German Shepherds Forum banner

1 - 20 of 27 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
47 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Luna has been experiencing some health issues lately. Everything started about the 8th of April.

Her current normal feed is: Acana Heritage Free-run Poultry, she's been on it since December 2017.

It started with soft stool and diarrhea. After the diarrhea didn't clear up on day 2, I started giving her a mix of rice, boiled lean ground turkey, and pumpkin. Things did not improve and around the 15th she started to vomit and have explosive diarrhea (meaning a mini bath every time she had to go) with grass in her stool.

Starting the evening of the 16th black tarry feces which looked basically like coagulated blood started coming out. She stopped eating, water consumption almost came to a complete halt (needed to be bribed with a mixture of chicken broth and water).


Since our yard just recently got treated, I thought she might have ingested some fertilizer and that was causing issues. I took her into the vet on the 18th and disclosed the lawn treatment to them as well.

They did the following tests:
Catalyst Chemistry
Electrolyte Panel
In-house: CBC
IDEXX Bile Acids Panel (pre and post)

and also prescribed the following meds:
Famotidine Tablets 10mg
Denamarin
Carafate (Sucralfate) 1g

as well as recommended we switch her over to a gastrointestinal helping diet (Hills Science Digestive care I/D) immediately.

They were concerned that her liver was having issues.



Two days passed after our vet visit and she did not pass any stool on the 19th. On the 20th tarry-coagulated blood stool reappeared during her morning potty. By this time when her diarrhea hit she would need to go 5-10 times within a span of 30-45 minutes. I called the vet that morning and they wanted to see her again immediately.

The follow tests were conducted:
Fecal Exam
Radiograph

More meds were prescribed:
Metronidazole 500mg
Panacur Deworming Package
Canine Fortiflora
Prilosec 30mg

At this point we were still not sure exactly what was happening. And to be safe they wanted to start a dewormer just in case she picked up a parasite that would not be addressed by Sentinel spectrum (heartworm, hookworm, roundworm, whipworm, tapeworm, and flea preventative). They also stated that her fecal exam showed intestinal lining being expelled.



At this point she was not eating any of her normal Acana feed and by the 23rd, 24th her symptoms disappeared and firm good stool was back. We did a follow up check up at the vet and she was given a clean bill of health on the 27th and cleared to be transitioning back to her normal feed.

I am now in the middle of a 14 day transition back to her normal feed (recommended by vet to take extra time due to the digestive issues she was having). She is now almost complete back on Acana and yesterday she had some soft stool again. This evening the same tarry stool has returned with what looks like her intestinal lining being expelled again.


After doing research about possible issues with Acana, I did find the lawsuit against the parent company of Acana (Champion petfoods) also seen in a separate posting on here showing that level of heavy metals and toxins from a lab chart is inconsistent with what they advertised. Additional research regarding heavy metal toxicity in dogs the G.I. issues Luna has been experiencing is pretty right on the nose.


Looks like Luna and I will be headed back to the vet tomorrow, but I'm seriously thinking about asking for a heavy metal toxicology exam to be conducted.


Has anyone else using Acana feed run into similar issues recently? Could it be that I got a bad bag of feed or it's just not agreeing with her? And if it didn't agree with her shouldn't symptoms like this have presented themselves a lot sooner?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
95 Posts
Have you considered switching to different food?

Also, I generally go for a food hold of 24 hours. Then rice, pumpkins and boiled whole chicken. You can strain the chicken water for a decent bone broth to mix with their water.

Btw, did her tongue turn white? I know it’s random but I friend of mine almost lost his 4 year old female and the symptoms sounded fairly similar. Except they actually had to use a feeding tube for several weeks, and she just randomly got better the last time we spoke. The whole process from initial onset to getting better to worse to better again took about 2 months.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
47 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Have you considered switching to different food?

Also, I generally go for a food hold of 24 hours. Then rice, pumpkins and boiled whole chicken. You can strain the chicken water for a decent bone broth to mix with their water.

Btw, did her tongue turn white? I know it’s random but I friend of mine almost lost his 4 year old female and the symptoms sounded fairly similar. Except they actually had to use a feeding tube for several weeks, and she just randomly got better the last time we spoke. The whole process from initial onset to getting better to worse to better again took about 2 months.
Food was withheld for 24 hours when diarrhea first started early last month. Her tongue never went white. Food is being withheld again this evening and onto tomorrow evening depending on what her vet says.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
95 Posts
Btw, did they ever officially recall acana foods? I know chewy stopped selling their product a while back.

