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Discussion Starter #1
Hi there,
Been going through soft stools for the past month and a half and eating voraciously but losing weight. Was on antibiotics but still did not gain weight. Usually in the past when he has had bouts of soft stools and diarreah he was put on antibiotics and that would do the trick. But this time it has been different.
Did TLI test and it ruled out EPI but showed high count of Folate (which apparently is suggestive to SIBO).
Did research on my own and found out that "Pancrezymes" is sometimes used when not enough enzymes are being produced hence, not holding the nutrients which causes the dog to lose weight even though eating voraciously. My 1st Vet mentioned nothing about this so I went for a 2nd opinion and the pancrezymes were suggested.
Have had him on that for the past 2 weeks and has gained about 6 pounds. Nevertheless, the 2nd Vet wanted a full blood test done just in case to rule out anything else. Which BTW, the 1st Vet didn't even suggest. So we had that done and the results are normal except for a high count in momocytes and eosiphils which suggests chronic infection, parasites (not the case because he was already tested for that) or allergies.
2nd Vet has requested that we do another blood test to make sure that it wasn't random. I am leaving out of the country in two weeks so it will have to be done when I get back. Now, I will be a bundle of nerves and worries about what could this possibly mean. He has firm stools but sometimes still soft. He has gained some weight since put on the Pancrezymes yet still has high count of monocyte and eosinophils???I know this is a long process in order to isolate the problem but was just wondering if anyone out there has any experience with the high folate combined with high count in monocytes and eosinophils. I am thinking it is SIBO, but not sure. I don't want to keep bothering the Vet because they will tell me to just wait until I get back to do another blood test. Meanwhile I am worrying myself sick.
Any advice or input would be greatly appreciated.
best regards,
Debbie
 

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When the TLI and folate was done, was the dog fasted (no food, no treats, only water) for a full 12 hours?
 

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High folate is definately indicative of SIBO. What antibiotics have been tried? Not all work the same. Annabelle was on quite a few antibiotics for SIBO, then we switched to Tetracycline and voila! It did the trick.

I would definately look into different antibiotics, and possibly an endosocpy to rule out IBD or any other abnormalties in the digestive tract.
 

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Originally Posted By: mamagoose...
Annabelle was on quite a few antibiotics for SIBO, then we switched to Tetracycline and voila! It did the trick.

I would definately look into different antibiotics, and possibly an endosocpy to rule out IBD or any other abnormalties in the digestive tract.
Kelly was put on a 30 day course of tetracycline for his SIBO along with feeding him the special Low Residue diet. We tried weaning him off the LR once and it failed - he needed another 30 days of the tetracycline and he went back on eating the LR for another 18 months or so. He was weaned back onto a normal diet about 9 or 10 months ago and is still in remission, he's doing good!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Yes, he fasted the night before.
Vet put him on Metrozesomething (can't remember the full name) for about 10 days and it didn't work and then amoxicillin for another 10 days and towards the end I started giving him the pancrezymes so I don't know whether the amoxixillin heped him or the pancrezymes. I have read that tetracycline is widely used for SIBO.

I have him on Prescription ID kibble and wellness 95% (lowest fat wet food without being prescription that I could find) and he seems to be doing ok. There is no diarreah but sometimes soft stools. We won't be able to really get back to the problem until I get back which is on the 9th of July. I am so upset I almost feel like cancelling this whole trip. He will boarding at a Vet's clinic so that somewhat puts my mind at ease but not fully....
Deep down inside I think it's SIBO too. However, I know the Vet will want to take the normal steps and procedures and not jump directly to it.
So, what about the high count in monocytes and eosinphils in his bloodwork? Anyone know if this is a contributing factor to SIBO or totally something else??
What kind of kibble and (if any) wet food are you guys giving your dogs that have been diagnosed with SIBO?
I had to quit giving him the ID wet food because he got bored of it and would walk away from it. Thats the reason why I added the Wellness wet food.
Thank you guys for your responses. This is helping me out tremendously.
kind regards,
Debbie
 

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I don't know a thing about monocytes and eosinphils, (I'd have to dig out Keefer's bloodwork and see if there was any mention of them), but as others have said, high folate is consistent with SIBO. Some dogs also have low cobalamin, (B-12) but Keefer did not. The usual treatment is at least 4 weeks of antibiotics, normally tylan (tylosin) or tetracycline, so the fact that your vet only had him on flagyl (that's the Metrosomething, I can never remember how to spell it either!) for 10 days and then amoxicillin for another 10 days could be why he's still having a problem. He needs to be on antibiotics long enough to clear up the bacterial overgrowth.

