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Old 04-24-2011, 08:46 PM   #1
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Default Hils Prescription zd.....Help!

Hi all,
My Harley has had bouts of pancreatitis and has been on a low fat food (Innova) but over the past month, he has been very sick...in and out of the vet hospital. They have come to think that he has IBD as well. He has all the symptoms: gurgling and upset tummy, throwing up, etc. So, he is on a few days of steroids and the vet put him on Hills Prescription zd.

Now I just read about this food on Dog Food Analysis and I am not happy at all. How can the vets sell this crap, knowing that it is not good for the animals that they treat??? We listen to them because we think they know best...I don't think that is the case at all.

We have spent thousands of dollars on our little guy since before Christmas and having him eat this food is like a kick in the gut. I hate seeing him in pain and sick all the time. I am scared to try other things though because I am not sure what might be causing his IBD, although I think chicken and corn might be culprits so far.

I don't know what to do except that I want to get him off this Hills food at some point. Any suggestions for a dog with pancreatitis and IBD? Thanks for any help!!
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Old 04-25-2011, 09:25 AM   #2
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Been there and it's scary.

Prescription diets (and dog food in general) don't have the most appealing ingredients. Vets don't have much nutritional training. However, a large amount of money goes into creating prescription diets for specific problems. They tend to work very well for the majority of dogs.

Dogfoodanalysis may be okay to get an idea of what is in dog food and why we might want to be careful about what we're feeding. But a veterinary nutritionist did not write those food profiles. Individual dogs aren't being taken into account. It is some opinion and some weak science. Certainly not all bad, but definitely not the first or best place to look when talking about nutrition.

Pancreatitis can be life threatening as can some underlying problems when talking about IBD. If this food is working for you pup, I would not change it. As little as vets do learn about nutrition, your vet still knows much more about intestinal health than most anybody on YT. It's okay to use an rx diet. They save lives. It wouldn't be okay to switch without a lot of veterinary supervision. If you really don't want to use this long-term, you could talk to a veterinary nutritionist about alternatives (although if this food is working, they will probably discourage switching). Any slight change with pancreatitis and/or IBD can throw everything out of balance.

By the way, my dog just started eating prescription food again. According to Dogfoodanalysis it is crap. They have nothing listed under "pros" and several things under "cons" (including that there is zero meat in the food and it contains corn starch). But I have something to put in their "pros" list. My dog can eat it without getting seriously ill.

I hope that makes sense.
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Old 04-25-2011, 10:09 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ellie May View Post
Been there and it's scary.

Prescription diets (and dog food in general) don't have the most appealing ingredients. Vets don't have much nutritional training. However, a large amount of money goes into creating prescription diets for specific problems. They tend to work very well for the majority of dogs.

Dogfoodanalysis may be okay to get an idea of what is in dog food and why we might want to be careful about what we're feeding. But a veterinary nutritionist did not write those food profiles. Individual dogs aren't being taken into account. It is some opinion and some weak science. Certainly not all bad, but definitely not the first or best place to look when talking about nutrition.

Pancreatitis can be life threatening as can some underlying problems when talking about IBD. If this food is working for you pup, I would not change it. As little as vets do learn about nutrition, your vet still knows much more about intestinal health than most anybody on YT. It's okay to use an rx diet. They save lives. It wouldn't be okay to switch without a lot of veterinary supervision. If you really don't want to use this long-term, you could talk to a veterinary nutritionist about alternatives (although if this food is working, they will probably discourage switching). Any slight change with pancreatitis and/or IBD can throw everything out of balance.

By the way, my dog just started eating prescription food again. According to Dogfoodanalysis it is crap. They have nothing listed under "pros" and several things under "cons" (including that there is zero meat in the food and it contains corn starch). But I have something to put in their "pros" list. My dog can eat it without getting seriously ill.

I hope that makes sense.

Excellent Advice!!!!!!! Well said!

I have read countless reviews on dog food, talked with a vet nutritionist, and checked out many books from the library. It can be exhausting! I am all for natural healthy diets. I wouldn't feed anything but the best! But, if her health required her to have RX diets, I would do it.

I don't think it matters how much I have read or consulted, If she needed an RX diet recommended by her vet,I would do it. As Ellie May stated, as the ingredients may not look appealing, but there is alot of science put into prescription diets, and they do save lives.
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Old 04-25-2011, 12:30 PM   #4
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I may be wrong but I think the vet makes a profit on the Science diet. I'm sure they get it for much less than they sell it for.

Pippin has IBD and he was put on Hills i/d and then the z/d. He continued to have episodes. One time I was picking up some Hills from the receptionist, and mentioned to her that the reviews I read on the hills wasn't good. She just nodded and said "I know". So, I don't think they are prescribing it because its such a high quality product.

I ended up going to a nutritionist and I home cook for Pippin right now. That still doesn't mean he won't have another episode. It's a scary disease.
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Old 04-25-2011, 01:06 PM   #5
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I may be wrong but I think the vet makes a profit on the Science diet. I'm sure they get it for much less than they sell it for.

Pippin has IBD and he was put on Hills i/d and then the z/d. He continued to have episodes. One time I was picking up some Hills from the receptionist, and mentioned to her that the reviews I read on the hills wasn't good. She just nodded and said "I know". So, I don't think they are prescribing it because its such a high quality product.

