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Discussion Starter #1
So we are on about our third week of feeding raw to our 2 year old Great Dane. The first week went pretty well with no loose stools that I can remember.

Around week two he began having diarrhea and I thought it was because of the dehydrated liver treats that we were giving him. So we stopped those and didn't feed him for a day and went back to just chicken backs. Things were fine for a couple days and then he went back to runny poops.

After a few days of runny poops and a little blood in the poop (bright red) we fasted him for another 24 hours. When I started feeding him again I cut all the skin and fat off the chicken backs and only fed him a couple per day. Things were going well for a couple days and when I gave him four backs yesterday he went back to runny poop. It is the kind that is almost all mucus.

He has been losing weight and starting to look a little gangly. He still eats his food right away and is drinking water and does not seem lethargic. Is it possible that he has a bug or another issue? His yearly check-up is coming up and we can go anytime for that. I am a little nervous about what the vet is going to say when we tell her that we switched him to raw. I don't want them to brush it off and try and get me to buy $200 worth of "sensitive stomach" food.

Should we see what the vet has to say or do you guys think this is still part of the adjustment period?
 

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Around week two he began having diarrhea and I thought it was because of the dehydrated liver treats that we were giving him. So we stopped those and didn't feed him for a day and went back to just chicken backs. Things were fine for a couple days and then he went back to runny poops.
The main causes of soft, runny, or watery stools in newly switched dogs are:
1. Too much food - Feed smaller meals - Feed smaller meals more often.
2. Too much fat - Since you have been removing fat and skin, I don't think this is your problem.
3. Organs added too early in the diet - wait a couple of months to feed organs
4. Too much variety too early in the diet - Stick to chicken and chicken only.
5. Not enough bone in the diet - Feed more bone - Thats not your problem as backs have A LOT of bone in them.

He has been losing weight and starting to look a little gangly. He still eats his food right away and is drinking water and does not seem lethargic.
These tell you not to be too concerned healthwise.

Is it possible that he has a bug or another issue?
Probably not.

His yearly check-up is coming up and we can go anytime for that. I am a little nervous about what the vet is going to say when we tell her that we switched him to raw. I don't want them to brush it off and try and get me to buy $200 worth of "sensitive stomach" food.
You don't have to have a yearly checkup on a strict schedule. I would wait a month or two before that. You don't have to tell your vet you switched diets unless you are asked. You don't have to buy any food your vet recommends or tries to sell you. You are the boss. The vet works for you. He does what you tell him, not the other way around.

Should we see what the vet has to say or do you guys think this is still part of the adjustment period?
I would give it a few more weeks. I think it is still adjustment. Drinking and feeling good are signs telling you nothing serious is wrong with your pup. :smile:
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the reply. Should I keep going with just backs and cutting the fat off or should I give him some quarters with the fat cut off too?

I am just worried that he is getting too skinny. We can see all his ribs now.
 

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Chicken quarters have even less bone in them so I don't suggest doing that. I would stick with backs. You said that when you gave him four, was that in one meal or for the whole day?
 

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If he is acting normal otherwise, there really isn't much I would worry about. One of our dogs, Emmy, has been thin her entire life. I can always see ever one of her ribs as well as her hip bones. Not grotesquely or anything but just under the skin. She has just always been a bit on the thin side but acted normal otherwise. I have had blood work done on her as well without any values out of normal ranges (her kidney values were high because she was on EVO high protein which skews the BUN to be on the high side but is not indicative of disease).

Your Dane might just be that way as well. Some dogs are just trickier to switch to raw and take a bit longer in the adjustment phase. I know that it took my Dane Bailey a bit longer than the rest to switch over, or at least to have normal stools. Now she is a raw eating and digesting pro! Just stick with it and have some patience and it will pay off.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
It makes sense that some dogs are naturally skinnier. It is just concerning because he wasn't ever that skinny on dog food.

I guess that once we get him adjusted it probably wouldn't be that hard to have him gain his lost weight back. Right?
 

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Probably but he might just be one of those skinny dogs like Emmy. It's definitely not unhealthy and might just be better for his joints. Is there a way to post a picture of him so I can get an idea of his body condition?
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Here is what he looks like tonight. This was the only picture that he would sit still for. :smile:
 

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He's a very handsome boy and by the looks of it he looks pretty good as far as body condtion goes. He's definitely a thin boy but not so thin that I would worry. It's hard to tell for sure though.

Keep us updated!
 

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After another week or so if you don't see any better results I would personally try another meat source, (I won't be popular for saying it) not all dogs do 100% on chicken, danemama08 or RFD can give you an idea as to which one but that is what I would do.
 

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I would go with turkey next if that is the route that needs to be taken. Several people I know have successfully used fish as their initial protein source.
 

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both malia and bubba have lost weight and we're on week three, too...we've been purposely underfeeding them by just a little....bubba never needed to lose weight and malia was only two pounds overweight....

but because their transition last time was so eventful and not just because of the transition, rfd felt it best to take it nice and easy.

so it's chicken backs stripped of skin and fat and the organs left over on the inside and drumsticks and drummettes....

we have just started giving turkey and we fed them cornish game hen which is just a young chicken....

they will have great stools and then a day or two of something different...not the pure liquid from before, but soft and melty....and then they clear up....

personally...and i'm sure i'll be corrected, since i'm the newbie, but my personal opinion is they are going through a transition and it will take a few months to take hold...

they do have to throw off years of kibble....as does yours....and their whole digestive process is changing....

there is bound to be some back lash....and bumps in the road....

what i am noticing after three weeks...is that, more often than not, their stools are acceptable....their skin looks great

and by the way, so does your dane.....his skin is positively brilliant looking...sick dogs get dull...yours is just beautiful....from the picture at least, his eyes are bright and healthy looking...he looks satisfied....

i notice now that bubba has slowed down a bit....i've noticed malia is starting to figure out what to do with the food...

i know when i started juicing my body went through all kinds of changes....my skin broke out...i wish i had lost weight LOL....but every system went through some kind of change....because my diet had changed. i can't imagine it being any different for dogs.

do you feed him twice a day?
 

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personally...and i'm sure i'll be corrected, since i'm the newbie, but my personal opinion is they are going through a transition and it will take a few months to take hold...
No need to correct you, because you said everything perfectly. Sometimes it take another newbie to help someone along the way, like a support system of peers. You may be a newbie to raw feeding but you have the knowledge it takes to help another out...which is what this place is all about. Keep up the good work!
 

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No need to correct you, because you said everything perfectly. Sometimes it take another newbie to help someone along the way, like a support system of peers. You may be a newbie to raw feeding but you have the knowledge it takes to help another out...which is what this place is all about. Keep up the good work!
i just re read what i had originally written...and i left out a part..

i meant to say, i'm sure i'll be corrected if i'm wrong, because i'm the newbie LOL

but, thank you for the kind words...i'm finding out that dog nutrition and human nutrition have many similarities especially when it comes to transitioning from junk to good....
 

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Discussion Starter #19
There hasn't been much improvement yet. He does not have completely liquid diarrhea but I would not call it solid either. There is still a lot of mucus in it too.

Does anyone have any suggestions?
 
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