At almost $4? A pound I’d never considered using it.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,728 Posts
Btw, did they ever officially recall acana foods? I know chewy stopped selling their product a while back.
Chewy did not stop selling Acana.

Champion (manufacturer of Acana & Orijen), along with other dog food companies (Fromm & Tuffy's) pulled their products from Chewy because they were bought out by Petsmart. These companies did not want their products sold by a "big box" store like Petsmart.

"
The recent news that specialty pet food players Champion Petfoods and Fromm Family Foods are pulling their products from Chewy.com in the wake of the ecommerce company’s April 2017 acquisition by PetSmart may mean a movement is afoot. When Tuffy’s Pet Foods made the same announcement Tuffy’s Pet Foods made the same announcement shortly after the acquisition, it was definitely newsworthy, but it was just one company (albeit an important one). Now it has bedfellows in its quest to help shore up the independent pet specialty channel.

All three companies said they made the move because of their long-term support of independent pet stores and family businesses; Chewy’s now being owned by the largest “big box” pet store chain was not consistent with that philosophy and business model. “Fromm Family Foods is a fifth-generation family owned-and-operated company with a long history of selling our products exclusively to independent pet retailers,” read a statement on the company’s facebook page. “Fromm believes our products are best sold by retailers who know our product and can offer pet parents what’s right for their specific dog or cat.” (petfoodindustry.com)


Acana has not been recalled. There is just a lawsuit pending. More about the Orijen/Acana lawsuit here.

Moms :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,524 Posts
In March 2018, a class-action lawsuit was filed against Champion Petfoods, accusing the company of “negligent, reckless” practices, false advertising, and “failing to disclose the presence of heavy metals and toxins” in its Orijen and Acana dog foods. In response, the company called the allegations “meritless and based on misinterpretation of the data.”



If the dog was doing better on prescription food stick with that for awhile, I say. I've had dogs who really needed it and did great on it. It's junk ingredients but it works, and I can't argue with the results
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
868 Posts
Based on what I've been through with my dogs over the years... and the details of your (OP) post.......I'd be trying some different food brands.....It can be a real battle nowadays finding a food your dog likes and eats well-creates good firm poop-yet not too much poop-shiny coat-causes no allergies/scratching/itching-doesn't cause an upset stomach--/ a kibble which doesn't cause inflammation in joints.......then once you find that "magic" food-they change the formula. It's incredible to me because of the cost of some kibbles today--they still have so many recalls and really can't be trusted to produce a good--safe and healthy product--My 2 cents--Once again to the OP-I'd try other food brands-----and then "read" your dog
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,694 Posts
Black tarry poop is NOT a typical food allergy symptom. I've been thinking about this since you posted, and it scares me for this dog.

Black Tarry poop can be a symptom of internal bleeding (blood from high up in the GI track turns black as it passes).
https://www.petmd.com/dog/conditions/digestive/c_dg_melena

This almost sounds like a partial blockage or some other damage (chemical burn?) high up in the stomach or small intestine, since there was a long period of not pooping, followed by black diarrhea.

Did they do an ultrasound? Did they check blood clotting time? I think that's where I'd be headed, along with endoscopy perhaps.

Do you have access to a veterinary internal medicine specialist for consultation? A national directory is here: http://find.vetspecialists.com/ If there isn't one close, some of them consult with general practice vets by phone/email for a reasonable fee -- around $100. The state university's vet teaching hospital would also be a good option in many states -- they usually have a collection of specialists on faculty and state-of-the-art diagnostics.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13,884 Posts
why was the dog eating grass?
what was that grass treated with ?

this is the season where every home onwer is out spraying herbicides
pesticides , chemical fertilizer

have a test done for glyphostphate

the above written before Magwarts post worried about the black tarry poop.
I agree --- chemical burn ? Did the dog injest lawn chemicals ?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
868 Posts
Black tarry poop is NOT a typical food allergy symptom. I've been thinking about this since you posted, and it scares me for this dog.

Black Tarry poop can be a symptom of internal bleeding (blood from high up in the GI track turns black as it passes).
https://www.petmd.com/dog/conditions/digestive/c_dg_melena

This almost sounds like a partial blockage or some other damage (chemical burn?) high up in the stomach or small intestine, since there was a long period of not pooping, followed by black diarrhea.

