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Discussion Starter #1
I am a new parent to a 5 week old German Shepherd and I am concerned about his bowel movements. I am not sure if I am feeding him properly. The original owner had said the mother was no longer nursing and the litter had been on canned food since 4 weeks. Is this correct? His bowel movements are very loose and frequent and sometimes it seems as though he strains to try to go. He has a very healthy appetite though but i am not sure of how often and how much I should be feeding him and if I am suppose to be giving him milk. Can someone please help me, I am very worried. I have only had him for 3 days, but My son and I are already very attached. Any information will help. Thanks!
 

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Needs to see a vet and have a fecal run to make sure he doesn't have parasites (sounds like he came from a BYB so I'll bet he does). Could be normal worms, could be something like coccidia which is a nasty little buggar for a pup to have.

At 5 weeks he should still be with his litter, even if not mom, and though he CAN eat just canned puppy food I'd personally still be mixing in formula but that's just me. Google LEERBURGS PUPPY FORMULA for an excellent recipe. Much better and cheaper than the store bought variety. Pup will love it, I guarantee!

But definitely...see the vet. Pups can go downhill very fast.
 

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BYB = BackYard Breeder
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thank you for your information, it was very helpful. I agree he should be with his litter unfortunately he was the only one they had left, at this point I want to make sure he gets the right attention and care he needs so therefore he will be going to the vet first thing in the morning. If anyone has any other advice for me, I would greatly appreciate it.
 

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Hi there,

Has he had any of his vaccinations and/or been exposed to any other dogs?

The reason people are rushing you to the vet is because there are several diseases (parvo being foremost) that can be fatal for puppies if they don't get medical care right away. Hopefully he just has a mild case of parasites and nothing serious.

Here are some questions for you:

How often do you feed him?

How much are you feeding him?

What is the brand of food?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
He has not had any shots yet, I have been feeding him 3 times a day about 2 table spoons full of Iams canned dog food dinner with lamb and rice
 

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IAMS is very low quality food (full of fillers) but 6 tablespoons of food a day seems like a tiny amount! My cat eats more than that. How much does he weigh? How much does it say to feed on the can?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
It says 2/3 of the can for a 10lb dog, but he probably only weighs maybe 5-6lbs, thats what the previous owner said she was feeding him, and he devours it when he eats. I was told that Iams was a good brand, she was feeding him a generic brand from Walmart. I want him to have the best and I am wondering if the canned food is what is causing the diarrhea. I also wanted to tell you that there isn't any blood in his stool, and the more he has been around us the more active he has been. He also has not been around any other dogs. I have been taking him outside to potty and play but I don't let him eat anything and there haven't been any dogs in my back yard ever.
 

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When you take him to the vet be sure not to put him down on the floor. Parvo is very contagious.

It could definitely be stomach upset from the food but I would guess he'd almost certainly have parasites too as most puppies do have them.

Would you have a store near you that carries Wellness? Wellness Just For Puppy

That would be better than what you're feeding. You can also get a high quality kibble and make it into a mash with water. He should be able to eat kibble at this point though so you could mix the kibble with the canned food.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I am sure I can find one, and I have dry dog food but its iams too. I don't want to feed him bad food. Is he to young to get vaccinated and treated for parasites?
 

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I am sure I can find one, and I have dry dog food but its iams too. I don't want to feed him bad food. Is he to young to get vaccinated and treated for parasites?
He can probably get his first set of vaccinations, the vet will tell you if it's ok. But he will certainly be treated for parasites if he has them. They'll just give you a milky type formula in a dropper to squeeze into his mouth. Most likely it will be something pretty normal and he'll be well in no time.
 

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Could be that he is stressed out. I brought my pup home at 4 weeks, and for about a week or something. Each time you switch food with a puppy, chances are it will have some runny stool, so mix it up for a while before switching it permanently.

Also, my puppy was vaccinated starting at 4 weeks old, and I got only 3 rounds of them (which is normal for a puppy starting at 8 weeks) but the new vet I go to said that I should have gotten 4 rounds, so maybe ask your vet about it. (My dog ended up getting parvo when he was close to 6 months old which is kinda old for parvo.)
 

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Agree he probably does have worms/parasites which will cause the loose stool. Also be aware that he won't have a firm stool if you are only feeding canned. Get him on a good kibble and mix some can with it. At 5 wks you may need to soak it in warm water first.
 

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We're feeding our 14 wk old Wellness puppy kibble with some canned Wellness puppy mixed in. This started when she was 6 weeks. At first, she got 1/3 of a can 3x a day with kibble (to total 2 cups of food a day), spread out in 3 meals. Sometimes she wouldn't eat it all, most she did. She's now 27.6 pounds and I've cut the canned to 1 can every 1 1/2 days and upped her kibble so she's getting one cup per meal, total of 3 cups per day. We are seeing vet this AM and I'm going to be checking on this amount.

Good luck!
 

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Agree he probably does have worms/parasites which will cause the loose stool. Also be aware that he won't have a firm stool if you are only feeding canned. Get him on a good kibble and mix some can with it. At 5 wks you may need to soak it in warm water first.
Agreed: higher quallity kibble soaked (not drowned) in water. Be patient with the runny poops, it may take a while to adapt. Twitching in sleep is normal. Also hiccups (sp) is normal. As stated many times above, get him to a vet ASAP. Get him into a routine too. Dogs adapt better that way.
Best of luck to you and him.
 

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The first GSD I had, I had gotten from a BYB. She was about 5 1/2 weeks old when I brought her home. She was eating about 2-3 cups of food a day (spaced between 2-3 feedings) and she only had diarrhea the first 2 days. After that...she never had it again until she was about 8 months old and drank some water out of the birdbath. A round of antibiotics and a bland diet for a few days cured that. I started her puppy shots right away so definitely starting your puppy on her shots would be a good idea. I agree with everyone else, definitely get her in to see a vet. :) If she does have parasites...it should be easy to treat.

Also, I agree about getting her started on a better brand of kibble. There are so many to choose from and there are a lot of threads on here discussing them. :D

Good luck! Enjoy your new puppy!
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Thank you to everyone for the information. I am taking him to the vet today to make sure he is healthy, and I will definitley be starting him on a better brand of food. I am so glad I found this site, it is really scary starting off with a new puppy and its nice to have feed back from people who have been through this before. We are very excited to have him in our family now and it would be heart breaking if something were to happen to him.
 
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