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Should I switch my old dogs diet because of weight loss and vomiting?

asked 2020-08-24 22:03:18 -0500

My 14 year old cockapoo was the runt of her litter and has an enlarged heart. She's on medication for the enlarged heart and had a lung infection a few months ago that we fixed but has always been very small and typically only eats 1 bowl of food/day. She is noticeably losing weight now and her energy levels are declining because she is eating less and less. She is also vomiting slightly more often than her usual (quite often compared to the average dog). She's also quite anxious and needs certain people around to eat. She's still very involved, happy, and active.

I think it's time to change her diet as she moves into the final stages just to ensure she isn't starving. She has always had some human food as treats (carrots, banana, chicken, rice etc) and seems to have endless appetites for human food and treats just no dog food no matter how many switches we make. I was wondering if it would be helpful to switch her diet to ensure she's eating in her old age. I don't mind putting in the effort to do things like cook chicken or whatnot as well!

TL;DR: my old dog who loves human food and hates kibble is losing weight and I want to switch her diet to help

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answered 2020-08-25 06:11:28 -0500

Because of your dogs advanced age and medical conditions, I would rely on your Veterinarian for advice before making any changes to her food or care.

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answered 2020-08-25 23:12:58 -0500

Since there are pre-existing medical conditions, I'd suggest (as Walt did) discussing with your vet what would be good for her condition. If you have pet insurance, you may also get a second option from the ask-a-vet option. If you don't learn anything new, you may want to research further.

Not all dogs benefit from the same foods (even within the human grade, safe to eat category) and there are supplements (again not a one fits all) to benefit dogs.

To address frequent GI disturbance, my vet recommended a specific brand probiotic supplement for my dog (which I later bought refills from Chewy). When confronted with a startling medical diagnosis, I spent countless hours researching the condition and made a list of good foods for that health diagnosis and ones to avoid (some foods which are perfectly fine for a healthy dog & I previously fed) and ratio of ingredients. After 1 month of starting medication along with his new home cooked diet, numbers cut in half from alarming to normal threshold. Sometimes amazing results can be achieved. :)

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