Did they do an ultrasound? Did they check blood clotting time? I think that's where I'd be headed, along with endoscopy perhaps.

Do you have access to a veterinary internal medicine specialist for consultation? A national directory is here: Veterinary Specialist Directory - Find Veterinary Specialists - VetSpecialists.com If there isn't one close, some of them consult with general practice vets by phone/email for a reasonable fee -- around $100. The state university's vet teaching hospital would also be a good option in many states -- they usually have a collection of specialists on faculty and state-of-the-art diagnostics.
I Agree ^^^ 100%---I completely missed the black tarry stool part---doesn't sound like a typical symptom of a food issue---since they suspected liver issues----I'm surprised they didn't want to send blood off to a lab----that's the only way to get in depth info....Vets can't get... by"in house" testing
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
95 Posts
Btw, did they ever officially recall acana foods? I know chewy stopped selling their product a while back.
Chewy did not stop selling Acana.

Champion (manufacturer of Acana & Orijen), along with other dog food companies (Fromm & Tuffy's) pulled their products from Chewy because they were bought out by Petsmart. These companies did not want their products sold by a "big box" store like Petsmart.

"
The recent news that specialty pet food players Champion Petfoods and Fromm Family Foods are pulling their products from Chewy.com in the wake of the ecommerce company’s April 2017 acquisition by PetSmart may mean a movement is afoot. When Tuffy’s Pet Foods made the same announcement Tuffy’s Pet Foods made the same announcement shortly after the acquisition, it was definitely newsworthy, but it was just one company (albeit an important one). Now it has bedfellows in its quest to help shore up the independent pet specialty channel.

All three companies said they made the move because of their long-term support of independent pet stores and family businesses; Chewy’s now being owned by the largest “big box” pet store chain was not consistent with that philosophy and business model. “Fromm Family Foods is a fifth-generation family owned-and-operated company with a long history of selling our products exclusively to independent pet retailers,” read a statement on the company’s facebook page. “Fromm believes our products are best sold by retailers who know our product and can offer pet parents what’s right for their specific dog or cat.” (petfoodindustry.com)


Acana has not been recalled. There is just a lawsuit pending. More about the Orijen/Acana lawsuit here.

Moms /forum/images/smilies/smile.gif

Thanks for the info. Somehow I had missed this going down. As long as they continue to carry Victor I guess I’ll keep ordering. Only other place I can get it Saluda River, and they’re.. not the most competent staff around here.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,418 Posts
My older dog had something similar more than once and is now on Hills ID. I don’t care for it, but it finally stopped the symptoms. The blood was red in the vomit, but darker on the way out. It was not a blockage and the blood panel was normal. They treated for ulcers and it stopped. They also gave two days of anti nausea meds. They want us to continue with Hills. I’m trying to find a similar bland diet kibble but without corn. We were using Fromm but the symptoms came back. We haven’t done an ultrasound yet but that is the next step. The vet said it could be several different things but their first priority was stopping the symptoms. Once they did, a healed ulcer would not show up on the test, so we are waiting.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
47 Posts
Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
Black tarry poop is NOT a typical food allergy symptom. I've been thinking about this since you posted, and it scares me for this dog.

Black Tarry poop can be a symptom of internal bleeding (blood from high up in the GI track turns black as it passes).
https://www.petmd.com/dog/conditions/digestive/c_dg_melena

This almost sounds like a partial blockage or some other damage (chemical burn?) high up in the stomach or small intestine, since there was a long period of not pooping, followed by black diarrhea.

Did they do an ultrasound? Did they check blood clotting time? I think that's where I'd be headed, along with endoscopy perhaps.

