I really should be working on accounting paper work but this feels so much more important to all of us. I am going to invite you to join me on a journey of trying to figure out what is causing my 8 month old puppy’s yeasty ears, pink chin and general itching. So, here we go!!!
Mercury my Bernese Mountain Dog puppy came home to us at 8 weeks old. The Breeder, following what her vet told her was feeding the puppies a Large Breed Puppy kibble with a very well know name. Knowing I was a certified nutritionist, sent me home with a very small bag of kibble ( probably 1 days worth ) as she knew I would be transitioning Mercury to Raw right away. The kibble would just help him with the transition. Day 1 we fed kibble, as to not change everything in his life all at once. His first bowel movement - Massive and Beige in colour. For such a small little guy (just over 20 lbs) that was not an ideal bm. So I said let’s just go for the raw and his next meal was raw.
We choose a pre-made raw (I do not have time to DIY), and one specifically formulated for growing puppies. Being raw it has nice levels of Calcium/Phosphorus for a the large breed and the rest of his requirements were covered. As he was just a little guy we added a Goat Milk Kiefer and blueberries (because he loves them - super food=super treat). After a while we began adding other items like quail eggs, sardines and Greek yogurt.
Mercury is growing like a weed and at 8 months he is pretty close to 90 lb, a full blown teenager and sweet as pie. At his recent grooming the groomer noticed a large amount of yeast in his ears, he was not scratching or bugging but when I looked closer he also had some hair loss on the outside of his ears. So off to the vet we went to get a handle on the ear infection.
As a nutritionist, I know this is a food intolerance and something has to go. So then I sit there and asked “Where to start? ”. How do I know what to eliminate or what should I change? I have 2 options: 1. I could go with my gut and switch proteins and see if something changes 2. I could do an intolerance test and see what comes out.
We stock 2 kinds of intolerance tests in the store so I grabbed the first one I saw and took it home. I followed the instructions on the test, and sent the sample off to be analyzed. Just over a week later I receive a 10 or more page report with both environmental and food intolerances rated from a no response level to a strong response level. The directions for the elimination say for 8 weeks to feed only the items that are no response level.
But it is complicated, it says he can eat beef but he cannot eat beef heart, He can eat chicken but he cannot eat chicken liver. So now I am working through every type of raw food I can find to see what will follow this guide line, to create a diet that is still nutritional for a 8 month old but not bother his intolerances.
So we are close and I think I have a plan, I just have to put it into play and start feeding him accordingly. But….then the question comes, is this test really accurate?? While we change his diet we are also going to do the other test that we stock in the store. Once we receive the results we will compare the two and see how that goes.
We will report on the 2nd test, how the elimination diet is going in Part 2.
Wish us luck