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dog food/ health

Posted: Wed Mar 14, 2007 6:10 am
by chowdad
What George is eating at the moment is anything he is willing to take, in other words he chose his own diet because it seems he would starve otherwise. In the last 2 months I have bought at least $100 worth of Nutro and Eukanuba cans and solids and gravy treat packs, and nutro lamb/rice treats. He won't take any of it.

I am going to make him the chicken broth recipe Juniper gave, I'll bet he'll take it because it's liquid.

I will look into better quality vitamins when I go to the vet with him today.

Thank You All so very much,

Posted: Wed Mar 14, 2007 11:32 am
by Red Dragon
John, go to Petsmart or a place like that and get some ProPlan Selects, all of mine love it and I have a couple of picky eaters. Mine all turn their noises up at Nutro, even with a small amount mixed in the bowl, all I can say about Eukanuba is he is a smart dog for not eating that. If he won't eat the ProPlan Selects by itself mix a little of the tuna or whatever else he likes in with it. Sounds like his stomach is very upset from all the table food and the meds.

Posted: Wed Mar 14, 2007 11:45 am
by Jeff&Peks
From what I read of what Kawani and Victory are saying he has a big lack of something going on in his system or to much of something in his system so instead of running out to the pet stores and buying all these different foods I would put together what Kawani and Victory are saying and base the food around that then add something to the food to get him to eat it. if your just going to base it on what he will only eat I don't think that will help anything.

Posted: Wed Mar 14, 2007 12:34 pm
by Red Dragon
Exactly, that is why I said try the Selects, he needs to eat food that covers all the nutritional needs. I would find it hard to believe he wouldn't eat the Selects, that is good food and all of mine love it. The key is to get him back on a good diet that covers all the bases, and suppliment where needed.

Posted: Wed Mar 14, 2007 1:02 pm
by Jeff&Peks
I didn't read all of what was being said but I did see Zinc and a few others being talked about. If zinc is the problem then he has to find a food with zinc and none of the others mentioned in the food. Zinc most likely won't be mentioned on the label but it will be an ingredient in something they do put on the label so he has to find out exactly what he is putting into that Chows system beyond the label.

Posted: Wed Mar 14, 2007 2:48 pm
by threedogjeep
Vet visit?

Posted: Wed Mar 14, 2007 2:57 pm
by janet
wow tdj, we are both on the same i was checking in to see how george's vet visiy went too.

George's illness/update

Posted: Wed Mar 14, 2007 3:33 pm
by chowdad
I wanted to update all the people that are concerned for George. We went to the vet today but the dr. was out till friday so I made an appointment. My love for George and commitment to him is immeasurable. He is our second Chowling, and we have made mistakes, but many less than with the first. He is our only child and I have been fortunate to take off work many days just to hang out with him, and we took him 2 hours away to the nearest TPLO provider, K-State in Manhattan, KS. Twice for 3 days each. We even talked the vet into letting him recover in our hotel room across the street, because he has seperation anxiety.
His morning routine for the last 3 months takes 2 hours, before work. I give his feet an epsom salt soak, wash and put medicine on his sores, take him for a walk, he begs for a walk no matter how ill he gets. I have had to tell him no because of his feet sores, now we take a car ride on those days. He will not eat unless we sit with him so I sit until he has breakfast. Our vet told us that when he is ill and refuses to eat, any food he'll take is better than nothing. He may be wrong but that's why he eats what he wants.
To make Juniper's Chicken soup,I went to the health food store and the grocery, and cooked a chicken in a pot for the first time, and have given him his probiotic capsule, but he won't eat the chicken broth, so we will wait and let him get hungry enough.

The GOOD news: This morning George went outside and downstairs to the bathroom without me carrying him for the first time in a week. At the vets he walked around outside for a half hour with no trouble, yesterday he couln't take more than four steps until he sat down. I feel sure the vitamin I gave him made that much difference. Thank You Kiwani. And thanks to Jeff for helping, and thanks to Juniper for the broth recipe and supplement advice, I did make the organic broth and will wait until he eats it. Thanks to all for the wonderful support in such a difficult time.


