Anyone have experience with chronic colitis in dogs? I am desperate.

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Anyone have experience with chronic colitis in dogs? I am desperate.

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Old 03-23-2016, 12:05 PM
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Anyone have experience with chronic colitis in dogs? I am desperate.

Hello! First of all, I am glad I found this forum as it would be great do talk to other fur-lovers and discuss issues with other experienced pet parents.

My dog, Fury, turned 1 year old October, 2015. I got her when she was 10 weeks and she had diarrhea from the start. For awhile, I thought it was puppy poops... or stress of going to a new home. However, the problem persisted. She has always had loose stools, very frequent bowel movements (resulting in many accidents at night or any time she's alone for 4 hours). She went through periods where there seemed to be some concern with her not putting on weight as she grew. Her stool often looks like a patty, or soft-serve ice cream. Her initial vet visits showed clean fecal exams, but she was put on some anti-parasitic medications just in case like flagyl and some others. Over the next six months, we ruled out food allergies, EMI (pancreatic enzyme insufficiency), and she tried other medications like probitoics, prebiotics, various antibiotics and was finally sent to a specialist at one year old.

She had a colonoscopy and a biopsy of her large intestine/colon and it showed very inflamed colon cells. The specialist put her on 20mg of prednisone a day (she is 45 lbs). 2 weeks after the start of the steroids, there has been no improvement in the stool which has me very concerned as that should've treated the inflammation. In fact, in addition to the accidents at night with stool there are now urine accidents as well due to the prednisone causing increased thirst. She has shown other side effects as well such as decreased energy/lethargic behavior.

She seems to respond well to pumpkin (helps firm the stool), however, she gets yeast infections in her ears as a result of the sugars and the vet had me switch to Metamucil which doesn't seem to have the same benefit. Since this has looked like a possible rare allergic reaction, she has been on many prescription foods. I have seen the best results with Royal Canin Almino - her stool firmed up but came out in small balls (looked like rabbit pellets). But, the frequency and need for bowel movements was unchanged with the Almino... which is also *very* expensive. We tried the Almino for 3 months.

She has always had a voracious appetite, and signs of Pica (which the vets have said is normal with digestive diseases).

Other than the digestive/bowel problems, she has always seemed healthy and happy, though the poor dear has suffered with this her entire life and would have no way to tell me how she feels.

I thought the prednisone was the final medication that would show signs of improvement. I am worried I have seen no improvement over 10 days... I am hoping to find anyone else who has had a similar experience with a dog/pet with this condition and could offer some advice on what more I can try at home. I will not crate her at night because she cannot control her need to use the bathroom, all that has done is cause her to have accidents on herself which I think is worse than me having to clean it up around the home. However, I have some health issues that have flared up the last few months making cleaning up her messes very difficult. I am desperate to get help and am willing to try almost anything to get her condition under control (at least the best that can be expected).

I truly appreciate any advice, or perhaps even support of others who have gone through this with their furbaby! Also, if you know of a specific support website for this particular condition, I would like that information as well as this has been difficult to find. Thank you for any responses!
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Old 03-23-2016, 01:34 PM
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Have you tried a home cooked diet? It not I would try a simple diet of ground turkey and a couple of grated steamed veggies to start and see if this makes a difference. I would also add 1/4 cup of kefir to her diet 2 or 3 times a day. After a couple of weeks on the diet if it improves things you will need a dog nutritionist or a dog cook book written by one to balance the meals. The veggies I recommend are things like squash of any kind , cabbage, carrots. apples. I would do a 50/50 mix of meat and veggies to start.
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Old 03-24-2016, 03:21 PM
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Dawn, thank you for your response! I have tried home cooked foods for her. Initially we started a bland chicken & white rice mixture which seemed to help a bit but not solve the problem. I've also tried venison & sweet potato with some other ingredients - my vet believes she may have an intolerance to chicken and wants me to avoid all fowl... venison is hard to get where I live. There were also some concerns that with holistic home cooked food she may not get all of her nutrients as her condition causes some malabsorbtion. The specialist has added Flagyl to her prescriptions now - she said her flora may be off and we're just trying to get it under control. She's currently on a hydrolized diet - proteins made so small the body does not recognize them. Once we get the severe inflammation of the colon under control, we will start changing her diet to see what she can tolerate and what she cannot.

For the time being, carrots & celery make healthy protein free snacks. Her food/vet visits/prescriptions are best they can be right now, I just wonder what else I can do to help with the accident issues or help her feel better. We're not sure what caused her condition, but since it started as a puppy, it may be autoimmune - sort of the equivalent of IBS/Crohn's disease in humans.
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Old 03-24-2016, 03:31 PM
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Its very possible she has some food allergies. Your Vet can prescribe prescription food, to see it that helps. In a neighbors dog, that made a huge difference.
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