Unlike most SIBO dogs, Keefer only had it for a short time rather than a chronic condition. He also had giardia, and I believe that threw his immature digestive tract out of whack, causing the SIBO. My vet initially put him on I/D, which didn't help at all. We switched to the Z/D Ultra with hydrolyzed proteins for food allergies, and his poop was perfect within days. I also put him on B-Naturals Digestive Blend http://www.b-naturals.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=22_15&products_id=101

Digestion Blend contains beneficial bacteria, pancreatic enzymes, amino acids and medicinal herbs in a convenient powder form. Designed to help heal the entire gastrointestinal system, this formula is beneficial for dogs suffering from Irritable Bowel Disease, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Colitis, GI disorders and chronic diarrhea.

I kept Keef on the presscription food and supplement for a month or two after he finished the meds, and then slowly switched him back to his regular food, which at the time was Natural Balance. He's been fine ever since, about 2 years now. The problem with chronic digestive issues is that you can end up with longterm damage to the digestive tract - it becomes permeable, and proteins leak out into the rest of the body, which reacts to them as allergens. So you can start with a dog that isn't allergic to any foods, but over time becomes allergic to EVERYTHING.

Do you know what tests you had that ruled out parasites? Keefer had every type of fecal test known to man and beast, all negative. Barb E on the board had mentioned that her Dante had gotten a negative giardia test too, but ended up with a positive on the giardia antigen test. Based on her experience I requested that my vet run the test, and sure enough, he came up positive too. Although, if your boy was on flagy, that should have taken care of it - Keefer was on it for a week or so for the giardia prior to treatment with tetracycline for the SIBO. Even though his cobalamin was within normal ranges, my vet gave him a couple of weekly B-12 shots just in case, which is also standard protocol.

This is the SIBO article I printed out and brought with me to my vet's office: http://www.vin.com/proceedings/Proceedings.plx?CID=WSAVA2002&PID=2580

And here's an article on Leaky Gut Syndrome: http://www.allergyescape.com/leaky-gut-syndrome.html
 

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Gracie was on 30 days of metronidazole 250 mg twice a day. Shorter time periods did not help; neither did amoxicillin. We use tylan powder on occasion. She has been on the Low Residue food since Sept 06 and with one flare up just recently (silly me tried to change her food) she's been great!! I don't give Gracie anything but the dry LR. She will eat i/d when she is not feeling well but will turn away from it when she's better. I keep a few cans on hand for emergencies. She only eats Natural Balance Lamb roll-around treats or the lamb roll food. Any changes to that diet cause MAJOR
problems. (C'mon friends, it's a SIBO thread. I'm surprised no one has used the poop banana yet
)

We tried all sorts of foods with Gracie and none of them worked: Chicken Soup Adult and also Lite, Californial Natural Lamb and Rice, Nutro chicken and oatmeal, Wellness, Innova (green bag), and most recently Blue Buffalo Chicken and Brown Rice.

We also used Prozyme - explosive diarrhea - and FastTrack...that seemed to be okay but her food has the necessary addititves and I don't want to make too many changes.

In her food she gets cosquin ds, ester-c and fish oil. Also the dreaded Benadryl twice a day for allergies.

I've just pulled out Gracie's blood work. When they did the testing here is how she rated:

TLI 7.8 (5-35)
B12 424 (249-733)
Folate 15.0 (6.5-11.5) **SIBO**

But this is interesting now looking back and reading your post....