Posted: Wed Mar 14, 2007 4:36 pm
by Juniper
Hi John:

Thanks for the update-we are all concerned about George. I'm glad to hear George was able to walk downstairs and go outside without your assistance today. Amazing that he resisted the chicken broth! I've always been a believer that the chow knows best on what it can or cannot eat when they are under the weather. George is definitely in the know about what he needs at the moment, so let that be your guide.

Zinc is also contained in baked potatoes which are easy to digest and in plain yogurt as well. But when there are sores I usually stay away from dairy products in case an infection sets in. Dairy builds up excess mucus and feeds bacteria, as well as viruses.

Oops, I forgot to add that potato in my broth recipe, and tell you to skin some of the chicken. Could be why George said no to the broth too much fat in broth and no potato. Sorry about that. Just put the pot in the frig and remove the fat in the mornin'.

Much health to George and hope he increases in strength every day.

Posted: Wed Mar 14, 2007 5:13 pm
by chowdad
Hi again ,
No eating yet. I think you are right about the fat because I drank a little to show him it was good and it was kind of oily. I will do as you said with the fat. It' s funny you mention potato because when I went to the store I thought it seems like I should add a potato.

George is very,very picky. He will turn his nose at lots of food and just when you give up and think he's not hungry at all he comes to you begging pitifully for a bite of steak or a piece of cheese. Thanks for the info about dairy products because he get a lot of mucous in his hot spots and cheese is his absolute favorite to eat, although it gives him the runs.

I really do appreciate the help with George. His Mom and I had decided he was dying and to try and keep him comfortable, now there's hope. I expected the responses to be "that's how they die". I am amazed at how wrong I was.

Posted: Wed Mar 14, 2007 5:51 pm
by Juniper
Oh, and cook some potato with the skin and place in the soup as well. He might even eat the potato with a tablespoon of chicken broth mixed into it or steak juice. Chows do love cheese that's for sure! I limit that stuff big time.

George has got a lot more livin' to do. Just something is out of sync at the moment. I don't know if he recently has had a blood panel done but if not the vet will probably suggest it.

I'm into homeopathy and natural cures and avoid drugs as a rule for myself as well as my animals. I use vets for diagnostics or emergency treatment only. So I really can't help with the effects of Rimadyl or other medications on George. If you decide to take the natural route and get him off medications I may be able to give some suggestions.

Have you tried putting aloe vera gel on his sores? I once cured a beagle who had a totally raw and pus ridden back and tail with fresh aloe vera leaves. I just washed the area, morning and night with water, no salt, and added the aloe vera gel, which naturally contains vitamin E and heals.

The epsom salt could possibly be an irritant to his foot sores and be actually preventing them from healing. There is enough salt in the tap water or spring water to do the cleansing. Usually if some noticeable change for the better has not occurred within 24 hours an alternative route needs to be taken.

Here's to George's continued improvement. [:D]

epsom salt, etc

Posted: Wed Mar 14, 2007 6:13 pm
by chowdad
The epsom salt is definitely an irritant. He hops around like his feet are on fire. The vet said it would prevent infection and promote healing. I already stopped the Rimadyl. The last was yesterday. I will get some aloe for his sores. I have to admit I gave him a can of tuna tonight because I couldn't go to bed knowing he hadn't eaten. I put it over a little rice with some of the green protein powder on top. He munched away until he hit the green stuff. then he jumped up and ran outside. He gets pissed when I hide stuff in his food, I've been doing that a lot lately to try and force him to eat dog food, but it just makes him angry and suspicious.
Good Night,

Posted: Thu Mar 15, 2007 5:40 am
by kiwani
Re: "I feel sure the vitamin I gave him made that much difference."

Whatever was responsible for the improvement, it's good to hear you feeling hopeful. Lean beef is much higher in zinc, than the chicken. Stay away from feeding fats. Review what I mentioned about the dairy calcium too. As mentioned earlier pulverize the meat in a blender to make a paste, and feed with some pulverized brown rice. Stick to *one* food for now, and don't cater, or your dog will hold out from eating meals waiting for something else. If your Chow needs to build muscle and increase zinc, stick with lean beef for now, and review the archives for 'green cow'.

