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Not again (SIBO)

11591 Views 141 Replies 17 Participants Last post by  DancingCavy
*Sigh* Just when I thought I had this dog figured out. . .she throws me for a loop again!

Around this time last year, Risa was diagnosed with SIBO (after 3 vet visits and almost 3 months of diarrhea). I got her started on Tylan and she improved. Had her on the meds til about June when I took her off them and she was fine on her own. Until I fed her some Salmon in July and we had a minor setback. Since that incident, I've eliminated Salmon in all forms from her diet (she's raw fed so I just have to check ingredients on treats). She's been absolutely fine for 6 months or more.

But 3 weeks or so ago, I started noticing she had runny (sometimes liquid, almost always soft) poop. I eliminated some treats from her diet with no success. I put her on a bland diet for a week (turkey and chicken) and still no improvement.
So yesterday I took a poop sample to the vet to be analyzed. No parasites were found. . .just an overgrowth of normal gut bacteria. So her SIBO is back (and genius me didn't even realize it!). I still had some Tylan left over from last year so I told the vet I'd just use that instead of the Metranidozole I was offered.

My question is, what the heck could be the cause of it this time!? I was almost 100% certain it was just Salmon that bothered her so much. Is it something about springtime that induces this? Any thoughts?
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Sibo in shepherds can be idiopathic--they have it because they have a 'fault' in their systems. They always have sibo, but it is not always observable.

Sibo is a problem with Immunoglobin A. That is the protective mucus of our bodies--lines the mouth, lungs (I think) and digestive system. Because there is a problem with the protective mucus, bacteria can grow where they do not belong.

My guy, Griffin, has it and is on tylan, probably for life. It can be controlled in some dogs with diet. It sounds like that works for the most part for your dog. It just might be that every once in a while, you have to go back to antibiotics to get rid of the 'build up' of bacteria.

Watch the fat, that can irritate things.

Good luck!
I know SIBO can be chronic in GSDs. And, if Risa were a GSD, I'd be a bit less shocked about the reoccurance. But she's a mutt of unknown heritage which is why I wonder if it's something else.
It can be chronic in other breeds as well, not just gsds. Have you done the folate/cobalamine blood test? Since she has symptoms now, it might be a good time to do the test. If it is neg/inconclusive, then you might continue to investigate other problems.
We did the bloodwork last year. That's how she was diagnosed.

I know it's not just restricted to GSDs. Sorry if it sounded like I was implying that. I meant the more immune system-related type seems to be most prevalent in GSDs. Hence why so many need to be on Tylan long-term. With her 6 months free and clear I just wonder if it could be something environmental. Especially since it seems to occur in the springtime (though this is only her second spring with me).
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Jamie, I'm so sorry you're going through this with Risa again. What about peeling the fatty skin off her chicken parts, and instead of feeding the usual treats, just some (eeeww) dehydrated raw? I have friends that use K9Craving raw dehydrated and the dogs REALLY go wacky for it.

I am so glad you have Tylan available to you! Maybe sprinkling a lil probiotic powder on her raw meals may help, but, of course not at the same times that she gets the Tylan.. maybe if she gets a mid-day snack, you could do the probiotic powder then? Can you do a phone consult with your vet-- just ask if there is any canine flu going around in your area right now? (just wishing for an easier answer for you!)
Actually, most of the treats she gets are really high-quality or home made. Like cheese, the buffalo patty (ground buffalo, eggs, and a bit of garlic then baked), boiled/baked liver, or the Wellness Pure Rewards. I dunno if anywhere local sells the K9Craving stuff. I am planning a trip to the pet boutique today and will see what kind of treats they have. We are attending a seminar over the weekend and I need to make sure I have tons of good yummies for her to work for!

I couldn't help but think of you and Grimm when I found out she has SIBO again. I hope he's feeling better. SIBO is no fun but at least I know the Tylan works for her. I wish there were a way to get Tylan to Grimm.

I am thinking about checking our local healthfood store and seeing if they have any Kefir to give Ris. I know the last time she had SIBO I gave her FortiFlora (by Purina) but didn't really see much of a difference with it.
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Oh Smiling Girl! Stop it! (There! Now she's better and back to zooming around your apartment!)

I had zero luck with FortiFlora. I did find that minimizing fatty food helped, which -- sigh -- meant minimizing even most wonderful cheese (sorry Ris!). Anytime I see anything that even starts to look like soft poop, I boil meat and drain it, to remove fat, and he eats that for a day or two. Then everything is back to normal.

I don't know what it is. ALL of his tests (and we've run every single imaginable test) came back perfectly normal. Once we did the antibiotics for 30 days, his SIBO stayed away. But every once in a while, soft poop. But minimizing fatty foods keeps it away. I peel off fat and most skin, feed lean grades of meat, etc.

(Yeah, it's really cheap to feed this way too.
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I cut out dairy too, lot of fat in it.

Jamie is Risa on Tylan all the time or just when she flares?

I took Havoc off of it last week and so far so good.
Well I had eliminated cheese for a couple weeks but it didn't help her out. I think I'll just stick to cheese as a 'sometimes' treat and not use it for training classes.

