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Bingo, deaf and mostly blind, yet still active was recently diagnosed with IBD (Inflammatory Bowel Disease). He has been under the care of a vet specialist internist.

Bingo's vet was adamant, he told us the ONLY thing my Bingo could eat, beginning right then, was some very gross vet-developed food.


Well, of course, Bingo would not eat it.  I was not supposed to give him anything else. I was absolutely beside myself. I was just watching him waste away, he went from 24 lbs to 17 lbs. 



A friend told me to talk immediately with a vet nutritionist and gave me some names. These folks are all around the country and work with you by phone. Desperate, I went shopping. Within a day I had a diet of cooked chicken breast and baked sweet potatoes and supplements.   Amazingly my Bingo absolutely turned around. 


It took months for Bingo to regain his weight, his major symptoms went away and he was no longer losing protein (albumin). 

The first time I went in to see the vet specialist after I started him on the special diet, the vet just wanted to clarify that I was giving him what he (the vet) had told me.  When I told him "no" and that I was being guided by a vet nutritionist, he absolutely hit the ceiling. 

He had never heard of any such thing and kept saying "vet nutritionist" in a derogatory way. I am not sure he had ever even heard of a vet nutritionist before and he is a very good internist.  Interestingly, he has come around completely and always wants to be sure I am feeding Bingo his chicken and sweet potatoes -- and of course I am. 



The genral oppinion of many dog owners is "Vets know very little about animal nutrition.  They know what they're taught in vet school, which supports brands like Hills and Purina, both of which are crappy foods.​"

What we do know is that Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) is a condition of digestive system of the dog involving the stomach, small
intestine and /or large intestine. Most often the condition is due to unknown causes or unknown etiology (Idiopathic).

The syndrome involves a hypersensitivity reaction to antigens in the bowel lumen or mucosa. Implicated antigens have  included parasites, bacteria, dietary constituents, and drugs.
The most common symptoms are characterized by chronic small bowel diarrhea, weight loss, and flatulence and odor of stool. Vomiting may also be the only sign seen in IBD. With chronicity of symptoms, large bowel diarrhea, halitosis and anorexia may develop.Food antigens frequently play a major role in this disease, especially in the Westie. The veterinarian may suggest a food of a novel protein and carbohydrate source that the dog has never been exposed to. A food trial of approximately 4-8 weeks may be appropriate before further diagnostic tests are done, depending on the condition of the animal.

The definitive diagnosis rests on identifying the inflammatory infiltrates in the intestinal mucosa with biopsy. This is accomplished by endoscopic exam and endoscopic biopsies or exploratory/laparoscopic surgery and full thickness  intestinal and stomach biopsies. The disease is characterized by the type of cells found in the intestinal mucosa  (Lymphocytic-plasmacytic, eosinophilic, or granullomatous infiltrates).

Oftentimes, a pet’s symptoms are mild or intermittent early in the course of the disease but become worse with time. Inflammatory bowel disease can affect pets of any age, but is usually diagnosed in middle aged to older animals.The precise location of the inflammation determines what symptoms predominate. For example, disease of the stomach typically causes vomiting, while inflammation of the small intestine often results in the occasional production of large amounts of diarrhea with or without vomiting. Large intestinal disease usually results in frequent episodes of small amounts of diarrhea that may contain mucus and blood.¹


We are interested in hearing from our readers on cases of IBD and what treatment you were advised to use with your Boston. We are also interested in learning if you have used a vet nutitionist to resolve a similar medical issue.  You can leave a comment here  or contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.