When there are immune system problems, zinc imbalances, the jaw muscle weakness I mentioned earlier can also involve inflamed tonsils, and swelling at the back of the upper mouth, etc. The doctor can test to see if masticatory muscle myositis is present, and prescribe steroids. Excessive drooling is one of the symptoms, besides being a symptom of ulceration.

I don't agree with the epsom salt treatments either, seems too alkaline. Petroleum-free zinc-based treatments might be a better choice.

Best wishes.

Posted: Thu Mar 15, 2007 7:26 am
by sit_by_the_beach
I would like to suggest veal rather than beef. If it's available, the milk fed calves meat is best. Veal contains less fat than beef, it's also easier to digest. I used to feed it to my cats when they were ill and not wanting to eat. When I am ill that's what I eat.

I slow boil/simmer veal in a bit of water. Then put it through a blender including the liquid which contains most of the nutrients.

Have you tried baby food? I give my pets baby food when they feel under the weather.

If you have access to a (real) chinese or asian restaurant, beef congee is good too. It's a rice porridge. You slow boil white rice and meat. I boil it for 4 hours. I rinse the rice first to remove some of the starch.

Posted: Thu Mar 15, 2007 9:40 am
by Juniper
Karin: Thanks for posting about the veal & the baby food.

It's important to note that Gerber has been using corn starch as a filler in their baby foods for the past 10 years or so. Beechnut, although sometimes difficult to find is the better choice, no fillers. The organic baby foods only seem to carry the vegetables- my chows like butternut squash and sweet potatoes.

Posted: Thu Mar 15, 2007 11:05 am
by sit_by_the_beach
I bought jars of Heinz 0g starch chicken and broth, and one jar of sweet potatos and carrots yesterday. I needed the babyfood to give Mikki the Benedryl. I didn't have the time to cook.
I don't know if Heinz baby food is available in the US.

I also bought a package of ground lean turkey. I will cook that today with rice and carrots. Mikki gets homecooked food about twice a week. It's a supplement to the bagged dog food.

About the veal, I don't know if veal contains as much zinc as beef. I will do a search.

My opthalmologist recommended vit.+ Mineral pills for me. I have retina and other eye problems. I may give Mikki 1/4 of a pill. Ocuvite, plus. I will ask the vet next month If this is o.k. Karin

Posted: Thu Mar 15, 2007 12:04 pm
by Juniper
Karin: Haven't seen Heinz baby food in U.S.

There appears to be a lot of reports here about itching & allergy; it appears black chows have a tendency towards this malady probably due to the black coat absorbing more heat/sun, inability to see bugs/fleas, etc. It appears that whatever dry food Troy eats he has a reaction of itching and does better when I cook and add the vitamins. I like my meat rare and so do my chows. I'm thinking of going more cooked/raw food but don't know where I'll get the time to do it. I would certainly eat better. :lol: Right now I'm justing eating a lot of organic oatmeal. Today I have a 15.5+ shift at work. Ugh.

Vet results

Posted: Fri Mar 16, 2007 4:30 pm
by chowdad
Hello Everyone,

George went to the dr. this afternoon. The vet says his problem is Pyogenic Staph. dermatitis and not allergies of any kind. He says he needs antibiotics for at least a month, and prescribed some shampoo to clean his skin and fue with. I discussed everything that was brought up here. He checked his jaw and chewing muscles, found an ulcer on the back of his throat, but nothing else. We had such a long discussion and I talked and talked and as lots of questions, because I'm extremely sceptical at this point.

He says he needs to eat Dog food, any kind soft or hard, Science Diet was recommended, has been by every vet we've seen for 20 years.

I saved the Zinc question for last after he was all done. His mouth dropped open. He said "yes zinc dermatitis", like it brought back a found memory from vet school. He ran out and came back with a script for 250 mg a day of zinc with meals, I asked about Copper to balance that and he said not to worry about it.

The vet expressed no interest in why the zinc was deficient to begin with.

He said the probiotics were fine along with the antibiotics, but that it wasn't necessary, but wouldn't hurt anything. Also benedryl is ok, and centrum is fine to, but given in addition to a complete diet.

I really think I may owe my chowlings life to Kiwani's help.

Thanks for the advice and recipes to Juniper, The aloe vera has really helped, and he did eat the chicken broth today. I will continue giving him the probiotic capsules. I was always using Rimadyl cautiously and only when he needed it.


