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  • Change in appetite
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  • Muscle atrophy
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Posts Tagged ‘Dogs Digestion’

Dogs With Upset Stomachs

Monday, April 25th, 2016


When a dog is suffering with an upset stomach it can be a miserable time for both the dog and its owner.

When dogs have upset stomachs accompanied by vomiting and diarrhea, it’s unpleasant for the dog’s owner, but worse for the dog. Vomiting, diarrhea and abdominal pain are unsettling to a pet and the sooner these problems are resolved, the better off the dog will be. A direct result of persistent vomiting or diarrhea is dehydration, so it’s very important to be sure your dog stays well hydrated when sick.

Some of the options for treating an upset stomach include home remedies, over-the-counter medications and prescription medications. The specific remedy needed to help a dog depends on the severity of the stomach upset and which symptoms it is experiencing.

Step one in treating a dog with an upset stomach is to identify the cause for the onset of the stomach problems. Upset stomach problems in dogs most commonly occur as the result of bacterial or viral infections or ingestion of foreign matter.

It’s not always possible to isolate the exact cause of upset stomach problems in dogs because it’s too easy for a dog to swallow something without your knowledge, resulting in the upset. However, if you can find out what caused the upset stomach, you’ll have a better chance of choosing the right remedy for effective treatment.

If you’re like most dog owners, you may want to try a home remedy before buying an over-the-counter medication. Most over-the-counter medications are safe for dogs, but you may want to call your veterinarian before giving your pet an antidiarrheal medication like Pepto-Bismol or Kaopectate. Both of these products can be safely given to dogs to alleviate diarrhea symptoms.

Mild diarrhea and vomiting are signs of gastrointestinal upset, and in order to alleviate the symptoms of the upset, the dog’s digestive system needs a chance to relax and recuperate. If the upset is due to a bacterial infection a continuous supply of fresh water will give the dog’s body a chance to eliminate the harmful bacteria.

When your dog is ready to eat again you should serve it only stomach-friendly foods so you don’t further irritate its digestive system. Some of the healthy things to feed your dog at this time are chicken, ground beef, rice, eggs, and bread (lightly toasted is fine if your dog prefers it that way).
Cottage cheese is also an excellent choice because it contains a high content of good bacteria which helps clear the dog’s system of harmful bacteria.

If your dog’s upset stomach problems persist you should schedule an appointment with your veterinarian so more appropriate treatment can be started.

Some of the prescription dog remedies that are available include:
* Metoclopramide – for the treatment of nausea and vomiting;
* Cimetidine – for control of gastrointestinal inflammation;
* Metronidazole – an antimicrobial antibiotic for treating diarrhea caused by bacterial infection;
* Sucralfate – an antiulcer medication that helps neutralize stomach acid;
* Centrine Tabs – used to treat gastrointestinal inflammation when accompanied by nausea, vomiting and diarrhea.

Can Dogs Eat Frozen Food?

Monday, December 7th, 2015


Frozen dog foods are becoming popular in the pet food world. The major concern for most dog owners is the question, “Can dogs eat frozen food?”

Some dog owners are choosing to purchase commercially prepared raw foods for their pets with choices ranging from turkey, chicken, beef and lamb, to exotic meats like quail, rabbit and antelope.

These fully prepared meals can be made up of only ground meat, or meat with ground up bone and vegetables. The meals that contain only meat use muscle meat as well as organ meats like liver, heart and other organs that wild dogs consume.

If you want to feed your dog a vegetarian diet, there are frozen vegetable mixtures also available on the market.

Dogs are carnivores and they require a diet of raw meat and natural foods that have been prepared with minimal processing. For centuries a dog’s diet was mostly grain-free and contained a multitude of enzymes and antioxidants that dogs today do not get in heat-processed dog food.

To provide the natural proteins, antioxidants, enzymes, vitamins, and minerals a dog needs, raw meat that is free of hormones and antibiotics supplies a dog with the sources for these ingredients.

Many owners find that feeding pre-prepared frozen foods for their dog is a relatively easy way to assure that their pet is receiving the vitamins and minerals necessary to good health.

We recommend you visit one of the following online sites that offer these meals: www.naturesvariety.com, www.stevesrealfood.com, or www.darwinspet.com.

You may also want to consider supplementing one of these prepared raw food diets with raw bones. Meat doesn’t contain a sufficient amount of calcium for a dog’s body, so dogs in the wild receive the bulk of their calcium by consuming bones which provide the additional nutrients a dog needs.