Do you have access to a veterinary internal medicine specialist for consultation? A national directory is here: Veterinary Specialist Directory - Find Veterinary Specialists - VetSpecialists.com If there isn't one close, some of them consult with general practice vets by phone/email for a reasonable fee -- around $100. The state university's vet teaching hospital would also be a good option in many states -- they usually have a collection of specialists on faculty and state-of-the-art diagnostics.
My vet and I do not currently think this a food allergy symptom. They did not do a ultrasound because the radiograph did not show anything that was concerning. Because her symptoms started to improve right after the second vet visit they decided a ultrasound and endoscopy was not necessary but would have been if her symptoms did not improve. I have discussed the possibility of going to a VIM with my vet but that was again if she did not improve.



why was the dog eating grass?
what was that grass treated with ?

this is the season where every home onwer is out spraying herbicides
pesticides , chemical fertilizer

have a test done for glyphostphate

the above written before Magwarts post worried about the black tarry poop.
I agree --- chemical burn ? Did the dog injest lawn chemicals ?
From what I've read dogs will often eat grass if they are feeling unwell or having stomach issues; sometimes in order to stimulate vomiting. I am not 100% if she did ingest lawn chemicals or not, but that was the likely factor that I was thinking it was.



I Agree ^^^ 100%---I completely missed the black tarry stool part---doesn't sound like a typical symptom of a food issue---since they suspected liver issues----I'm surprised they didn't want to send blood off to a lab----that's the only way to get in depth info....Vets can't get... by"in house" testing
We did do a blood panel that was sent off to the lab. It seems that they may have left that out of the invoice/combined it with something else or I forgot to put it on the list. But that was how they came to the conclusion that her cholesterol was higher than normal and a possibility of liver failure.



Update:
After speaking with my vet today, we decided to completely remove Acana from Luna's diet from for the time being to see if symptoms continue or disappear. This decision was made because the tarry stool started to reappear after her transition back to Acana. We have a follow up on Thursday to determine the further course of action.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
123 Posts
Old food, stored in the heat? Maybe have it tested, pour it out and see if it is infested with insects, mouse poop, anything weird?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,814 Posts
I can't answer to tarry stool and the concerns others have raised. They are more knowledgeable than I, on those aspects. I did want to point out that you are feeding the Acana Poultry formula and when you stopped the Acana, you gave your dog rice and turkey - more poultry. Perhaps your dog is allergic to poultry. My previous German Shepherd was allergic to chicken. My dogs do best on a fish based formula.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,418 Posts
I can't answer to tarry stool and the concerns others have raised. They are more knowledgeable than I, on those aspects. I did want to point out that you are feeding the Acana Poultry formula and when you stopped the Acana, you gave your dog rice and turkey - more poultry. Perhaps your dog is allergic to poultry. My previous German Shepherd was allergic to chicken. My dogs do best on a fish based formula.
Unless they are sensitive to fish. Mine has been on fish and did much better switching to chicken.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,694 Posts
If you and your vet think the Acana possibly caused internal bleeding and/or liver failure, it is extremely important to send a sample of the food to be privately tested by whatever lab your own vet uses (IDEXX?) -- it costs around $100 to have this testing done. YOU want to be the one to order the testing through your vet so that YOU own the results -- this independent testing keeps pet food companies honest.

That's step one in getting vet bills reimbursed, if it turns out that you're right. Or else you may find out the food is fine, and then you and your vet need to go back to the drawing board to figure it out.

Your vet should also be in touch with both Champion and the U.S. FDA about his or her suspicions:
https://www.fda.gov/AnimalVeterinary/SafetyHealth/ReportaProblem/ucm182403.htm

Champion may ask for some of the food too so that they can do their own testing -- that's fair, and I would send them a picture of the lot code, and as much of a sample as they need (not the entire bag and all that's left). I would not send the original lot code or receipt--only copies.

If you purchased from a local, independent shop, be sure to call the store owner to loop him or her in on this episode. Sometimes they are the first ones to put together the puzzle pieces of an emerging problem when several customers complain or return bags -- they'll know if anyone else who bought bags from the same shipment has had issues. Sometimes they can even manage to get vet contact info of multiple customers with problems so that the vets start talking to each other to connect the dots.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,350 Posts
Why not go back to the fertilizer. The most likely cause. Especially since he was ingesting grass as mentioned.
Then question why the vet through so many drugs at your dog in such a short time.
The G.I tract will heal (think 30 days at least). Takes time for the tissues to repair. No drug will heal it. They will kill bacteria (all), they may suppress vomiting, they will kill worms. But they will not heal.
You need to focus on liver support herbs like dandelion and milk thistle and probiotics.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
868 Posts
To the Op....Keep us in the loop for what the outcome ends up being....as someone who's had dogs with multiple allergies & food allergies....I personally had never heard of kibble causing blood in poop (other members may have ?) unless there's something in the food that wasn't intended.......Thanks
 
1 - 20 of 27 Posts
Top