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Unread 03-23-2010, 12:03 AM   #1
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Default Firming up loose stools

I am still struggling with finding the right formula to give Ricky firm bowel movements.
I cooked him a chicken and mixed it with cooked rice. When fed this only, he poops nice and firm.
When adding half Lamb & Rice Kirkland kibbles it gets too soft again.
Suspecting the lamb may be too rich for him, I bought a bag of Chicken & Rice as well now, and am phasing it in slowly.
So now he gets a cup of kibbles (Chicken & Rice and Lamb & Rice) and a cup of cooked rice and chicken.
The lamb is the smallest part of the mix now, and still I can't get the firmness I like to see.
It may sound trivial to some of you, but I just happen to think that permanent soft stool indicates some kind of digestive disorder, and may eventually cause problems of one sort or another.
Please, I want my dog to be as healthy as he can be, and appreciate any help and advice I can get to achieve that.

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Unread 03-23-2010, 06:57 AM   #2
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You might try adding a tablespoon of canned unspiced pumpkin to the diet - this can help firm up loose stools.

ETA: since there were several posts in a row about loose stools as opposed to vagreys kibble grading system, I split them off into this thread.
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Unread 03-23-2010, 10:37 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skunkstripe View Post
You might try adding a tablespoon of canned unspiced pumpkin to the diet - this can help firm up loose stools.
Thanks, I'll try that. I suppose fresh, cooked pumpkin may have similar value?

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Unread 03-23-2010, 11:28 AM   #4
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Yes I just mention the canned because fresh pumpkin may only be available in some parts of the world or at certain times of the year.
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Unread 03-23-2010, 11:39 AM   #5
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Quote:
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Thanks, I'll try that. I suppose fresh, cooked pumpkin may have similar value?
Pumpkin is great for binding things back up again when they get loose.

And concerning the stools being loose on a food, tends to indicate that the food itself is not suited for the dog. They are not able process it fully for one reason or another. Could be that it's too rich, could be that one has to feed a higher amount to maintain weight than the digestive tract can process in time, could be an ingredient that doesn't agree them with for some reason... so, if it were me I would slowly look for another dog food. Don't change too frequently! Give it time to adjust before being certain it's not working. There are loads of good dogfood out there for a reason, one formula works wonders for a dog while another dog might not be able to stomach it at all. There are a load of factors involved. It has taken me a couple of shots to settle on Solid Gold's Barking at the Moon for Ash and Parker. For them the main formula, Hundenflocken, gave them terrible gas! Yet I know many dogs who are on the same formula and they are not walking gas factories. It's all down to the individual dog.
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Unread 03-23-2010, 12:24 PM   #6
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I'll third the vote for pumpkin.

And add a note about storing the unused portion. MacKenzie only needs a serving of two tablespoons every once in a while so I take the rest of the can and freeze it in ice cube trays.

Each 'cube' is equal to about a tablespoon. Once the tray is frozen I pop them out and toss them in a zippered freezer bag in the freezer, ready for the next time I need them.

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Unread 03-23-2010, 12:33 PM   #7
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Also younger dogs often have more loose stool cause they are higher in excitement in average. All my dogs get loose stool when they been through something that STRESSES them. Example does he have separation anxiety? Or does he gets too excited when he sees other dogs? In that case it might not be the food at all but environmental. You have to take that into consideration too. Might also be worms but due to how through you seem I suspects he's been wormed sufficiently
also you might be feeding him too much, when I feed Missy too much she wasnt really fat, just a tad porky as I like my bullies but she had loose stool and went very often. Lessen the amount and put her in her slender weight fixed a big part of the stool issue. Covering my window so she couldn't see the neighbors dogs fixed the environmental part of it. So look at the whole picture, might be more to it than just the food.. Good luck
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Unread 03-23-2010, 04:28 PM   #8
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Great suggestion, Kenzie's Mom!

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Unread 03-23-2010, 04:47 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Monkey View Post
Also younger dogs often have more loose stool cause they are higher in excitement in average.
No kidding, Ricky is hyper-hyper (part Boxer!) We suspected that to be the cause a long time ago, because at the dog park he always had the runs. But he even poops soft now when there seems to be no mental reason for it.
Quote:
also you might be feeding him too much
Well, not according to him we are!
and he is still a growing boy.
Quote:
Covering my window so she couldn't see the neighbors dogs fixed the environmental part of it.
Hell, I might as well gouge his eyes out! He is a sight hound, for heaven's sake, and watching stuff going on outside is his life!
Alright, joking aside, thank you for all the good suggestions, and I am going to try all of them (well, not taking the view away from him!). He has a good slim figure, but I could try reducing his food to the point when he scares me with his ribs showing. I am only concerned about shorting him on nutrition while he is still growing. He is just a year old now, and should still fill in at the shoulders and butt. And he DOES work out regularly:
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Unread 04-19-2010, 06:55 PM   #10
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Loose stools could be from an intolerance of some ingredient in the food but most often it is from feeding too much. I have seen people switch from one brand to another to another to another and never look at the ingredient list. I assure you that no dog is allergic to a "brand." If it is caused from the food (and often it is not) it is a specific ingredient or ingredients in the food and switching to another brand with the same ingredients will not help. People who say that a food is "too rich" are almost always feeding "too much." The suggested amount on the bag is just that, a suggestion. It is not an exact science. One of my dogs eats half what the bag suggests, the other eats about what the bag suggests. If your dog has loose stools or often doesn't eat all of his food you are probably giving him too much.

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