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Well, we took Napa in to see the Vet because we thought he had an ear infection. She thinks he's got a yeast infection. But while we were there, we had quite a few questions to ask.

First was about doggie daycare. She highly recommended him going since he had such a strange puppy hood. But she also said he shouldn't be in the playrooms more than 3 hours with an hour break after that. So, we're now on the hunt for a doggie daycare that will take care of our precious pup.

As part of that though, she said that Napa will most likely develop arthritis. And every time he's rambunctious he's pulling the tendons and stuff in his joints. This wasn't so great to hear, but it was nice to know what we've got to face in the future, and we'll face that when we get there. In the time being, though, does anyone know of any supplements that I can use to ease the stress on his joints. I'm not going to try to inhibit him being a dog, so hopefully there's stuff out there to counteract him being a dog.

She also had some different opinions about dog food. She thinks Napa is allergic to grain- hence the scratching (which I don't think is horrible but my parents' dog has awful dry skin, so I'm used to it, and I didn't mention it to the vet) and the ear infections. She also wanted me to change him from kibble to canned food. She wants him on a grain-free, low carb, high protein diet- which she says is what canned food gives.

So, this poses a problem since we just started him on Canidae, and we've got 3/4 of a 40 lb bag left. So, now I'm on the hunt for kibble that's what she wants, but not canned. I'm nervous about giving him all canned because my parents' dog has huge teeth problem because he's eaten canned most of his life.

I bought a small bag of Innova Evo Dog food, but I'm not done researching. I also saw Nature's Variety Instinct. Funny thing though, she wasn't very supportive of raw diet. Especially for Napa.

Her take on Raw diet: you have the possibility of putting viruses in their bodies, and for dogs with weak systems, that's just making things more problematic.

Her take on Napa: He's a "lemon". Just an unfortunate result of hybrid dogs. The fact that we don't know all of the congenital diseases and hereditary problems, and what can result from crosses because we don't know all of the past history of the lines that are being crossed. It was just nice to hear someone from Medicine agree with us. That it wasn't just trauma. But, obviously this is one case where blame just can't be put on one thing. It's a tough thing to accept-- that no one can tell you where you went wrong to cause your pup so much pain and trouble in the future. But hey, I wouldn't take him any other way at this point.

There isn't any update on his next surgery, either. We're still waiting for him to stop growing....

Anyway, sorry for this being so long. Thanks for reading.
 

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Hi Kristen,

I'm sorry that you've had so many problems with Napa. :(

How old is he? We have Manchego and Brie on Innova Evo Red meat but I found out that it is too high in calcium for puppies (they are almost 11months). I am switching them to Orijen large breed puppy and they will eventually move onto Orijen adult food. Both of my dogs LOVE the EVO and the Orijen (I'm pretty sure they'd eat anything I put in their dishes though). I also considered Wellness CORE which is lower in protein but the company did not recommend it for puppies.

As far as the arthritis, I remember reading somewhere that if dogs have it that you may not want to feed them high protein/calcium... but I'm not sure... Does anyone else have more information on this?

You may want to try glucosamine. I ran into a lady that swore by it. She said she gave it to a friend for her dog and in a day the dog was all ready feeling better. My aunt also gives her dog traumeel, a homeopathic remedy with things like Arnica Montana in it which are natural forms of ant-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen. Here is a link that I found that sells it http://www.allivet.com/Traumeel-p/27107.htm

Good luck with Napa and I hope he beats the diagnosis and stays healthy!

Best,
Sarah
 

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I can't believe your vet would call Napa a "lemon"!!! And that he's "Just an unfortunate result of hybrid dogs."! It sounds to me like your vet is straight from the American Kennel Club and thinks every dog should be a purebred something or other! It's the same old, same old comments one hears from what I call the "purebred snobs."

If my vet had said such things to me, that would be the last time I'd be seen in that office!
 
