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Max, Diet, Oxalate Uroliths, "Gall Bladder Attacks"



 
 
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  #1  
Old July 17th 03, 04:42 AM
Rene
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Default Max, Diet, Oxalate Uroliths, "Gall Bladder Attacks"


"Marshall Dermer" wrote in message
...
Althought this is about health, I am posting to two dog groups
because this is where I had discussed these topics before.

Max is about 6 years old and because he had calcium
oxalate uroliths he was placed on Hills Canine U/D kibble
which we hydrated before serving.

After about four months on the diet, Max started
developing symptoms much like gall-bladder attacks. This
would involve vomiting in the morning and his
progressively either "shutting down," or moving from place
to place as if he could not find a comfortable position.
Other behavior included an elevated body temperature,
panting, and shivering.

These behaviors suggest that Max was in pain. The symptoms
would resolve on their own within 12 hrs and he would have
these attacks about once every four weeks. His latest
attack, however, was one week after a previous attack.

Max's vet ran numerous tests including a sonogram, put Max
on Pepcid AC for a month, but the attacks continued.
Eventually, the vet reluctantly suggested exploratory
surgery though he thought bringing Max to the University
of Wisconsin Veterinary School to be checked by internists
was a good idea.

We decided to first try one medication and alter Max's
diet. The medication is Actigal which is supposed to clean
out Max's gall bladder as well as liver and ducts. He has
been on this medication for one week.

We also discontinued the Hills U/D because it is a high fat
diet: at least 17.5% fat.

Amy Dahl brought Strombeck's _Home-Prepared Dog & Cat
Diets: The Healthful Alternative_ to our attention.

http://shop.store.yahoo.com/isupress/0813821495.html

The book presents two diets for dogs who have had
calcium uroliths. It took me a while: to find bone meal
without much lead (see KAL Bone Meal Powder), to learn
to put the food in a processor and whip it up well
for otherwise Max's bowel movements are loose, and to
serve the food in little balls for otherwise Max's Havanese
beard becomes all gummed up.

The effort at the home diet appears worthwhile.

Max clearly prefers the black-eyed pea/brown rice diet to
Hill's U/D. Moreover, the PH of his urine is 7 which is
about the same PH on the U/D but is far more basic than
when he developed stones. The home-made diet is also low
on added sodium chloride and surely lower in fat than U/D.
Also, the diet is low in oxalate. Finally, perhaps because
the food contains so much water, his urine looks more
dilute than on the U/D.

I have copied the recipes from Strombeck's book and
modified them for the KAL Bone Meal Powder, but if you
are thinking about putting your dog on one of these diets then
you really should read much, though not all, of the book
because the information you will need is scattered
throughout the book. For example, Max is also given
about 1/10 of a human multi-vitamin per day and once
a month some vitamin B-12.

We'll just have to see how things work out. Will the
attacks disappear or will have to take Max to the
university hospital?

--Marshall


Congratulations Marshall, on giving a home prepared diet a try! I hope
everything works out for your Max. Keep us posted!

René


  #2  
Old July 17th 03, 04:51 AM
Marshall Dermer
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Default

In article "Rene"
writes:

Congratulations Marshall, on giving a home prepared diet a try! I hope
everything works out for your Max. Keep us posted!

René


Thanks for the good wishes Rene.

Amy Dahl made this point to me. Hills Canine U/D is made for
various urninary tract problems and may not be ideal for
every problem.

Also, just for the record, the veterinarian does not believe
that the food has anything to do with Max's problem. There
certainly was a long delay, about 4 months, between introducing
the U/D and Max having his first attack.

Again, thanks for the good wishes Rene.

--Marshall
  #3  
Old July 17th 03, 01:10 PM
Pennie
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"Rene" said:

Congratulations Marshall, on giving a home prepared diet a try! I hope
everything works out for your Max. Keep us posted!


Ditto Rene's comments Marshall =) I'm glad you've found something
that's working for Max.

Pennie

Let Food Be Our Medicine.
-Hippocrates
  #4  
Old July 17th 03, 03:54 PM
Marshall Dermer
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Thanks Pennie.

Max had some gas when we started this black-eyed pea/brown rice
diet but he no longer has gas.

The real issue for us right now is whether his "attacks" will
continue. If they abate we won't know if it is due to the Actigal
or the diet. We'll, of course, discontiune the Acitgal at a cost
of about $1.35/pill/day. :-)

As for the diet, cooking the food takes some time but he
really likes it. To put this another way, with the Canine U/D
he would take a piece of kibble out of the bowel and move
it several feet away. He would do this with many pieces until he
would begin eating.

I never thought much of this until I remembered that rats scatter
their food when the smell of a newly introduced food has been
correlated with delayed poisoning. Of course, I am not saying
the canine u/d is poison. :-)

--Marshall


In article
writes:
Ditto Rene's comments Marshall =) I'm glad you've found something
that's working for Max.

