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New To Diet & Having Severe(?) Poop Issues


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#1
Erica

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Hello all, I am totally new to the diet and started out on this past Tuesday after doing about 1.5 weeks of research online and after THINKING I knew what I was doing I took the plunge cold turkey and now that we're having problems into the fourth day I am starting to get very concerned...

To make this short as possible, (probably won't) I'll get right to it: I have a 6 month old male boxer that was eating merrick grain free kibble. We switched the flavor every month with no issues up until last month when we started giving him the pork flavor..and his poop was never the same, coming out literally like soft serve every single time, and often. He would poop up to 4 times In one walk, each being softer and runnier and him straining more. Being frugal as we were, we decided that we would finish the bag and change the diet after that. Well, Max (the pup) had other ideas and didn't want to eat his food Tuesday morning so in the afternoon I gave him a few skinless boneless chicken breasts (3 of them) to see if he liked them and he gobbled them all down.

I read from various other sites for growing puppies it was ideal to give a higher percentage of food, and I couldn't remember what site it was that I found, but 4-8% was a good starter. Uhm, WRONG? I decided on 6% and that it was we have been feeding him wed-thurs. I have been feeding him breasts with bone, no skin, for every meal. I guess I didn't do my research well and now my poor little guy is suffering from over feeding :/ hopefully this is the cause, and nothing worse

He has been having poor results. The first night on wed he threw up 3 times, the first with bones and some yellow stuff, and the rest just water. He had diarrhea squirting out, but nothing explosive (we know when he has explosive, experienced once with treats containing grains) and the poop is runny, ranging from mucousy clear to light to dark brown (thank goodness nothing red or black, fingers crossed it doesn't come to this) and sometimes contains pieces of bone.

He hasn't thrown up since Wed but his poop continued like that without having to run outside until 2am this Friday morning when he couldn't hold it (took him out at 10pm night before)

Other than the poop that his been inconsistent, his character/appearance/attitude seems the same. He plays, happily goes on walks, and sleeps A LOT (he's always been like that, so weird for a boxer I know). My husband told me last night his coat feels oily?

I'm really hoping this is just detox but since we were over feeding him and we technically didn't fast him for a full day, his body is taking a heavy hit :( I'm just worried sick now because it's now approaching 3 days, any suggestions other than greatly reducing the amount were giving him (how much should I be giving him, he is lean and ate about 3-3 1/2 cups of kibble a day) and trying to avoid going to the vet? I mean I know I will have to if nothing works but if I can prolong all those bills then I will :(

Thanks in advance for any help ! I wish I had found this site sooner, more blame to myself since I was stuck on deciding between cooked, BARF and raw and came up with so many mixed results!

#2
Erica

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Oh, and I should mention that I've also even adding about a tbsp of coconut oil to each meal and have given about two thumb sized chicken livers already (not at the same time, once the first day, one last night)

And he's been having problems even eating. The first day he looked and sniffed and even started jumping at the bowl and barking at it , but eventually would try licking it down (he's a gulper) so we helped him out by hand feeding and he's not taking to the bones to well so I helped him chew the first day and this took up to an hour so now I've just been cleaving the meat and he eats everything up in less than 2 min..could this be the issue??

#3
GoingPostal

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Did you go up and read the getting started guide?  2% is what we recommend starting at and for a pup you would feed 2% of expected adult weight I believe, for the first week or so you usually want to feed a lower amount and you want to start with a boney cut like chicken quarters or backs with the skin removed, no boneless meat yet.  Fast him overnight and start again with backs if you can get them.  Don't add other meats, no organ meat, no oils, all that is going to do is cause digestive upset, you need to go slowly. 


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#4
Erica

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I don't know if I mentioned or not but I JUST found this site *cries* I know, I did my research in all the wrong sites. I read the whole entire guide after taking him out a couple hours ago and haven't been able to go back to sleep knowing how many mistakes I made, but time to stop beating myself up about it!

And I will start that immediately tonight, thanks for the info!!
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#5
Jordann

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Don't beat yourself up. There is so much info on the Internet, and so much contradicts each other! I was getting confused when I first started, then I found this site, and decided to stick with one website for the route of feeding I most bought into, and here we are 3 months into feeding. :)

Just start fresh, and put the last few days out of your mind. :)

Start out feeding bony chicken (backs, quarters, wings) because bone helps to firm poop up, as bone is a constipating agent, and you want that for the first few days to a week, to help their systems get used to the meat. Seeing bony poops is normal in the beginning. His body is adjusting to digesting the bone, but the amount of bone you see in his poops will gradually become less and less, as his body adjusts. It is also recommended to remove the skin and fat from the meat, as this can also cause digestive upset in the beginning. After a while (a week or so) you can start slowly leaving more and more skin and fat on the meat.