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Thanks for the update, Kristen. Napa is such a cutie!
I can understand what the vet was trying to tell you and although her 'bedside manner' was not so great, I think the reaasurance that YOU did not contribute to Napa's problems would be reassuring. Believe me, there are non-hybid dogs out there who will also develop problems that are not apparent from their lineage. Same with humans. It's a mix of genetics and bad luck.
Bella is also on track to develop arthritis. We will deal with it when we get there. Our Ortho vet and regular vet said to expect to see some problems around age 8. Did she mention the joints that she thought would be affected? Chondroitin/Glucosamine has been touted as a great supplement, but I don't know how beneficial it would be BEFORE the onset of the symptoms. If she seems to be in pain now though would try it. Since Bella will develop the arthritis in her hips, she will probably need a hip replacement or a femoral head osteotomy when the time rolls around. This will 'cure' her arthritis symptoms. Of course, I hope she does not develop the problems, but the plan is there for if she does.
Napa is lucky to have you both for parents!
 

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Kristin
I'm about to fly across country and hit your Vet over the head with a RAW chicken quarter :shock: Your vet obviously failed to take a canine nutrition course other than what was offered by the pet food companies! I can personally attest to the benefits of a RAW diet with Abby. I would not be surprised if Napa FULLY RECOVERED just by eating RAW! What do they think is in canned food? IT'S MEAT :? If nothing you are trying is working why not try feeding RAW? www.rawmeatybones.com There's nothing to lose.
 

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I am so sorry to hear the prognosis for Napa. However, his "lemon-hood" has nothing to do with him being a hybrid. That comment from your vet was uncalled for IMHO. You see, I have a "lemon." His name is Hunter, and he is an AKC American Cocker Spaniel. I also want you to know, that although my "lemon" has several issues, involving but not limited to, arthritis, skeletal deformity, he is a wonderful dog. He is now over eight years old, first diagnosed when under two, and has lived a relatively pain free life. Once in a while, I do have to give him pain relievers, but otherwise he hangs with all the other dogs.

I don't have any ideas about food, sorry.
 

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that's so sad to call Napa a lemon :( There are humans and dogs that just have problems and to call them lemons?? You know...all the testing in the world can be done on breeding dogs and sometimes you still get a puppy with a few problems. I'm sorry you have to go through this...remember, he is in NO way a lemon...just has a few issues :)

I have heard of people giving glucosamine supplements for joint problems. I know Nancy and others love the Nuvet vitamins - maybe look into these?

About the allergies - we have found luck w/going grain free (duck & potato) food...I think Vanessa uses a fish/sweet potato...I would give one of them a try for the allergies (if you want to stay with dry kibble).
 
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Forgot to answer your food question. Kristen posted this site and it does a good job listing the foods and rating them.

http://www.dogfoodanalysis.com/dog_food_reviews/

I would definitely consider the Grain free ones. Solid Gold Barking at the Moon and Wellness Core look awesome.
The whole 'canned food=bad teeth" is really a myth. Your dog growing up probably just had soft teeth. If you brush Napa's teeth you will be fine. Kibble cannot keep teeth clean. :)

I have also started supplementing Bella's kibble with FreshPet Select. I contacted the company before I started using it and they stated that the meat is human grade. It comes in a roll and it smells great and looks delicious. You can see the chunks of veggies in it. It can be fed on it's own as a complete dog food, too. I can buy it at Shoprite. It is at the end of the pet food aisle in it's own refrigerator.

http://www.homestyleselect.com/

And it is a great Kong stuffer, too!
 

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Kristin i realize what you're Vet is trying to say but she doesnt use the best tact.
Yes Napa has problems more so than the average dog, but I'd also look into supplements like Glusomine Chrondrotin, vitamins , swimming which is excellent for dogs with tendon or hd problems etc

for some RAW works...i haven't tried it so i don't know
as some do homemade diets

Napa isn't a lemon...........she a SweetBerry :wink:

some PUREBREED Dogs have problems up the yingyang...so doesn't matter whether "hybrid" "mutt all the way" or "purebreed"
poop happens and life goes on sometimes witha few adjustments along the way
 

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Kristin,
So sorry for all the troubles you and poor Napa are having, but your vet should be smacked with a wet bully stick for calling him a "lemon!" Her "bedside manner" stinks! I could imagine a pediatrician saying that to the parent of a child with medical problems!! I agree with Annmarie - swimming might be a good alternative exercise for him- if he enjoys the water.
 

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Hi Kristen - I'm so sorry that you are having more problems with Napa's health :( Sounds like you've gotten some sound advice here though! The swimming one in particular! Great idea!