Monocytes 1040 (0-840) HIGH
Eosinohils 312 (0-1200) NORMAL

She had blood work just recently (did not do the TLI nor B12/folate again) but her Mon and Eos were normal.

Might be good to do some research.

Here are other links, if you don't have them already:
http://www.upei.ca/cidd/Diseases/GI%20disorders/small%20intestinal%20bacterial%20overgrowth.htm

http://www.vetmed.wsu.edu/courses_vm546/...erial_overg.htm

http://www.walthamusa.com/articles/cgismintes.pdf

http://www.gsdfederation.co.za/articles/sibo.htm
 

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Ris' SIBO is chronic but it seems to only show up in the springtime. I have a feeling it could be allergy-related but have no proof. She is raw-fed and I try to keep the fat down when she's having her SIBO flareups but I don't tweak the diet much otherwise.

Most people I know who have treated SIBO in their dogs treat for at least 30 days with antibiotics. I think we're finally getting Ris' most recent bout of SIBO under control after trying probiotics, Tylan, Metra, and B12 supplementation. Right now, she's just taking Tylan twice a day and getting B12 injections every week. But we're finally seeing progress again.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Hi,
Thank you so much for the information. The more the better!
What do you guys mean by Low Residue food? I just took him off the ID and have now put him on the ZD ultra for allergies. The Vet wants to rule out any allergies he might have. As for the poops! Yes, I am constantly analyzing them. They differ...sometimes firm and sometimes soft. However, he has not had diarreah in a month. Just soft stools.

Jen M66
I noticed that the monocytes in your dogs bloodwork says high? Apparently, Vet tells me that elevated monocytes and eosinophils are indication of chronic infection. Which is what my dog showed in his CBC.
Did anyone give their dog Pancrezymes or Viokase to replace enzymes that hey might not be producing? It seems to have put on atleast 6 pounds on Romy thus far. I guess it shouldn't harm him since it is something that they produce anyways.
Are they only put on antibiotics (tetracycline or tylan) only when they have diarreah or do they start the antibiotics once they see elevated folate in the bloodwork? I guess what I am trying to say is that do I have to wait until it flares up again (if this is indeed SIBO) with diarreah or should I get him started on it now even though he doesn't have the runs?
Thanks so much for helping me understand this whole thing!
regards,
Debbie
 

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Gracie was put on the metronidazole because her stools were so inconsistent - the duration was lengthened when the positive SIBO result came back.

Low Residue is a veterinary diet. The ingredients are awful but Gracie thrives on it, loves it, and will eat it for the rest of her life....

http://us.iams.com/iams/en_US/jsp/IAMS_Page.jsp?pageID=PL&productID=24
 

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I put Ris on Tylan whenever she has diarrhea for an extended period of time. Now that I know this is a chronic springtime thing, I won't be waiting quite so long anymore before starting her on Tylan.

Some dogs will experience SIBO without diarrhea but can still have other symptoms like weightloss. If your dog's poops still aren't perfect, then I would consider starting him back on antibiotics again--but check with your vet first.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
His poops aren't perfect. Sometimes they are firm and sometimes they are soft. What got me concerned the most was that he was eating voraciously but was losing weight. The weight loss combined with the on and off soft stools is what got me to do the ELI and CBC test. I knew deep down inside something was wrong. I do have on Pancrezymes and he is gaining weight on it.
Do you guys think I should ask the Vet to put him on Tylan now or wait until he finishes out the ZD for a month ? My Vet said he wanted him on ZD to rule out allergies and then would take it to another approach if that didn't solve the problem.
Everytime I suggest a medication that he didn't mention he asks me where am I getting this info from and not nicely, either!
regards,
Debbie
 

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I don't see any up side to waiting on the antibiotics. Having him on Z/D won't tell you if he does or doesn't have allergies, and you're just wasting valuable time getting his digestion back on track by delaying treatment.

