I want to apologize in advance for being so verbose, but I want to get the whole story out there in the hopes of getting the best advice.
My 6 yr old lab Billy has been having what seems to be digestive issues the past few months. One day he will be fine and then the next I wake up to his stomach making horrible loud noises (usually early morning ~5:00am). I assume this is intestinal gas, but he doesn't actually pass gas. What's most concerning is that he will refuse to eat that entire day and appears to be quite uncomfortable. Then the next day he will be perfectly fine again....until a few days later, then it starts all over again.
I took him to the vet and they did a fecal test and ruled out parasites (but we still treated with Panacur to be on the safe side). They also did an abdominal X-ray and everything looked ok, except for what appeared to be gas in his intestines (not surprising). Lastly, they ran a complete blood work-up and told me everything "looks great". The only advice my vet had at the time (this was a few weeks ago) was to give him Mylanta when he was having the gas problems, wait and see if the Panacur takes care of the problem, and if all else fails think about changing his food.
I was hopeful that the Pancur would do the trick, but sadly it didn't. I've been giving Mylanta as recommended, and it helps enough to get him to eat...but gives him diarrhea and doesn't keep him from getting the gas in the first place.
Wanting to find a solution, not just something to coverup the symptom I decided to try changing his food. He was on TOTW Pacific stream formula, wanting to change him to a different protein source I first tried Blue Buffalo Chicken and Brown rice, but my other dog wouldn't eat it. I am now trying to transition them to Wellness Core Original. They both LOVE the food, but it doesn't seem to be helping with his bouts of intestinal gas. Granted it's still early in the transition. Its only been 2 days, but he has had the gas problem both days. Today I decided to try feeding him 3 times/day rather than 2 and limiting his water after meals. He tends to gulp down water right after eating and I read this can cause gas. We have another vet appointment in a few days and I will update the vet on his lack of progress and hope he has a better idea of how to deal with this situation. I am especially worried because labs are more prone to bloat. I am wondering if this could be chronic bloat.
In the meantime, I was wondering if any of you have experienced similar complications in your dogs. If so do you know the cause? How did you treat it? Should I consider an allergy formula?
Billy and I would like to thank you all in advance for you help/suggestions.