Help! Issues with feeding a Shih Tzu Health

Discussion in 'Shih Tzu' started by Blackn6345, Mar 10, 2024.

  1. Blackn6345

    Blackn6345 New Member

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    Help! Issues with feeding a Shih Tzu

    I wanted to post this to see if anyone is having the same issue or has had this issue and figured out what the cause is or ideas of what it might be. Or if anyone has gone through this before and what you had to do to get the issue resolved.

    Eating habit:
    I have a 5yr old shih tzu. For the 5 yrs I have been dealing with issues with what to feed him. He will not eat dog food. He typically will only eat once a day. If you put dog food down, he will sniff it and walk away. If I leave it down, he will go back to it around 11pm or 12am at night and eat it. My guess would be because he is hungry or figured out that is all he is getting. But it is like this all the time. If you put cooked chicken in his food or ground beef he will eat it right away.

    The real problem:
    It is getting to the point know matter what you feed him, he gets diarrhea. You can feed him the same food for a month or 2 and be fine and then out of the blue he starts having diarrhea issues. It will continue on for a couple days and will be good, but then again it happens. And it just cycles over and over again. I will try something else (different food) and he will be fine for a while, month or 2, and it starts over again. I have been through so many different foods, brands, flavors, and no matter what I do, this happens. I expect a food allergy. I went to the vet and they can't tell me anything. Took him to several vets and no one seems to give an idea of what to do. If I make his food, brown rice, chicken (sometimes beef or liver or mix), green beans, sweet potato, kidney beans, all portioned out per receipt found online, he will eat it no problem and the problem goes away. Go back to dog food and it starts over again. Like right now he has been eating Merrick food for a couple months with no problems, now all of a sudden back to the same problem. I only feed him food made in the USA or Canada. Canada has more food restrictions than the USA and heard it is better for them but heard to find. I been through Blue Buffalo, Purina Pro, Royal Canin, Nutro, Natural and more. I don't like the idea of making his food because I want to make sure he is getting what he needs, and it does not help with keeping teeth clean. But that is what it is starting to get too. And then have to keep up with making sure his teeth stay good.

    I know this is long but could keep going on with the issues with foods. But if you happen to get through this and have any ideas, it would be greatly appreciated. If you need more info just ask and I will tell. I'm at my wit's end on what to do. Want to make sure he is health but if this keeps going on, I think its going to cause issues down the road. I have had dogs before but never issues like this.
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  3. Lifew/dogs

    Lifew/dogs New Member

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    My advice (take it or leave it) is to feed RAW because dogs with food issues will eat it, it's better for them than canned or kibble and keeps their teeth clean. If you haven't tried it you should at least try it for a week or so.You can type in Feeding RAW but this is a first time user link; https://www.prodograw.com/nutrition/raw-feeding-guide/
  4. Toedtoes

    Toedtoes Member

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    The first thing to do is to get him checked out by a vet. Rule out any underlying medical issues before making any more dietary changes.
  5. Lifew/dogs

    Lifew/dogs New Member

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    Been there, done that.
  6. CaroleC

    CaroleC Member

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    Toedtoes and Chris B like this.
    Small ShihTzus can have trouble eating kibble because of their undershot jaw, which doesn't align quite as efficiently as a normal overlapping bite. It could be that swallowing whole dry kibble is not helping his sickness problem. Therefore, I would feed him what he seems to enjoy - his brown rice with meat and veg, plus a good multivitamin and mineral supplement. If it's a fag, make up a week's quantity at one go, divide into portions and freeze. You would cook for a child - not a big job to cook for a dog.
    I doubt that eating kibble is doing a great deal to keep his teeth clean, a raw lamb or beef rib will do a much better job. Brushing with a junior toothbrush and an enzymatic dog toothpaste a couple of times a week will help to stop any brown tartar from forming on the teeth.
    If the sickness continues, perhaps ask to see a different vet. Good luck.
  7. Toedtoes

    Toedtoes Member

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    My recommendation to see a vet wasn't directed towards you but towards @Blackn6345.
  8. Lifew/dogs

    Lifew/dogs New Member

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    OP: I went to the vet and they can't tell me anything. Took him to several vets and no one seems to give an idea of what to do.
  9. Toedtoes

    Toedtoes Member

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    Then a different vet is in order. As @CaroleC mentions it could be a problem with the bite. A good vet should be able to see if that is likely an issue.

    If the OP only discussed potential food allergies then the vet may not have considered other potential causes such as the inability to chew the kibble, etc.
  10. Lifew/dogs

    Lifew/dogs New Member

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    I'm not a vet but have you ever tried probiotics?
    https://www.bing.com/search form=MOZLBR&pc=MOZI&q=supplements+for+the+flora

    Also a term caught my eye on those pages; colitis.

    Dog diarrhea guide:
    https://www.akc.org/expert-advice/h... dog may,body, like a toy or socks More items

    There are many reasons why a dog may develop loose stools, but most of the time, dog diarrhea is caused by:

    Dietary indiscretion: Eating too much food, eating garbage, or eating spoiled food. ...
    • Change in diet: It may take a few days for a dog’s digestive system to adapt to digesting new proteins. ...
    • Food intolerance
    • Allergies
    • Parasites: Most of these will cause illness in puppies or in adults with weak immune systems: ...

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