We've recently gone grain free - Sandy is now eating Solid Gold Barking at the Moon - its wonderful! Its very pricey here (15lbs for $30 compared to Canidae 20lbs for $20) but totally worth it. His itchiness has almost gone away, and his ears have never looked better :) We battled constant ear yeast infections with the chicken & rice food.

Good luck finding a food that fits!
 

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I'd use up the dog food you have on hand before I switch him to another. It's not going to hurt him to use it up, and it's cost effective. Cinnamon is on the duck and potato food and we haven't noticed any change. We'll stick with it for a while longer though. Still working through all the possibilities for her itch.
 

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I love all of these posts!
I am sorry about little Napa and his troubles...really sorry.
I have no real advice on the food or supplements...we just feed Canidae and we do give canned in the morning and night and kibble is free-fed throughout the day...but I assure you, a raw bone once in a while cleans their teeth far better than kibble! That is an old wives' tale about kibble cleaning teeth...think about it, would our eating pretzels or dry cereal take the place of a toothbrush for us? No.
Sometimes I think that vets push what they sell...and even though Napa has had troubles, your vet may be setting you up for lots of vet care that is not necessary...just my opinion.
I like Dairy Dell Doggie Day Care in Petaluma. That is where we got out dogs trained (boot camp) and they worked wonders...they had a great yard and each dog had a little apartment.
Good luck...I am very sorry.
 

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We use a supplement called NuPro Joint Support...contains glucosamine, msm, ester c, 16 vitamins,15 minerals, 23 amino acids, 9 enzymes and 4 fatty acids....made from.....norwegian kelp, ground flaxseed, yeast culture, liver, bee pollen etc....they claim it promotes hair growth,stops itchy dry skin and hot spots,helps repel fleas, combats allergies, aids digestion and prevents gas, improves appetite and burns fat along with helping arthritic conditions and joint pain....it makes a tasty (im guessing) gravy when mixed with a little water and dog food... its a product of Nutri-Pet Research Inc...you can find it on ebay....I think it works really great...we have four dogs....two doodles, a coonhound and a pointer...our pointer Pepper is 16 years old....has led an extremely active life...had several joint injuries over her life and still moves around pretty good.....
 
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jumpinjacuzzijoe said:
We use a supplement called NuPro Joint Support...contains glucosamine, msm, ester c, 16 vitamins,15 minerals, 23 amino acids, 9 enzymes and 4 fatty acids....made from.....norwegian kelp, ground flaxseed, yeast culture, liver, bee pollen etc........
That sounds fabulous...can humans take it? :lol: :lol: :lol:
 

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They have formulas for cats, horses, ferrets, gerbils etc.....have not seen human formula but could not find "not for human consumption" anywhere on the canister
 

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Just want to chime in that I take glucosamine/chondroitin/MSM for arthritis and it helps me alot. Much of what it does it give lubrication to the joints so I see no reason why you couldn't use it to help avoid arthritis symptoms. Napa is not going to tell you when he is sore and achy.

Your poor baby is NOT a lemon! How cruel. He will be a challenge and I'm sorry for the financial burden but I am also very sure that he is adding much to our lives.

Deb
 

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If Napa is a lemon then I too am a lemon. But at almost 65 yrs I have done quite well for getting some genetic predispositions. I have arthritis (have had 4 joint surgeries so far) and am babying my hips (will need replacement in future) but for right now my Doctor recommended Glucosamine with MSN.

My son's lab mix was so lame he couldn't get down the stairs....on Glucosamine he is back to normal again.

Can you just imagine taking your child to the pediatrician and have them tell you your child is a lemon....don't they teach vets any better than that :twisted:
 

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I've also heard that swimming is great. There is a dog therapy pool here in BC that I've heard does wonders. There is a German Shepard who has arthritis and a Ridgeback that has under-developed rear legs that shake if he runs too much and apparently the swimming pool therapy really helps him.
 

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For my lab, we gave her chondroitin/glucosomine and it worked wonders (she passed at age 19!) for her...

When our Australian Shepherd ended up with problems, the c/g was too much for him and we gave him Synova G3 and it worked well for him.
 
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