So during the course of this I have probably done 60+ hours of research on the subject and still have not found enough information on what to do; so I figured I would plead for help from the many other pug owner's here and their years of experience. Zooey is my first pug, and the first dog I have ever had that my parent's didn't take care of (I recently graduated from college and got her shortly afterwards, in February as a rescue; no previous medical history known). My little girl is my number one priority, I only want what the best for her is; and I don't care how many bags of food or vet visit it takes to make sure she is both comfortable and healthy.
May 8th, she had an accident in training class. Normally she pees in the grass, so I hadn't seen her urine. But when she urinated on a cement floor it was very obvious that she had a bladder infection. I called the vet the next day. May 10th we took in a urine sample. A few hours later they called back and said she had a bladder infection/uti and struvite crystals. She had a two week course of 100 mg of Amoxicillin. Then she had another urine analysis that showed her infection had cleared up; but still showed a good amount of struvite crystals.
The vet told me to put her on Hill's Science Diet Prescription c/d slowly over the course of about 10 days. Previously I had been feeding her Natural Balance reduced calorie formula, with intentions of trying to find a higher quality ingredient food, now that she had lost some weight. The vet wants her on the Hill's for the rest of her life, with absolutely no treats except occasional moist Hill's Science diet prescription c/d moist food used as a treat. Also drinking filtered water from now on (which I don't mind, we just put a PUR filter on the sink)
1. This food does not seem to be made with very high quality ingredients. The website says that the purpose of the diet is for a lower ph level (6.2-6.4) and low amounts of magnesium and phosphorus. So I have been looking high and low for a high quality, more natural diet with a low target ph. It seems that most dog food sites do not put the target ph level on their information.
2. A pug's life without treats seems so depressing to me. My little Zooey lives for her treats, and loves a wide variety.
3. I am starting to believe that Zooey may have some kind of minor allergy to something in the food. Lately she has been itching her face a lot more frequently, and licking her paws more. She has also been producing more/thicker eye mucus which I don't know if it is related or not. Some times it almost covers her whole eye like a contact. Before I started I hadn't noticed these things very much with her and now they are a daily occurrence. They seem to be increasing with the increasing the % of her food that is the Hill's over the Natural Balance.
So I have been devoting most of my time lately to trying to research and find food which meets the standards for helping with her struvite crystals while still being quality and natural. I don't think that I have the time to devote to a homemade diet, although I have heard of premade raw diets that I would be okay with. But once again, I can't find the target ph or mineral content for a lot of them. I still haven't found anything. I feel like I'm going crazy trying to make sure she is healthy. Normally I just go along with whatever the vet says, but after seeing the ingredient list; I just can't acquiescent with it.
If anyone has any ideas, website leads, experience, or help for this issue I would be sooooo grateful. In the meantime I'll get back to my research. If nothing else the more informed I am on dog food, the higher the chance is that I will be able to help someone else going crazy in the future. Thanks for your time to anyone who read through all this!
Tinker doesn't have struvites but calcium oxylate stone history. I'm convinced that more important than the food is the water intake. Flood her food with water and I treat water as a treat. She always has a large bowl of water down(I use Deer Park) then I add a pinch of canned chicken or tuna, chicken broth in small amount to another smaller bowl of water at least 4-5 times a day.She drinks that smaller bowl right down.The smaller bowl has about a cup of water in it.Tinker used to be on Royal Canin urinary s/o and I switched her over in January to Stella & Chewey's freeze dried raw.Her urine specific gravity and ph have not changed with the food, the water has stayed the same. I take a urine in every month to stay ahead of a UTI/stone formation so I know what the urine values are. I love my vet but she was adamant about NOT going to a raw diet and she doesn't know I have, but she's thrilled about the urine reports. Several people on here have pugs with struvites and hopefully they will add a reply. Good luck and keep us posted.Please increase her water intake even if you think she is drinking enough, it will keep her bladder flushed out.
Jackie,Mom to Robbie & Stacy my human children and Tinker my furkid.
I was told any Science Dog food was good! You can also ask your vet about methionine to help make the urine more acidic I went on it until my dogs were clear...then went to a better food and kept the methionine going!
For a urine infection ...especially with crystals a culture should be done to make sure you're on the right antibiotic.
I always gave my guys treats!
Good luck to you!
Lucy has trouble with uti and struvite crystals. We were told to use Science Diet too... We put her on Avoderm, and have cut down on Uti's and the crystals are gone. Good luck!
(Owned by Lucy and Bugsy the pugs, one human child, a wonderful hubby, and a tank full of guppies)
I've heard cranberry juice also helps lower the Ph .
Chris, owned by Minni the diva, and "Sugar" Ray the ever hungry.
DH to Ellen , DD to Lindsay and Carrie
Okay, as was mentioned above, it's the water intake, not the food that makes the most difference. Scrap the Science Diet go get some prepared raw (nature's Variety, Stella & Chewys and Primal are all great brands). Go get a quality cranberry powder. I use NaturVet Cranberry Relief, but there are other brands and human can be used too.
Flood the food with DISTILLED water....I mean make it a thin soup. If she won't eat it with so much water add a bouillon cube to it. Give her distilled water in her water bowl as well.
Avoid any treats with carbs....no carrots, or treats that have grains, potato, tapioca, etc.
Add two heaping scoops of the NaturVet Cranberry Relief powder to her food daily until the crystals clear. Once clear use it every other day. Encourage her to go out and potty as often as possible. The more she pees the better.
Have they done x-rays to rule out stones? If she has stones, they will need to be treated with surgery (if large) or methionine (if small), then take up the above to maintain her. But if it's just crystals, follow the program. Also if she has or gets a bladder infection she will need antibiotics. I don't like amoxicillin for bladder infections, Simplicef and/or baytril are better. Some dogs need to remain on them for 3-6 weeks to get all of the bacteria gone. Most vets just give a ten day prescription.
How old is she? Does she have any incontinence issues or does she hold her urine a very long time?
In a gentle way, you can shake the world.
- Mohandas Gandhi
I am interested in the methionine. what dosage?
The doctor didn't think she had stones, but we did not do xrays. She is two and half years old. The only time she ever had incontinence issues was the few days with the bladder infection, but that went away after her infection cleared up.
I will give Garden of Life Raw C (for pH) and d-mannose (to bind with urinary tract bacteria) on alternating days when my old girl has a problem.