HELP - Sick Cappy :( - Havanese Forum : Havanese Forums
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post #1 of 20 (permalink) Old 04-13-2012, 12:35 PM Thread Starter
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Wink HELP - Sick Cappy :(

I'm hoping some of you Hav owners on this great forum can help me. Cappy turned a year old March 1st. Several months ago, he would periodically throw up after eating. Also, he periodically has a LOUD grumbling belly, stops eating, is quiet, and will sometimes vomit or have diarrhea. It usually only lasts for part of the day (he'll skip his morning meal and then by dinner is fine). Once it's over, he's back to his peppy, happy-go-lucky, playful self.

We've brought him to the vet and they did an ultrasound, fecal test, examination, etc. and said they couldn't find anything wrong with him. They suggested we put golf balls in his food bowl to make him eat more slowly. They also gave us Famotidine (Pepsid) which didn't really help.

We had been feeding him Wellness Super 5 for puppies until he was about 9 months and the vet recommended he go to adult food. I switched him to Wellness Super Mix for small breed and that's around the time his problems started. I slowly switched him to Wellness Core and he got worse. Then, we transitioned to home cooked and that didn't really help. My husband is old fashioned and believes all this fancy dog food actually makes dogs sick, so then we went to Purina Pro Plan. He was good on that for a while and now he's back to the same symptoms. I have tried adding some home cooked to his dog food (organic canned pumpkin, brown rice, hard boiled egg, salmon, boiled carrots, boiled sweet potato, boiled organic chicken -- not all at once) and it still hasn't stopped the problem.

I only give him "Made in the USA" chews, usually bully sticks or pork ears, never rawhide. Lately he's tried the Himalayan dog chews also.

I just can't seem to find out what's causing it. I always tell my husband I think it's the chemicals they spray on the grass (he does love to be outside in the yard and we live in SW Florida where they are always spraying lawns for something).

Anyone have any ideas for pinpointing what could be wrong?
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post #2 of 20 (permalink) Old 04-13-2012, 01:05 PM
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It could be her diet is just too rich, my new dog is tiny and had issues with the food, after learning my lesson about leaving them on the food the breeder was feeding when they settle in, I was carefully to do this, Misty and Khloe were swaping dishes. Even after watching her eat out of the proper dish, she still had loose stools, grumbling tummy and occasionally bring up chunks of food, and her poop smelled bad so did she. I started giving her less food (we feed twice a day) at meal times and treat her with kibble during the day, also we make them rest after meals and meals are calm any rough housing or barking, begging, delays the meal, they are rewarded for calm. The reason for this is I have the old, doesn't have the greatest health Lhasa, he needs it calm his tummy is sensitive. It has worked and she now eats the same foods as the others however if there is too much excitement after dinner or she eats too much, she will have lose stools, grumbling belly,etc., good part is it does not last as long as I cut back on the food. Wellness is very rich and some dogs do have trouble...great food...but not if your dog has tummy issues.

Robbie, Boo Boo, Yogi, and Misty's human.
Poohkey miss you, monkey.
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post #3 of 20 (permalink) Old 04-13-2012, 03:30 PM
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Hi, Michele:

I am sorry to read that Cappy has been feeling poorly for the past few months. that must be so worrisome for you as his Mom.

I just took a look at WebMD for Dogs for some possible answers for Cappy's problems, and thought this page about diarrhea may be helpful:

The discussion about food intolerance (not allergy) may help guide you.

"Food intolerancecan also cause rapid transit. Foods that some dogs seem unable to tolerate can include beef, pork, chicken, horsemeat, fish, eggs, spices, corn, wheat, soy, gravies, salts, spices, fats, and some commercial dog foods. Note that food intolerance is not the same as food allergy, which causes dermatitis and possibly vomiting, but rarely causes diarrhea."

Here is the webpage for gas:

I hope the reasons for Cappy's distress are simple and easy to fix. Has the Vet ruled out Inflammatory Bowel Disease? See

Buster has a very sensitive gut and he will have loose stools at the drop of a hat. I was talked into Blue buffalo at the store, and he never had normal stools. His Vet said the food was too rich for him, so we started the hunt for a kibble that would give him firm stools.

Evo Red Meat seemed to be good for his gut, but after a while both Buster and Buffy were less than enthusiastic about eating it.

We now have them on Taste of the Wild Wetlands kibble plus a couple of spoonfuls of Merrick's canned. From time to time he still has a day when his stool gets really loose or watery, and I follow the Vet's instructions to give him one or 2 doses of Pepto Bismol (2 cc's) using an oral syringe. It seems to slow down his gut so that his large intestine can remove more water and form a more solid stool.

I think both of my dogs have these problems after they eat or lick grass on neighbors' lawns because other dogs use the lawns, too, and some of them may not be in the best health. My neighbors do not seem to be using lawn chemicals, but I am not totally certain.

Our lawn is very small (with no chemicals), so we do go for walks in the neighborhood for exercise. I have been trying very hard to keep them from touching the grass with their faces. Sigh....

Please keep us updated about Cappy's condition.

Starr in NorCal
Mom to Buffy & Buster & Benny & Champ
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post #4 of 20 (permalink) Old 04-13-2012, 05:00 PM
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It could be from eating too fast OR it could also be from the lawn chemicals, both can cause vomiting and tummy aches.

