seizure dog considering homemade food

This is the place to share your best homemade dog food and treat recipes with each other! Remember to use caution if your pet has allergies and to make any diet changes gradually so that your dog's stomach can adjust to the new foods you are introducing.

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Barked: Sat Jan 7, '12 7:43am PST 
Adler started having seizures about a year and a half ago. We started him on bromide, then added kepra and now have also added phenobarbital. This mix is very expensive and the side effects have turned my puppy into a different dog (used to be very active athletic build - could jump like a deer) cry Now overweight, joint issues, drugs make him dizzy and he injures easily.

At my last vet visit I reported that he had a lot of gas and she suggested that he might have a food allergy. She offerred trying a hypoallergenic diet, either commercial or homemade and gave me the following recipe for a 12-13 lb dog:

1 1/4 cups oatmeal cooked
3 1/2 oz kidney beans, canned
1 egg, large, hard-boiled
1 cup mixed vegetables, cooked and drained
1 1/2 calcium carbonate tablets (600 miligrams calcium)
1 multiple vitamin-mineral tablet

At first I was against spending the extra time on this but the more research I do I realize this could be the key to getting him off the meds. I read that commercial food could be causing the seizures and he has aged so quickly in the last year that health benefits can't be ignored. Even if just relieves his current gas symptons it seems worth it. I have already purchased Be-Well Vitamins after some further research on proper supplements.

My question is once I modify the recipe for a 70-75 lb dog (currently 83 lbs) the quantity of ingredients is huge! I estimated $50 per week with retail prices. This is 5 times what I pay for commercial. My budget is strapped based on the meds and I'm wondering if anyone has advise on modifying the recipe or buying in bulk. Help!!


I'm triple- superior MAD- now!
Barked: Sat Jan 7, '12 10:00am PST 
That isn't a hypo allergic diet, it is a vegetarian diet. Beans especially can cause gas as most people know after eating too many!

A hypo allergic diet is one starchy veggie or grain plus one meat. Both ideally are foods the dog hasn't had before. Feed that mix for several weeks and if things improve you can start to make it balanced by adding calcium and other supplements needed to balance the diet.

I use nutritiondata.com to make up recipes and check that the bits and pieces are working out for the dog. I start with a minimum of 1 gram of protein and 20 calories per pound of dog and try to give more protein if possible and adjust calories up or down depending on the dog's condition. Sick geriatric Sassy got 25 calories per pound and healthy senior Max only gets about 17 calories per pound.

Just multiplying out the quantities probably isn't going to work, your dog is larger and larger dogs generally need fewer calories per pound than small dogs, this can work! Check the food he gets now, that number of calories is a reasonable starting point, right?

Sassy had kidney disease which is generally treated by vets with low protein. I gave her moderate protein, about 1.5 grams of protein per pound and she did better. Sick dogs need more protein to rebuild the tissues that aren't working properly! If chosen carefully there is a good protein for any disease. Meat proteins are better tolerated by dogs, plant proteins, like the beans, work on paper but are a last resort. Liver dogs get low ammonia egg and dairy and fish, kidney dogs get low phosphorus boiled chicken and egg white for instance.

The ultimate allergy diet is prey model raw as you can feed one single protein and no carbs of any sort. Some very ill dogs have had remarkable recoveries going to that super simple type of diet. My 38 pound Max eats 20 pounds of meats a month and the chicken, pork, beef, ostrich and organs add up to about $25 a month. Even before I had a freezer so I could take advantage of good deals I was able to feed him for that price with shopping sales and checking clearance bins.

Sassy had unexpected benefits from eating fresh food. You might just try chicken and rice or hamburger and rice at first as it is cheap and be very surprised at how well it goes. I would prefer not to use rice but something like sweet potato or white potato or even just chicken or beef and broccoli but budgets rule! Aina had a really great sounding mix of sweet and white potato and turnips in equal quantities for upset tummies if you want to try that. [http://www.dogster.com/forums/Home_Prepared_Food_Recipes/thread/707 838/last] Sassy had irritated anal sacs on kibble which improved on the same chicken and rice type food but cooked from fresh stuff. Fresh likely has a lower bacterial load than what the kibble ingredients started out with is my guess. This book is one source of information that comes from a traditional vet.

Barked: Sat Jan 7, '12 6:45pm PST 
Thanks Maxwell! The pointers on calories and protein have helped and the nutritiondata.com site is very useful.


Barked: Sun Jan 8, '12 6:41am PST 
If you have already read my posts in the past, I apologize for the repeats.
Timmy developed his seizure disorder about 3 years ago. We immediately started a seizure diary noting things as:

What he had eaten during the past 24 hours
Weather over the past 24 hours
Location of the seizure
Activity over the past 24 hours
Any scents in the air, whether from cooking or if you've used any air freshners/cleaners

We were able to find several guranteed triggers right away. Stress, location, weather and food triggers were a few.
I know turkey, rosemary and citrus affect a lot of dogs with seizures.
No matter what a small amount of a treat he has or new food, make sure you note it. Timmy once got hold of a cheeze-it and had 6 seizures in a 24 time period.
We were able to keep him off of meds for 2 years (he also has a history of mast cell tumors) but he now takes a very, very low dose of phenobarbital and it works wonders for him.
Natural Balance makes several limited ingredient kibbles. That might be an easier route to try initially. I tend to agree with the other poster that the absence of meat from the diet would concern me. Then again, perhaps your vet is trying to eliminate then re-introduce proteins one at a time.
Please feel free to p-mail me if you'd like. Best of luck to you and your pup!
Dylan aka- Dilly,my- angel

frisbee- s rule
Barked: Sun Jan 8, '12 11:54am PST 
dylan hasnt had a seizure in 3 ½ years. I got him off pedigree food.

have been able to cut his meds down to where they dont even show in blood work, and am aiming towards a very slow total removal

Member Since
Barked: Mon Jan 9, '12 5:36pm PST 
If a vet told me what yours told you, I'd get a new vet immediately. Allergies don't cause gas. As Maxwell said this is a vegetarian diet. It's entirely inappropriate for a carnivore. Your dog needs as much meat in his diet as you can feed cooked as little as you can cook it.

Lookin' Pretty
Barked: Wed Jan 11, '12 6:34pm PST 
You may want to explore this site:

If you scroll down on that site, you will find information about home-made diets for dogs with seizures.

I'm triple- superior MAD- now!
Barked: Wed Jan 11, '12 8:59pm PST 
The liver diet has been refined and made to be complete by Monica Segal.

Barked: Sun Jan 15, '12 5:53am PST 
Trixie - thanks for the link! I've never found this much information on epilepsy in spot.

I'm triple- superior MAD- now!
Barked: Sun Jan 15, '12 9:44am PST 
Seizures are a big concern among dog owners, that site helped me back when Max was having them.

It isn't easy having a dog with a serious chronic condition. If you are up to it cooking really helped me deal with Sassy's kidney disease. She adored the special food for a really long time and fresh wet food has got to be better for dogs than dry kibble. And most of all I was doing something!
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