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Old October 21st, 2008, 09:31 AM
BoxerTandE BoxerTandE is offline
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Unhappy Gulping air and Licking floor

Hello,

I have a boxer (Tyson) that is about 6 years old. He has been my little sick dog since I have had him. He has kidney problems and is on a prescription food NF. Over the last couple of years he has had what seems to be chronic stomach/intestinal issues. At night usually late between (9:00pm-4:00am) he will wake up and start gulping air. He appears to be very stressed out and will start licking the carpet and eating any little thing he can find on it like string, hair, etc. If we let him outside during this time he proceeds to try and eat tons of grass. It seems that all we can to is try to get him to lay on the bed and comfort him throughout the night.

We have been to the vet many times for this. My wife is actually a Vet Tech. Not that the doctors have written us off but nobody really gets to see the intensity of this since it always occurs late at night. From what they seem to figure it happens out of stress. Things like us leaving out of town, being gone for a long period of time during the day, off schedule feeding time, someone different at the house, etc. I have been convinced of this for some time now and make everything as regular as possible. He is fed 4 times a day and is prescribed pepcid that he takes at lunch time daily. On perfectly normal days these episodes will still happen leading me to do some research. Now finding others that have had the same problem lead me to believe there must be a cause or a solution to help.

He can not go on an all natural diet because of his kidney issue. Another thing that I have found is DGL (Deglycyrrhizinated Licorice). Does any anyone have any experience using this or has it help your dog with these problems? From what I have found there is one made for dogs called DGL Plus. Thanks for any help or information that you have!

Last edited by BoxerTandE; October 21st, 2008 at 12:40 PM.
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  #2  
Old October 21st, 2008, 09:35 AM
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Not sure why are you are ruling out an all natural diet because of kidney issues. You will probably find your dog may do better on a raw diet than any processed diet full of chemicals? What would you feed your children, fresh fruit and veggies, homemade bread without chemicals, etc. or hotdogs and fries, mixed with a bit of alphaghetti?
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Old October 21st, 2008, 09:55 AM
BoxerTandE BoxerTandE is offline
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I guess from what I have talked to the doctor about is that in an all natural diet there is a lot of protein that is very hard for his kidneys to process causing extra work for them. The one food that he is on is called Kidney Function.
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Old October 21st, 2008, 10:12 AM
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I would say a trip to the vet is in order. My grandmothers dog used to do this, lick everything, the carpet and floors, and comforters on the bed... he ended up have pacreaitis (spl?)....
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Old October 21st, 2008, 10:23 AM
BoxerTandE BoxerTandE is offline
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Thanks for the input. I have been to the vet many times about this. He has had pancreatitis before. I just feel like it can not be just due to stress if others have had this exact same experience. Seems that from what I have read it is more common in deep chested dogs.
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Old October 21st, 2008, 11:10 AM
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I would characterize this as extreme intestinal distress. Is that how you see it?

Slippery elm powder might be worth trying. You can get it at the health food store. There are many ways to give it; I mix a teaspoon (maybe go to a tablespoon for a dog; it is completely harmless, you can't go wrong) with very hot water and let it sit. As it cools, it will thicken - don't let it get so thick you can't draw it into a feeding syringe (available from the vet) and down the hatch. It coats the gut, reduces inflammation and has some powerful healing qualities. I use it on my cats for tummy troubles. You could try giving it to him before bedtime and see if it helps.

Licorice is used a lot in Europe for stomach problems, also charcoal. But I haven't heard of it being used in dogs.

Have you tried probiotics?

I would use one remedy at a time.

But especially because of the liver problem I would seriously think about consulting a vet with experience in homeopathy and holistic remedies.

Last edited by badger; October 21st, 2008 at 11:21 AM.
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Old October 21st, 2008, 11:33 AM
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I know exactly what you're going through. I have a dog with the same problem, and many a very has looked at me like I'm a total nut as I try to describe the issue to them.

There are a few things I've figured out over the years. The first is that stress absolutely plays a part in this. As best I can figure out, it's like a form of doggie acid reflux, the gulping being the dogs attempt to swallow back bile which is coming up and the licking of everything being an attempt to settle the stomach, as they do with grass.

We tried pepcid for a while, but it didn't work and after further research it seems like long term use can actually make the problem worse. Becasue pepcid and the like causes the stomach to be less acidic, this can lead to worse digestion, which in turn causes the dog to have more trouble properly digesting and the cycle continues.

The best regime I've found is feeding raw, including a digestive enzyme with his meals and supplementing with Active Manuka honey before each meal.

I would also suggest you find a holistic vet as they will likely have a better idea of how the various issues your dog is having are connected, rather than treating them as distinct problems.

ETA: on the note of stress, it has been my observation and has been backed up by a couple of homeopaths and my own reading on TCM, that dogs suffering from extensive digestive problems are also often high strung, prone to anxiety type dogs. Don't discount your own gut feelings about things, they're often stemming from something and, in my experience, can help you out a lot especially when dealing with these weird "mystery" ailments.