I ended up going to a nutritionist and I home cook for Pippin right now. That still doesn't mean he won't have another episode. It's a scary disease.
The profits vets make off of food is miniscule - one of my tech responsibilities at the clinic i worked for was "food manager". i did all the ordering/inventory etc. Vets carry food as a convenience and to prescribe rx diets as needed, definatly not to make money. Trust me, it's at the very very very bottom of their "profit" margin and if I remember correctly, the profit margin on Hill's is aprox only like 5 to 10%.

That same vet also sold Innova and Nature's Variety simply as a convience (trust me, it's a pain to deal with food on top of everything else in a clinic) but he still put certain patients on an rx diet when needed. He used a few different brands depending on the reason for the diet, but he had quiet a bit of Hills rx diets in stock (this is a vet who actually does know a ton about nutrition by his own research and feeds his own dogs a homemade raw diet with suppliments, so if he used rx diets, then they are definatly necessary in some cases).

OP - if you are really not happy feeding the Hills long term, don't switch from it without consulting a licenced veterinary nutritionist. They may be able to help you with an alternative, but definatly don't do it on your own with a condition like this. I understand how you feel about the Hills food, but as Ellie Mae said - sometimes you have to use it and when it comes to a desease, don't base all your thinking on a dog food rating site, yes they are helpfull, but not the bottom line, especially with an unhealthy dog.
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Old 04-25-2011, 01:10 PM   #6
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I spend a fair amount of time at a veterinary hospital that stocks rx food. I've heard them talking about it before. It is not their favorite thing to carry. They make very little off of it. It takes money to handle it and space to stock it.
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Old 04-25-2011, 01:41 PM   #7
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Thanks for the advice everyone. It is very scary and so hard to know what the balance is for these little guys.

He has been home since Saturday and no major problems yet. If he does well on the food, I may just have to look the other way...it is his health after all. I was just frustrated by the seeming lack of nutrition in this food.

And yes, I will talk to the vet or a nutritionist when thinking about a food change. The last thing I want is for him is to be sick again and again. I will do what is needed to keep him healthy!

Thanks again. There is so much knowledge from everyone on here, really appreciate it especially with my little guy's health problems.
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Old 04-25-2011, 03:42 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HarleysMum View Post
Hi all,
My Harley has had bouts of pancreatitis and has been on a low fat food (Innova) but over the past month, he has been very sick...in and out of the vet hospital. They have come to think that he has IBD as well. He has all the symptoms: gurgling and upset tummy, throwing up, etc. So, he is on a few days of steroids and the vet put him on Hills Prescription zd.

Now I just read about this food on Dog Food Analysis and I am not happy at all. How can the vets sell this crap, knowing that it is not good for the animals that they treat??? We listen to them because we think they know best...I don't think that is the case at all.

We have spent thousands of dollars on our little guy since before Christmas and having him eat this food is like a kick in the gut. I hate seeing him in pain and sick all the time. I am scared to try other things though because I am not sure what might be causing his IBD, although I think chicken and corn might be culprits so far.

I don't know what to do except that I want to get him off this Hills food at some point. Any suggestions for a dog with pancreatitis and IBD? Thanks for any help!!
I can only tell you about my experience with my late Molly. She had Chronic Pancreatitis, IBD and ERD and Cushings as well as cancer.Having to juggle for both IBD and Pancreatitis was a real learning experience. Finally after many foods the one she really did the best on was Natural Balance Reduced Calorie Food. She did have to take the Pepcid everyday and also she was on long term Metronizadole (it was compounded for her ) Also I always had on hand Carafate to start immed. if she started shwoing signs of a Pancre. attack. This was made into a slurry for her. She lived this way for over 4 years before the cancer took her this past November.
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Old 04-28-2011, 09:09 AM   #9
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So Harley has been out of the hospital for close to a week. He is almost finished his steroids and pepto but I have noticed last night and this morning that his stools are soft with some runny diarrhea. He is eating and drinking well though. I am so paranoid now. Should I be worried about this or can it just be the change to the Hills food?
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Old 04-28-2011, 12:45 PM   #10
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How long has he been on Hill's alone?
Nothing had changed within about 48 hours before this started happening?

IBD can be very hard to manage.

What testing was done to confirm that it is IBD?
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Old 04-28-2011, 02:29 PM   #11
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Ellie,
He has been on the Hills since last Saturday. I have been sprinkling some Forta Flora on his food as the vet said it would be ok.

No changes...although he does not enjoy taking his steroid pill or the Pepto for that matter!

He has had numerous blood tests for the pancreatitis but no other testing until this last time. The vet did an x-ray and then a barium swallow. She said there were no blockages on the x-ray. She did mention that his intestine was inflammed but she thought it might be due to his problems of late. She also mentioned that his liver was larger than normal. During the barium swallow, the liquid went through his stomach fairly fast, she thought faster than normal.

Of course, I don't know what questions to ask when presented with all of this information.
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Old 12-13-2012, 05:39 PM   #12
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Default Low Fat Perscription ID

after almost losing my little guy 3 times due to pancretitus the Low Fat Perscription ID is the only think that works. it is fairly new
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