Hello everyone

We have just joined the forum. We have a great dane, mantel. Elsa is almost 7 months old; we are struggling at the moment with her diet and some tummy plus anal glands issue :frowning:

Hello and welcome to the forum. It is a shame that you are having problems with your puppy. I don’t have any knowledge of Great Danes but if you feel that you would like to discuss the problem we will try to help.

Thanks a lot Dottie, we will do it for sure. We are, at the moment, a bit confused of what to do after changing food brand twice.

what problems are you having? soft loose stools?

what foods have you tried?

I assume you’ve ruled out the usual issues, worms etc, with the vets?

Hello David,
yes, the problem we are facing on and off are soft stool, and am also concerned because she is not putting on that much weight (only 1.5 kg last month).
Now it’s been 3 days where the stool is quite firm and formed but as I said before it seems there is no continuity.
Food: Elsa is now on Arden Grange large puppy, it is now a week since we finished the transition with the previous kibble (a very long transition).
The previous one was Orijen where the first 4 month have been fantastic. Then, all of the sudden a bad episode of diarrhoea. We suspended the food, she’s been a week on rice and chicken before gradually reintroducing the kibble and everything seemed to be fine. Now, I have no idea if it’s my fault but because Elsa was constantly craving for food, I thought that the daily quantity suggested by Orijen (something around 350 grams) wasn’t enough…and we started to give her more. Result was another bad episode of diarrhoea with the vet giving us antibiotic. Since then (this was about a month and a half ago) we haven’t had other episodes but in general the stool have never been firm or formed. Because of this we also have issues with the anal glands; this doesn’t happens every day but often.
She is a mantel, so far I have to say that her coat is super shiny, not greasy at all and not smelly.
Today seems to be a good day and I’ve noticed her stool are also a lot more dark brown compared to the almost yellowish stools of the previous weeks.
Am feeding her 3 times a day x 220g each (and this is more than what suggested by Arden Grange)
I forgot to mention that I am also adding one table spoon of probiotics (Bionic Biotic) every feeding time.
I was at the vet with her today and he gave me all the necessary to do the feces test but he also told me to wait about 2 weeks to see if the new food work better for her.
As of today she is 35kg, according to the clinic if she will not put on weight in the next 2 weeks then we will do the test.
Thanks in advance for any thought/hint/idea

p.s: what I have noticed is the Arden grange kibble are quite small and Elsa she just swallow her food in few seconds. We tried to slow her down buying those special bowls but I’ve noticed she was swallowing even more air and we stopped using it. I don’t know if part of the problem is related to the fact that she doesn’t chew.

Certainly overfeeding on a high meat food like Orijen will cause diarrhoea, slight overfeeding will cause soft stools.

Eating too fast can also cause tummy upset, green feeders are god for this, or just feeding from a tray, spreading the food thinly so a big mouthful can’t be grabbed. With orijen you could soak in hot water to make a porridge, but AG will probably swell.

A little puréed butternut squash or pumpkin, one or two tablespoons per meal, may also help.

It may also be possible that an ingredient isn’t agreeing.

As for weight gain, diarrhoea or soft stools means food is passing through the gut too fast and thus not being absorbed properly, so it is possible that by overfeeding resulting in diarrhoea can actually result in losing weight, it can also leave a hungry feeling as nutrients are passing straight through, this is known as leaky gut syndrome.

Of course you are also consulting your vet, and any medical issues need to be ruled out too.

It sounds like she might have an intolerance to something but there is also the overfeeding issue. Have you consulted the breeder? The reason I ask is that if he or she is a reputable, experienced one who has had the breed for some years they may be able to shed some light on this. On the subject of hunger, I have two who are always scrounging so I know how difficult it is not to overfeed. I give them their daily amount divided into three. I also give some of their food (softened) in a Kong. This might be useful for you to try. I use Gentle cold pressed food which is supposed to be good for deep chested breeds who bolt food. It is broken down in the stomach in a different way to kibble. If you are interested in this, check out the thread on Markus Muhle and other cold pressed foods. However, for now I think you need to stick with the Arden Grange and follow the vet’s advice.

Hello and welcome to the forum. I don’t have anything much to add to what others have said. I hope you can get Elsa’s diet working for her. On occasion when I have softer stools, I tend to give my terrier a little natural yogurt (low fat) This generally sorts her out quickly.

Hello everyone and thank you all for your thoughts. I think I will do the test anyway, today her stools have been ok in the morning and in the afternoon, but just few minutes ago a very soft/sloppy yellowish stool appeared again :frowning:
I wonder if it’s the carrot and the piece of cucumber she managed to steal while I was making dinner :o

I really like the idea of the cold pressed food and I have read the thread and visited the Gentle and Healthy Dog websites. I like the idea of feeding Elsa with good food but of course, what could be my first choice, it could not agree with her tummy. I also like the idea because we are thinking of having another Dane in the summer and I have noticed that Gentle, for example, is a food for every size and every life stage.
As Dotty mentioned I will stick with Arden Grange for a bit, let’s hope tonight episode was nothing serious and maybe caused by the veggies, and I hope the vet will decide to go for the test (I just want to be sure that Elsa is fine and she is not infested by parasites).

The breeder is a lovely lady and this was the first and as far as I know will be the last litter. Elsa’s sister still live with her and she is on Hill’s adult large breed, 800gr a day and apparently she is doing well. I hope I will be able to meet up soon so I can have an idea at what stage Elsa really is.
We have had a male Great Dane back in the ages (he left us about 13 years ago), and he was a huge super gentle giant (103cm at the shoulder and 110 kg of pure muscles); he grew up on Purina Pro Plan, eating like a horse and never had any issue…having Elsa now is like having a super petite Great Dane :slight_smile:

I will also give a try to the green feeder to see how it goes.

Hello everyone, I thought to post a quick update. It seems Elsa is doing great on Arden Grange ;D. No more loose stool, but very firm and only twice a day. I have to say that AG isn’t my first choice but if Elsa is ok with that I think I will stick with it. It also seems that she is bulking up a bit and putting on weight…I will double check this on Saturday at the vet.
One quick question. One thing I have noticed is that her coat, especially near the back end it seems to be a bit matt and not shiny as the rest of the body…almost discolored I would say. There is no dandruff (there a was a bit when she was on Orijen) and she doesn’t smell at all (last bath 2 weeks ago and she is absolutely fine). Could this be the food doing this to her coat?
Many thanks in advance for your suggestions :slight_smile:

it is possible that is related to the food, but maybe there could be other causes