GI Support - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 25 (permalink) Old 11-11-2009, 08:38 PM Thread Starter
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GI Support

I'm considering starting Risa on some sort of digestive support. Even when she's having decent poops, it seems it doesn't take much to throw her back off. I have been giving her 2 capsules of slippery elm daily since mid-September. For the most part, it's been highly effective. But lately her poos have been softer again. Not to the point I'm alarmed or worried about a recurrence of SIBO. However, I would like her to have nice poops!!! (She did have very 'sad' poop last night which earned her a fast. However, I am pretty sure I know the cause. Which sucks because, again, it's something she really likes. Hopefully I can still give it to her--just maybe in smaller portions.)

So, does anyone use/recommend a digestive supplement that might help keep Risa from having such a yo-yo GI tract? I have had her on a probiotic in the past but I don't think it did anything. Didn't hurt, didn't help.

Thanks in advance.

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post #2 of 25 (permalink) Old 11-11-2009, 08:50 PM
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Re: GI Support

I *love, love, love* B-Natural's Digestion blend for my Grace who has EPI, but is not on prescription enzymes at this time.

http://www.b-naturals.com/bertes-dig...cPath=22_23_15

(I also give their Immune Blend...I give both at a half dose daily).

Oh, and I only give probiotics separately if I start smelling "SIBO" farts...sounds funny, but there is a different smell lol.

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post #3 of 25 (permalink) Old 11-11-2009, 08:53 PM
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Re: GI Support

I give LJ Perfect Form that Ruth recommended.

http://www.thehonestkitchen.com/prod...ect_form.shtml

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post #4 of 25 (permalink) Old 11-11-2009, 09:10 PM
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Re: GI Support

Nux Vomica is a simple homeopathic remedy that may help as well.

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post #5 of 25 (permalink) Old 11-11-2009, 09:18 PM
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Re: GI Support

I wouldn't give nux vomica for those symptoms and I wouldn't give it long term.

Chama did great on that Berte's Naturals one mentioned above but it didn't work at all for Rafi. Rafi has gold standards poos with the Perfect Form that Joanne mentions above.

And you can up the slippery elm if you need to. Are you giving 2 capsules twice a day or 1 twice a day? When Chama had issues I gave as many as 3, 3 times a day.

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post #6 of 25 (permalink) Old 11-11-2009, 09:24 PM
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Re: GI Support

I swear by *human* grade probiotics (I buy this http://www.costco.com/Browse/Product.asp...matchallpartial because it is a blend of bacteria, and I always keep it refrigerated.) I'll never own a GSD without them again.

The ones I give suggest 2 per day for humans. Camper (85 lbs, and you may recall, he had SIBO) took one in the morning and two at night. If he started to have any sort of softening of his stools, I increased that to 4 per day, then backed down the dose as soon as things recovered (usually a day or two). It's the only thing that worked consistently. My vet and internist felt that the probiotics (even at a higher dose than recommended for humans) were better for him than any Rx treatment...and certainly better than regular bouts of diarrhea.

Celo (50 lbs this week) takes one of these daily. He had very soft to liquid stools when I tried him on kibble for a short while. When I put him on raw, things firmed up, but not perfectly (he seems to be sensitive to too much fat, which as you know, is hard to get exactly consistent from meal to meal). The probiotic does the trick. Even if I miss a day's dose, he's fine. I wouldn't be surprised if as he starts to approach adult weight I may need to increase the dose to two tablets, but he may surprise me.


So maybe with Ris, you weren't giving her enough probiotic? Or, were you feeding her probiotic made for dogs? I had read a paper(that I can't find right now) of research comparing human probiotics to those made for dogs (compared to a control group that got nothing) and essentially, the study showed that those made for dogs (eg Fortiflora and others available OTC) are just slightly better than nothing.

One of the things they pointed out is that L. rhamnosus, works very well, so if we're giving acidophilus alone (which is very common in lower priced probiotic capsules), we're not getting the full benefit of probiotic treatment.

I know Ris weighs about what Celo weighs, but since she has SIBO, I wouldn't be surprised if she needs a higher dose. Since she's doing ok right now, it seems like a perfect time to move good bacteria into her GI tract to set up a "neighborhood watch" before the bad guys set up shop and ruin the neighborhood again...

