Ducky’s Digestive Issues, Part 2

Back in September (2014), I wrote a post for the Caring for Critters round robin about the digestive issues my three knuckleheads were going through. You can find that post here. At the time, it seemed that the probiotics were working for all three dogs. And they were – for Callie and Shadow. Ducky was another story. That’s where “Part 2” comes in.


Back in November — two days before Thanksgiving in the USA — Ducky started experiencing her upset tummy issues again. For the life of me, I couldn’t figure out what was triggering them again. My husband had not given any of the dogs any people food for months; I had not changed her diet since the barium test in June (including the one treat the vet had said I could continue giving her); and she was still getting the same probiotics, digestive enzymes, and camelina oil that I’d been giving all three girls since September. Back to the drawing board. But what to eliminate? I started with the digestive enzymes. They didn’t seem to be helping anyway. They didn’t seem to be hurting her, but they weren’t helping either. Poor dog had an upset tummy again that Saturday, so I cut out the camelina oil and added some water to her food bowl instead. The issues seemed to resolve themselves, so I didn’t think about them again.

We made it through the entire month of December without any “episodes” until New Year’s Eve. Early that evening, it all started again. A call to our regular vet. I sent hubby to the store to get some Imodium. After giving her one, she brought up half of her breakfast – undigested. She seemed to feel much better almost immediately. She made it through the night and all New Year’s Day back to her old self…driving Shadow crazy and pestering Callie. I cooked some plain rice and hamburger for her meals instead of giving her the dog food. Then, Friday morning, she had a little diarrhea again, but seemed fine otherwise. When I dropped her off at daycare, I asked them to keep an eye on her and call me if she got sick.

Friday afternoon, she had a little more diarrhea at daycare, but they said she seemed to feel fine. When I got home with her, I gave her another half of an Imodium tablet. She seemed fine, but I decided to leave her in the kitchen while we went out to eat. While we were out, she got sick all over the kitchen floor. My poor baby was miserable. After cleaning up and then feeding her sisters, I took Ducky out in the yard where she got sick again. It was time for a visit to the emergency animal clinic.

The veterinarians at the emergency clinic are wonderful, and very thorough. Ducky and I were there for nearly two hours while hubby stayed home with Callie and Shadow. The vet tech took her “history” and then the doctor came in and we talked some more. She tried to get a fecal sample but there was nothing left. So, they gave Ducky subcutaneous fluids to help rehydrate her, an injectable antibiotic, an injectable acid reducer, and some Cerenia to curb any nausea. And they gave me two pages of instructions along with more Cerenia, some Metronaidozole, and a nice big bill. But if all this helps get Ducky’s issues under control, it’ll be all worthwhile.

On Tuesday morning, I took Ducky to our regular vet for a follow-up. We decided that Ducky needs a diet change. A bland diet of plain rice and plain hamburger meat, and bland treats. So, I’m cooking her meals, at least for these next two-three months. And, at least for this week while she’s still on the antibiotics, no daycare. I need to keep her on the leash in the yard to control her yard trash diet and keep it as close to non-existent as possible. So far, it’s working. I know, I know, it hasn’t even been a week yet. And, she’s still taking the antibiotics (Metronaidozole). But minus the yard trash in her diet along with the bland diet, she has been steadily – albeit slowly – getting back to her old, ornery self.

Meanwhile, when I was trying to decide what food to start giving Ducky instead of the Fresh Pet, I had an idea. Jen at My Brown Newfies was kind enough to share with me some specifics about her Leroy’s diet. Jen also gave me some treat ideas: rice cakes (sometimes with canned pumpkin) and apple slices. I figured “what have I got to lose?” So, I bought a package of salt-free, fat-free (taste-free too IMO) rice cakes and a package of dehydrated apple slices. All three of my girls love them! The rice cakes remind me of the puffed rice cereal I used to eat as a kid, with a pound of sugar and a quart of whole milk to give them some flavor. But, hey, if my dogs are happy, I’m happy.

