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Levi and Heidi have me on a serious roller coaster in terms of their poops.


Levi had been on Taste of the Wild for about 4 months or so, when all of a sudden he started having really bad diarrhea. Brought in two fecal samples and both tested negative for any parasites.

Heidi has had diarrhea since we brought her home. I suspect part of that was her puppy food, and part of it was stress from coming home. Took in a fecal, she had Hookworm. Treated her and Levi, and she still had diarrhea. Took in a fecal, tested positive for Giardia! Treated her and Levi, and then we tried her on Taste of the Wild and saw no improvement. This was right about the time Levi started getting his awful diarrhea.

Decided to start them both on PMR. Minimal improvement even with feeding very bone-heavy meats. They were on that for roughly three weeks, and I've had enough.

Purchased a bag of this, and I'm reeeeeeeally hoping we make some progress.
 

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Could be colitis maybe? Has vet thought of that? Jessie had colitis due to too much variety in diet and turns out couldn't handle duck
 

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Fingers crossed that this works.

I have to ask, Have you tried a grain-inclusive diet? Sometimes grain-free is just too dense for some dogs. What treats are you giving? Or are you just using kibble as treats? Maybe doing a few days on boiled chicken/hamburger and rice then wean onto a new food? What was Heidi on at the breeder? did she have any issues when she was there?

Also have you tried adding a probiotic like Fortiflora or natural organic kefir? I've personally used the Kefir mixed with a small tsp of pure pumpkin to help Tessa with the gastro issues. The food rollercoaster is not a fun ride, I know. Took me a LONG time to find out that Tessa on does ok on Orijen. Nothing else. Her weight has finally stabilized (she's lost what she needed), she doesn't have the runs, her eyes are clear, and for some reason every time we tried Go! she'd get a rash on her belly. Hopefully they don't change Orijen any time soon, because I don't wanna get back on the ride!
 

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@KayWilson she no longer does ok on acana pacifica? gosh only orijen crikey! so glad she lost the weight needed to be lost for her and you finally figured it all out! well done!
 

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@KayWilson she no longer does ok on acana pacifica? gosh only orijen crikey! so glad she lost the weight needed to be lost for her and you finally figured it all out! well done!
Yeah, she did well on it, but not like Orijen. She started getting slightly sloppy poops and dandruffy around the time of the formula change. On orijen she's perfectly regular and her poop is 10/10. No sure what it is and it kind of makes no sense, but I've seen the results and it's hard to argue. Not sure if its the carb ratio, the recent change in the formula, or what but the 80-20 ratio of Orijen just works better. She also seemed less satisfied on the Acana and I can definitely feed Acana in a pinch, but Tessa is at her best on the Orijen.

Oh well...it's off to the dollar menu at Mickey D's for me :p jks lol
 
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Yeah, she did well on it, but not like Orijen. She started getting slightly sloppy poops and dandruffy around the time of the formula change. On orijen she's perfectly regular and her poop is 10/10. No sure what it is and it kind of makes no sense, but I've seen the results and it's hard to argue. Not sure if its the carb ratio, the recent change in the formula, or what but the 80-20 ratio of Orijen just works better. She also seemed less satisfied on the Acana and I can definitely feed Acana in a pinch, but Tessa is at her best on the Orijen.

Oh well...it's off to the dollar menu at Mickey D's for me :p jks lol
Oh thats the last thing either you need on a food! im truly glad the orijen is right for her and gives a 10/10 or poop! No doesnt make sense but at least theres a food for her or what would you do? its like Jessie cant have so many protiens in dry food then she cant have any form of veges or fruits in the food at all even raw! so i know what exactly you would of gone through and truly understand it
 

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@Shandula this might be considered a low quality ingredient but have you tried barley grains from supermarket cooking them in plenty of water till soft, drain the water into a container, let the grains face sunlight for 2 days and meanwhile feed the barley water? it really works for Jessie when she has had direha, loose stools and colitis i was getting desperate and went with the reccomendation as last resort having had enough picking up pure runs. within 2 days poops were firmer and more normal.

It calms the guts down giving them a rest nad gets rid of any inflammation unless the dog has allergy to barley. if not give it a go. cheapest remedy i tried!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
@KayWilson - I haven't tried grain-inclusive foods yet. That's a good idea. If this bag of food doesn't seem to help that may be worth investigating.
@crazy - Levi is due for his annual boosters soon, so I think I'll talk to the vet about that kind of stuff when I go visit, especially if this bag doesn't help. I haven't tried anything like Barley, but at this point, I'm willing to try anything. I just feel so bad.

Other than the poops being sucky, they are bright-eyed, soft, shiny coats, no eye discharge, no dandruff, no rashes, and not scratching abnormally.
 

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For the time being I'll also suggest adding pure pumpkin to their food. When I switched Aayla over to the kibble I was using (Orijen) her stool got a little soft and runny so I added pumpkin and it helped firm everything up. I'm not too sure about the food, I haven't heard anything about taste of the wild changing ingredients or their suppliers. Do you switch around their different proteins? Or have you stuck with just one this entire time. It is possible that Heidi might have stomach sensitivities or allergies to the food if she has always had stool problems. It isn't a puppy thing as far as I know. When they are young (under 9 weeks) you may see soft stool while they may still have access to mom's milk if they didn't get fully weaned. Aayla's stool has been firm since 9 weeks and on.
 