Raw bones should not be cooked. When cooked they become brittle and can break into pieces in your dog’s digestive system. If your dog has a tendency to eat too fast, you can feed it frozen bones that have been slightly thawed. This will force your dog to spend more time eating the bone.

In addition to raw food and bones, many companies sell frozen treats for dogs that look like ice cream tidbits and popsicles that we humans eat. The treats are made from dog-friendly foods like peanut butter, bananas and berries and most dogs find them to be delicious and special snacks.

Dogs can eat frozen foods and will usually like them.

If you’re interested in feeding your dog raw foods you can visit one of the raw pet food sites listed above, or start out by buying fresh raw meat at your grocers and begin feeding your dog small amounts of meat to see if it can easily digest it.

Healthy Dog Food Ingredients

Monday, June 15th, 2015


It is an axiom (a generally accepted idea or proposition assumed to be true) that using healthy dog food ingredients will result in healthy dog foods. It is also true that feeding dogs healthy food enhances their quality of life by reducing illnesses, improving the coat and teeth, and providing healthy energy for their bodies.

But no matter how healthy the ingredients are in a specific dog food, if a dog’s health doesn’t improve with a particular type of food, then it is not the right diet for that dog. Many dogs are allergic to certain types of protein or other ingredients used in the manufacture of dog food, and if your dog seems to have more health issues after changing to what you believe to be a healthier dog food, you’ll need to experiment with a few other dog food brands or recipes.

Luckily, most quality dog foods also come in smaller packages, negating the need to buy large bags and waste money if your dog can’t or won’t eat the new food.

Some signs that your dog needs to change its diet are excessive flatulence, frequent ear infections, licking the top of its paws too much, and frequent vomiting or diarrhea. If this is happening to your dog, try changing the type of protein used in its food and see if the symptoms disappear or at least improve.

A dog’s stomach will often attack unfamiliar ingredients, so a new food may not be accepted right away and often can cause diarrhea. Don’t buy a new brand or type of dog food at the first sign of these problems. Continue feeding your dog the same food for a least a week or two before deciding to try something new.

Dogs can also develop allergies to foods they eat too often, so it’s a good idea to feed your pet several foods that contain different protein sources to help it maintain a balanced diet.

Dogs are omnivores, and like humans their bodies were designed to obtain nutrients from both meat and vegetables. The reality is that pet dogs receive most of their nutrients from protein sources, so when choosing a dog food, the quality of the protein is the most important ingredient. As a general rule. three of the first five ingredients listed on the label should be protein sources.

Don’t choose dog foods containing “meat byproducts” or any with labels listing “animal protein” as a principal ingredient. These two ingredients usually don’t include muscle meat from which dogs receive most of their protein. Look for dog foods with labels listing specific ingredients like chicken and turkey. If your dog has food allergies you can choose a food containing proteins like duck, venison or rabbit.

Dogs are not able to efficiently digest corn, wheat, white rice or soy. Instead choose dog foods with whole vegetable ingredients like carrots, green beans and sweet potatoes. There are some dog foods that also include fruits like apples, and grains like oats and barley. Grain-free foods are also available that substitute potatoes in place of the grains.

Other healthy dog food ingredients include pumpkin (which helps soothe a dog’s upset stomach), cottage cheese which provides healthy bacteria, and eggs which are a healthy protein source.

There is no one dog food that’s right for every single dog, but some foods are definitely higher in quality than others. Compare labels on the dog food you now feed your pet with other brands available wherever you shop for dog food.

Depending on where you live and where you shop, you may need to visit Petco or PetSmart, or your local pet store to find a healthy dog food.

Stomach Ulcers in Dogs

Monday, April 6th, 2015


Stomach ulcers in dogs are not uncommon and can be caused by medications, an inadequate diet, or an underlying health condition. Luckily, stomach ulcers in dogs can be treated and also prevented by taking pro-active measures to help avoid the development of stomach ulcers.

Medications, especially anti-inflammatories, pain killers, and corticosteroids administered orally, will disrupt the normal balance of acids in a dog’s stomach and can destroy a dog’s stomach lining if the medications are administered over a long period of time. In addition, stress, an unbalanced diet containing excess fats, stomach injuries caused by a dog ingesting sharp objects, or poisoning can also cause stomach ulcers.

A dog who is suffering from stomach ulcers will exhibit symptoms such as:
* Chronic vomiting, even when the dog hasn’t eaten anything;
* A general lack of appetite and weight loss;
* General weakness in its actions and movements;
* Diarrhea or blood in the vomit.