Posted: Fri Mar 16, 2007 5:18 pm
by Juniper
Oh John, what great news! I'm so happy you have a diagnosis and now George is on his way to recovery. I'm glad Kiwani and I were able to help you and that the aloe vera is giving some relief. (Ditch the Science Diet is all I can say.)

This is such GREAT NEWS to end my day at work. :-oo \:D/

We're not letting you off that easy. Now ya better post some pics in the photo gallery section and don't be a stranger![-X

Much Health to you and your entire family. :D


Posted: Fri Mar 16, 2007 6:21 pm
by chowdad
I have been lurking for a month and I'm not going anywhere. I have a bad feeling that George has 1 paw on the rainbow, but I will always find comfort among fellow chow enthusiasts.

I have tons of lovely awe inspiring pic's of George, but I am not saavy enough to even get one to appear below my name. Alas, he is handsome, rugged, cinnamon, 56 lbs today, usually 60. He looks so much like the photo with Juniper's name I can't even tell the difference.

Posted: Fri Mar 16, 2007 7:40 pm
by Jeff&Peks
Chowdad, the news sounds good to me, don't be so sure about having one paw in the grave. Its sound like he is improving by the day, Just keep doing what Kawani and your vet is telling you and don't change anything. you might be surprised. when your Vet prescribes anything you might want to post it first before giving it to your Chow

Posted: Fri Mar 16, 2007 7:52 pm
by kiwani
Re: "He ran out and came back with a script for 250 mg a day of zinc with meals, I asked about Copper to balance that and he said not to worry about it."

That seems excessive, especially since zinc supplements can irritate the gastro tract and cause other problems. The Merck Veterinary Manual mentions zinc dosage, for zinc-responsive dermatoses, at 2 to 3 mg per kg. Your vet also approved adding Centrum on top of this. In humans, zinc in excess of 100mg can lower the immune system, instead of boost it. You might want to research this further, eventhough antibiotics will pull down the zinc.

Staph is always on the skin, but gains a real foothold when zinc plummets and when yeast flourishes (high grain diet/med use)

All best wishes.

Posted: Fri Mar 16, 2007 8:02 pm
by kiwani
Re: "I am not saavy enough to even get one to appear below my name."

You may request an avatar by submitting a photo to the site administrator. Scroll down the forums page...

Posted: Fri Mar 16, 2007 8:25 pm
by janet
john im glad to hear george is on the mend. you've had expert advice from everyone hear. especially kiwani. good luck with everything. i would definately follow jeffs advice, post anything first.all the best to you and george.

Food/ Shampoo/feet?

Posted: Tue Mar 20, 2007 5:15 pm
by chowdad
I am checking in to discuss my baby again. I have found that he'll eat lean beef and rice, so I returned a bunch of the cans, kibble and treats that he won't touch. He actually gobbled ground beef that I boiled and drained this morning, he got so excited about the smell and taste of it that I mixed some dry food in it and he ate it up. As usual when I do this he get all offended when he realizes what happened. He seems uncomfortable and queasy anytime after he eats. Is this normal after they hardy eat anything for months, like a tummy ache.
Question; How important is it that I get him off of lean beef/ rice, and onto a dog food diet? The vet told us we need to feed him dog food. I called the vet with a couple of questions yesterday, one about the zinc, because he said 250 mg/day, and that is 5 of human 1/day pills. They said that was correct. Zinc tabs taste awful and I doubt I'll get him to eat 5 a day anyway.
The vet prescribed Glehaven P2/S shampoo to clean all his sores daily. We gave him a haircut and shampood his legs, butt and feet on Sunday, We rinsed and dried him and applied ointment and aloe vera to his wounds. He seemed like it nearly killed him. He started shivering and laid still trembling for 3 hours. He seemed fine for the rest of the day, when we washed his sores the next day, he reacted the same way but got better much faster. The vet said this was normal when I called, it is from pain and should get better as he heals.
His paw pads are open and bleeding and a great source of pain and disability to him, allowing him to only walk a few feet at a time. Does anyone have suggestions other than washing, ointment, and aloe vera for this problem?