Pennie

Let Food Be Our Medicine.
-Hippocrates



  #5  
Old July 17th 03, 07:20 PM
Rene
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Default


"Marshall Dermer" wrote in message
...
In article "Rene"
writes:

Congratulations Marshall, on giving a home prepared diet a try! I hope
everything works out for your Max. Keep us posted!

René


Thanks for the good wishes Rene.

Amy Dahl made this point to me. Hills Canine U/D is made for
various urninary tract problems and may not be ideal for
every problem.

Also, just for the record, the veterinarian does not believe
that the food has anything to do with Max's problem. There
certainly was a long delay, about 4 months, between introducing
the U/D and Max having his first attack.

Again, thanks for the good wishes Rene.

--Marshall


Since you are taking more "natural" steps to finding relief for Max, I
thought I would put a bug in your ear. I have a book "Four Paws, Five
Directions" by Cheryl Schwartz which is a guide to Chinese Medicine for dogs
and cats. In the liver/gall bladder section, there is a description that is
fairly close to what's going on with Max. If you have a vet near you that
practices Chinese Medicine, it may be worth a try? From reading your posts,
I suspect you don't believe in alternative treatments but are sometimes
willing to try something different. This book is the only reading I have
done on TCM and it is quite interesting. My holistic vet (who sold me the
book), uses TCM above all other modalities.

Since, I think, this all started with urinary tract infections, here is some
info on UTI from the book above (some of it will not make sense, such as
meridians, yin/yang and heat/fire, unless you know about the Five Element
theory): "Western medicine sees bladder infections as being caused by
either bacteria or diets that create crystals in the urine which inflame the
bladder lining. The condition is almost always treated with antibiotics,
and if the inflammation is severe, cortisone is also used. The diet is
usually changed to a prescription type diet, creating thirst and promoting
urine formations. Many animals respond favorable to this course of
treatment, with only occasional bouts of urinary flare-ups, which are once
again treated with medications.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine, problems with the urinary bladder usually
fall under the categories of heat or damp heat. Whether pathogens are
present or not, it is the underlying constitution of the individual which
has made the animal vulnerable to bladder weakness.
Heat, or inflammatory conditions, usually arise from a dryness of lack of
moisture stemming from a kidney yin deficiency previously discussed. Kidney
yin deficiency leads to a lack of urine production, because not enough fluid
is being manufactured within the body. Since the kidney and bladder are
supposed to control the heart and small intestine in the Five Element
Control Cycle, when the kidney is weak, these fire organs create more heat
in the body. The scanty urine that is formed is highly concentrated and
hot, causing burning on the inside of the bladder wall or in the lining of
the urethra as it leaves the bladder. This can make the animal wince or cry
out either when passing the urine or just afterwards. Cats may run to try
to get away from the pain, or scratch furiously in the litter box in an
attempt to distract themselves. Due to their extreme discomfort, they may
be irritable and intolerant of their housemates. If the yin is sufficiently
low, some blood may be present in the urine.
Traditional Chinese Medicine treats these conditions by changing the diet to
cooling or yin nurturing foods as well as with herbs that clear fire,
restore the yin and restore the calming quality of the heart.
Damp heat situations are more severe than heat situations. In addition to
the kidney and heart meridians, when dampness enters the picture, the spleen
and the liver are also involved. A heat condition results from a fluid or
yin deficiency. Damp heat conditions usually arise from a kidney yang
deficiency that affects the spleen. As a result, the spleen cannot process
the moisture from food and the tissues become water-logged, causing a
feeling of heaviness and bloating. Moisture tends to sink to the lower part
of the body, creating stagnation in the bladder area.
When there is stagnation, the liver becomes involved and pockets of cold and
heat can develop because the movement of the fluid is blocked. Pain and the
frequent urge to urinate usually results. If the heat becomes severe, there
will be blood in the urine and it will be foul smelling or turbid. When the
urine is retained for long periods of time because of the stagnation or
because the animal doesn't want to experience the pain of passing it,
crystals can develop. Crystal, stone and sand formation are considered
stagnant damp heat situations by TCM.
Gravel and stones cause further inflammation, and if they block the urethra,
the urine becomes backed up. In situations of damp heat, there is usually
diarrhea, possibly with mucous or blood. The tongue is very moist, almost
swollen, with teeth imprints along its side edges."

I hope you did not find the above too boring. To me, it is very
interesting. According to this, your dog needs cooling foods. (Proteins:
clam, duck, egg, pork. Grains: millet, barley, wheat. Vegetables: lettuce,
celery, broccoli, spinach, tomato, napa cabbage). Treatments usually
involve accupuncture as well.

