- Pet forum for dogs cats and humans 


Slippery elm and liver problems

September 27th, 2010, 11:22 AM
My 15 year old dog Mickey has liver problems. His ALT in mid-August was 98, last friday (Sept. 24) it was 290 (normal 10-118). His ALP in August was 270, last friday it was 320 (normal: 20-150).

Friday and Saturday, sept. 17-18 he had really bad diarrhea. I gave him slippery elm which usually helps but this time it didn't so I made him the slippery elm/honey/water recipe found in Dr Pitcairn's book. I gave it to Mickey every 4 hours and fasted him. The diarrhea went away but starting last Monday I could see Mickey wasn't his usual self. Things got worse so I was able to see a vet for bloodwork and x-rays last friday. I got apo-ratinidine 150 mg and novo-sucralat 1g twice a day for 2 weeks and was told to stop the milk thistle and start back on Sam-e because it is more effective.

Mickey is getting worse: he has no appetite, he's weak, etc. he doesn't vomit or have diarrhea. The vet told me maybe the slippery elm caused this but couldn't confirm anything because they are not familiar with slippery elm.

Is slippery elm proccessed by the liver or kidneys? I looked everywhere and never saw that slippery elm should't be given to an animal with a compromised liver. I'm going back to the vet this afternoon. Did I make things worse? Is it just a coincidence? I'm a basket case; I hardly slept last night and I'm thinking his end is near... I feel my head is going to explode :(
Thank you for yours comments.

September 27th, 2010, 02:06 PM
I'm not sure about the Slppery Elm, but Milk Thistle and SAMe can be given together. In fact, there's an actual product that combines them called Denamarin. It was recommended to us by a vet in the states. None of our vets here know about it, but you can order online.

I'm sorry about your baby :(
:pray: & :fingerscr that he makes a full recovery.

September 27th, 2010, 02:15 PM
I have never heard of slippery elm ever causing liver issues, only the opposite helping. Many I know have used this when their animals have had renal and liver issues that I know of and no problem. I suspect that your vet is assuming this was the cause simply because they are not familiar with the herb. :goodvibes::pray: for your furbaby that the meds and the sam-e milk thistle combo help out...

September 27th, 2010, 03:43 PM
I agree with loopoo 100% and have found this to be very true. The old vet I went to before with Bomber told me he had some swamp land in Floirida if I was interested?? I was very upset with this comment. Why couldnt he have just said I am not familiar with it! soo I agree 100%

I am alsoo so sorry to hear about your baby. I wonder if suggesting an appetite stimulant?

I hope your visit goes well...


September 27th, 2010, 03:55 PM
IMO, Slippery Elm Bark is one of the safest herbs for use in cats and dogs. I have done considerable reading on it and I have never heard anything negative.

The only precaution, if you are not already aware, is it can reduce the effectiveness of some medications if given at the same time. To avoid this possibility just make sure you do not give it within one hour before or after giving any medications or other remedies.

September 28th, 2010, 12:08 PM
I'm relieved to read all this. It was also my feeling the vet was quick to blame slippery elm because she is not familiar with it.

Mickey saw another vet at the same clinic yesterday. His health problems are probably not even related to his liver. Turns out his neck/throat area is hurting. I told the vet he sometimes would cry out a little when I gave him his pills. So she lifted his head and sure enough, he let out a really big cry. This pain explains his posture, his sudden weakness and slowness, refusal to eat, etc. We don't know what is causing this pain: x-rays of his neck are ok. The vet suspects maybe an abscess far in his throat or maybe a residual virus or bacteria that caused his diarrhea in the first place.

He got 3 injections: 2 antibiotics (Baytril and Amoxil) and a painkiller (Rimadyl). I have the pills to continue at home with the Ranitidine and Sucralate. I'm stopping the milk thistle and sam-e for now because it's complicated with all the medication: with food, empty stomach, 1 hour before this one, 1 hour after this one, etc, etc. The vet told me Mickey associates certain foods with pain. Because his Orijen kibble was painful to eat, he would refuse to eat them even if I had let them soak in broth. He's now eating cooked ground beef, boiled chicken, carrots, rice as well as can food I got from the clinic. Everything has to be mushy, nothing crunchy.

Mickey ate well last night and this morning :). I'm seeing improvements in his body language and energy. I hope it continues and that these problems aren't related to anything more serious (cancer, meningitis, etc)

Thank you for your good wishes. I will keep you posted! :thumbs up

September 28th, 2010, 01:00 PM
Thanks for the update. I'm glad to hear that Mickey is eating better and showing some improvements and that you might be closer to finding some answers. :goodvibes: for continued improvements.