Stomach ulcers in dogs are usually detected by a veterinarian when performing tests such as urinalysis, a complete blood count, ultrasound, or an endoscopic exam which will reveal any ulcers in the stomach.

To treat a dog with stomach ulcers, you will need to change your dog’s diet and regularly administer antacid drugs. The antacids will protect the dog’s stomach lining and allow the ulcers to heal. The new diet should focus on reducing fats and artificial ingredients that could cause the stomach ulcers to reoccur. Bland foods and wet foods are better than dry kibble and are easier to digest and less likely to cause harm to the stomach walls.

If your dog has persistent vomiting or diarrhea, the vet will prescribe medication. Should dehydration result from the vomiting or diarrhea, your vet may recommend a transfusion of IV fluids.

Many dog owners prefer natural remedies that can soothe the production of stomach acid and heal the stomach ulcers. Natural remedies include licorice root, aloe vera, echinacea or alfalfa.

Your vet may also recommend some supplements like L-glutamine or Quercetin which will help strengthen the dog’s immune system which is its best natural defense against the formation of stomach ulcers.

You should treat stomach ulcers in your dog as seriously as you would if you were the one who had the ulcer. If your dog continues to display one or several of the above symptoms, call and schedule an exam with your vet as soon as possible.

Vegetarian Dog Food Recipes

Monday, December 15th, 2014


Dogs need to consume a lot of protein to remain healthy. If you’ve decided that you want your dog to be a vegetarian, you may want to try these vegetarian dog food recipes to be sure you’re feeding your pet a healthy diet.

You should understand that vegetables alone will not supply the protein your dog needs to be healthy and hearty. To provide the missing protein and still maintain a vegetarian diet, include beans, dairy products, eggs or protein supplements in your dog’s vegetarian diet.

For a hearty and delicious Vegetable Stew, prepare this recipe for your dog:
Heat up a small amount of olive oil and a little garlic in a saucepan. Cut into slices the following vegetables: one large sweet pepper, one medium zucchini, one medium yellow squash, one medium eggplant, and one potato.
Bring the mixture to a boil and let it simmer for 40 minutes, adding a small amount of oregano or basil.

Let the stew cool before serving it to your dog. You can also add shredded cheese, beans, a raw egg or a protein supplement to make sure your dog is receiving a suitable amount of protein.

This is another vegetarian dog food recipe any dog should find appetizing:
Mix one cup of quick-cooking oats, 1/4 cup of soy flour or soy milk powder, 1/4 cup of wheat bran, one tablespoon of soy lechithin, one tablespoon of yeast, one tablespoon of wheat germ, one tablespoon of ground sunflower seeds, 1/4 tablespoon of molasses, one teaspoon of ground flax seed, and 1/2 tablespoon of olive oil or canola oil.

Soak all the ingredients in hot water for 20 minutes before serving to your dog. This is an easy meal to make in advance and keep refrigerated or frozen for a quick and healthy daily meal for your dog. If you have a large dog you’ll need to double the recipe. Ground pinto beans can also be added for additional protein.

This is a recipe for a Vegetarian Chowder your dog is sure to love:
Thoroughly cook two red potatoes in two cups of water, adding two tablespoons of olive oil and a clove of garlic. Remove the potatoes from the water. Add three cups of fresh corn to the water and cook for five minutes. Add to the corn 3/4 cup of cooked kidney beans and the potato water you set aside. Bring to a boil, then simmer until the corn is tender. Blend the red potatoes with 3/4 of a cup of milk in a blender or food processor and add it to the simmering chowder.

Vegetarian Dog Food Cookies:
Mash a cup of peas, green beans, squash, zucchini, and carrots. Add one egg, 1/3 cup applesauce, a cup of cooked rice and a teaspoon of brewer’s yeast.

Drop a teaspoonful of the mixture onto a cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees for 12 minutes. These delicious doggy cookies can be stored in your refrigerator or freezer and given to your dog as a treat at any time.

A recipe for Yummy Veggie Biscuits:
Mix three cups of parsley and 1/4 cup carrots, finely chopped. Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil. In a separate bowl mix 2 and 3/4 cups of whole wheat flour, two tablespoons of bran and two teaspoons of baking powder. Combine this mixture with the vegetables. Add one-half to one cup of water and mix well until the dough is moist but not wet. Knead the dough and roll it out.

Use a cookie cutter to create cookies in any shape you want, then bake them on a cookie sheet for 20 to 30 minutes at 350 degrees. This is a healthy and delicious treat for your dog.

We sincerely hope your dog will love these vegetarian dog food recipes.

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