Last edited by pitgrrl; October 21st, 2008 at 11:37 AM.
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Old October 21st, 2008, 11:42 AM
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I would try a Digestive Enzyme Capsule at times like this. Just open it up an sprinkle it on a small spoonful of plain yogurt.
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Old October 21st, 2008, 12:55 PM
BoxerTandE BoxerTandE is offline
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Yes I guess it could be characterized as intestinal distress. Acid reflux seems to make a lot of since as well with all of the gulping and swallowing. Thanks for the info about pepcid. I think we will try one remedy at a time and see if they are able to help. With the Slippery elm powder, do you give that on a nightly basis? I also have not tried probiotics. I am going to look more into the Active Manuka Honey, I have never heard of this. Thank you for the link, do you continue to use the honey. It seems like it is used to buy time to repair the esophagus and help fix the problem caused by the acid.
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Old October 21st, 2008, 01:00 PM
BoxerTandE BoxerTandE is offline
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Sorry also I wanted to clarify in my original post I said he had liver problems. I typed the wrong thing...he has kidney problems. I corrected it in the first post now.
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Old October 21st, 2008, 01:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BoxerTandE View Post
Yes I guess it could be characterized as intestinal distress. Acid reflux seems to make a lot of since as well with all of the gulping and swallowing. Thanks for the info about pepcid. I think we will try one remedy at a time and see if they are able to help. With the Slippery elm powder, do you give that on a nightly basis? I also have not tried probiotics. I am going to look more into the Active Manuka Honey, I have never heard of this. Thank you for the link, do you continue to use the honey. It seems like it is used to buy time to repair the esophagus and help fix the problem caused by the acid.
Personally, I've found slipper elm to be extremely helpful for colitis (which my dog also suffers from) or diarrhea, but not for the acid reflux/gulping thing. If you want to try it though, it can be added to meals at about 1/3-1/2 tsp. for a medium sized dog. It's a very safe herb though, so don't worry too much about messing it up.

I do continue to use the honey before each meal. It helps to heal any ulceration of the esophagus, but it also coats the esophagus, therefore protecting it from future irritation. After many years of dealing with this, it's probably been the most helpful (aside from diet changes--removing grains being the real key I think) thing I've tried.

If it were me, I would get a digestive enzyme first and see if that's not enough on it's own, then add the honey if your dog need further help. If there's a way, likely with the help of a holistic vet supportive of homemade and.or raw diets, to design a diet which would be appropriate for the dog's kidney issues as well as being more helpful to the digestive problems, that would probably help you out a ton too.

www.dogaware.com has great info on feeding dogs with specific conditions.
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Old October 21st, 2008, 01:30 PM
BoxerTandE BoxerTandE is offline
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Is there a particular brand or kind of digestive enzyme that you use? Is if for dogs or something that you just pick up at a heath food store. Thanks for the link there seems to be tons of good info on the site.
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Old October 21st, 2008, 02:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BoxerTandE View Post
I guess from what I have talked to the doctor about is that in an all natural diet there is a lot of protein that is very hard for his kidneys to process causing extra work for them. The one food that he is on is called Kidney Function.

The high protein is a myth ....it's the phosphorus levels you need to be concerned about.

Pitgrrl has given you great information and I also recommend reading all the info on the dogaware website....

http://www.dogaware.com/kidney.html
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Old October 23rd, 2008, 09:29 PM
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new member. NEED ANSWERS!

i have a maltese who is about 3 years old. he has the same exact reactions. he licks the carpet, his lips, and anything he can find. then he gulps the air but, it only happens sometimes and its about 15 minutes long, then its over! it seems like he is suffering and i have no idea what to do. ill take him outside and he will go straight for the grass and he will not stop eating it. do you have any suggestions?
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Old November 1st, 2008, 09:50 AM
BoxerTandE BoxerTandE is offline
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I think that I am going to try Total-Zymes. Does anyone have any experience with it or have any suggestions for a better digestive enzyme? Thanks again for all of the help.
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Old September 12th, 2009, 12:50 PM
Jake3 mom Jake3 mom is offline
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did anything work

hi i have a 6yr old rottie who does the same thing and i was just wondering if you have found any solutions??
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Old September 12th, 2009, 01:20 PM
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If your dog has just started this behavior suddenly, Jake3 mom, you need to take it to the vet right away. Sudden gulping and licking can also be a symptom of bloat, which requires an emergency visit to the vet.
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Old September 13th, 2009, 01:21 AM
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Jake3 mom has your dog already been diagnosed with a previous medical condition?

If this is a new behaviour that your vet has not yet been notified about, a vet visit is the first step.
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Old September 27th, 2009, 08:21 PM
kathiel kathiel is offline
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Gulping air and licking floor

My 3-1/2 year old dog is doing this same thing - only several times so far, but we had a really bad night last night. I have tried antacids but it didn't help yesterday and last night. I read about the special honey and I wonder if normal grocery store honey wouldn't do the same thing. Honey in general is antibacterial and healing - all bees make it that way. So I gave Siren a teaspoonful of common honey just now. She lapped it up. Has anyone else ever tried this?

