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Old January 16th, 2009, 03:06 PM
crosbydog crosbydog is offline
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Unhappy Gas, Bloating Mystery, please Help

My dog Crosby is a 4-5 year old Lab mix. he was a rescue dog. He has some chow in him (spots on his tounge) maybe some shepherd., he is small for a lab only 48 pounds- he is lightly built but very athletic.
Ever since he has been about 1 year old we have had an increasing problem with gas, I have switched vets and asked them repeatedly for help, I have worked with a holistic dog nutritionist but no one has been able to solve the problem or really take me seriously. Please help me. I am beginning to get very worried.
Here are all of the details:

Primary gas time: after his second daily meal- from 7:30 pm to 10:30 pm
but it can be bad any time, usually never before noon though.

Symptoms: flatulance consistantly every 4-5 seconds sustained for 1 to three hours, 75% of flatulance does not smell at all, 25% smells horrible, occasional loud belching, very loud stomach sounds, can be heard within a three foot radius, very bloated stomach, (normally, crosby looks like he is on the thin side of healthy, with a marked indentation where his stomach is, when he is bloated his stomach bulges 3'' past his ribs),

Normal Routine: he eats 3 cups of food total daily, split between two meals, Lassie brand natural food we switch between chicken and oatmeal and lamb and rice, he has a special food bowl that has molded raised areas in it so he has to slow down eating, he gets 1 table spoon of stoneybrook orgainic plain low fat yougert with each meal and a cap full of olive oil with each meal, he drinks water from the toilet when he pleases during the day, he runs or swims playing fetch for 15-30 minutes twice daily, once after breakfast and once after dinner, during which he has a bowel movement- always normal.

Remedies that have been tried but found unsuccessful either made no difference or made the problem worse:
Foods- started with purina one lamb and rice, then wellness complete health whitefish and sweet potato, then wellness core whitefish the wellness products were fine, but kind of made his gas smelly and his breath smelly, so I found the lassie at the supermarket- no corn, no wheat and it is CHEAP (although I add olive oil to supplement)!
I have tried using dynovite as a food suppliment- went through one of the big tubs of it with no difference.
I tried fresh garlic cloves- no difference.
I don't know if the molded food bowl works, but I have continued to use it.
He dosen't get scraps
He dosen't get raw hyde
I went to the vet again today and he suggested adding pumpkin.

Please, if you have any ideas, advice, suggestions or suggested diagnosis for what is going on with him please respond, this poor dog looks miserable for hours every night when he is inflated.
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  #2  
Old January 16th, 2009, 03:55 PM
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pitgrrl pitgrrl is offline
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I'd look into trying a grain free food again and giving it enough time for the dog to actually fully adjust to the new food.

Adding a digestive enzyme such as Prozyme would likely make a difference.

A probiotic, either in supplement form or from plain (no sugar or flavors added) yogurt may help too.
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Old January 16th, 2009, 04:17 PM
kandy kandy is offline
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Looking at this food, I see that Rice Flour, Ground Rice and Rice Bran are the 2nd, 3rd and 4th ingredients. The only meat protein source I see is Chicken Meal (which is 1st). Also, Poultry Fat is the 5th ingredient - but it doesn't say what kind of poultry.

IMO, your boy has horrible gas and bloating because this food is loaded with grains - way too much grain. While the claim of 'no preservatives, no wheat, no soy, no animal by-products' looks to be factual, it misleads people into thinking that it is healthier for their dogs. You have to read ingredient labels to know what you are really getting.

Personally I look for the basics: no corn (in whatever form), no wheat, no animal by-products, no unspecified meat proteins (meat meal, poultry meal, etc), at least 2 species identified meat protein sources in the first 5 ingredients - and for me, no barley (I have a dog that doesn't tolerate barley well). I also don't like to see tomato pumace or beet pulp (both stool hardners) but I'll live with those if I like the rest of the ingredient list.

There is tons of information out there on dog food, what those ingredients really mean, and how to read the labels. There is also tons of information here on dog food.