René



  #6  
Old July 17th 03, 11:06 PM
Marshall Dermer
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

In article "Rene"
writes:
Since you are taking more "natural" steps to finding relief for Max, I
thought I would put a bug in your ear. I have a book "Four Paws, Five
Directions" by Cheryl Schwartz which is a guide to Chinese Medicine for dogs
and cats. In the liver/gall bladder section, there is a description that is
fairly close to what's going on with Max. If you have a vet near you that
practices Chinese Medicine, it may be worth a try? From reading your posts,
I suspect you don't believe in alternative treatments but are sometimes
willing to try something different.

I hope you did not find the above too boring. To me, it is very
interesting. According to this, your dog needs cooling foods. (Proteins:
clam, duck, egg, pork. Grains: millet, barley, wheat. Vegetables: lettuce,
celery, broccoli, spinach, tomato, napa cabbage). Treatments usually
involve accupuncture as well.

René


Dear Reni,

Thanks so much for taking the time to type in all that text. When
given a choice between Eastern and Western medicine I will go
with the Western Medicine.

Max has had calcium oxalte uroliths. The diets that are associated
with the lowest reoccurrence of these uroliths is low in protein,
low in sodium chloride, and low in oxalates.

http://www.ccjm.org/pdffiles/HALL1102.PDF

The list which you kindly entered contains many protein sources and foods like
wheat and celery that are high in oxalates.

Thanks again for your concern and efforts,


--Marshall
  #8  
Old July 18th 03, 03:56 PM
Gwen Watson
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Default



Marshall Dermer wrote:

Max has had calcium oxalte uroliths. The diets that are associated
with the lowest reoccurrence of these uroliths is low in protein,
low in sodium chloride, and low in oxalates.

http://www.ccjm.org/pdffiles/HALL1102.PDF

The list which you kindly entered contains many protein sources and foods like
wheat and celery that are high in oxalates.

Thanks again for your concern and efforts,

--Marshall


Marshall I am glad you have found a diet that is helping Max. I hope
he continues to show much improvement.

Gwen


  #9  
Old July 19th 03, 04:22 AM
Marshall Dermer
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Default

In article
writes:

Wow, at least the Actigal has gone down in price since Chase had to
take it when she had liver disease. 2 years ago the cheapest I could
get it was 6.00 a pill.


Well, Max weighs in at 18 lbs. How much does Chase weigh.

When our last dog died, some 17 years ago, the vet suggested
that we get a smaller dog because among other things the
dog's meds would cost less.

He did not, however, mention that A PURE-BREED DOG MIGHT
BE MORE LIKELY TO HAVE HEALTH PROBLEMS THAN A MIXED-BREED.
(Do you think the assertion in upper-case letters is true?)

Our previous dog, Girl, was apparently a labXGSD. I had found
her on campus, brought her to the humane society, but no one
claimed her so we adopted her. She was about 6 years old. (I had
no idea how dogs lived.) She lived 7 more years and I guess died
of cancer at 13. Although she had a few problems as
she grew older, they were treated with estrogen (urination)
and testosterone (She had trouble climbing stairs when she was
about 11).

I really could only buy a weeks worth at a
time, but it seemed to help.
I'll be interested in hearing how he does once you stop the Actigall,
you'll have to let us know.


Yes, I wonder about this too. As I noted the vet really could not
specify the particular problem. The Agtical was an "educated guess."
His previous "educated guess" was Pepcid AC.

These attacks occur with about once every 30 days although the interval was
only two weeks between the last two attacks. Between attacks my dog is quite
frisky.

As for the diet, cooking the food takes some time but he
really likes it.


I'm so happy you've found something Max really likes, and is good for
him too. Keep us posted.


OK Pennie and thanks for your interest.

--Marshall

PS: One great part about Max's new diet is that I can eat the food too.
I was looking for a protein source for dinner this evening and
I decided to have: black-eyed peas and brown rice! I can even
eat Max's food with the bone meal, salts, and olive oil. I guess
I could have eaten the Hills U/D but I'm not a big fan of
pork or "pork digest."
  #10  
Old July 19th 03, 04:38 AM
Marshall Dermer
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Default

In article Gwen Watson
writes:

Marshall I am glad you have found a diet that is helping Max. I hope
he continues to show much improvement.

Gwen


Hi Gwen,

Thanks for the good wishes.

As for the diet we don't know that it is helping him
although it apparently has lots of positives. From the
standpoint of calcium oxalate uroliths the number one
feature is that it is highly hydrated also it is low in
protein and sodium chloride. There seems to be some
debate, though, about whether low calcium or normal
calcium diets best control calcum oxalate uroliths. Max's
diet apparently is low in calcium. Finally, his urine PH
on this diet is at about 7. The urine PH of the diet
correlated with his uroliths was, as I recall, something
like 5.7--acidic.

Then, of course, we have no idea of whether the diet
will affect the "gall-bladder like attacks" that
he has been experiencing. We implemented the new
diet and Actigal at the same time.

We'll just have to wait and see but thanks again
for the good wishes.

--Marshall
 




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