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Cathy T
15th March 2005, 01:07 AM
Stinky stinky stinky!! We had a speaker at the cavalier club advise salmon oil for an EFA. I bought some from sitstay and put it on the food tonight. The dogs loved it but, man, Jake's breath stinks big time!!

Cathy

BonnieB
15th March 2005, 01:11 AM
EFA ????? I have 6 squirt cans of it right now that I have never used that I got a deal on ebay. What benefit does it have?

rosalie
15th March 2005, 01:41 AM
it's supposed to be good for their coat I think :? I have the same 6 cans that Bonnie does :roll:

BonnieB
15th March 2005, 01:45 AM
I think the fish oil is also good for their hearts, but what does EFA stand for? I'm going to feel real stupid when I hear the answer icon_furious

Pat
15th March 2005, 02:20 AM
EFA is essential fatty acid. There are the omega 3 fatty acids (from fish oils) and the omega 6 fatty acids (from plants?). Omega 3's are very important for cardiac health and also for brain. All kinds of studies about cholesterol reduction (important for humans and not dogs); cardiac health, protection against senility, depression, benefit to kidney functioning. There is debate about best sources - most studies say use fish oil caps. I've read some articles about salmon oil being better than fish oils and other studies saying the reverse. The kidneydiet list I'm on says use fish oil caps - and there are some real experts in that group that know more about supplements and herbs than I'll ever learn in my lifetime. Consensus is that dogs get enough omega 6 fatty acids from their diet but need supplements of omega 3's. This is all just off the top of my head because I need to rush off to the grocery store and didn't check references before posting. Bottom line - I believe in the fish oil caps and the dogs and I take them. (My internist and the dog's internist also agree.) Also the caps don't smell!

Karlin
15th March 2005, 02:22 AM
It would be good for hearts and joints, I should think. The right kind of fats.

Every time I give oil the boys have fish breath for ages and it always seems to get on their ears too. Snoods, snoods, snoods I guess. Which reminds me to put a link up for fancypaw... 8)

Cathy T
15th March 2005, 02:41 AM
Pat - Where do you get the caps? I can't stand this stinky breather, especially since both of mine are such kissers!

BonnieB
15th March 2005, 05:06 AM
Cathy, I get the 1000 mg Fish Oil Caps at the Health Food Store. Pat, is 1000 mg the correct dose? I'm just going to pitch the Salmon Oil unless there is somebody here who wants it.

Pat
15th March 2005, 05:40 AM
Yup - 1000 mg fish oil capsules. I get mine from Puritan's Pride (mail order they have a website, and are having a big sale right now - buy one get two free). I did a ton of research years ago (not surprised, are you? ;) ) to find a company that made good products for a reasonable cost. (There are very good vitamin companies like Solaray or Nature's Plus, but the prices are high.) I spend about $2,000 per year on supplements for the dogs so I need good value. I get the MAX EPA fish oil caps from puritans. You can go on their web site and read a lot about supplements. I also use their Co-Q10 and their glucosamine/chondroitin and vitamin E. Plus different things for myself - calcium, etc.

Interestingly, I have been doing a lot of reading on the kidney diet list, and they recommend Puritan's Pride brand. They have a lot of backup like independant lab assays, etc. Another nice thing I've learned from that group is that the drugs they recommend for kidney health are the same ones I use for cardiac health -- CoQ-10 (in higher doses than I've been using), fish oil caps, vitamin E. Also B-Complex, which I've just added for the dogs whose kidney values are starting to rise.

Reminds me that I need to order more snoods too - the new home cooked diets make for messy ears.

(and I need an avatar! Bonnie, I'll be asking you for help!)

BonnieB
15th March 2005, 06:12 AM
Pat, I would love to do your Avitar, but I don't have access to your profile and I think it looks at your IP address so I can't get in there even if I had your password. I saw where Karlin offered to put Avitars on for those who had problems, so I'm sure if you email her a picture, she will put it on there for you.

Pat, whenever I have a major project around the house, ie new roof, etc. I hate getting estimates, so I find somebody in the neighborhood who I trust has done their research and gotten the estimates and call them to see if they are happy with the work and use their contractor.

I trust your knowledge and judgement so much that I'm going to Puritan's Pride website right now and order more Fish Oil Caps. icon_thumbsup I never can understand the medical talk anyway and you explain it where I can almost understand.

MaggieM
15th March 2005, 01:47 PM
Oh that stuff from Sitstay sucks! My vet says its too oxidized. He prefers not to give the capsule but recommended Nordic Naturals oil for us. It works great, doesn't oxidize or thicken if left in the fridge and best of all DOES NOT SMELL!!!

:lol:

Cathy T
15th March 2005, 03:54 PM
Thanks guys!! I'm pitching the stuff right now. I'll check out Puritan's Pride. Thanks for the research Pat!

15th March 2005, 05:29 PM
Great photo, Maggie!

