup:

30th May 2007, 04:01 PM
Hmm. I doubt that is the case since there have been no blood loss issues for about two or three weeks now. It is just occassional soft stools now.

30th May 2007, 04:51 PM
I think your vet's advice is correct. And your own instinct about finding the right diet. :)

30th May 2007, 06:31 PM
Hi I live in Chorley, Lancs which is quite near to you.
My puppy Mica has been a fussy eater.
He also had loose stools at times and there was blood once. Since starting the Burns he has had small firm stool, apparently the absorption rate of this food is much higher.
After reading Karlins reccomendations I decided to try burns food. The first thing I did was email them and ask them for a sample, which he promptly wolfed down with no problem. They also sent me alot of literature which all made sense and a £5 voucher off my first purchase. They also sent me a list of all the retailers in Lancashire, which turned out to be a large list.
Even if you do not decide to purchase it is worth emailing to get the literature.
Hope this helps.:xfngr:

30th May 2007, 07:07 PM
Thanks, hopefully that will help.

cavi lover
30th May 2007, 07:30 PM
I have 4 cavaliers two of them have collitis so have very tricky tums! However this is managed brilliantly on Burns fish and rice or duck and rice. I have no problems with their poos on this and they are all thriving .Two are ex puppy farm breeding bitches so did not have a good life until they came here.
I would be more than happy to send you a sample from my sack in an envelope that will go through a letterbox . If so pm me your address.
I buy a 15kg sack from Burns direct and they do not charge delivery

Hope you get it sorted Jx

30th May 2007, 07:36 PM
Thank you but that's okay, I don't think a sample of any food would make head nor tails of the situation. I'd have to try it on a few days basis. But I'm glad to hear that they do not charge for delivery as the nearest stockest to me is five miles away.

I guess I will have to have it delivered to my mum's house.

30th May 2007, 08:04 PM
Hope you get this sorted out soon, I was going to suggest James Wellbeloved too, it is extremely good for sensitive tums, My Ma-in-Law had a Tri boy a few years ago who had an enzyme deficiency which meant he had trouble digesting his food, Jamesd wellbeloved was one of the foods that he tolerated very well.

Anyway, Good Luck with finding the right food! :thmbsup:

Sarah J
1st June 2007, 09:26 AM
My mums golden retreiver used to have the same problems, turns out she was allergic to certian fake colorings and presertives. Might be worth checking what kinds of things like that he has in his food ?

1st June 2007, 11:38 AM
Would you believe that now, after a few days back on her old diet, she seems fine.

1st June 2007, 11:49 AM
Oh that is excellent news. :xfngr: that there will be no more troubles.