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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 20615
Experience:  Hello, I am a small animal veterinarian and am happy to discuss any concerns & questions you have on any species.
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My American bulldog has had diarrhea past month and a half.

Customer Question

My American bulldog has had diarrhea for the past month and a half. 2 rounds of metronidazole and each time it gets better for a while than returns. If I feed him just white rice his stools get solid. When I add any protein source even quinoa it gets soft again. He is loosing weight like crazy and I have seen the vet several times. Do you have any experience with anything like this?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.

Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you with your wee one today.

What testing has your vet done? Any stool samples?

When was Casper last wormed?

Have any other treatments been used to reduce his diarrhea besides the antibiotics?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Took a blood sample to test his b-12 and his pancreas enzymes on Thursday still waiting for results. Before his last round of metronidazole he had an overgrowth of a bacteria normally found in his system at lower levels. The stool sample on Thursday looked normal as far as bacteria is concerned. He was dewormed about 2 months ago with panacur. I have tried kaopectate and different variations of bland diet ( rice & ground beef, rice & chicken, rice & eggs, and rice & kangaroo based kibble) the only thing that formed his stool has been rice alone. I added some quinoa and now his stool varies from diarrhea to firm throughout the day with rice and quinoa. He has went from a healthy 86 pounds to now 70 and dropping. His energy level seems good though. I am worried my buddy could crash at any time and am looking for any advice I can get to help his situation...? Any suggestions?
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.

Thank you,

Now it does sound like you have been very through and I am glad to hear that those tests are pending, as checking these are indicated here. This is because it sounds like instead of a more common infectious cause (ie pathogenic bacteria, viruses, protozoa, parasites); we have a maldigestion issue (ie exocrine pancreatic insufficiency, IBD, GI lymphoma, etc) or a possible bacterial overgrowth (small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, aka SIBO) with Casper.

Now I do think those results will direct how to approach this for Casper. Further to this, we may need to keep GI scoping in mind as a next step to obtain biopsies and rule out IBD or lymphoma (less likely at his age but possible). Though in the meantime, you could consider speaking to his vet abut supplementing Vitamin B (usually via injection) and considering trying him on an easy to digest diet (ie Hills I/D, Royal Canin Gastrointestinal or Sensitivity Control), a calorie dense diet (ie Hills A/D, Royal Canin Recovery) so we get some into him despite the diarrhea, or even a sterile protein diet like Hill's Z/D (More Info). As well, since you did see that previous bacteria overgrowth, you may want to consider trying him on probiotics. These can help maintain a normal gut population and may be ideal if one species is overgrowing among the others. As well, you can obtain canine probiotics in combination with Kaopectate in OTC preparations like Propectalin, Fast Balance, Prokolin, or Canikur. So, these could be used as well to address both angles at once.

Overall, his signs and test results thus far are more supportive of gut malabsorption or compromise from one of the above. Therefore, it sounds like you are on the right track but I would suggest the above while awaiting those results and do consider the Z/D as a means of getting protein into him without triggering his gut/malabsorption issues.

All the best for Casper,

Dr. B.