My pup Oliver is joining the EPI family

Epi4Dogs Foundation Inc.’s mission is the advancement of science and education relating to EPI (Exocrine Pancreatic Insufficiency), yielding useful insights and positive outcomes in better managing EPI in dogs and cats. Our goals are to support and/or collaborate with veterinary EPI research and researchers, and to promote EPI awareness by educating the general public, pet owners, pet organizations, rescue and shelter organizations, veterinary schools and veterinarians.
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Roy
Member
Posts: 8
Country: United States
State: North Carolina
Pet name: Oliver
My name: Roy

My pup Oliver is joining the EPI family

Post by Roy » 07 Jan 2020, 15:57

Hey everyone,

Can't say how grateful I am to have found these forums and this site. My pup Oliver, has had chronic diarrhea for what feels like 2 months now. Multiple tests, 2 different Vets and finally determined it to be EPI as of yesterday, with his enzyme levels under 1. I found this site last week and had come to the conclusion he had epi after reading all the symptoms mentioned here. So I had already ordered Bio Case from Amazon and started him on that, on Sunday.

Oliver had his first solid poop yesterday evening, and my wife and I hugged once we saw it, lol. I noticed a lot of people mention Diane's enzymes, so I think I will switch him over to that once he's finished with the current Bio Case. Diane's enzymes do appear to cost less and are stronger. But after paying almost $80 for Bio Case I don't want to just throw away that money spent.

It's definitely an awful feeling, seeing your dog keep losing weight to where you see all of his ribs and have no idea what's going on. Oliver, just a little over 2 years old and originally weighing about 70 lbs, lost about 20 lbs. He never was too big in the first place.

So now I'm feeding him the 150% of recommended amount of food, that I seen stated on here. Till he gets his weight back up at least. I did order some of the B12 mentioned on here from the Wonder store too. He's blood showed him on the lower side of normal at 393 ng/L, I believe I read I should try to keep him around the 600 ng/L mark?

I'm going to switch him over from the Royal Canin Hydrolyzed formula to Merricks Grain Free Salmon and Sweet Potato. It's 4.5% Fiber, but we will see. The 2 vets both, at different times put him on antibiotics, dewormers, and probiotics so I'm hoping SIB won't be an issue.

Any other tips for a newbie are greatly appreciated. Thank you!


Here is Oliver, the blonde puppy with his younger brother Wiggles.
oliverandwiggles.jpg
oliverandwiggles.jpg (803.59 KiB) Viewed 894 times

Tuckaboo.
Member
Posts: 255
Country: United States
State: Florida
Pet name: Tucker
My name: Pam H.

Re: My pup Oliver is joining the EPI family

Post by Tuckaboo. » 07 Jan 2020, 18:13

Hi Roy! You've come to the right place. I found this group last May, when Tucker was one month into his diagnosis. We are still tweaking a few things periodically, but he has gained his weight, stopped eating poo, and there is no more diarrhea. So, we are pretty happy. My second vet, who had EPI experience, first put Tucker on sulfasalisine, which did fix his poo, but only temporarily. He then put him on Tylan, and finally we added the enzymes. That is when we started seeing results that lasted. From this group, I learned about the same B12 that you are going to use, and so Tucker currently takes Diane's enzymes (you'll be glad you switched, when you do), Tylan (a small amount, quite possibly forever---this is OK), and the Wonderlab B12. I'm jumping in first because I see that nobody else has responded yet, and I just wanted to let you know that you will be greeted by all of the administrators, and you'll be given so many good ideas to set you and Oliver on the road to recovery. It may take a little time for his weight gain to start showing, but it will, and he will be happier, too. Last month I actully had to cut back on Tucker's food because he was starting to look a little chubby! Take care---Pam
Tucker is a shepherd/lab mix, adopted on craigslist; he has tested positive on the ScheBo test for EPI. Currently taking Diane's Enzymes 3 teaspoons/day, Wonderlab B12 capsules 1/day, and Tylan 1/5 teaspoon/day. Thriving on Sport Dog Food Elite/Herding Dog. No more coprophagia, his weight is steady, and he is a happy member of the family, if a bit of a bully with his four siblings from time to time. Tucker is my boyfriend, and my husband is OK with that.