I would try to maybe spread out the portion of food to slow it down and maybe give a break on the treats and reintroduce them to see if they could be causing it, sort of like an elimination diet for dogs.

Hope he feels better soon,
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post #5 of 20 (permalink) Old 04-13-2012, 07:40 PM
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I have noticed that one of mine will throw up if he plays too soon after eating.........the only other issue I had was when I used comfortis for fleas and trifexis...both of those caused tummy upsets in all 3 of mine......also I have noticed that for about 24-48 hours after I give them their heartworm meds they all have loose stools......don't know if any of these apply but thought I would throw them out there.....I know it's frustrating when our babies are sick and we don't know what is causing it..keep us posted.
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post #6 of 20 (permalink) Old 04-13-2012, 08:03 PM
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Mine had somewhat similar symptoms with vomiting and constipation alternating with diahrea. She just turned 1 in March. Stress/excitement seemed to bring it on. After expensive testing at the vet ruled out any underlying medical causes I decided to look at her diet. Several members on this forum have recomended nutritional consultations with Sabine Contreras. I contacted her and she recomended Wellness Simple lamb and rice (canned) for my Princess with some added supplements. Princess has been doing great since making the switch. I had really never thought of this (although I've never had such a small dog - 8.5 lbs) but my mom mentioned how she thought it would be hard on a dog's system to scarf down a bowl of dry kibble. I mean all that dry food hitting that tiny tummy at once with no water. My dog is not a big drinker, never has been. Since she's been eating canned food she's been happy, healthy and even unusual excitement doesn't bring on the episodes of tummy rumbling, vomiting, etc. Just a thought but it may be worth looking into canned food to see if it helps. I know it's a pain to dish it up, measure it out, etc. and it's a little more expensive but it's been worth it for us. Good luck and I hope your little one is feeling better soon!

Cindy and Princess
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post #7 of 20 (permalink) Old 04-13-2012, 08:27 PM
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Camellia has a sensitive gut, too. She had trouble with a couple of Wellness products ("jerky," which wasn't really jerky anyway), and some kibble.

She has allergic dermatitis, which means, environmental allergies, which my vets and I are controlling by using antihistamines, and especially, DOUXO calming shampoo and spray.

I think it's quite possible other people's lawn chemicals, or even roadside chemicals could be contributing to Cappy's period of illness. But one thing really jumped out at me: your mention of pork ears. These have, in places I've read, been notorious for causing problems, so I'd eliminate those.

I assume you're keeping a journal with detailed notes? Sounds as though you might be doing that. I did that for my diabetic Australian Terrier, Kumbi, bless his sweet heart - and when I got Camellia, I simply continued the practice. It's invaluable information! I keep daily records (in a spiral notebook, so I can't lose pages).

Hope Cappy feels better soon!

Incidentally, after changing Camellia's food six times (!), I finally settled on Natural Balance Original Ultra kibble for Adults and Puppies, after using the dogroodadvisor site.

I also get cans of the Natural Balance chicken recipe, which I use to wrap Camellia's pills. She doesn't get much of that; I use about a can a week.

Oh, also, I had a digital scale I got for Kumbi, and continue using it for Camellia - I weigh her kibble! And having learned with Kumbi that feeding twice a day, 12 hours apart, can have great value (especially if giving medications that need to be given with food or on an empty stomach), so I'm doing that with Camellia, too.

For Kumbi, being diabetic, the 12-hours was important, as I gave insulin 30 minutes after he ate, and the insulin has to match the food, and should be given 12 hours apart. With Camellia, though, I'm a bit more flexible, and can feed earlier, or a bit later, without any bad consequences.

Please keep us posted on how Cappy is doing! I hope he feels better soon. I'm thrilled with the EXCELLENCE of your care of him - you did all the right checks with your vet, ruling things out. Cappy is one VERY LUCKY DOG!

Fri, 13 Apr 2012 18:26:52 (PDT)

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post #8 of 20 (permalink) Old 04-13-2012, 09:20 PM
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Carol, You kindred soul you, I too take notes and when I board my guys have typed notes on meds and time of day ect., at first they all thought I was weird (fruits and nuts from California) today they think it is cool and helpful.

I never feed pork or pork ears, a long time ago my Husky would get ear infections and my vet thought the pork ears were contrbuting to the problem, when we stopped them, his ear infections did not go away but only happened in hot weather.

On a funny note we use to buy them at Sam's club and they came in a hug bag and the guy at the door after awhile (he was almost always the same guy) told me he noticed that I did not get the ears anymore then he ask what happen to my dog, how old was he when he passed away! Lol, you never no what people will notice.

Robbie, Boo Boo, Yogi, and Misty's human.
Poohkey miss you, monkey.
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post #9 of 20 (permalink) Old 04-13-2012, 09:23 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you all for your wonderful suggestions. I spoke to my vet again today and she recommended we do some food trials to see if we can determine what food is causing the intolerance. I'm slowly switching him to Natural Balance Limited Diet Sweet Potato and Fish (kibble and canned). He'll be on that only for at least 8 weeks and then we'll see. By tonight he was back to his usual spunky self. Fingers crossed we can find the problem - thanks again for your suggestions and thoughts.
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post #10 of 20 (permalink) Old 04-13-2012, 09:25 PM
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that's great news!!
and I totally need to look into that food! I always like to have kibble on hand for emergencies!!

Tammy and Tillie
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