Welcome to Thursday’s Barks and Bytes hosted by 2 Brown Dawgs and Heart Like a Dog. The Barks and Bytes hop is for anything at all and all bloggers are welcome. You don’t have to be a dog blog to join. For new blog hoppers, a blog hop is list of links that is shared on multiple blogs. In order to be fair to all participants Linda and Jodi ask you to please use the linky list. If your blog does not support a linky list, please link back to either Linda or Jodi.

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15 thoughts on “Ducky’s Digestive Issues, Part 2

  1. 2 Brown Dawgs says:

    I am glad you have it under control. It can be so frustrating when they are sick and you cannot make them better. I remember when Thunder was growing up he would periodically stop eating. Just stop. He is a large dog and if he skips meals he tends to drop weight fast. We had blood work done on more than one occasion. It was always normal but he wasn’t eating. Finally we got a RX canned food from the vet that was very calorie dense and expensive. He liked it so for a bit we fed him that and then mix it in his food. The weird thing was that once he was full grown he never went off his food again. But for a while it was worrisome and expensive. Then there was the trip to the ER vet for Storm when she had a pancreatitis attack. I won’t even go into that except to say no beef or people food for her.

    Thanks for joining the hop.

  2. Jodi says:

    Thanks for adding this to the hop. I will link it up to the community page. It sounds like you have a great start to helping Ducky feel better. I’m taking a new approach with Delilah as well.

    Thanks for joining the blog hop.

  3. Saved by dogs says:

    We seem to have had a round of the doggy flu this past week. Collie first (no surprise, she’s the sensitive one) but when the iron stomach Lab had problems…it was fun to see how many nights in a row a person can go without getting solid sleep. Thank goodness we’re all well here again – best wishes for your crew to stay on track too!

  4. Jan K says:

    I’m glad things seem to be getting better. I’ve often thought that feeding the dogs a homemade diet would be a great thing, even when they don’t have issues. I just can’t talk myself into taking the time to do it (it’s all I can do to cook healthy meals for my hubby and me). But if I had to do it, then I think I would.
    You reminded me that we used to give rice cakes to the dogs as a low calorie treat. I never could understand why they loved those tasteless things quite so much! Since Luke needs to lose some weight, that’s probably something I should start getting again.

    • The Golden Life says:

      The good thing with the rice cakes — at least for Ducky — is that they’re easy to break apart so I can give her small pieces and she’s just as happy. Actually, the apples are the same way.

  5. Tails Around the Ranch says:

    Sam experiences periodic bouts of colitis so I know exactly what you’re going through. I use Kaopectate for the diarrhea and introduce food only when the diarrhea is gone. Usually he’s fine in a couple days, otherwise, he has to have antibiotics. So sad when our fur-kids have upset tummies. Hoping your pup feels better soon.

    • The Golden Life says:

      Hi! Thanks for stopping by! It just breaks my heart when my fur-babies are sick. Thankfully, Ducky is much better now. I think part of her problem all along has been acid reflux, and obsessive eating of whatever she could find to relieve herself of it. Like Golden Retriever hair and yard trash. The important thing is getting rid of the bad bacteria and growing the good in its place. And neutralizing the acid or getting rid of it altogether. Thank you for your concern! I hope Sam is doing wel, too!

  6. Donna O. says:

    I’m glad the antibiotics, home cooking, and lack of yard trash seem to be helping. And nice that she can have a little rice cake or bit of apple as a treat. I hope she continues to improve!

    • My Golden Life says:

      My poor girls aren’t getting ANY treats right now. The only “treat” Ducky is allowed right now are the pieces of Greenies Pill Pockets that I wrap her pills in twice a day. And since I’d feel guilty giving her sisters treats when I can’t give her any…well, you get the idea. But, once the vet okays treats again, I’ll go back to the rice cakes. I’ll just make Ducky’s pieces smaller. Meanwhile I feel like a meanie. 😦 LOL

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