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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Board Certified Veterinarian
Category: Vet
Satisfied Customers: 24518
Experience:  General practice veterinary surgeon with extensive experience in a wide range of species.
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our dog is 15 years old & has inflammatory disease, colitis,

Customer Question

dog is 15 years old & has inflammatory disease, colitis, grumbly tummy & sickness. (diagnosed after biopsies 2004) at diagnoses he was having bouts every 2-3 months. since living in Germany bouts went down to every 12-18 months, which remained the case until this year. Treatment was buscopan injections & tablets. our vets insist on treating him with metronidasole antibiotics (I have many arguements with them as they don't usually check his temp before prescribing) so 1don't know if he has an infection & 2 antibiotics kill of good bacteria in gut..FACT. in humans used for clostridium dificile. which has always confused me as abuse of antibiotics is whats caused the problem in first place.

He's had 2 bouts in last 2 months. he's had yellow diarrhoea for last 2 weeks despite metronidosole, salazopyrin & canigest

Barney is neutered, has multiple allergies, arthritis & other age related problems. other meds regularly taken are cosequin & herbal remedies (since 2005)

Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Vet
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 5 years ago.

Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you with your wee one today. I do apologize that your question was not answered before. Different experts come online at various times; I just came online, read about your wee one’s situation, and wanted to help.

Now I must say that I cannot quite see a specific question in your history. Still I suspect your confusion is related to the use of Metronidazole and I will touch on that now. If you have any other questions, then just reply and let me know.

Now where I think you may be getting confused is that you are only know Metronidazole as an antibiotic. Of course it is; but it is more than that and when we use it in IBS patients we are not really using it for its anti-bacterial properties. Instead, we are using it for its GI immunomodulating effects. This effect of the drug is often useful in autoimmune GI conditions because it can reduce signs and inflammation and is safer then steroids.Tylosin is another antibiotic that shares this dual function. So, while it is an antibiotic and used as such most often; Metrondidazole has an additional function that makes it useful in inflammatory GI disease.

Now further to the treatments you are using, I agree that we need to be supporting the good GI bacterial microflora. And this is something that can be done while you are using drugs that may impact that population. There are a range of dog probiotics and GI supplements on the market. The one I tend to use for general GI issues if Fortiflora (More Info) or if my patient has diarrhea then I will use Protexin Prokolin, as this contains the GI microflora support we want but also has a dog safe anti-diarrhea (kaolin) to slow the diarrhea and prevent secondary nutrient or hydration loss.

So, while it may seem that the vets are dishing out antibiotics without confirming infection, it is not quite as it seems. Instead, they are likely using this particular drug (as they use the salazopyrin) to reduce the GI inflammation and settle the local immune reaction within the gut.

I hope this information is helpful.

If you need any additional information, do not hesitate to ask!

All the best,

Dr. B.


If you have any other questions, please ask me – I’ll be happy to respond. Please remember to rate my service once you have all the information you need. Thank you and hope to see you again soon! : )

Customer: replied 5 years ago.

his metronidasole & salazopyrin finish tomorow & he still has no improvement in symptoms

Expert:  Dr. B. replied 5 years ago.

Hi Tracy,

If he has no improvement on treatment, then we definitely want to revisit his vet and have them reassess him. I do think probiotics and GI microflora support would be indicated for your lad. As well, I would also suggest considering taking a fecal sample in (this can be tested to determine if there is an infectious agent being missed ...not just bacterial, but also parasitic or protozoal). That way, you can just make sure that you aren't missing something here before potentially trying him on stronger anti-inflammatory GI treatments (like steroids). And if an opportunistic agent is found on fecal, then you will be in the position to know what it is and to therefore target treatment effectively for him.

All the best,

Dr. B.


If you have any other questions, please ask me – I’ll be happy to respond. Please remember to rate my service once you have all the information you need. Thank you and hope to see you again soon! : )