How often are you feeding him a day? Once, twice, three times? Puppies need to eat more often, than adults. I believe Natalie (owner of the site) suggests feeding 3 times a day. Her Dane just had puppies, so she has been a little busy with the litter, but she will be on as soon as things calm down. :)

I'm sure you saw in the getting started page, organs aren't added in until around 2 months. This is because organs are so rich.

Don't hesitate to ask as many questions as pop into your head. Everyone is here to help make your transition as smooth as possible!

Welcome to the forum! :)
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#6
GimMom

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Welcome to the PMR board, I'm Deb and I totally know what you're going through. I've had my share of ups and downs when I was starting out for the first time with my dog. Everyone makes mistakes, hell I was making big balls of ground meat with veggies in it and giving my Gimli all sorts of poop issues because there was no bone and I was overfeeding. It happens! But you've found us and we'll definitely do our best to help ya out :)

 

Definitely read the getting started guide. Bookmark it, because if you're like me, you'll be referring to it often while you're getting used to the diet. I'm over 8 months in and I still check it periodically if I'm not sure.

 

And like GoingPostal said, fast and go back to basics, no organs, supplements, or oils. Bone in chicken, skin and fat removed, and take it day by day. Once you see some consistent, firm poops, you can reduce bone and increase the meat, but do it slowly or you'll end up with the squishy stuff again. 

 

My dog had all sorts of issues before the switch, and went through a detox period where his yeasty ears got WORSE before they got better. But they are fully clear now (going from HAVING to clean DAILY, to cleaning once a month), just give it some time. He's now got normal ears, softer fur, and zero tartar on his teeth. It's worth it!


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#7
Erica

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Thanks for all the feedback everyone, I appreciate every bit of info :D Currently, Maximus has been down the whole day because I haven't fed him today (I usually feed him twice a day), however he DID have two solid poops this morning with a lot of bone of course, but he hasn't pooped any runny or mucous-y stuff since early in the morning (thank goodness that passed?!) He hasn't drank any water today so I hope he's not dehydrated .__. Hopefully this fast won't hurt him, he's such a dramatic little guy the faces he gives me pains me to see them :/

 

And I haven't been to more than two stores and I'm pretty sure the commissary on base has chicken backs but I do have quite a bit of chicken leg quarters for the week to get started back up right (this time lol). The breasts I gave him these past few days did have the skin removed but I didn't bother to take the fat just because his waist is really starting to show A LOT lately, he is so awkwardly shaped right now hehe, he is a teenager puppy after all.

 

I did have one question though - I'm a little confused as to how much to give him? I know the starter guide says to feed 2-3% of his ideal adult weight but I'm not a 100% sure what that would be since his dad was lean and tall (probably weighs anywhere from 75-85 lbs) and his mother short and stocky (50-55 lbs). I may be over reading it or the fact that I'm horrible with maths but just wanted to clear that up because it then talks about the puppy part with the 10lbs feed 1lb and then 18lbs something and ..whew too many numbers for me  :startle:  (my husband is the math guy, lol)



#8
GimMom

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How much does he weigh now? As far as I know, once they're past 5 months of age, you can drop to about 2-3% of their current weight. I'd double check with Natalie (PreyModelRaw) to be sure. 

 

Bone will be normal to see in the poops and hunger pukes until his gut gets adjusted to digesting raw bone. Mine puked and pooped bone in the beginning, too. That went away by the second week.

 

I'd keep up with the leg quarters until you've had a few days of non-mucous-y firm poops. Then you can try turkey necks for the next protein.



#9
Jordann

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When dogs get onto raw food, their water intake goes down. My boys used to clear a 5 gallon bucket in 2 days during the summer, and 4 days during the winter, but I had to use their food bowls for water, because the bucket would go 2 weeks without being emptied, and would start growing algae.

Was he excited to eat, now that mean old mama stopped fasting him? :P

Gorgeous boy, btw!!
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#10
Erica

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He weighs anywhere from 45-50 lbs, depending on what time of the day and he's turning 6 months tomorrow. I've been kind of eyeballing the 2% until my scale comes in which was supposed to come today!! But didn't :/ lazy mail man!!

I'll have to do a grocery run today because I have a few leg quarters left but I have about 6 lbs of half breasts w/ ribs - I tried looking up the bone % of it but I couldn't find that cut and it's frozen now so I can't really tell until I start chopping it up.

His poop has not been mucous-y or runny anymore, it was slightly soft last night & this morning but he still is straining a lot. He poops so much less already and idk if I should be alarmed or relieved!! Lol

And lastly, OMG you have no idea, he was THRILLED lol he actually chewed the bony parts instead of trying to lick the meat off (like he did the first day, hahah) annnd thank you, he is quite a looker ;D

#11
Prey Model Raw

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Welcome to the group, you've gotten some excellent advice so far. Just stick in out for the long term and you wont be disappointed! 


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#12
GimMom

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When dogs get onto raw food, their water intake goes down. My boys used to clear a 5 gallon bucket in 2 days during the summer, and 4 days during the winter, but I had to use their food bowls for water, because the bucket would go 2 weeks without being emptied, and would start growing algae.

