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Discussion Starter #1
As a starting point I need to share this: We had 3 dogs, 4 cats, and parakeets at one point. 1 cat had to be PTS at 10.5 years due to a stroke that left her paralyzed. The rest of them we had to find good homes for due to us being moved from the house we own in Georgia to an apartment in Alabama. We couldn't bring them with us for a couple reasons: 1) We couldn't have more than 2, 2) There wasn't a place in the apartment for a litter box where it could be out from underfoot and 3) Our dogs were medium sized dogs (25-35lbs) that we didn't think would be happy in an apartment situation (no yard to play in ... they were used to being outside whenever they wanted to be out there). So, we had to make the hardest decision ever... find homes for them. We never, ever got any of our pets with the intentions of getting rid of them. They were like our children. Our Cavalier King Charles was 10 and he was blessed with a wonderful, wonderful couple until he passed away a year after we saw him last. Our Eskimo Spitz went to a family in Savannah and our cats all went to great homes as well (we made certain of that!!!!). When we were talking about getting a small dog (specifically a Chihuahua that wouldn't be over 3.5/4 pounds) we discussed how much we regretting not bringing the Cavalier and our Persian with us but we also discussed how blessed we (and they) were to get great homes and that we couldn't go backwards only forward. So - that is how we ended up with Minnie Mae. I live with the guilt everyday of finding homes for our pets and I feel like I have betrayed them in getting sweet Minnie Mae, but that can't be helped. (we got all of our pets as puppies/kittens so they only lived with us before we moved)

I said all that because I thought it was important to know that I do have experience with dogs and cats (and various other animals). This food issue is frustrating me because I haven't had this problem before in the entire 10.5-11 years we had our previous pets.

She was on Royal Canin but when the vet told us to take her off and give her the Science Diet Rx canned for a week her runs stopped. We then decided to since that was the ONLY thing we hadn't changed in the month we had her that it must have been the food. Especially since she didn't have any other health issues. (even the vet is thinking diet at this point) So we decided to switch her to something healthier and bought the Nature's Balance Small Bites Ultra. I have been mixing it with the Rx canned as the vet said to do when I got near the bottom (he doesn't want to give her Rx food forever!) and now she is having loose poos again.

I have a couple questions at this point:
1) Could her loose stools at the moment be her body adjusting to the new kibble?
2) She is only getting 1/8 cup kibble and between 1/8-1/4 can wet food split between 3 meals a day...is she 'eating too much'?
3) Some places (including the breeder) say to leave dry kibble out at all times yet other places (including the vet) say to only feed her twice a day. Which is best? My vet said to feed her 3 times a day (splitting the whole amount into 3 servings)... she was doing fine (and seemed less hungry) when I was only feeding her twice a day and had kibble out all day.

This is really frustrating me because I haven't had problems like this before and because it is obviously her kibble - I need to find one that works. Does anyone know where I can obtain samples of foods to try instead of buying full bags only to use 2 cups max? (not that I won't spend the money to get her the right food - it just doesn't seem a wise use of money to spend $20+ per bag only for her to be allergic to it).

Thanks for listening to me!!! Hope this isn't confusing....
 

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Discussion Starter #2
I sure hope lack of response isn't because we found homes for our previous pets (almost 2 years before we got Minnie Mae). I can't say enough just how much we regret NOT keeping at least our oldest 2 (the Cavalier and Persian). They truly were our babies and it broke our hearts to give them up. We honestly believed it was in their best interest to do so. I certainly hope that y'all don't think badly of me...believe me, I think badly enough of myself for it to last me a lifetime. Minnie Mae doesn't replace them...we thought long and hard before getting her.

Anyway,

Could she be having runny poo again due to me changing her kibble? I didn't do it gradually because she was already fully off the Royal Canin while eating the Rx canned food the vet put her on. So, when I introduced kibble back, I just gave her the new stuff, Natural Balance Ultra. I figured since she was having runny poo due to the R/C anyway it wouldn't matter too much but could that be why it is runny?
 

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She definetly could be having diarrhea from not transitioning to her new food.
Also it does seem like she may be eating too much. My girls get a little less than half a cup of kibble a day, split up to 3 meals. They eat taste of the wild, I know nothing about natures balance though....

Another possibility is she could have allergies to something in the food.

For a safe, quick help you could add a small spoon of canned 100% pumpkin, it works wonders!

*EDIT
By natures balance, do you mean NATURAL balance?? I see that the small bites ultra isn't grain free, maybe switch to a grain less formula will help. Natural balance has grain free formulas, totw is grain free too
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Wonderful! Thank you so much!!!

The only reason I didn't do a transition is because I figured since the RC was giving her diarrhea anyway, that I wouldn't be able to tell if the new food was causing tummy issues too or not. Poor Minnie!!