I already use a digestive enzyme - Dogzymes Digestive Enhancer that I get online from Nature's Farmacy. I feed raw but I mostly use high fat hamburger for meat, and from what I'm reading, this might be contributing to the problem.

Any further info will be welcomed!

Kathie & Siren
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Old September 28th, 2009, 02:09 AM
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Kathie have you informed your vet of these new symptoms?

Yes regular honey does have natural antibacterial properties and has been used medicinally for years but many different issues. For the differences between regular honey & Active Manuka Honey: Manuka honey has extra antibacterial & healing properties as outlined here:http://www.natural-animal-care-produ...UMF-Rating.htm. When the hydrogen peroxide (the most important anitbacterial property of honey) was removed from Manuka honey high antibacterial effects were still found. There are also as yet unknown unique Phytochemical Factors not found in regular honey. It is also only collected from the flower of the tea tree bush in New Zealand.

When you say you are feeding "mostly high fat hamburger" are you including proper portions of organs & bone?

for Siren & let us know how Siren's doing
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Old October 17th, 2009, 06:39 PM
Jake3 mom Jake3 mom is offline
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no this is not new he has been doing it now for almost 2 years!
he been to the vet millions of time aboyt it!! an no answer...they sid acid reflux and he takes the perscription form of zantac 150mg every 12 hrs...since he has started taking it it dosent happen near as oftyen but he still licks the carpet and his lips like he has the pasties..the vet says nothing to worry aboyt but it drives me crazy...
he has poor digestion and just found out he has Coccdia waiting to start the meds for that but i dont know if it could be related!!
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Old October 25th, 2009, 06:47 PM
kathiel kathiel is offline
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Growler - thanks for your response. Sorry I haven't checked in with this list for a while. I mentioned it to my vet and he told me to give Siren antacids, which I'm not crazy about doing. In addition, the last time we had a bad bout of this, which was when I last posted about it, I tried antibiotics and it didn't seem to help. But I have been giving her just regular honey - at first I was giving it before each meal but now only occasionally. One night last week she started some gulping and I gave her honey - the gulping subsided - don't know if it was because of the honey or if it would have subsided without it. I see that the Manuka honey site says to give it with a little food or apple, which I have not been doing. Regarding Siren's diet, I have reduced the fat content of the hamburger I'm feeding her. I'm interested in your question about bone and organ, because I don't feed her organ meat and I use a supplement I get from Nature's Farmacy called Bone Builder M122 that contains calcium, zinc, and some other minerals. Of course if I should be doing something different, I'd love to hear about it. thanks.
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Old October 25th, 2009, 06:48 PM
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Sorry - I wrote that I tried antibiotics but I meant that I tried antacids -
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Old October 25th, 2009, 11:00 PM
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Is your vet aware of Siren's diet? What are her poops like?

You can have a look around the raw feeding forum here to get some ideas.

When feeding a dog raw the proportions are generally 30-50% raw meaty bones, 5-10% organ, with the rest made up of muscle meat, eggs etc.

Since you are giving a calcium based supplement in-place of bone, you may consider adding in a small amount of organ meat.

Quote:
http://www.dogaware.com/wdjhomemade2.html
Organs are an important part of a raw diet. Liver and kidney in particular are nutrient-dense and provide a great deal of nutritional value. These foods should make up 5 to 10 percent of the total diet. Note that they may cause loose stools if too much is fed at one time. It’s better to feed smaller amounts daily or every other day than to feed larger amounts once or twice a week. This also spreads out the nutritional value, allowing your dog to receive more benefit.

Heart is nutritionally more like muscle meat than organ meat, but it is rich in taurine and other nutrients. If possible, make heart another 5 to 10 percent of the diet. More can be fed; just remember that too much can lead to loose stools in some dogs.

Other organs, such as spleen, eyeballs, sweetbreads (pancreas and thymus glands), brain, etc. are nutritious and can be added to the diet in small amounts.
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Old October 26th, 2009, 09:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Love4himies View Post
Not sure why are you are ruling out an all natural diet because of kidney issues. You will probably find your dog may do better on a raw diet than any processed diet full of chemicals? What would you feed your children, fresh fruit and veggies, homemade bread without chemicals, etc. or hotdogs and fries, mixed with a bit of alphaghetti?

Totally agree with your input.

a dog with kidney issue should eat a species appropriate diet which is

raw diet which is a lot better than those commercial kibbles.

as long as you feed your dog a good quality protein, then high protein is not

the issue for kidney problem dog.

excessive licking air, floor, human's arms, bedding, paws etc is a symptom

of vaccinosis.

you should find a classical homeopath to deal with your dog's issue.

HTH
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