Was he excited to eat, now that mean old mama stopped fasting him? :P

Gorgeous boy, btw!!

This is true. My new addition has only been on full raw one day, and his water intake is already down. He's not 100% housebroken, so this helps LOL



#13
Erica

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Yeah, so much for buying a bigger water bowl...we haven't filled it up for in the past couple days lol

 

It fills my heart with so much joy because now the little guy runs to his food bowl the second he hears it hit the floor ;') His poop has been solid with a wee bit of random mucous and stuff on the side in the mornings/day, but for some odd reason my husband always tell me it turns into complete 'nastiness', in his terms, at night!  I'm not saying I don't doubt him or anything but...maybe I should take him out at night to take a look see for myself lol

 

Gim- another benefit of raw feeding? hehehe :lol:


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#14
GoingPostal

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I would check on night time stool yourself, we have fed the dogs raw for a couple years now and my fiance still freaks out sometimes over silly stuff because he's not the one that researches or feeds them usually.  A few times I've come home and he's saved whatever "weird" thing the dogs pooped out or threw up that day because he is convinced they are dying.  Way overdramatic. :lol:


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#15
Erica

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:lol:  That's my situation EXACTLY! Well, minus saving the dog's poop, lol, but 100% agree on the whole he thinks he's dying part hahahah. The 2nd day he sent me a text in all caps saying 'NO MORE BONES HE THREW THEM ALL UP OMG THEY WERE SMALL PIECES AND SPLINTERED OMG'

 

I've been doing all the shopping, feeding, weighing, and monitoring, but I get a break at night...guess not anymore .__. lol

 

Never have a man do a woman's job, right? ;)


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#16
GoingPostal

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And right after I posted this one of the dogs swiped a piece of cheesecloth (full of chicken bits from last nights dinner) out of the trash and he ran over freaking out about why there was "gauze" in the garbage.  He jumps immediately to worse case scenario. 


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#17
GimMom

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Men do tend to freak out a lot easier. Mine freaked about the bones in the poop and bacteria and those "yellow puke pikes" (hunger pukes) and so on and so forth. He's actually gotten much better about everything, since I usually just try to explain whatever it is that's happening and why it's normal. Once they get used to the whole PMR thing, they stop being little girls about it. :P


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#18
GypsyShepherd

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Hello All,
Newbie here- planning to get my 8 month old GSD started on raw next week- am traveling for work this week and wont be around over the weekend so I want to make sure we start when I am there to monitor her on her first couple of days. I read the Getting Start guide and am looking to feed anywhere from 1.3-1.7lbs per day depending on her activity level (she is currently 60lbs) expecting her to gain another 10-15 lbs.

 

I already have my shopping list of chicken backs and chicken quarters down- just a quick question. I notice that Gypsy tends to gulp her food down and doesn't really chew- any advice on how to get her to start CHEWING? Should I freeze the chicken backs before I give them to her to encourage chewing?

 

Any advice would help!!



#19
Jordann

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Feeding partially or fully frozen food makes them need to chew their food, so you could try that. Also, feeding larger pieces will help to make her chew. Dogs don't chew their food like we do, so as long as she chomps a few times before swallowing, you should be fine. :)

Erica, glad your boy is doing well! No breaks for you, it sounds like! lol I love how fast the poop breaks down, now. Before it wouldn't break down, no matter how long it was left out ... Now after 4-5 days, it just crumbles. I love it!! The poops have been my favorite part of this transition! lol

#20
Erica

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:lol:  Hahhahah, I try to explain things to him and he just makes this uneasy look and goes, "as long as you know what you're doing..." He'll learn one day the in's and out's but as long as I'm doing the work he seems content with my shenanigans lol

 

And hello Gypsy, welcome! :D To help my pup learn to chew, I held one end of the leg (since it's the easiest bone to hold) while the other end was in his mouth. Well actually, he was unsure about what to do with the bone so I had to first stick it in his mouth because he tried to lick the meat off until he realized it wasn't doing anything hehehe. After fasting him for one day he learned that he had to chew and now he loves it. Even after he learned to chew he has a tendency to swallow the pieces that hardly have any bone so I'll have to try out the freeze for a few hours before feeding him thing.

 

Thank you Jordann! :) Speaking of his poops, Goingpostal, I took him out last night and it WAS solid. I told my husband "Idk what they looked like the other nights but those were some hardy little rocks that came out" but maybe I should stop giving him such a hard time because for some odd reason the little guy has problems real early in the morning (from 3-6am) This is probably the 4th night (not in a row) that he couldn't hold it and went in the house, this time in our bedrooom (!) and it was pretty soft. We would hear him get up from his bed but neither one of us heard him get up this time and he usually tries to wake us up by licking or pawing us in the face but he just...went. I wonder why it's just that ONE POOP in the early hours that messes him up. Other than these accidents, he's housebroken plus since Saturday everything's solid so something's not sitting right with him at those hours of the day.


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