When Keefer had SIBO he couldn't eat anything else without soft stools, but did terrific on Z/D because it had hydrolyzed proteins and was easy on his messed up digestive tract. Now that he's been eating anything and everything without issues for two years, it's obvious that he DOESN'T have food allergies. But at the time, that's what he needed to heal.

An elimination diet is the best way to know if Romy has food allergies and intolerances, but doing that now, when there's very likely a medical issue as well, wouldn't be very useful. How do you know if he's reacting to the food, or because he has SIBO? Clear up the SIBO, and then you can start experimenting with food and see what happens. IMHO, of course.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I totally agree. But to tell the Vet otherwise??? When he's the one who wants the ZD. Maybe I should go and complain!
 

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I'd still try the Z/D, I don't disagree with him about that, but I'd probably go back a little stronger about ALSO wanting to try the course of antibiotics. But that's just me, I'm a stubborn b*tch!
 

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If you need to, switch vets. Make sure your vet is doing what's right for your dog. Print and bring him the various articles we've given you links for. The first vet Gracie had (in the same practice as where we are now) had to look up the meaning of the abnormal lab tests (which, by the way, I had to ask for after learning about it on this forum). She said, well they're expensive. I told her I wasn't asking her to pay for it. We've since switched to a different vet in that practice (and she's moved to a different office for the same company). He has learned that I am a well informed dog owner who only has my dogs best interests at heart and usually goes along with what I want, or educates me thoroughly on why to not do something I suggest.

Food elimination trials are 8-12 weeks, not one month, so the ZD may calm his system but will not be an indicator of allergies, at this point.
 

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Re: Need help on diagnosing lab results. Maybe SIB

Originally Posted By: JenM66Food elimination trials are 8-12 weeks, not one month, so the ZD may calm his system but will not be an indicator of allergies, at this point.
Agreed. I'd keep him on it a couple of months minimum (presuming he does well on it) before I started messing around with food changes. Give his digestive system a chance to get on track and heal after his SIBO treatment.

Funny thing Jen, I just said pretty much what you did in this post in a PM to Romy. Great minds think alike! You have to be an advocate for your dog, and if your vet doesn't trust and respect you enough to include you in decisions regarding his care, find another vet.
I also learned about the tests here on the board, and went in and said I want this, and this, and this. I showed him the information I printed out, he read it, and said "okay".
 

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Re: Need help on diagnosing lab results. Maybe SIB

I'll just quickly add to what the others have wisely said. My guy does best on ampicillin. I've found that the probiotics/enzymes powders that you can buy for dogs do no good for my pup, but I give him Acidophilus capsules (I actually buy these at Costco) and they do the trick.

I give him the 3 pills every day when he has SIBO symptoms and 1 pill when he doesn't. I don't know why these work and the other stuff didn't. I do think that maybe it was the enzymes that messed him up, since he doesn't have enzyme insufficiency? I stagger the probiotics with the antibiotics throughout the day.

The others aptly spoke about food, so I'll just toss out my two cents worth. Fat will tend to be your enemy. Watch fatty foods, especially in treats. Fats are not all created equally, and you'll learn over time which your dog can handle and which he can't. But in the interim, a lower-fat diet should be helpful.

My dog's SIBO falls between chronic and rarely on the spectrum. If he has a stressor to his system (surgery, giardia, etc), his SIBO will flare up. Otherwise, we manage to keep it under control with a bit of effort. It's a broad spectrum. Hopefully you'll fall within that one-time to fully-manageable area.

But as the others said, one of the keys is having a vet that works cooperatively with you. That in itself is worth its weight in antibiotics and probiotics together.

Good luck.
 

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Re: Need help on diagnosing lab results. Maybe SIB

Thank you all soooo much. You have no idea how much you guys have helped me. I will be going in on Monday to see if we can go ahead and put him on the antibiotics for 4 weeks to see what happens. Unfortunately, I will be out of the country on the 25th untill the 9th of July but he will be boarding at the vets clinic. I was hoping to wait until I got back so that I could personally check his poops but I'm afraid to leave this as is for another month? I know the people that look after the dogs won't be checking his poops. I should have done this so much sooner....
 
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