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Dr. Kara
Dr. Kara, Board Certified Veterinarian
Category: Vet
Satisfied Customers: 17885
Experience:  Over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian.
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French bulldog pup diarrhea and bloated belly

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I bought my French bulldog puppy on Friday, the breeder gavee royal kanine puppy food and saches of cat food for her to eat? He said the cat feed is good for them? I gave her a little royal kanine biscuits and a small amount of Kat meat/ fish for a few days but somebody told me cat food is bad for them? So now im just feeding her royal kanine busits, but for the last few days she's has had diarrhea and tonight she seems very bloated and is bringing her hind legs in as is she is in pain, she is not greedy with her food and I haven't over fed her? Have you any advise?she was wormbed yesterday and is also eating her poo  Many thanks Lucy

Hello, my name isXXXXX and I have over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian. I'd like to help with your concerns about feeding Peggy and her current abdominal discomfort.

Cats and dogs are quite different as far as their nutritional needs. Cats are true carnivores (meat eaters) and dogs are omnivores (eating a variety of foods including meat, vegetables and grains) like we are. I do not recommend feeding dogs cat food or vice versa as they are not formulated for the different species. I suspect that the breeder uses cat food to stimulate the puppies to eat well, especially when they are stressed and going to new homes.

If your puppy is used to getting canned food though (which is very high in moisture content) Peggy may not be drinking enough to replace the fluids her body is used to and that can lead to constipation. And the change in diet formulation without the canned food, as well as the stress of a new home and gastrointestinal parasites can lead to diarrhea.

If she is eating her stools that can lead to her reinfesting herself with gastrointestinal parasites which can lead to loose stools.

I understand that she was wormed yesterday too. You don't say what worming medication is used but they can cause gastrointestinal cramps, nausea and diarrhea.

At home today to settel her stomach and help reduce cramping you can give either:
1)Pepcid ac (famotidine) at ¼ of a 10mg tablet per 2 to 4 kilograms of body weight every 12 hours
2)Prilosec (omeprazole) at ¼ of a 10mg tablet per 2 to 4 kilograms of body weight every 24 hours
These are acid reducers and should help her feel better.

To further decrease the symptoms of stomach upset you can feed her a bland diet for the next several days. A homemade bland diet is a mix of 1/3 boiled, minced, white skinless chicken or lean, boiled hamburger, all fats and juices drained off the meat, and 2/3 boiled, plain, white rice mixed with some low salt chicken or beef broth to make it easy to lap up and swallow and get in plenty of fluids. Feed small meals frequently.

Signs that things aren't going well, and she needs an immediate veterinary visit, are vomiting, a tense painful belly, lack of an appetite even after the acid reducers are given, a fever (more than 103.5F rectally) and lethargy.

Once she's feeling well then start mixing in what will be her regular food, adding a little more regular and less bland at each meal. It should take a week to get her converted back to regular food. You might want to use a canned puppy food to add to the dry, at least initially, and then slowly decrease the amount over time if you don't want to feed canned long term.

Many dogs are drawn to eating feces. In most cases it doesn't mean that they are lacking any thing in their diet or that there is anything wrong with them.
Because the foods that we feed our dogs are so high in nutrition all of the nutrients aren't necessarily used (especially when feeding cat food) and the stool may smell pretty good to your puppy, not much different from food. Some animals, like rats and mice routinely eat feces as a food source if given the chance.

If she is highly food driven she simply finds feces as a treat.

It certainly isn't a great habit for her as it is a way of reinfesting herself with gastrointestinal parasites and introducing more bacteria into her oral cavity.

There isn't much that you can do about her habit except not allowing her access to her stools. In highly food driven dogs even a severe scolding or punishing her won't be enough to counteract what she feels is the positive reinforcement of finding food.

There are products out, such as Forbid which make the stool taste bad but this doesn't always dissuade all dogs or sometimes they only stop while on the supplement. You can try them, and they may train her well enough to stop for a while but this way be something that you may need to use on and off wit her to reinforce the lesson.

In most cases this is a behavioral issue however in some dogs it is a sign of malabsorption/maldigestion or underlying diseases associated with her gastrointestinal tract. If she is especially thin I would highly recommend having her checked by your family veterinarian.

Please let me know if you have any further questions.
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Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thanks for your advise were can I get the pepicide or prilosec from? Many thanks Lucy

You are very welcome. Both Prilosec and Pepcid are over the counter medications (no prescription needed) that you can pick up at any drug store. Please let me know how your little one does or if you have any further questions, Dr. Kara.