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jilbert57
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Posts: 951
Country: United States
State: Washington

Re: My pup Oliver is joining the EPI family

Post by jilbert57 » 07 Jan 2020, 18:40

Hi Roy and welcome to you and Oliver. What a cute picture.
Sounds like you are getting things situated. What is the antibiotic the vet put him on? Are you hearing any loud stomach rumblings or burps?
The 4 cornerstones to cover are:
Diet
Enzyme
B12
Antibiotics
It sounds like you and your vet are on it so far. How are you preparing the food and enzymes?

Jill
My name is Jill and I live on the Hood Canal in Washington State. I have two dogs: Kiya is an aussie/blue heeler and is 13, TJ is a 4 year old Jack Russell. They keep me on my toes.
Mickey and his pancreatitis brought me to Epi4dogs.com site in 2012 to help manage it.

Mickey, Jack Russell. Chronic Pancreatitis. Dianes enzymes, 1/8t 3x/day with meals.
6/1999 - 8/2014

Roy
Member
Posts: 8
Country: United States
State: North Carolina
Pet name: Oliver
My name: Roy

Re: My pup Oliver is joining the EPI family

Post by Roy » 07 Jan 2020, 20:14

Thanks Pam and Jill. I can't recall the first antibiotic but he is just finishing Albon Oral Suspension or something like that.

He's stomach was grumbling before the enzymes but haven't felt any issues since. I haven't heard or smelled him pass anymore gas and I don't recall seeing him burp at all.

The vet hasn't given me too much info yet, I'm just getting everything from here and you fine folks!

-Roy

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jilbert57
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Posts: 951
Country: United States
State: Washington

Re: My pup Oliver is joining the EPI family

Post by jilbert57 » 07 Jan 2020, 20:22

Hey Roy, are you able to navigate around the site and read all information on the tabs,?

Jill
My name is Jill and I live on the Hood Canal in Washington State. I have two dogs: Kiya is an aussie/blue heeler and is 13, TJ is a 4 year old Jack Russell. They keep me on my toes.
Mickey and his pancreatitis brought me to Epi4dogs.com site in 2012 to help manage it.

Mickey, Jack Russell. Chronic Pancreatitis. Dianes enzymes, 1/8t 3x/day with meals.
6/1999 - 8/2014

Roy
Member
Posts: 8
Country: United States
State: North Carolina
Pet name: Oliver
My name: Roy

Re: My pup Oliver is joining the EPI family

Post by Roy » 07 Jan 2020, 20:36

Yes, Jill. I've been bouncing around. Lots of info to find and digest.

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jilbert57
Staff
Posts: 951
Country: United States
State: Washington

Re: My pup Oliver is joining the EPI family

Post by jilbert57 » 07 Jan 2020, 20:39

Ok. Good deal.

Jill
My name is Jill and I live on the Hood Canal in Washington State. I have two dogs: Kiya is an aussie/blue heeler and is 13, TJ is a 4 year old Jack Russell. They keep me on my toes.
Mickey and his pancreatitis brought me to Epi4dogs.com site in 2012 to help manage it.

Mickey, Jack Russell. Chronic Pancreatitis. Dianes enzymes, 1/8t 3x/day with meals.
6/1999 - 8/2014

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Madelon
President
Posts: 938
Location: Nashville, TN
Country: United States
State: Tennessee
Pet name: Doc

Re: My pup Oliver is joining the EPI family

Post by Madelon » 07 Jan 2020, 21:04

Hi Roy - welcome to our EPI family. Your Oliver and Wiggles are absolutely ADORABLE! Thanks for sharing the picture - it's one of the upsides of EPI and this forum - seeing all the cute doggies.

Sounds like you and Oliver are off to a good start! Glad you had already researched and found us and the latest information on how to best manage EPI.

Glad you are switching over to EnzymeDiane as the BioCase is not strong enough. Stick with the 1 level teaspoon per cup of food ratio but if the poops go soft again it will be a guess as to whether it is the enzymes that need tweaking or the food. It's funny but even 1/2% lower fiber can sometimes make a big difference. Be sure to keep a detailed log of everything you give and the resulting poop so you know what's working and what isn't AND only make one change at a time then wait 3-5 days to see how your Oliver does.

