5.17.2014

Chelsea Belle and Her Diet

This dog...

She is so cute, and so lovey, and the dog love of my life. She is ALSO the biggest pain in the butt! How can one little 21 pound dog be such a headache you ask? Well, let me sum it up... Diarrhea. This post might get gross, so either get over it and keep reading, or close your browser window RIGHT NOW!

She has good days and bad days. We were at my mom's for Mother's Day for 4 days and she had great poops. The days leading up to those 4 days, she had kinda OK poops. The minute we got home? Shooting water poops. UGH. She has medicine, but I honestly don't think it does anything worthwhile. She is on it for several days, poops get good again, she goes off of that prescribed round of medicine, and then BAM right back to terrible poops. Sometimes they are watery, sometimes they are mucusy. Sometimes they are rainbow colors. Sometimes they are all the same color.

My vet, who I really do like, doesn't ever really have an answer for her issues, and always gives us the same meds and recommends a bland diet of rice and boiled meat. Don't think I haven't consulted a vet on this issue, coz I have. A lot actually.

We recently moved her into sleeping in the bathroom attached to our room so that she would stop pooing in the dining room and on a hard surface for easier cleanup.

I have decided to just make her food and treats. She does seem to be more regular when she is on homemade food rather than dry bagged food. It should be noted that you should NEVER feed your dog grapes or raisins, onions, chocolate, or anything they seem to have an allergic reaction to. My plan is to make a big batch of food (maybe 1 or 2 weeks worth) and store it in the freezer in 3 day portions. The fresh food does not last very long. Homemade food should be 40-60% meat protein, 20-30% cooked starch, and 20-30% vegetables (raw or cooked). I will use cooked because Chelsea is so sensitive. Although today I learned she likes raw carrots.

Chelsea will get 3 meals per day, about 3/4-1 cup per meal. For a dog of 21 pounds, the recommended daily intake is approximately 6-10 ounces of food. You can calculate your dogs food intake by multiplying their weight in ounces by 2-3 percent. So for Chelsea:
21*16 = 336 ounces body weight
336 * .02 = 6.72 ounces food minimum
336 * .03 = 10.08 ounces maximum

The best way to ensure your dog is eating enough, and not too much, is to just monitor their weight. If they lose weight, feed more. Gain weight? Feed less. Chelsea rarely ever gains a pound, so I don't think this will be too much food. I will monitor her though to ensure health.

I also decided to take her treats into my own hands. I will be making a series of treats that I pinned HERE. Caesar (that guy who talks to dogs) says to store treats in the freezer and they can last up to 6 months. My plan is to take out a treat before our walks, then it should be defrosted enough by the time we get back for her to enjoy. Flax and wheat germ are good add ins for the treats.

Caesar also says that pumpkin mixed with plain yogurt is good daily treat to keep fiber flowing and keep the natural flora in the gut healthy (very important for a dog with digestive and poo issues). You can freeze this mixture in portions and then defrost in the fridge.

Perhaps I am putting too much thought and work into this. Actually, most definitely I am putting too much thought and work into this. But I don't have kids, I have animals. And one of my animals has rather special needs. And I will do what it takes to keep her healthy and happy.

I will post an update as to how Chelsea Belle is improving (or not?) with these dietary changes. 

9 comments:

  1. Poor baby! I hope she gets to feeling better soon. It could be a parasite (ones he hasn't been treated for), or some virus (like parvo which is very dangerous and can cause hemorrhaging--that rainbow thing doesn't sound good). But it could also just be some delicate state her intestines are going through, in which case, it might be good to try giving her white rice and boiled chicken (white meat only) for a while.

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  2. PD - Sorry, but I don't think things like carrots are a good idea for a dog with intestinal problems. In fact, you might want to easeup on the vegetables in the mix which could be part of the problem.

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    1. Thanks! I did not think about carrots causing problems. I should clarify, the Rainbow thing is more like shades of green and Brown rather than true rainbow. She has been tested for viruses and parasites and got a clean bill of health. She rarely has access to veggies, and hasn't had them in her food for awhile. I really just think she has an overly sensitive system, probably partly due to producing puppies from an extremely early age, you know like maybe some developmental issues. I will keep you posted as to her progress. Thanks for the tips!

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  3. Wow. That's a whole lotta poop'n problems. I've been after my sister to feed her Boxer a homemade dog food like you are because he has bad skin allergies. But she says she doesn't cook for herself or her husband, she's not going to cook for the dog ;)
    But she did buy him like crazy f'n expensive natural dog food & the BARF food I think, WAY too expensive....she need to just make the dog food herself. I'm going to link this on FB for her to read (and maybe get the hint).
    Heck, and maybe she'll start cooking for the dog....AND her husband!

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    1. My dad had a dog with bad skin allergies, turned out she was actually allergic the grass!

      I hope she gets the hint that processed food is bad for everyone, people and animals alike.

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  4. Have you ever thought of water kefir? My cat had terrible sinus wheezing. I started her with 1 tsp. a day, and went to 1 tbl. a day. Her wheezing stopped and she's fine. It's good for a lot of tummy issues, mine's acid reflux. It's much better since I started making and using my own. Just a thought...

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  5. hmmmm..... poor little Chelsea.. a product of a DAMN puppy mill.... she was never properly fed as a juvenile and if you recall when she first joined our family would only eat in her crate in the kitchen... yogurt is probably a good idea to add in..... carrots... she does like them... when she was a working lady... they were her treats... :) bless her sweet heart.... this little dog has allot of miles on her.... thank you for just letting her be a dog....

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  6. I don't think there is anything wrong with putting that much effort into someone you love - two or four legged. I may try some of the treats you have pinned - I buy good ones (as in pricey) but would like to have more control as to their contents. I'll be looking forward to following Chelsea's progress (and yours...)

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  7. I am with Nancy po and the water kefir, you can order the live grains on Amazon and keep making your own. It will provide beneficial bacteria for the intestines and exclude the milk part of yogurt that some animals and people have trouble digesting. (Good for people too!) And/or probiotics in capsule form, they say it helps the bacteria get past the stomach and dissolve in the intestines where they do the most good. Just a thought!

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