GI problems, probiotics vs antibiotics?

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GI problems, probiotics vs antibiotics?

Postby MkatUmich » Wed Feb 08, 2012 2:20 am

A little background, when the rescue found Starry a bit more then a year ago they had to do emergency surgery for a rectal prolapse. I put rescue pics of her on a post on the general site if you are interested. Anyways, as would probably be expected she suffered from diarrahea (sp?) after this, presumably from the trauma and/or food allergies which can be caused by stress and trauma. The doctors have her on prescriptin Z/D diet and she gets two meds twice a day, I guess one is an anti-inflammatory and the other is a anti-inflammatory and antibiotic. More then a year later and she is still on this yet she daily gets a small bit of TOTW to mix up her diet, we want her getting used to other foods besides the Z/D. Her stools seem fairly firm though sometimes there is a little blood though there is no discernible difference in it when she gets the TOTW or doesn't.

While i'm no doctor, as a fitness professional I do know a bit about health so when I saw the doctor the other day I questioned why she was getting antibiotics and not pro-biotics? The doc didn't give much of an answer besides they usually treat these cases with antibiotics and it was cheaper. Seems to me that, in humans at least, the reason people develop food allergies and have these GI problems is because the bacteria in the GI system isn't healthy and so the cell walls aren't protected and they breakdown releasing toxins into the body. This is how people get ulcers, it's often stress that causes the breakdown and i'm sure between Starrys former life and the rectal prolapse she went though more then enough stress in addition to the trauma.

Am I on the right track here? Do I not know what I am talking about? This was my first time dealing with this doctor, only had Starry a couple months now, and in my profession we don't always trust doctors who often just medicate to treat the symptom instead of addressing the actual problem.
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Re: GI problems, probiotics vs antibiotics?

Postby mtlu » Wed Feb 08, 2012 3:56 am

Hmm, I'm not familiar with the condition of rectal prolapse but I would be very concerned with her being on antibiotics for a year. Since antibiotics kills all bacteria, then she has no "gut flora" - i.e. good bacteria - that is also necessary for the digestive system to work properly.

If there's no reason for her to stay on antibiotics (again, I'm not familiar with what causes/happens with rectal prolapse), then I would start her on a good probiotic and wait at least two or three months (it takes a while to rebuild the gut flora) before starting to slowly transition her to a different food. Giving probiotics at the same time as antibiotics is useless because the antibiotics will nullify the effect of the probiotics.
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Re: GI problems, probiotics vs antibiotics?

Postby AllisonPitbullLvr » Wed Feb 08, 2012 7:50 am

Which meds is she on specifically? Has she had a fecal float done?
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Re: GI problems, probiotics vs antibiotics?

Postby MkatUmich » Wed Feb 08, 2012 11:52 am

AllisonPibbleLvr wrote:Which meds is she on specifically? Has she had a fecal float done?


Metronidazol and C-mesalamine. Not sure what tests have been done, she did mention when we see her that she had not had a biopsy done. She was with the foster for a full year before I took her so not real sure what was done. When we went in monday they ran a blood test though i'm not sure exactly what they tested, doctor did say results were good though.
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Re: GI problems, probiotics vs antibiotics?

Postby MkatUmich » Wed Feb 08, 2012 11:54 am

mtlu wrote:Hmm, I'm not familiar with the condition of rectal prolapse but I would be very concerned with her being on antibiotics for a year. Since antibiotics kills all bacteria, then she has no "gut flora" - i.e. good bacteria - that is also necessary for the digestive system to work properly.

If there's no reason for her to stay on antibiotics (again, I'm not familiar with what causes/happens with rectal prolapse), then I would start her on a good probiotic and wait at least two or three months (it takes a while to rebuild the gut flora) before starting to slowly transition her to a different food. Giving probiotics at the same time as antibiotics is useless because the antibiotics will nullify the effect of the probiotics.


Those were basicly the concerns I had. Rectal prolapse is when the intenstines are forced out usually because the dog(or human even) is straining too much to defecate. Apparently more common in dogs found on the street who are eating basicly anything which was Starrys case. I've seen the pics of her when she came in and she was skin and bones.
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Re: GI problems, probiotics vs antibiotics?

Postby AllisonPitbullLvr » Wed Feb 08, 2012 7:53 pm

Cases like starry's can be difficult to resolve. Was the rectal prolapse caused by a pre-existing condition that was made worse by poor nutrition or are her current issues a result of the prolapse?

Metronidazole is often used in chronic GI cases but if it isn't working, I'd recommend doing some more testing to get to the bottom of her issues.

Also, there's no point in you guys spending a small fortune on z/d if she's getting other food/treats/etc. z/d is kind of like the "end of the road" diet.

It seems to me like something isn't quite working. If it was my dog I'd be tempted to do some more digging to find out the source of the problem rather than just treating her symptoms.

A case like Starry's should be closely dealt with by a vet you trust.

In the meantime, I'm sure proviorics wouldn't hurt but as human gut bacteria varies significant from that of a dogs, there's no guarantee that human grade probiotics will help.

Our foster dog had diarrhea after being on antibiotics for her skin and we used Fortiflora with some success.
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Re: GI problems, probiotics vs antibiotics?

Postby MkatUmich » Wed Feb 08, 2012 10:14 pm

AllisonPibbleLvr wrote:Cases like starry's can be difficult to resolve. Was the rectal prolapse caused by a pre-existing condition that was made worse by poor nutrition or are her current issues a result of the prolapse?

Metronidazole is often used in chronic GI cases but if it isn't working, I'd recommend doing some more testing to get to the bottom of her issues.

Also, there's no point in you guys spending a small fortune on z/d if she's getting other food/treats/etc. z/d is kind of like the "end of the road" diet.

It seems to me like something isn't quite working. If it was my dog I'd be tempted to do some more digging to find out the source of the problem rather than just treating her symptoms.

A case like Starry's should be closely dealt with by a vet you trust.

In the meantime, I'm sure proviorics wouldn't hurt but as human gut bacteria varies significant from that of a dogs, there's no guarantee that human grade probiotics will help.

Our foster dog had diarrhea after being on antibiotics for her skin and we used Fortiflora with some success.


No way to say which came first, the condition or the rectal prolapse. They found her on the street with the prolapse already. To be honest it's not that nothing is working, from the reports of where she was originally she seems to have come a long way and besides the occasional small amounts of blood in the stool and the fact that she seems to need to go to the bathroom more often, I wouldn't know anything was ever wrong with her. It's the fact that she is doing so well, especially with the very small amounts of TOTW she gets(originally she stole it from Gauge but she showed no adverse reaction so we started giving her small amounts of her own), that really has me thinking why are we still giving her antibiotics. Reality is the vet sees something that seems to work and they don't want her to go backwards. I just tend to see pro-biotics as a better way to move forward.
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Re: GI problems, probiotics vs antibiotics?

Postby Leslie H » Wed Feb 08, 2012 10:52 pm

My homeopath carries this brand, it's what I use. Animal Essential Probiotics and Plant Enzymes. I find it helps my dogs.

http://www.animalessentials.com/#products:63
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