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Hi All,

Here are the details on my current situation. I apologize in advance for all of he info:  My almost 2 year old had a really mushy poop on our lunch time walk on Friday. Got home and she had had diarrhea in her crate while I was at work. Cleaned everything up and switched her to a boiled chicken/rice diet. She doesn't eat the rice but loves the chicken. I also add in some plain greek yogurt. Her energy levels Saturday were good. We went on a 3.5 mile walk and she played with her neighbor friends in the afternoon. Saturday night I got risky and decided to give her kibble again. She ate all of the kibble as normal. Well, Saturday night she woke me up almost every 2 hours to go outside and poop. Poop again was runny. Sunday morning went back to the chicken/yogurt diet. Poop Sunday night was runny but more of a brown than yellow. Her energy levels were also normal on Sunday (she had zoomies, played with her toys, and had an appetite for the chicken). Last night was fine. This morning she vomited around 5:30 AM (she had been eating grass over the weekend). Energy levels still seem normal and she ate all of her chicken/yogurt this morning. She refused to get in her crate this morning so I dropped her at my parents house instead. She had a poop this morning but it was similar to the one last night.  

In summary:

Loose poop since Friday

1 instance of vomiting

Appetite seems normal

Energy level seems normal

Any advice? Will this clear on its own after a few days on a chicken diet? Or should I take her to the vet?

Only difference in her normal kibble diet is that for the past two weeks I have been giving her Fromm kibble with grains mixed in with her grain-free Fromm kibble. Not sure if the grains would have anything to do with this but am mentioning just in case.

Thanks!

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I'm pretty sure it's because it's a quick fix, and so many people just want a quick fix. I mean, I understand if the dog is having diarrhea all over the house you just want to make it stop. But they overlook the fact that in the long run they're making it worse. What I don't understand is why they don't use drugs like lomotil more frequently. Stop the diarrhea without the antibiotic/good-bacteria killing properties.

Parents and healthcare providers are the same way. It turns out that most ear infections will resolve without antibiotics, but people are used to antibiotics and they want them. Try telling them they don't need them, or they don't need them unless symptoms persist for several days. And then all we care about is patient satisfaction so we just give them what they want and not what they need.

That's a shame. 

We have such extremes in this country. On the one hand, you have the crazy anti-vaxxers and the "all natural holistic drug-free coconut oil and apple cider vinegar" crowds, and then you have people who want unnecessary drugs to kill something that doesn't need killing and contribute to antibiotic resistance. We need to maybe start a new movement..."The Moderation Movement". Members would have to demonstrate a modicum of common sense to gain admittance. :)

We could talk about this for days - maybe a lifetime. I have this constant rant/debate in my head. It's not all black and white. But there has to be something between the two extremes. Something between 1. You are in charge of your healthcare, even if you choose to make decisions that will harm you. Doctors are just there to write prescriptions for the drugs you saw on some commercial. We aim to make you happy, if not well. 2. Doctors are all knowing and what they say goes without question. We are going to make you well, and we don't really care about your opinion. 

We could talk about the opioid epidemic, and how modern healthcare has contributed to it because Medicaid reimbursement is tied to patient satisfaction scores and people don't want to feel any pain. So then people get addicted and we go the other way and now we're treating the pain from your broken arm with ibuprofen. There has to be a better way!

It just becomes very tough because most of us aren't familiar enough to debate with our vets about these antibiotics and what type of treatment we'd prefer instead.  My vet said that she likes to prescribe metronizadole along with panacur since Giardia is so tough to get rid of and it helps eliminate giardia quickly which in fairness it did with my pup. Now whether the metronizadole contributed to the quick elimination I'll never know.

She also prescribed proviable for a month as a way of countering the issue of killing good bacteria and did explain to me the importance of the probiotic.  Moving forward I don't know how I would respond if they wanted to prescribe it again.  For giardia I would say let's just go with panacur but if it is for something else it's tough to refuse it if I don't have a better alternative.  You can't really pull out your phone and go to DK in the vets office.

I'm still dealing with loose stools.  It had gotten better and then we needed to board Cannoli with our trainer for two nights.  Yesterday his stool was loose again bordering on diarrhea last night (it was pretty firm this morning).  I don't know if they failed to give him his probiotic, if it was b/c he didn't have his normal fiber while away, if it is time for him to switch foods or simply due to the change of being boarded for two nights and away from home.