If you choose a grain free food - be aware that grain free does not mean carb free.

Good Luck!
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Old January 20th, 2009, 12:13 PM
crosbydog crosbydog is offline
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thanks Kandy and Pitgirrl

Thank you both for your responses!
The problem is I have tried grain free for 5 months- the 'wellness core' (this is a completely grain free food), and it did not help- in fact it made his gas more smelly and did not change the frequency.
And as for a pro biotic- I did the dynovite thing for almost a year, no change. and I have been giving him plain yougert for the past 4 months...
So that is where my mystery lies,
but I will find a food that has 2 types of meat protien in the first 5 ingredients, that is a new suggestion to me,
And I never thought about 'poultry' as it is truly un specific- so i will work on finding a new food that does not break the bank but has two types of protien and no 'meat' or 'poultry'
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Old January 20th, 2009, 01:16 PM
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Kahne9Lover Kahne9Lover is offline
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Have you tried supplementing with green tripe? My one lab smelled like a dead body was shoved up his patooty until I started mixing it with his nightly meal. Both dogs now have good normal stool and the gassy moments are far and few in between. And they love the taste.
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Old January 20th, 2009, 02:03 PM
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pitgrrl pitgrrl is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crosbydog View Post
Thank you both for your responses!
The problem is I have tried grain free for 5 months- the 'wellness core' (this is a completely grain free food), and it did not help- in fact it made his gas more smelly and did not change the frequency.
And as for a pro biotic- I did the dynovite thing for almost a year, no change. and I have been giving him plain yougert for the past 4 months...
So that is where my mystery lies,
but I will find a food that has 2 types of meat protien in the first 5 ingredients, that is a new suggestion to me,
And I never thought about 'poultry' as it is truly un specific- so i will work on finding a new food that does not break the bank but has two types of protien and no 'meat' or 'poultry'
Try a digestive enzyme if you've already gone with a probiotic without results.
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Old January 20th, 2009, 03:36 PM
24paws 24paws is offline
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Sounds like Crosby has an ultra sensitive tummy. My Dane ~ Diesel~ does too but switching her food solved the problem after a couple of weeks. If you are positive that there are no internal parasites I would go back to thinking about the food.

Lamb and rice has served Diesel well. The problem with a lamb and rice diet is that once introduced as the main diet, it is difficult to switch back to anything else. Lamb is very bland and easy on the stomach, so when you introduce other meats (proteins) they are now too rich. Diesel is able to have a treat from things other than lamb, but for a main diet I stick to the lamb and rice.

If you stick to other meats, know the difference between 'meal' and 'by- products'. In chicken, for example, 'meal' consists of ground, rendered, clean parts of the carcass, such as necks, feet, undeveloped eggs and intestines. Poultry 'by-products' will include heads, feet, viscera, free from fecal content and foreign matter. (Hungry yet?)

I have also changed other aspects that seem to have done well, but I'm not sure if it's just because I am paranoid of bloat but they do make sense.

~try using a raised dog bowl. If Crosby doesn't have to raise his head to get the food to the back of his throat he will take in less air
~playing so soon after eating probably isn't good. Food sits like a stone in the belly (humans don't jog immediately after eating). Crosby is gulping air. Exercise a half hour before or a half hour after a meal upsets the stomach and you might consider extending that to one hour before and after eating.
~if you are able to do so, try feeding three times a day instead of two. Smaller meals are more easily digested.

Good luck!

Last edited by 24paws; January 20th, 2009 at 04:05 PM. Reason: more information available
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Old January 21st, 2009, 10:39 AM
kandy kandy is offline
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You could also try a food that does not have rice in it - perhaps it is the rice itself that he is not tolerating well.

What I meant by two protein sources in the first 5 ingredients isn't necessarily 2 different sources (ie lamb & fish) but more like chicken & chicken meal. If you are comfortable that your boy doesn't have any protein allergies, then having 2 different sources is fine.

