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Dr. Altman
Dr. Altman, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 11115
Experience:  Practicing small animal veterinarian for 17 years.
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I have a boston terrier and he has been to the vet ear

Customer Question

I have a boston terrier and he has been to the vet for mostly ear infections but for the last couple of years he has been having what seems to be digestive problems.Every few days or weeks,he won't eat dog food.He does NOT get table scraps or bones.He will go for say2 days not eating or drinking and then he will want food but not dog food or food I have prepared.Just cottage cheese.Please help.He is a rescue and around the age of 9 yrs.
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Altman replied 11 months ago.

Welcome to Justanswer! I am Dr. Altman and happy to assist you both today!

I am so sorry to hear Riley has had this recurring issue. My primary concern with his history of ear infections in the past and now repeating gi changes is food allergies. Unfortunately without an intestinal biopsy done during an episode either via endoscopy (camera through the throat/ stomach) or exploratory surgery this diagnosis would be very difficult to conclude.

Alternatives are going to include:

1.) Doing a food allergy trial. Surprisingly most food allergies are to the protein in diets not the grains so using a food that is specifically for this purpose, which is where the proteins are broken down beyond the point where the body recognizes the protein as beef, chicken, fish and monitor for improvement in signs. These foods include: royal canin h/p (hydrolyzed protein), hill's z/d ultra. This is not for sensitive stomachs which often include corn, chicken meal.

-During the food trial he cannot have anything besides these diets and this can be a two week trial. So no treats nor other foods. This is the best way to rule out food allergies

2.) Starting a probiotic from your veterinarian such as proviable which is a probiotic that has no meat based products in it.

3.) Unfortunately if the diarrhea does not change or becomes looser throughout the day then the recommendation is going to be more aggressive. Abdominal ultrasound to evaluate the thickness of the intestinal tract layers throughout and possible endoscopy/ colonoscopy to evaluate and biopsy the layers of the intestinal tract with a camera and without an invasive surgery

4.) It may require a course of steroids to suppress the immune response and increase appetite in order to allow Riley to show interest in the above foods and begin a food trial. Again without the option of biopsies this would be the best course of action to rule out my primary suspicion from what you describe.

I have a food allergy dog and this can be quite a challenging situation. She is on the royal canin h/p formula longterm and whenever she gets anything else she breaks with loose stools, sometimes vomiting as well :(

I hope this information makes sense but please let me know if you have any additional questions or concerns I can assist with!

If you have more questions or if I can help in any other way, please do not hesitate to ask! If you would like to accept my answer, please press RATE OUR CONVERSATION (I am not compensated in any other way). Bonuses are always welcome. Thanks!

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Expert:  Dr. Altman replied 11 months ago.

Please let me know if I can be of any further assistance to you both today!

If you are satisfied with our chat please rate or accept with the stars on the top of your screen so I may be compensated for my time. If you are having any difficulties you can also state your rating (excellent, good, fair) in our chat as an alternative. Thank you!

Expert:  Dr. Altman replied 10 months ago.
Hi,
I'm just following up on our conversation about Riley. How is everything going?
Dr. Altman