I have a hunch that Maggie has a great new holistic vet, and he probably has the best recommendation. Does he prefer to avoid the caps because of absorption problems? I also worry about PCB's and mercury toxicity. As if I didn't have enough to worry about!

The kidney diet moderators are so smart about diet, supplements, herbs, etc that they make me look like a rank amateur. They say to use capsules because of oxidation in liquids. I know people who slit the capsules and squeeze the stuff out onto food, but then you have the stinky ear/breath problem. Kidney folks also say that the caps actually reduce creatinine - don't know if that's true but if so it's major because of real effect on chronic renal failure. They also recommend high doses of CoQ-10 for kidneys, so I've upped that supplement. Bonus is that both supps are good for hearts and kidneys.

I'm going to set an appt. with Susan Wynn, very famous holistic vet who specializes in diet, herbs, supplements, etc. If you google her you can see what a well known expert she is. I need her help as I move to home cooking for the renal dogs and add herbs, etc. I'll see what she says about supps. My dilemma now is that meds that you use for cardiac dogs hurt the kidneys, and SC fluids you use for renal dogs send cardiac dogs into CHF, etc. A real tricky balancing act. Right now four of my dogs are in very early renal failure so I'm not in a crisis yet. I have one renal dog with no cardiac probs, two cardiac dogs with no renal probs, and three who have both cardiac and renal probs. I know a lot about cardiac but I'm just now getting up to speed about renal.

I'm sure Susan Wynn is expensive, plus I'll be buying fancy herbs that are probably pricey. $ is getting to be a real issue. Since Jan I've spent 1300 at cardiologist, over 1000 for superchems and chest x-rays, 800 for dentals, and Capers' meds run 200 per month (viagra is the killer). Plus meds/fluids for other dogs, food, etc. I'm about to place an order for probably 1500 in supplements. I need to start running more frequent superchems to monitor the renal values. It's getting kinda scary - I just never thought I'd have so many very old dogs at the same time. Sorry that I'm venting and I've digressed from the topic......it's just impossible for me to compromise their level of care....so I'm going into debt and not saving for retirement.

BonnieB
15th March 2005, 05:36 PM
Pat, did you notice that when you post through your work computer that your name shows up as Guest?

Pat
15th March 2005, 05:40 PM
Actually, I'm still at home. I just hadn't logged in and didn't realize that someone could post without logging in :roll: But yes, I am the mystery guest!!

P.S. 15 more days of work, and I pretty much come and go as I want! After 18 years, what are they gonna do? I'm starting to freak out a little though about being unemployed :shock:

Cathy T
15th March 2005, 05:45 PM
Pat - Wow, you've really got your hands full. Can we set up an charity for you?? :D

Thanks for all of your wonderful information.

MaggieM
15th March 2005, 05:52 PM
Puritan's Pride has the MaxEPA and Co-Q10 on sale... buy 1 get 2 free. I bought some of the MaxEPA to try... but yes my vet says its an absorption problem. However, if the capsules get Paul to remember to feed it to them, I'd rather use that.... better them get some then none.

I was excited to see the CO-Q10 on sale!!

We try and give all other supplements naturally rather than via pill. You'll learn that one soon at your new fancy vet visit Pat :)

Pat
15th March 2005, 06:04 PM
Yup, I know Maggie that it's better to get your vitamins/supplements through actual food than through pills. Same with me - my diet is pure crap but I take all these supps/vitamins - not good :(

But I'm just trying to do what I can - and I haven't yet been comfortable with home feeding - scared I'll screw it up. I've learned that the calcium/phosphorus balance is very important - esp with renal dogs. My order of powdered calcium just arrived. You can't give renal dogs RMB's because they are way too high in phosphorus. Actually, I'm about to lose my mind over all of this - trying to figure it out.

I'm not going to be able to have Susan Wynn as a regular vet - no way I can afford it. Just hoping to have some consults to get on the right track with preparing food and maybe learn about herbs.

Cathy - really not trying to make people feel sorry for me, but thanks! It will work out. I can always start selling my Cavalier collection on ebay and watch Donna, Paige, Rosalie, Nancy and Bonnie have bidding wars! icon_devil But I will be careful in the future not to have so many dogs of the same age. All you folks that are acquiring multiple young dogs -- take note!

Pat
15th March 2005, 06:07 PM
Forgot to say - I also use the MAX EPA from PP.

Maggie - what if I slit each fish oil cap with a razor blade to kinda open it up but don't actually squish the stuff out on the food? Better absorption?

As if I don't have enough to do with preparing food, supps and meds!

MaggieM
15th March 2005, 07:25 PM
Forgot to say - I also use the MAX EPA from PP.

Maggie - what if I slit each fish oil cap with a razor blade to kinda open it up but don't actually squish the stuff out on the food? Better absorption?

As if I don't have enough to do with preparing food, supps and meds!

Hmm... yes, I think that would be better. Now... the question is.. can I get Paul to do that?!

Are you preparing each night? Or can you prepare on one day for the whole week or even part of the week?