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Something I would wonder, since they are both experiencing the issue, is are they getting into anything in the yard or something? I use to think it was the food, but then I wondered how 2 dogs that aren't related could have the same stomach sensitivity. What I found was that they were both eating the same berries off the tree in the backyard. Just a thought.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
@ThatYellowDog - Pumpkin helps Heidi (slightly), but gives Levi orange diarrhea. Sigh. She's been having diarrhea since we picked her up, at 8 weeks, so I can't imagine it is a puppy issue either. We alternated Levi's protein source between the Bison and the Salmon flavour and never noticed anything. Always nice firm poops.
@jclark343 - That is a good suggestion. Our backyard is pretty boring (hello Suburbia) but there is a small pond/waterfall element in the corner that has stagnant water underneath all the rocks (I keep trying to bury it) that I've caught Heidi drinking out of once. Hmmmmm.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Update.

Heidi's poops seem to be improving. They are soft-ish but actual formed nuggets, which is a huge relief. Levi on the other hand, the only thing that's changed is the colour. It's like an orangey-brown colour, but still extremely soft/diarrhea.

Going to continue to keep them on the same food for a while, just to make sure it won't work for Levi. We are eliminating all other food sources, no treats or anything, and are just using kibble for training.
 

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@Shandula, I found a really interesting food available in Canada that a friend of mine is using with really great success. Smack Dog Food is available at some Global Pet Foods and other specialty retailers. It's a bit on the expensive side, but the ingredients are spectacular and it's very easy to feed. If things don't work out with TOTW, it may be worth a try.
 
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@Shandula - couple things from my experience dealing with a dog that couldn't handle any food.

Food wise after cycling through a bunch of brands of premium puppy foods we settled on a non puppy sensitive stomach food from a small provider and the diarreah stopped but the poop was never completely solid. After 5 months on that food the diarreah was back and the vet had us de-parasite and recommended switching to RC Gastrointestinal. So far 5 months on with RC poop is perfect if that's all he eats.

Which is the second point, Simba will eat anything, when we were trying to rule out parasites we muzzled him when ever we took him off leash and even today if we don't, the next day he'll be ill.

The last thing is something I've noticed about poop that isn't food related. I've found that if he poops before schedule, for example I take him out 3hs after breakfast rather than 6, the poop is less firm. Also sometimes the poop starts out perfect and then tapers of into more or less. So I started interrupting him after he's done the majority of his business. If he's still squatting after dropping the main load, I praise and pull out a treat to lure him away.
 

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I wonder how much one should really worry about poop consistency. My dog has soft shiny fur, no doggy odor, no dandruff, no eye discharge - he's in great health. However his poop is often (not all the time, but often) softer than most people on here would like. Not runny or anything, just soft. First thing in the morning it's always firm. However, I've noticed that if he has been doing a lot of running around, it's a lot softer.

If a dog has soft poo and then switches to a food that gives them firm poo, are they healthier now just because their poo is firmer? (this is assuming that the new food doesn't produce any other noticable changes in their health, such as clearer eyes). The only thing I can think of is that firmer poo would indicate better gastrointestinal health, although I question this due to the patterns I've noticed with my own dog (mentioned in first paragraph).

I'm interested in hearing what others think about this.
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I wonder how much one should really worry about poop consistency. My dog has soft shiny fur, no doggy odor, no dandruff, no eye discharge - he's in great health. However his poop is often (not all the time, but often) softer than most people on here would like. Not runny or anything, just soft. First thing in the morning it's always firm. However, I've noticed that if he has been doing a lot of running around, it's a lot softer.

If a dog has soft poo and then switches to a food that gives them firm poo, are they healthier now just because their poo is firmer? (this is assuming that the new food doesn't produce any other noticable changes in their health, such as clearer eyes). The only thing I can think of is that firmer poo would indicate better gastrointestinal health, although I question this due to the patterns I've noticed with my own dog (mentioned in first paragraph).

I'm interested in hearing what others think about this.
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Their anal glands will be healthier and their poor bums will be less irritated. Think of yourself when you have a the runs or not right poop, things just don't feel right *

**I've realized I've just done too much tmi lol
 

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You've gotten a lot of great suggestions but just to throw it out there, my dog had some consistency issues that I now believe were mostly stress-related, and switching to Dr. Tim's dog food helped us. It was developed very much with digestion for active dogs and dogs placed in high-stress situations in mind (includes pre- and pro-biotics, etc.), and it yielded surprisingly fast results for me, or has so far (it's been several weeks).

For sure don't be afraid to try grain-inclusive foods unless you already have good reason to think your dog has some problems with grain. Mine does better on grain inclusive - grain free food has always exacerbated any consistency problems for us. :)
 

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Their anal glands will be healthier and their poor bums will be less irritated. Think of yourself when you have a the runs or not right poop, things just don't feel right *

**I've realized I've just done too much tmi lol
lol love it! So true though so good on you!
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