I will definitely email Taste of the Wild. Thank you soooo much!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
We had been using Cesar Puppy canned food (that is what the breeder said she was feeding them) but we stopped when she started with the runs thinking it might be from it. Obviously it wasn't - should I just give her canned food instead of kibble?
 

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I wanted to go back and reread your posts to see what all you've tried but haven't had a chance so I may ask some questions you've already answered.

I doubt it's overfeeding. When I first got Taz she weighed only 1.25lb and I did feed her too much the first couple of days. She pooped a lot but only slightly loose and as soon as I cut back the amount the problem cleared up.

If you've switched numerous times maybe she just hasn't had time to adjust to the new food? Both of mine switch really easily but I've read some people on here that have to transition really slowly like over two or three weeks.

Also, what would you think about switching her from the prescription canned to a regular canned food? If she does okay on that, you could give her tummy a few weeks to settle down and then pick a kibble that you want to stick with and try adding it very slowly. For canned food, I would look on the dog food review websites and pick a high quality one, preferable a limited ingredient food.

As for buying food she can't eat, I am not familiar with your area but if you can find a small speciality pet food place, they will often give you samples. I believe PetSmart will take back an opened bag of food if your dog won't eat it so if there is one of those near you, you might ask them and see.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I would definitely be willing to try switching to regular canned and introduce kibble slowly after a week. We do have a PetSmart and Petco. I will have to ask if they will take opened bags back. And if they have any samples. :)
 

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I ran out of room so here's the rest of my reply.

Is there a Petco near you? They have begun to carry quite a bit of better quality foods and I believe they carry some limited ingredient foods. I looked up the prescription diet and it looks like the protein source is turkey and pork liver. Maybe you could find a turkey based canned food since we know she's doing okay on that one.

I'm just throwing things out here. If she were mine, I really think I'd just transition her over to a good canned food and let her tummy settle for a few weeks before trying kibble again. I know a lot of vets will say you should give them kibble but I don't think vets necessarily know best when it comes to what you feed your dog. I'd use what works for her.

I had not responded yet due to wanting to research some foods and your previous posts. It had nothing to do with you rehoming your dogs.
 

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I don't think a week is long enough to wait before trying kibble again. I'd wait two or three weeks and give her a chance to settle. She's awfully small. I'd be really careful with her.
 

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Pardon me if I already pointed you to this site:
Dog Food Reviews | Dog Food Ratings

It is a great place to research foods that you are feeding or wish to try. I'd try for a 4-5 star food. Blue Buffalo and Wellness are and they are carried at chain stores. TOTW is also carried at places like Tractor Supply. Most places will take back food until you find one that works.
I order food online. With free shipping and coupon codes, I can get my girl's food less expensive online. AND it just magically shows up on my porch.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I ran to Petco and got 2 cans of Natural Balance canned food - one is the chicken and one is the beef. I also got 4 samples of the NB foods to try. I will do the canned food first and see how she does before introducing kibble back to her. Since I won't be giving her kibble for a couple weeks, should I give her 1/4 cup of canned food per day (divided up into 2-3 meals)? She is only 2lb 9oz and will be 6 months old next week.

I truly appreciate the help. The vet isn't going to be much help at this point because she isn't sick. Minnie is such a tiny thing - and she is my baby!!! I just want what is best for her.
 

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dont think its from too much feeding. dexter was on 1/4 cup when i first got him at 12 weeks old it as also 3 times a day. however to entice food we used nutrical....they used to sell it in petsmart and petco but now they carry crappy gnc products which ive heafd only bad reviews about. as for samples, if u email any major dog food company they will send u some. ive gotten samples from totw wellness,, and some other brands like orijen. petco is the best place for hollistic foods but petamart also has wellness and blue buffalo, blue buffalo is only great if u can actually get ur chi to eat the black bits that seem to be a dislike to majority of people thats tried. dexter was also on royal canin first and cesar gourmet but his poops were huge and let alone smelly, peeyew! dexter is off kibbles and has veen for years, one day he finally gave up to all kibble food. ive tried every kinda brand food out there.....oy vey. i hope this helps u a bit as i know how frustratin it is when it comes to dog food. as for ur movin situation u did what u had to do and seein that uve had dogs for so many years i dont thin people should judge u just because of that decision. im glad they all found great homes!
 

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if ur goin to do canned food alone u have to watch out for her teeth ;) wet food builds up plaque and tartar easier than dry! brushiee teeth everyday and petzlife oral spray does wonders
 

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I just also want to caution you to do this very very slowly and watch her weight.

You need to make sure she is drinking enough because she could be losing her proper electrolytes. and be patient yo don't want to rush her give her time. If you still don't see results I would switch to a grain free food if you haven't tried it, then if you do not see results I would take her to a different vet with a record of everything you have tried and for how long. A fresh set of eyes could really help
 
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