iPet’s Ally Weekly Q&A Round-up 6-29-20: How does bloat in dogs happen and how harmful is it for your dog?

iPets Ally Q&A Round-up 06-29-20

Download audio here

Download transcript here



Hello! I’m Dr. Ruth Roberts, your pet’s ally. I want to thank you all for being understanding last week and for your many expressions of sympathy and condolences with regards to my mother. Again, many thanks for all your condolences and all of your support during this time. So, let’s get caught up.


How many hours does hulled barley need soaking before cooking?

Barley is a whole grain that is inexpensive, nutritious, and delicious. You can just soak it for a couple of hours before cooking. Frankly, when I was using it for my guys in crock pet, I would just throw it in with the food. And I think, barley is much like any other grain where you just cook it until the grains themselves are tender so I say probably, if you soak it for a couple of hours, drain it and then get that squared away that should be pretty easy for you.

What are the substitutes that can be made at home when you’re running out of calcium? And are there any vitamins that can be purchased and crushed to put on their food.

            Being away with you fur babies makes it hard to monitor the supply of the vitamins they are taking and considering that countries are still on lockdown due to the pandemic it makes it even harder. When running out of calcium, you can use powdered egg shells as a source of calcium. You can also use just plain old Tums or Rolaids. Now, for multivitamin, what I would do is see what is readily available there in country where your fur babies are currently at. So, if you will post a picture of what is relatively easily available there, I can tell you how to dose it and keep your babies on track.

What is the best thing to do when you dog has skin infections and several other skin issues?

With skin infections in dogs, dermatologist typically want to throw steroids and things of that nature. However, there are a couple of things you can do; One is getting allergy testing done if you haven’t done it yet. And assuming your dog did have an MRSA infection some years ago, and now its back but you don’t know why, I recommend getting a couple of culture and sensitivities done to make sure it’s not MRSA again before any active pustules break open. You can also use the Duoxo Chlorhexidine Shampoo, the other thing you can use is actually just plain Selsun Blue, that seems to be better actually for fungal skin infections. Check that out and see which of the products will get you some help.

What is the best rabies vaccine? And what is the dosing for thuja to help prevent health issues?

Assuming that your dog has had several health issues, it’s probably best to use the Thuja at the symptomatic dose just to help prevent other issues since you’ve already had so many health issues going on. With the Adored Beast recommendation, instructing four pumps per day for two days for healthy pets and two times per day for up to ten days for symptomatic. I think, I would go with the latter frankly. Now, for rabies vaccine, Merial makes a thimerosal – free rabies vaccine and it is commonly used one but not totally common. Interestingly, Pfizer makes the vaccine for both Merial and Fort Dodge which is why they’re both good since they are thimerosal – free.

Among dental chews, dental liquid, and dental spray which would be the best choice for your dogs?

Cleaning your dogs’ teeth regularly is essential to prevent the build – up of plaque and prevent gum disease. Among dental chews, dental liquid, and dental spray, frankly, I would buy dental chews since I think they’re better. The dental liquids often contain xylitol an artificial sweetener which is unfortunately, toxic in pets. It has long been known to cause hypoglycemia in dogs. Assuming your dog has fresh wounds which they would likely lick, go with the chews if you don’t know Bye Bye, Dog Breath at (https://shop.thisdogslife.com). Unfortunately, I think they are out of the powder they were using but they do have some dentures where there is sort of the least amount of garbage in them of any product I’ve ever seen.

What can you do best to help your fur kid’s wounds heal sooner?

 Assuming that your fur kids has fresh wound, which started to heal but eventually opened up again because of the licking, there are several things you need to consider. A chronic licking can be about several things: One is anxiety, second is chronic pain, third is things like allergies, and fourth would be something like an OCD type behavior. It’s something that your fur kid does to self – soothe. What I would suggest doing is making sure they are comfortable. If you feel they start to have some anxiety component going on, I would look at things we’ve talked about many such as things like liquid nutria calm, adaptive collars, or spray, things of that nature. The other thing you can do is, get a handheld cold laser, it’ll be very helpful in helping to clean or to heal up chronic wounds and it’s something you can do at home.

How does bloat in dogs happen and how harmful is it for your dogs?

Bloat in dogs is a big problem. The last proposed mechanism was that it is from eating dry food and then drinking a ton of water because dogs are oriented in a horizontal way instead of a vertical way. Their stomach which is full of food and water is sitting there swinging and if they go outside and run and frolic, then there’s a potential for the stomach to act like a bolo and as the dog moves, it moves around in there. So, one of the big things you can do is making sure that they’re not running after eating. If your pup has bloat, you’re going to see that pretty quickly because literally the abdomen may expand from something small to large because the stomach gets filled up with air. Calling your vet immediately would be best because truly, this is life threatening.

 The thing that makes it worrisome is that bloat kills so many dogs. What happens is that the stomach just flips over. From a side view, you have the esophagus coming in to the stomach and then this big bowl basically and then the small intestine so you have two relatively small openings leading into this big vat and dogs are not supposed to have a great deal of gas production in the stomach because they’re carnivores and so they use hydrochloric acid to keep things going.

 Bloat is called gastric dilatation and volvulus and so dilatation is the expansion and then the volvulus is the twist and twist, frankly, is what’s life – threatening. The distension can be miserable but the volvulus is what ends up killing dogs and the reason is that the stomach turns over, and it often takes the spleen with it cutting the blood supply to two major organs, completely obstructing outflow from the stomach with that twist.

Tomorrow is our second E – pets ally call, tomorrow at 4:00 P.M Eastern so for those of you that are ultimate members, you will be getting an email or Hanna probably sent that out. We’ll send you a reminder tomorrow. I’m also working on something with frontier herbs and spices which would be even better deal for you as far as you know it’s 16 bucks or 20 bucks for actually one pound of calcium citrate versus 17 or 18 dollars for 8 ounces. We’ll keep you posted on that. If there is anything that we can do to support you, to support your pets better, please let us know. I and Hanna are always checking this page and the old crock pet page and she’s always available by email.

And for all of you, Ipet’s Ally folks, we have ongoing discounts for the consultation for 100$ instead of 150$ through the end of July, the other thing we’ll be doing is sending you out an email with a way to get a 50% rebate Visa gift card on the purchase of  Holistic Total Body Support through Amazon.com  as I launched in there as well. So, until next week, you all stay healthy and Happy. Kathy, get better, feel better all of those good things and we’ll talk soon. Many thanks!