Labradoodle & Goldendoodle Forum
Coco, who has IBD, was recently diagnosed with pancreatitis. Seemingly, her only symptom is that she doesn't want to eat her food in the mornings, but this has always been an issue with my IBD girl. After not eating breakfast, she will immediately go out in the yard and eat stool (yes, I pick it up the yard the best I can). She will also take treats. To me, it seemed more like boredom with her food than low-grade nausea. The vet checked her PSL levels (I think that is what it is called), and the level was about 80 points higher than the high-normal range for pancreatitis.
The suggestion from the vet was low fat dog food. For about a couple of years, Coco has been eating The Honest Kitchen Chicken Grain Free, which is 15% fat. Sometimes, I add cooked chicken breast to her food.
Does anyone have any food recommendations that aren't the prescription vet diets? Personally, I do not think those are food. Rayne Nutrition seems very expensive. Any other advice would be appreciated.
I think you might get better advice in the Health Group and/or the Food Group on these issues. We do have comprehension discussions about pancreatitis and IBD in the Health Group, and lots of info in the Food group about special diets.
IBD is often confused with IBS, but they are two very different things. IBS stands for Irritable Bowel Syndrome, and it's basically a sensitive stomach. There are no diagnostic tests for it, and it is usually managed with diet alone.
IBD on the other hand stands for Inflammatory Bowel Syndrome, and it's an incurable, serious immune mediated disease that is fatal in 20% of cases. It can only be diagnosed via endoscopy/colonscopy under anesthetic. While a small percentage of IBD dogs can be managed with diet alone, the vast majority require some combination of special diet, medications (usually antibiotics and immunosuppressants) and supplements (often B12 injections, probiotics, and others). IBD dogs have serious inflammatory reactions to many foods and almost always require very restricted diets involving novel proteins or hydrolyzed proteins. Many IBD do have to be on Rx diets, there is just no choice when it's a life or death issue, which IBD often is. You can never just change their food easily. It would also be very rare for a dog with IBD to tolerate chicken, although it is possible. (Mine could). So before we get into diets, has your dog actually been diagnosed via scope with Inflammatory Bowel Disease, and if so, which type?
If in fact, it is IBS and not IBD, I'd be happy to help with diets if you'd like to start a discussion in The Food Group. If it is indeed IBD, any diet changes need to be discussed with your internal medicine specialist or a veterinary nutritionist; not even general practice vets are usually qualified for that.
Pancreatitis also can be a very serious disease (40% fatality rate for acute pancreatitis) and typically does require some initial treatment beyond a low fat diet. Most dogs are hospitalized for pancreatitis and in great pain.
There are a few limited ingredient commercial diets that are lower than 15% fat, in the 12% range, but I would not feel comfortable making specific food recommendations under these circumstances, and I'm pretty well-versed & well educated in canine nutrition and diets for special needs dogs. I truly feel your best bet is to consult a veterinary internal medicine specialist.
Just noticed that you did start a discussion a year or so back about Coco's IBD.
Many foods were discussed in that post, and nothing has changed with respect to commercial dog food since then, in terms of new options. You may want to consider consulting with a veterinary nutritionist about formulating a homemade diet. In the long run, that may be your least expensive option.