Ris was on Tylan 2x a day from April to about June last year. I took her off it in June and she's been fine (at least no major flareups) until now.
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I just broke down and bought an entire jar of Tylan rather than getting a little at a time where I work. I was also reading one of the vet's books about SIBO and they say to keep the diet lactose free. It seems like anything can cause a flare up - did Ris eat something outside that altered her internal flora?!! FortiFlora did nothing, except make things worse, for Gracie. I've also looked into adding FOS but I can't find anyone who can help me with the dosage amount. Gracie's vet said for me to call Eukanuba/Iams since they put it in their food. The vet at work told me 1% of what Gracie is fed - need to weigh her food (kibble), figure out how much of a pound it would be then take 1% of that.....
that is just too hard!!
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Hmmm. . .well if lactose can bother a SIBO dog's tummy then no more dairy for Ris. Except for maybe an occasional snack.
She's had no problems with small bites of cheese or the occasional ice cream before. But perhaps using cheese as a training treat (ie lots and lots of cheese) was too much for her and sent her into a downward spiral. Poor dog. Eh well, live and learn!

That's too bad that the FOS is so difficult to dose.
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Poor Ris. No more banana splits!

I do peel off most skin and fat on meat too. Even without pancreas issues at all, too much fat just tweaks the bacteria in my guy's system.
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Lotsa the probiotics especially the powdered stuff, is milk-based, too.
She usually does alright with the skin on her meats. Only once did she have problems with a real fatty piece of pork shoulder (all meat, no bone). And it was just 'emergency splarts' and nothing more.

Still, I removed the skin off her chicken thigh last night and will probably keep things skinless for at least as long as she's on her Tylan again.

I know the vet said 10 days. I've heard a minimum of 30 days works best no matter what the vets say. I'm doing a minimum of 14 days. . .or until her poop is solid for at least a week. Whichever comes first.
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*Throws her hands into the air in a fit of frustration.*

Just when I think I have things figured out with Risa. . .she throws me for a loop.

I give up. I have no idea what is wrong with my dog. All I know is, the Tylan hasn't helped. I know from previous experience it takes about 2-3 weeks for me to notice any improvement in Ris' poop after starting her on Tylan. It's been about 5 weeks now and things are still not good. She has some days where the poop is chunky (solid and liquidy). There are days it's just soft. And there are still days when it's just liquid. I had high hopes after seeing two nicely formed poos over the weekend. They were still soft but had form to them finally. Then Ris had liquid water poop right before class last night. I don't know what to do with her.

Ris is still eating the same foods (and treats) she was before with no problems. I've even had a couple days in a row when I have given her NO treats at all (or, if any, only one or two). And still, the poo is awful.

So I called the vet to make an appointment. We'll be going in at 5:00 on Wednesday to see if Dr. Best (the one who originally diagnosed Ris with SIBO) can figure anything out. I will be fasting Ris tomorrow morning just in case she recommends running the TLI/Coblamin/B12 bloodwork again. *Sigh* Sometimes I feel like a crappy dog owner.
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How about a Giardia Angient test?
Originally Posted By: Murphy-Elperroguapo*Throws her hands into the air in a fit of frustration.*
Sometimes I feel like a crappy dog owner.
Jamie, Let's start a crappy dog owner club....that's how I feel sometimes too. Don't beat yourself up. I cried and cried when Gracie reacted to the new food like she did, "I did this to my dog" and I wanted to curl up into a ball. I have to remember, it's nothing we did. They have crappy digestive systems. She could have eaten a bug for all you know - I've found one fly and Gracie has ridiculous poop for a few days. We may never know. I think it's a good idea to run the tests again - see if it has changed into EPI, perhaps. I have considered running the tests again but right now, since I stopped the Blue Buffalo and am giving her only the Low Residue again, things are okay - not great but I realize that any type of formation in her poo is a good thing. As long as there is no mucous and it's not liquid, I'm happy. I'm here for you, sister in crappy dog owner poo
And, it seems only fitting, if the Loser Club has their own avatar, that we use the poop avatar for the crappy dog owner club (and I mean crappy not as in bad but as in .....well, poo!)
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Last year, when I went through this before, we did run a Giardia Antigen test and it came back negative. Not to say we won't run one again this time around.

I haven't the faintest idea what causes it now. I first thought it was salmon. Which she is sensitive to and I now avoid entirely. Then I figured it was due to too much dairy since I'd been giving her a lot of cheese. But even eliminating cheese hasn't helped things. I've also cut back on fats by taking the skin off her chicken, etc. You'd think giving her the Tylan twice a day it'd clear things up. Afterall, the doctor saw excessive bacteria in her stool sample a month ago and recommended antibiotics. *Sigh* What really gets me is that Ris is just FINE for the entire year. But then springtime comes around and we're back to this again. Which makes me wonder. . .is it me being stupid every spring and giving her too much of something she can't handle? Or is it just something about spring that sends her tummy into a tizzy?

I love the lil dancing poop guy. He makes me smile.
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That's an interesting thought. I have a cheese sensitivity, not a diagnosed allergy but... I can eat all the cheese I want in the winter but in the spring/summer when my environmental allergies are bad (tree pollen, ragweed) I can only eat one slice of pizza or my IBD flares up. Good question to ask.

How much Tylan were you giving? I was giving 1/8 tsp twice a day and saw improvement in a few days.

Also, what antibiotic? I know metronidazole has a bad rap but that is the only thing that can calm Gracie's digestive system down. She was on amoxicillin 2 or 3 times and never got over it. She was on metro 250 mg twice a day for 30 days. That is well within the safe range for any of the neurological side effects.

Also, the Eukanuba/Iams Low Residue food gets a bad rap - terrible ingredients - but every high quality food I gave Gracie did not work. She is thriving on the Low Residue since Sept '06 (except when silly me tried to change to Blue Buffalo recently). She can tolerate the Natural Balance lamb roll and the roll-a-round lamb treats so she has a variety of treats.
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