It's certainly possible that all of these issues stem from him having been prescribed metronidazole or it could be something else now that's leading to loose stools.  We've got him back on proviable and psyllium and will see if things get better.  We all know that doodles (especially goldens) have weak stomachs and I'm trying to learn to accept that loose stools are going to be a regular issue for us moving forward from time to time...

Being boarded can definitely cause digestive upsets.
I think that we become more confident in participating in health care decisions with exeprience. If and when you have seen enough bad outcomes from metronidazole or any other drug, it becomes easier to refuse it, lol. I think it helps to ask questions. Too many people are afraid they are imposing or taking up too much of the doctor or the vet's time asking questions. That's what you are paying for. A good vet (or a good doctor) will take time to answer your questions and will be willing to listen to your concerns. He or she should never be dismissive or impatient. My own vet has stopped taking new patients to make sure that he can spend as much time as needed with his current patients. 

So, I do give your vet a lot of credit for telling you about a good probiotic. I feel like a lot of them don't. I think a lot of things depend on your relationship with your vet. My vet is a research guy. He's up on all the studies and journal articles. So all I would have to do is ask him what the latest research shows, and he would be off on a 20 minute tangent and I would know exactly why he thought we needed whatever we needed. And I will debate him if I don't agree. I usually lose, because he is the vet. But he is very convincing. I will say that none of these dogs have ever had metronidazole. 

I don't agree though that we can make a general statement saying that doodles have weak stomaches and GI issues. I'm on #4 and none of them have ever had any issues. (Except sometimes they're gassy) I think we just hear from the people who are having problems. How many people come to a forum to tell us all that their dog has firm, formed stools twice a day every day? I think that's more about the individual dog than the breed (breeds?) as a whole. I would hope that eventually Cannoli will get figured out and you won't have to resign yourself to poor quality stools for all time.

I agree with this.

I had a foster with raging giardia. I mean, 11x a day, waking me at night, and the stool looked exactly like wet cement. It was as bad a case as I;ve heard of, and my vet still didn;t prescribe metronidazole. 3 days of Panacur. That's it. 

On the other hand, when Jack was diagnosed with IBD and his entire GI tract was inflamed, the IMS prescribed metronidazole. It does have its uses. Just not for a routine case of giardia.

My vet also participates in continuing education and stays current with new findings, studies, and treatments in veterinary medicine. That helped a lot when we were dealing with Jack's IBD. 

I agree with you except...... 

Ned was really ill one time - seriously couldn't keep anything inside.  Whatever it was he needed immediately to stop the diarrhea and calm the vomiting.  He received two meds - a shot for calming the tummy and  metronizadole for the diarrhea.  He needed immediate relief and I was grateful.   I don't at all care what he was given to help.

Charlie had severe diarrhea when we got him and we did all things wrong.  He had parasites and received Panacur only but we also took him on a trip to Washington where he developed  stress-induced diarrhea.  I mean explosive and serious - in an RV? When you are not free to stop immediately at a seconds' notice? Metronizodole was a lifesaver - yes, he rebounded with more diarrhea - but at least we were camped and could take him outside (as unwelcome as we must have been to other campers), and, thanks to Karen, we also gave him a human probiotic, VSL#3.  We had to give him this for 2 months.  He has had stress induced diarrhea several times since and needed a month's worth of VSL#3.  I just realized that we have not had to give him anything for a year now so I think his tummy finally has good bacteria.  Hooray!  Perhaps he we should have avoided the Metronizodole in both cases, but I really think there are times.......  just not every time.

She had the tiniest firm poop last night! I introduced a little bit of her grain-free kibble back in with the chicken and sweet potato. This morning she had another good poop. Will gradually increase the kibble with the chicken and sweet potato until the chicken and sweet potato are gone!

So I guess it was either the grains in the grain formula food or something else she got into that caused the diarrhea. Needless to say she will be back on grain free for the long run. 

I really think that's the right decision.

I'm glad she is improving.

What does it mean when the first few pieces come out well formed and firm and then some soft mushy stool follows?  This happens a lot for Cannoli where 75% of his poop is firm and 25% is soft (just an approx..).  Do I consider this a firm poop or him still having some stomach issues?

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