Some Good News About a Dog

Over the last few weeks our sweet Bruno had been losing some weight. We hardly noticed it at first, but it wasn’t long before we could see ribs, and even some of his pelvic bone (eek!). We couldn’t brush this off to just a lot of exercise. Something was up.
We had often found ants in his food dish if he left a piece or two after he finished a meal, and we knew there was a possibility he may have gotten bitten by ants while eating and no longer had a desire to eat. So we cleaned out his food dish. He still didn’t want to eat much.
We though maybe he was associating the ants with the particular spot his dish was in the kitchen, so we moved his dish. That, too, didn’t help. He wasn’t interested in eating much then.
I quickly bought a stainless steel food and water dish for Bruno, in hopes that this would clear up the problem with his eating.
Although he did seem to eat more happily from these dishes, his weight wasn’t coming back up like it should have.
Our Bruno isn’t quite a free-range dog, but our neighborhood has no leash law, so we would let him run freely for a few hours a day to get his “wiggles” out. Thinking he may have picked up some kind of illness or parasite, The hubs and I decided to let Bruno outside only on his leash. Much to Bruno’s dismay, of course.
We finally started to see some improvement and weight gain, but we still wanted to take him to the vet to get him checked out.
After a lengthy visit yesterday filled with poking, prodding, and all kinds of tests, the veterinarian asked specifically, “Does he have access to any chicken feed?” I thought carefully and remembered that the family at the end of our block had several chickens, and there was some possibility that he could get into their food when he was outside on his own.
That, apparently, had been the issue all along. Chicken feed, which is made of mostly grains, does a number on canine digestive systems, including providing an excess of fiber to the point that a dog could continue to eat it and lose weight. After some instructions on keeping Bruno away from table food (with two babies, how???) and keeping him on a leash outside, we took him home smiling.
There were so many things that crossed my mind when we began to notice our pup wasn’t feeling well, but it was quite a relief to find out it was such a simple fix.
Our furry son, our “middle child”, the girls’ favorite playmate got some extra hugs and belly rubs today.

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