We get a shipment of necks or backs every two weeks. I spend two hours or so preparing (cutting of skin, fat, and bagging them 4 per bag) but them I'm set for a few weeks.

I'm assuming you can't freeze your foods, but you might be able to do a few days worth?

Pat
15th March 2005, 08:05 PM
Not even quite there yet - but here's my understanding of what I must do:

Diet is a combination of lightly cooked meats, veggies and a grain - mixed in certain proportions - you have a lot of choices. You figure according to bloodwork of each dog what your maximum phosphorus amount can be per day, and then how much protein you can feed so you don't exceed the max phosphorus amt. Then, according to bloodwork, you figure what the calcium/phosphorus ratio should be, then you figure the amounts of calcium and phosphorus that are in the food, then you add calcium to the correct amount for the right proportion. No bones because they are high in phosphorus. With commercial kidney diets, they just reduce the protein in order to have less protein by-products (phosphorus, etc) so then the dogs get protein starved, plus the commercial foods use junk ingreds - corn, by-products. This idea is to keep a good level of good protein and reduce the level of phosphorus. (this is very simple explanation of the plan). Then you add certain supps - coq10, fish oil, B complex, vit E. And a lot of people use herbs also. You use phosphorus binders when necessary and also meds for nausea and ulcers. Renal dogs often lose their appetite so you vary your ingreds to keep them interested. (I'm not to that point yet.)

Did I explain that right, Nancy?

So I can cook up some stuff and keep it separate in the frig or freeze some, but then I must mix up separate meals as needed for the different dogs. And the younger dogs and the two older with no renal probs are still on higher quality kibble with stuff added. That's the best I can do at the moment! Since I won't be working for a few months, I can get this all figured out. But of course any dog could crash at any moment. Not sure how I'll handle that when I start with a new company. One day at a time. And my signif other is retired and I do have my dog sitter so that will help.

MaggieM
15th March 2005, 08:08 PM
Sounds like you do have your hands full. I'd definitely try and prepare a base from you to work from. Hopefully you can learn to and master the herbs to help as well.

Pat
15th March 2005, 08:27 PM
How do people feel about herbs? I'm not sure how much faith I have in them. (Although I realize that most allopathic meds started out as herbs.) How do people feel about homeopathy? I try to have an open mind about that, but to me it's too much like voodoo!

I do know that my cardiologist is not a "herb guy." He says that their action can make the doses of allopathic meds incorrect - for example if you are giving digoxin and hawthorne it can have too great an effect. He does agree with the supplements. So, for Capers who is on the five cardiac meds, I don't dare do any herbs. Ditto for Nominee and Darby, on fewer cardiac meds. But for the two girls with moderate heart disease and early renal disease, we are waiting to start them on heart meds because of the potential harm to their kidneys. So I thought I'd do cardiac herbs for them and maybe renal herbs. And for the girl with renal disease but no cardiac disease, thought I'd try herbs. (who's on first??!! what's my name??!!) Um....basically I'll be experimenting on the dogs. Pretty scary.

MaggieM
15th March 2005, 09:37 PM
Well I never had much faith in them... BUT... I've kept pretty quiet with our problems with Nikko, but a few weeks ago we were ready to give up. We were thinking maybe we'd have to rehome because we just couldn't deal with him. I called the vet basically in desparation.... he knew that I wanted good old fashion doggy downers.... but he's holistic... He asked me to try an herbal method first... for three weeks and if it didn't work he promised he'd go conventional for me.

Well.. Nikko is certainly not 100% better, but the herbal formula (a Chinese therapy for heart yin deficiency - trust me, I rolled my eyes too) has really, REALLY helped. I've been shocked. AND Nikko eats the pills like candy instead of having to force him to eat them.

So.... they obviously do have some effect. I can notice the days when Izzy has not been given her herbal supplement (the cardiac support I emailed you about) because she is more sluggish. Her activity level on it is more like you'd expect... and some days its exceptional. So again... they do have some effect.

That being said, none of my dogs are on conventional medicine at the same time. Ask the holistic vet, she will know what's safe.

Karlin
15th March 2005, 10:04 PM
Pat. send me a pic and I'll do your avatar. Just email it to karlin@cavaliertalk.com

I just changed permissions so that to post you do need to be registered -- I thought it was set already but then realised you have to do each forum separately.

This is just a way of making sure we don't get any nasties on the board -- I can track people down if they have to register.

Pat
15th March 2005, 11:22 PM
Maggie, I really like what I hear about your new vet. Hope Nikko continues to improve. Now I've got to look and find that email about the cardio-supplement - was that the email that I read in the middle of the night? I'm worried about what to do if holistic vet and cardiologist disagree.....guess I won't worry too much until that happens.

Karlin - thanks - I've first got to take enough shots until I find one that will work.

MaggieM
16th March 2005, 01:59 PM
Here is the link to the cardiac support http://www.standardprocess.com/vet_catalog_product_detail.asp

You can scroll through at the top to the renal support and the others as well.