Lab still has runny poop - please help!

(29 Posts)
Stillmonday Mon 19-Aug-19 14:41:24

My 13 year old lab has had runny poop for as long as I can remember. Vets have squeezed her anal glands twice but it's made no difference.

Vets can't find anything wrong with her but say next stage would be an op which obviously we don't want to do.

Tried swapping her food to just plain rice for a few days which hardened her poop up somewhat but then when re introducing food it's gone back to normal.

Foods we've tried are Arden Grange which she used to be fine with, tried Chappie from recommendations but that's made her worse.

What can I do? Feel really sorry for her not to mention us!

OP’s posts: |
BiteyShark Mon 19-Aug-19 16:48:42

What is the op that they want to do?

Is it something like an endoscopy to see if there are any blockages and take samples? If so I might be inclined to do some investigations just so I knew what I was dealing with even if I wouldn't then put mine through any invasive operations at that age.

TheHodgeoftheHedge Mon 19-Aug-19 16:54:02

What op do they want to do? They obviously think they know what the root cause is if they want to do an op?
Have they not suggested a vet diet?

slipperywhensparticus Mon 19-Aug-19 16:56:09

Give her rice cakes? Sorry I found myself here by accident but I know this constipated my moms collie dog 🐾

Nucleoli Mon 19-Aug-19 17:14:33

Carrots have been great for my dogs, pumpkin is also recommended.

When they were puppies with very rocky stomachs I used to feed them Purina ProPlan Veterinary Diets gastrointestinal cans.

AwkwardPaws27 Mon 19-Aug-19 17:23:26

Have you ever done a food trial, usually a veterinary prescription diet like Hills i/D with no other food or treats at all for 6-12 weeks (not easy with a lab, I know! My dad's one snaffles anything she can get near)? This would help see if there is a dietary intolerance.

You say she is 13 - has it been her whole life? This suggests a parasite such as giardia is less likely, but have you ever had a pooled sample (samples from over a few days) lab tested?

Stillmonday Mon 19-Aug-19 18:57:32

All the vet said was it would be an operation to investigate more. I would rather avoid that if at all possible, even the vet doesn't seem to think it's necessary.
The vet suggested chappie food but it's made her worse if anything.

She's 13 but we've only had her 3 years as we got her from the rspca. She was ok ish to start with, but things have progressively got much worse.

I'll try anything!

OP’s posts: |


BiteyShark Mon 19-Aug-19 19:03:58

The problem is unless you know what it is then 'treating' it is going to be trial and error with guesswork.

For example my dog had runny poos for months when he was a puppy and we tried everything including changing food. When he was around 18months of age we ended up doing investigations and found he had IBD which steroids every now and again gets under control. Once we knew the cause treatment was relatively simple.

If your vet doesn't think the investigations are necessary and their suggested food isn't helping you need to ask them what else they want to try because having runny poos all the time must be unpleasant for your dog.

Jouska Mon 19-Aug-19 19:11:39

I guess at 13 it is worth trying a food change rather than an anesthetic but it could be a lot of things causing the diarrhoea from pretty serious to something quite straight forward

All my dogs are raw fed except one lab who can only survive on Purina HA food. A lot of people hate prescription diets but my dog would be dead without it. It could be worth a try.

dancingdirty Mon 19-Aug-19 19:12:42

We had this with our dog and chappie sorted him out but it doesn't sound like it worked for you
How long did you have her on It? It took a good couple of weeks for him to settle down on it

Cyberworrier Mon 19-Aug-19 19:21:38

Have you tried a doggy probiotic? Protexin Pro-kolin syringes, available on Amazon. Our pup was prescribed it as a pup with sensitive tum by vet but the vet told us just to buy it online when we came back for same problem. He also has hypoallergenic food which helps. Your poor doggy, hope something helps.

Veterinari Mon 19-Aug-19 21:16:53

Has she been tested for Giardia? It’s often overlooked and reinfection/chronic infection is very common

Localher0 Tue 20-Aug-19 09:45:49

When we first got our rescue collie cross his poops were bad and he had the worst farts. After reading around a bit I switched to CSJ dog food and it's worked amazingly well. He doesn't clear a room with a fart anymore and most poops are solid (unless he's very nervous - but even humans suffer that way!). Link here

longearedbat Tue 20-Aug-19 15:42:47

Has she had a blood test op? It can be a sign of kidney problems in an older dog.

Iamenough Tue 20-Aug-19 15:57:21

Have you tried a grain free? Our lab is exactly the same. We give him a strict diet, dairy and gluten free. No more runny poos, we no longer give him yoghurt/ cheese. Treats are chicken/ sausages. Food we get is the James Welloved Grain free (dry food), they have small pouches worth a try. A friend of ours also have a lab have gone for raw food, Excellent results too!!

Quite common in labs having dodgy tums.

Plus carrots to prevent anal glands getting blocked!! Saves so much on vet bills!!!

Good luck

iamthedanger Tue 20-Aug-19 16:04:33

We have a lab cross, he's young but we struggled for about a year with runny poo. We tried grain free and emimibtating et
but nothing worked, not even rice etc. Eventually we were advised to try a food made from 'hydrolysed protein', at that stage we were desperate, the science-y bit is that the protein has already bee broken down so doesn't cause the sane gut reaction l. We used a Royal canin specialist one and literally within a few days there was a remarkable difference. It was very expensive so after a year or so on that we researched a bit and found a cheaper salmon based one. He rarely has sloppy poo now (the only tidbits he gets from us is carrot and a bit of cheese), chicken and beef both give him a bad tummy quite quickly. His poo isnt smelly either which is another bonus.

iamthedanger Tue 20-Aug-19 16:04:52

Excuse the spellings!

Veterinari Tue 20-Aug-19 18:17:16


Grain free diets are increasingly linked with cardiomyopathy

BiteyShark Tue 20-Aug-19 18:26:04

That article says the are investigating not that it has been linked. I would like to see evidence that they can directly link that to food rather than a million other things that might be a factor in a small number of dogs. I am starting to think these type of articles are just as prevalent now for pets as they are for human health where every week we seem to have yet another thing that might cause a health issue.

justasking111 Tue 20-Aug-19 18:31:48

You may have an anxious lab. my friend has a rescue one with the same problem. Zylkene which zonks them a bit or a doggy valium type drug may help.

Veterinari Tue 20-Aug-19 18:37:41


I guess we’ll have more evidence as more dogs die. You’ll have to wait for that.
After all why would you want to proactively take expert advice...

BiteyShark Tue 20-Aug-19 18:40:31

* After all why would you want to proactively take expert advice...*

When they have concrete evidence and I can see the scientific reviewed articles I will take notice. Saying they are investigating isn't enough for me.

Veterinari Tue 20-Aug-19 18:48:17

There’s a peer reviewed article in JAVMA from the team at Tufts - knock yourself out

BiteyShark Tue 20-Aug-19 18:59:41

Just read July's update and still not convinced.

Sorry OP. I won't derail again grin

Veterinari Tue 20-Aug-19 19:18:14

Just read July's update and still not convinced

Not convinced of what? That diet-associated DCM exists? That changing the diets of dogs with diet-associated DCM improves their clinical status? That many of the dogs with diet-associated DCM are on grain free diets?

Perhaps you should read the original research then? It’s odd to say you’ll believe peer reviewed evidence but then not actually read it confused

I’m all for evidence-based medicine. I also tend to think that those expert nutritionists writing the peer-reviewed publications probably know more than me...

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