So glad you ordered the B12 pills from WonderLabs as B12 supplementing is critical to properly managing EPI. You are correct, you want the B12 to be 600 or higher and supplementing will be for life. Poor Oliver's B12 is pretty low so even though you've got good poops right now and no signs of SID, recent research has shown that all EPI dogs have SID it's just a matter of keeping it under control with the proper dose of enzymes, B12 and the right food. So bottom line - don't worry too much if Oliver starts to show signs of SID - you can either try Slippery Elm Bark Powder or Tylan antibiotics - but don't worry we'll be here to guide you through it.
MADELON and Doc. DX EPI and SIBO: 5/22/2015
Test Results: (1st) 7/2014 = TLI 16.5, B12 894, Folate > 24; (2nd) 5/2015 = TLI < .4, B12 406; Folate >24; (3rd) 10/2015 TLI < .4; B12 >1000; Folate 14.4. Prior to DX: May 2014 (2mos) - DX coccidia/bladder infection; July 2014 (3mos) 1st EPI test = TLI 16.5, B12 894, Folate >24 - Dx SIBO not EPI; Feb 2015 thru May 2015 - weight loss only; May 2015 vomitted several times, diarrhea and eating poop. Regimen: 4 cups Sport Dog Food Elite Herding - Diane 6x 1tsp per cup; 1 WonderLab PetFactor B12 2x day; 1/2tsp Slippery Elm 2xday; Multivitamin; 1 Zyrtec 10mg 2x day; Salmon Oil

Roy
Member
Posts: 8
Country: United States
State: North Carolina
Pet name: Oliver
My name: Roy

Re: My pup Oliver is joining the EPI family

Post by Roy » 10 Jan 2020, 09:18

Thanks, Madelon!

I was talking with my vet yesterday about Oliver. She called Texas A&M to talk to them about their latest research. You'll be happy to know that they recommended this site and forum! They also agreed that even though the B12 might not be an issue now, it will become one and to keep him on oral supplements of it. They also recommended Diane's Enzymes to use.

The one thing that differed was the diet, they said even though a lot of people mention the grain-free diet, they haven't see any research that proves it's better than a grain-based diet. Though they did agree with lower fiber is better. When asked which diet he would use (I assume they were looking at Olivers numbers when talking about this), he said probably - https://www.chewy.com/purina-pro-plan-v ... n/dp/50010 . Of course it's the more expensive stuff, but it does have some of the lower fiber % that I've seen. Has anyone on here used this food? The Texas A&M person did mention that Oliver has really low enzyme levels. So maybe spending the extra $30 or so a month would be worth it.

Another thing that's hard about this, is not giving treats! Oliver loved his rawhide-free bones to chew on and eat. I tried one of the real marrow-filled bones but his jaws are just so strong he starts breaking pieces off.

Hope everyone has a happy Friday!
-Roy

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Madelon
President
Posts: 938
Location: Nashville, TN
Country: United States
State: Tennessee
Pet name: Doc

Re: My pup Oliver is joining the EPI family

Post by Madelon » 10 Jan 2020, 12:58

Hi Roy. The reason we recommend grain free is because MOST EPI dogs cannot tolerate grains. Over the 10 plus years we've been around we've noticed a pattern with our EPI dogs not being able to tolerate grains. There are a few EPI dogs that can tolerate a little bit of grain but the majority of our dogs don't so that's why when starting out we recommend grain free. Also, typically the grain free foods have lower fiber than the grain inclusive. Here is the link to our page on Why Grain Free https://epi4dogs.com/why-grainfree-foods/. You can always try it and if the poops aren't good, not gaining weight then stop and try grain free. I tried giving my boy some rice once and it was a diarrhea nightmare LOL LOL.

As for treats, yes that's hard. Once Oliver is stable you can try giving a treat near an enzymed meal - just one and then watch the poops for the next 3 days and see if anything changes. Some EPI dogs can tolerate a treat near their enzymed meal feeding. You can also try giving ice cubes and once stable making your own enzymed treats https://epi4dogs.com/treats/

Hope this helps.
MADELON and Doc. DX EPI and SIBO: 5/22/2015
Test Results: (1st) 7/2014 = TLI 16.5, B12 894, Folate > 24; (2nd) 5/2015 = TLI < .4, B12 406; Folate >24; (3rd) 10/2015 TLI < .4; B12 >1000; Folate 14.4. Prior to DX: May 2014 (2mos) - DX coccidia/bladder infection; July 2014 (3mos) 1st EPI test = TLI 16.5, B12 894, Folate >24 - Dx SIBO not EPI; Feb 2015 thru May 2015 - weight loss only; May 2015 vomitted several times, diarrhea and eating poop. Regimen: 4 cups Sport Dog Food Elite Herding - Diane 6x 1tsp per cup; 1 WonderLab PetFactor B12 2x day; 1/2tsp Slippery Elm 2xday; Multivitamin; 1 Zyrtec 10mg 2x day; Salmon Oil

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