Opie’s Tummy Troubles — A Mystery — SOLVED!


Be advised this posting will contain Too Much Information about Dog Poo so if you are eating lunch reading my blog… well you’ve been warned.

Opie was having a time with his tummy.  The first week we had him he had a case of the runs and threw up twice. This sent us to the  Animal Hospital’s ER.  We could only speculate about what caused his problem.  He had more than one test of his poo to see what was going on. Luckily, he was  negative for all the big bad stuff.   The vet put  him  on an antibiotic, pro-biotic powder and Vet only prescription pet food.  Guess what? Opie didn’t like the food.  He ate it, but he always left a little.   He’d never left it before.  At my wit’s end,  I decided to do some Internet  research on  tummy remedies.

Here is a summary of my Internet research results

Some dog owners swear by the boiled chicken and rice diet.  Some have even boiled hamburger meat as well. The common denominator is rice.  There are others who swear by the use of canned pumpkin, not pumpkin pie, but just the pure vegetable.  Some of the same owners also suggest a little Pepto Bismol or Kaopectate to soothe a bubbly doggy tummy.  Most of them qualify these remedies with a suggestion to check with your vet to make sure that your dog does not have something really awful.  The other night when I was teaching my online class, my students even had suggestions.  They were firm believers in the chicken and rice diet, but cautioned me to be certain that my dog didn’t have anything life threatening.   My children’s nanny suggested a remedy that we both have used on the kids when they were similarly afflicted. Can you guess what it was?


My Next Step

So what was my next step? Well, I didn’t dose him with Pepto Bismol.  I don’t dose my kids with that stuff. We’ve always used the rice and apple sauce/banana remedy. Nothing works quite like a banana.   I didn’t want to mix chemicals in an already sensitive belly.  I have no doubt that the pet owners were sincere in their belief in Pepto method.  I have heard it from others as well. However,  I’d rather not mix prescribed medication with over the counter stuff unless I have the doctor’s permission.  I see this as a something to do if  less radical measures don’t work.

I would have given him some banana but Opie does not have a sweet tooth.  He sniffed the banana I offered him and looked at me as if to say, “You eat it, crazy lady. I’m not eating it!”  I think he considered snarling at me when I dumped pumpkin in his plate.  I swear he looked at me and said “YUCKY!!!!!”  There is nothing quite so obvious as doggy disgust.

I mixed his prescription dog food with a half portion of rice. He was supposed to get one-third of the can. I gave him one sixth and filled in the other sixth with rice.  To make certain that he ate all the rice I sprinkled the new meal with some chicken broth.  He cleaned his plate. More importantly, the effect was immediate. 

SUCCESS!!!!  No more soft serve poo!  YIPPEE!

However, like any good scientist, I like to see a repetition of test results. So he had the same meal for dinner. The next morning…soft serve again.  Okay, well, maybe the rice just needs more time to work.  That evening… same result.  Okay what now?  Can you feel my confusion and consternation. The boys were getting tired of walking the dog with poop bags and paper towels to leave neighbor and city grounds in a pristine condition.

Back to the Drawing Board

Back to the drawing board!  We went back to the straight Vet’s diet — antibiotic pill ( We never stopped. ), pro-biotic powder ( We never stopped that either) and 1/3 can of the Vet prescribed food. Result …. slightly stiffer poo.  Okay, so now we have the first day of good poo morning and evening.   Did the vet food just need more time to work? Did the rice finally kick in?  Did the pro-biotic stuff finally kick in? Or did whatever was causing the problem in the first place finally work its way out? 

We ran out of Vet food.  Now what?

After several days on vet food and long conversations with various dog owners, we decided we needed to try something different. I’d read on the Internet that it sometimes took dogs months to get used to certain foods. I’d also read that Yorkies and Schnauzers were known for their sensitive stomachs. Wow, this dog is more like  me than you can imagine!   Maybe there was too much moisture in the canned food.  We conferred with a nice girl at Centinela Pet and Feed and decided to try California Natural- a low ingredient dry food made for dogs with sensitive bellies and allergy issues. It was also easier on our pocket-book than the Vet food. Instead of mixing the food in with the remaining vet food we started him cold turkey on the dry.

That evening he was fine. We had good success. Not only was the poo good, but we could now use comparisons to playdoh to talk about its consistency. Was it fresh playdoh or dried playdoh?  TMI — remember I warned you!

This went on for days. We were finally happy. However, Opie wasn’t all that keen on the food.  He kept leaving 1/2 of it. We knew we weren’t over feeding.  We measure his food out in our old Weight Watcher Measuring cups ( they have a nice long handle!)  He was still not getting any snacks or treats during the day. He should have been hungry enough to eat it all.

Finally, of course we ran out of that bag of food.  Yes did we change.  Isn’t it normal to want your “kids” to eat the food you make for them?  I bend over backwards to make healthy food my kids will eat. Did we owe Opie any less?  We wanted his doggy taste buds to be happy as well as his doggy belly.  Besides, we wonder if the whole problem couldn’t be laid on wet canned food.  We jumped ship from the low ingredient California Natural and jumped back to Innova for adult dogs.  He’d been on the Puppy kibble before.

How’s it going? 

As Tony the Tiger would say… GRRRRReat!

Tummy trouble solved. Opie is perfectly happy with dry food and so are we. No more paper towel need to be carried with the poop bags and that makes everyone happy! Best of all, he cleans his plate!


About Opie and Opie's Mom

Snorkie with attitude. My mom writes about me and sometimes she lets me write something too. I was rescued July 11, 2010! I am so happy! I love my family and I hate squirrels. I don't know any cats but the neighborhood cats are fun to bark at. Read Opie's Mom's Blog to find out more about me. View all posts by Opie and Opie's Mom

3 responses to “Opie’s Tummy Troubles — A Mystery — SOLVED!

  • The Simple Life of a Country Man's Wife

    I’ve had to do this with my pups as well. The washed-off brown hamburger did the trick! Glad Opie is feeling better!

  • lillij

    Thanks for visiting my site! Love your Yorki pups. They are super cute.

  • sagechronicles

    Hi, Opie!! I’m so sorry you had a tummy-ache. I bet that’s no fun. My Mom always uses rice and a little cottage cheese (the nonfat variety). That always worked for Toby and his sister Maggie (I never got to meet her). I haven’t had a tummy-ache yet–Mom says I have a caste iron stomach–but I’ll bet that’s what I get if I do.

    And I LOVE bananas. You just have to give them a try–they are really good. Mom just gives us a slice or two though, but that’s OK!

    I’m so glad you are better!

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