Good Luck!
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Old April 14th, 2009, 09:22 PM
SHarv SHarv is offline
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I stumbled upon this site researching answers for how to help my dog with severe bloating and issues with gas, and I am amazed with how similar our stories are, it is unbelievable. My Lab Wilson has been having problems since late December. We had to kennel him during the Christmas holiday while we were away on vacation, and one week later he started having severe diarreha. He was put on an antibiotic and we assumed that he just picked something up while he was at the kennel. However, that was just the start of our long battle. The potty problems cleared up, but Wilson's behavior started to change. My husband and I noticed that he wasn't comfortable laying down and could not relax in the evenings; that he was leaning up against furniture, and hanging his head, and he was drooling, and then, the burping started. We went back to the vet, and they ran blood tests and more extensive tests of his stool, all were negative. At that point we changed his diet. He had been eating the chicken flavored Pro Plan, and we switched to Science Diet ID, the prescription formula.

After two weeks, there was no change, and he was getting worse, so we went to a vet specialist in town. His belief was that Wilson was taking in too much air, and that was the root cause of his gas. He recommended changing how we were feeding Wilson, and to ensure we were not feeding when he is excited (right when we walk in from work for example). We also started feeding smaller amounts. In addition, we changed his food, again. He recommended another prescription brand, but this one is more specific and does not process the foods together. (I can't recall the brand, we are not feeding currently). It was a Venison and Pototoe flavor. We noticed no improvement in feeding this food either, and it is very expensive. Wilson gets so bloated, that he can't relieve himself on most nights, and we are concerned that this will become fatal. We now physically assist him in relieving his gas by patting his back, and pressing under his belly to press the air out. So, we scheduled an endoscopy for Wilson, knowing that it would most likely be normal, but we didn't think we had a choice. They did biopsies during the test, and thankfully, the test was normal. At that point, they diagnosed Wilson with "Inflammatory Bowel Disease", and explained that his small intestines and stomach walls were inflamed. He was prescribed two months of Prednisone Steroids, starting with 60mg, tapering down every two weeks. The first two weeks were pure insanity. He was hungry, thirsty, he urinated in the house because he could not wait for us to get home from work, he panted uncontrollably, and...they did not help. After the third week, we added in a probiotic. It has not helped either. Just this week, we changed his food, yet again. They still think he may have a food allergy. He is now eating Fish and Potatoe, and the smell is unbearable. The vet specialist said if this does not help him, then he most likely will not tolerate any processed foods. Our next step may be to find a specialty dog store that makes freeze dried dog food, I'm not sure I understand what that means entirely.

We are just desparate for some answer, for anyone that may have a suggestion to offer, because my vet of 10 years, and the vet specialist have been unable to provide a solution. We just want Wilson healthy, and happy again.
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Old April 14th, 2009, 10:00 PM
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satchelp satchelp is offline
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It might be a good idea for your vet to run a cTLI test for EPI (Exocrine Pancreatic Insufficiency). There are varying degrees of this condition, and therefore symptoms can vary in severity, but among other things, it can cause problems with gas due to improper digestion.
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Old April 14th, 2009, 10:27 PM
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sugarcatmom sugarcatmom is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SHarv View Post
Just this week, we changed his food, yet again. They still think he may have a food allergy. He is now eating Fish and Potatoe, and the smell is unbearable. The vet specialist said if this does not help him, then he most likely will not tolerate any processed foods. Our next step may be to find a specialty dog store that makes freeze dried dog food, I'm not sure I understand what that means entirely.
Aww, poor Wilson. You might want to do some research on home-made diets. Many dogs and cats with GI issues do considerably better when they aren't eating highly processed commercial foods. No need to use the freeze dried products from the store (which are still technically processed). You can't go wrong with fresh, high quality ingredients, possibly even a novel protein source like duck or rabbit. You could start by lightly cooking it and gradually move towards raw. Here is a long but worthwhile article on the subject of canine nutrition, with a list of raw-feeding books at the end of it: http://beardie.net/bcca/health/articles/going_raw.shtml

And some info on IBD, IBS, Colitis and other GastroIntestinal Disorders.
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