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post #7 of 25 (permalink) Old 11-11-2009, 09:57 PM
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Re: GI Support

Glad I stumbled upon this thread. I was just atlking with my vet today about the possibility of adding Tylan powder to Zisso's intake and now I am rethinking it. It sounds like the link above might do the trick. I have been giving Perfect Form for the last month and while it helps, it does not do the complete trick. I finally stopped giving anything like treats to the dogs again, so get their poop solid and good again so want to try something different. Thanks for the info

Nadia - GSD -DOB 12-29-07
Zisso - GSD- DOB 9-16-07
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post #8 of 25 (permalink) Old 11-11-2009, 10:28 PM
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Re: GI Support

I'm just gonna throw out a bunch of stuff here...........

I like that Perfect Form stuff, been meaning to try it.

Probiotics: acidophilous, bifidus, bulgaricus from the refrigerated section of the helath food store works great for Indy. Not for Max. I've been meaning to try a straigh acidophilous for him, maybe the other stuff is feeding some pathogenic something in him....I always (try to) give it between meals.

Primal Defense is supposed to be kinda a probiotic from soil organisms. I have some here that I recently bought to try for Max, but I haven't yet, his condition is too precarious and his response to probiotics too unpredictable. Used it with success for Indy many many years ago.

DGL licorice will help with all sorts of stuff in the gut. It's in chewables with artificial flavoring though, which I"m not happy about, but starting to try it for Max. Regular licorice should not be used for this.

l-glutamine powder mixed with apple juice is my all time favorite - very healing for the digestive tract. Can't say enough good things about it. Very good for LGS.

For dogs that run "hot", aloe vera is good. For Max I also use a combination of scullcap and black cohosh specifically for his stomach, when he pants a lot, and seems to be uncomfortable in his skin (the black cohosh again, for dogs with heat).

I'm a big fan of fresh ground flaxseeds to keep the bowels moving, they also act as a prebiotic, provide healthy fatty acids, and also natural estrogens for both males and females to block the bad estrogens in the environment. I'm thinking if food not prolonging it's "stay" in the gut, less fermentation, maybe it will help with unwanted gut guests?

Digestive enzymes given with food to help the food adequately digest and reduce the severity of leaky gut syndrome (LGS).

Proteolytic enzymes given between the meals to digest the "extra stuff" floating through the body, again helpful in LGS. They function like pac men in the body, for those of you old enough to have played the game

I've read that MSM will help with things like giardia and food allergies, though I don't know if that's true.

Peppermint is supposed to help with IBD, NOW has a Peppermint oil extract with ginger and fennel. Not sure I'd use it in a dog with heat (dogs that pant easily, red eyes).

And in the end? Sometimes you still need something like panacur or antibiotics


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post #9 of 25 (permalink) Old 11-12-2009, 02:45 PM
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Re: GI Support

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And in the end? Sometimes you still need something like panacur or antibiotics
Absolutely. Twice, we had to put Camper on a 30 day course of ampicillin. And it has to be at least 30 days of abx in order to reach into the deep dark bowels (pun intended ) of the colon.

We tried some of the other abx that are traditionally prescribed, but ampicillin is the only one that worked for us. I think that often, vets don't think outside of the metronidazole/tylan box (possibly the box includes panacur, but we don't even see that prescribed that often unless parasites are suspected). As owners, I think we need to keep asking questions and push our regular vets to consider other options (are they going to professional electronic bulletin boards when they get stuck, for example?). Or we need to move on to a specialist.

My probiotics advice was aimed at Ris, who seems to be at stasis right now. For a dog that is really having a lot of GI issues, especially if they're severe, I wouldn't necessarily recommend probiotics as a first course of "treatment."



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post #10 of 25 (permalink) Old 11-12-2009, 04:33 PM
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Re: GI Support

Checking back in to read and re read this thread.

I can say that Zisso does not have severe diarrhea, and not as often as he once did. The perfect Form helps a great deal, but not when I add other foods, like the Natural Balance Chub. He then gets puddin' poo, even if he only has a wee taste of the chub meat. Like a thimble full or two, for lack of a better example. I took this statement (meant for Ris) "Since she's doing ok right now, it seems like a perfect time to move good bacteria into her GI tract to set up a "neighborhood watch" before the bad guys set up shop and ruin the neighborhood again..."
and took that into consideration. Both of my dogs are having healthy poops right now, so thought perhaps now would be a good time to add good bacteria into their systoms as well. I will not act yet, until I hear something further here.

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Zisso - GSD- DOB 9-16-07
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