The other thing I have been reading is re. feeding. He is a stray but seems quite healthy, we watched him 'relieve himself' and his 'waste' seemed slightly runny (niiiice!!) - I've heard that they can have slightly weak stomachs so would 2 smaller meals per day (one in morning and one at night) with a couple of doggy bisuits after his lunchtime walk be okay?
The other thing is, is it better to take him out for his long morning walk before he eats or after from a digestion/bloat pervention point of view?
I have no intention of breeding him or anything, so I'm not worried about health problems from that point of view, but as he was a stray and they know nothing about him, is there anything in particular I should watch out for, or would a vet be able to identify any potential problems?
Sorry for rambling on, it's just everyone seems to know so much here and I would rather ask than guess...thanks )
|Congrats! I'm not sure what he would have already been tested for by the shelter - but the first thing that comes to mind for me is Heartworm!
I would schedule an appointment as early as possible with your Vet and have them check for all of the worms (hook, ring, heartworm, etc.). He may have a parasite/worm causing the loose stools. I'm sure whatever he may have - it will be able to be dealt with easily. He sounds like a healthy dog overall. I would be more inclined to think he was younger than 5 - based on your description. I know they can usually tell based on the teeth - so your vet will probably give you a better idea.
2 meals a day is recommended and I would avoid strenous exercise following eating to decrease the chances of bloat. You may have to work with his food to see which one suits him best - especially if there are some stomach issues.
Enjoy your new addition! I hope he has a happy, healthy and long live with your family! Best of Luck! REmember we're all here when you need us!
|Congratulations and Thank You for adopting an adult dog.
I second getting a "worm" check. The vet will know what other diseases are in your area and check for that.
Any changes in a dog's life will bring on the "squirts." It happens with most breeds. Changes in family, home, food, etc. I sometimes think sheepies are more prone to these tummy upsets but it may be the evidence is more apparent....
I urge you to get high quality food and not El Cheapo as we are talking about long term health. Like the old commercial for .....what....STP? "You can pay me now or you can pay me later." Meaning El Cheapo may save you money upfront but you may run into more health issues later. BTW, I use Nutro because it doesn't give my sheepies gas.......
When changing food, do so very, very slowly. Give their tummies a chance to catch up.
I second also not exercising the dog after eating. Sheepies are big chested dogs and prone to bloat or gastric torsion........the stomach flips over and can kill in a matter of hours....or minutes. Keeping sheepie quiet after eating allows the stomach to "concentrate" on the job at hand, digesting food. No extra muscle movement, please.
I too feed twice a day......small amounts so as not to over extend the stomach.......bloat again.
As for the age, hard to tell. Teeth can be worn if sheepie is a rock or fence chewer. Also lack of dental care can prematurely age the teeth giving a false age. In the end, who care. As long as sheepie is peppy, healthy and happy......I don't care their age. (Not true, I prefer a few years on them because some of the madness has run it's course..LOL)
There's so much more to know about owning a sheepie, please stay tuned and ask questions.
|Just wanted to say thank you for the replies - I phoned the Centre again today and they said that the vet has said (after castrating him - apparently you can tell by the testes?) that he would place him at 3.
You are right though, that it makes no difference. I was a bit upset when I first thought he was 5 as (selfishly) I always wanted a slightly younger dog so I could have him for longer. (My mum and dad got a black lab and he's lovely, but he's only 9 and not very well). Then when I was chatting about it with my husband, I realised that I couldn't care how old he was, I was just looking forward to picking him up from the Centre so much! Can't wait till Sunday!
They said that, with strays, they give them all their shots again, as they can't be sure what they have or haven't had. He has to go for his second lot next week so I'll ask the vet about worms etc.
I got a complete dog food (I think Pedigree but it's in the car so I will double check - was assured by the shop it was good for big dogs). I couldn't find Nutro - maybe it's America only? (I'm in Scotland)
Thanks again for your posts - my husband always laughs at me for researching things too much but I want to know as much as I possibly can about OESs to make sure he is as comfortable and happy as possible with us! Did I mention I can't wait until Sunday!!!
|No matter what food you choose I would expect to have runny stools for a bit, all the changes are bound to bring it on, as well as the fact that the dog has likely had several food changes which is hard on any dogs system. I know some dogs do well on Pedigree, but I would suggest looking into some of the premium brands. I don't know what is available in your area, but Pedigree is not top notch, IMO. If you check the label and see that the first three ingredients are meat first, and then meat based at least, that will give you an idea of what you are feeding. Protien levels for an adult dog should be around the 25% mark, and fat levels around 15%, give or take a percentage point or two. If he needs to be brought into better condition at all, higher protien and fat levels are good for a while.|
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