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Thread: How to choose a good Bully vet

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    Newbie Dad to louie's Avatar
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    Default How to choose a good Bully vet

    I have noticed a lot of you say the best thing I can do is find a good bully vet. Especially since my vet told me that this bully was going to cost me an arm and a leg to keep healthy. So how do you find a good BULLY vet? How do you know if they are good with bullies. I took Louie in for his first set of shots and to just get him checked on and my vet already hit me with antibiotics and antihistamines and some omega oil pills and some little cloth pads that look like the old acne pads. lol They told me he did not have a skin infection yet but it looks like he could get one any minute so its better to be safe. I ask how long he would be on them and they said everything but the antibiotics could be a permanent thing. I just hate giving all the meds when I am not positive he needs them. He does have some pink around his face and sometimes on his belly but that is it. Any way how do you find a BULLY vet? What questions should I be asking? I am going to start the process of changing his food today to one of the one this sight suggest but now I do not know if its the food or meds that are helping. I am very confused.

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    Default Re: How to choose a good Bully vet

    I am on my 3rd Vet with my bullies. The first one always said "I dont know...but he's a bulldog so its gonna happen" Then he charged $100. The second, sounds alot like yours. Even whe he was right about the diagnosis, he wanted to sell me everything he could. Our Vet now, says "lets try.....before we have to do these tests", " Since 2 of your bullies need antibiotics, let me write you a prescription and fill it at Wal-mart.....its free there"
    A good Vet will help you figure out the problem instead of just try to charge you an arm and a leg. Unfortunatly, its trial and error. There is a Vet recommendations here on EBN you should it check out. Your Vet should know as much or more about bullies than you do!!

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    Default Re: How to choose a good Bully vet

    @Dad to louie We have a suggested vet list on the home page of this website:
    English Bulldog Veterinarians-Veteranarians
    But I just noticed we don't have any listed on there in Alabama. I think someone on here mentioned that BCA (bulldog club of america) can recommend vets good with bullys. Another idea would be to contact your local English Bulldog rescue organization and/or search on meetup.com for the English Bulldog meetup club in your area and I'm sure the members would be able to tell you vets they trust. Your vet sounds like he's going a little overboard. I don't think you need a regular antihistamine unless your pup is truly suffering with allergies, an occasional flare up can be helped with a benadryl as it happens. What are you feeding Lou? I suggest you take a look at these foods. A good diet can make a huge difference on in a bullies skin. Vets always seem to want to throw medicine at the problem versus taking a nutritional approach: Dog Food Ratings - Recommended Brands of Dog Food
    I like Fromm alot and I am trying Natures Variety next, both are really popular foods here. My Samson takes an antihistamine (atarax) daily for his allergies but its because he has pretty bad allergies, take a look at our before and after stories. You can see how bad my Samson was! I wouldn't keep him on a regular prescription if he didn't need it, without the atarx he licks his paws like crazy, his eyes water like crazy, his face just looks awful without it as you can see in the picture.
    Dog Food Then And Now
    What exactly are the little cloth pads the vet gave you? What are you supposed to do with them?
    Last edited by TessaAndSamson; 10-27-2010 at 06:14 PM.

    "Looking at a bulldog is said to cure the worse of the blues, living with one, serves to prevent them!" -Author unknown

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    Default Re: How to choose a good Bully vet

    Yes what are the pads he gave you? We do use these pads to clean the nose wrinkle etc so that may not be such a bad sell on the drs part. I have mal-a-ket pads and use them maybe 1 time a week when cleaning rather than every time. Someone on here posted that their vet didnt recommend using these unless there was an infection and I think said to just use stridex pads for daily cleaning even. I havent tried that yet since I ahve these already. The pads I used to use were much better but the company went under, they were called malaseb. Those I did use everyday for cleaning after baby wipes and they worked great. Too bad good things dont last. There is another brand, cant think of it now that has been said to be very good also. Anyhow those wipes will come in handy I am sure and can be used a lot. I agree with Tessa about the antihistamines. If there isnt a real concern there then dont give them. Benedryl does work well for flare ups. 25mg (1 pill) per 25 pounds. Never anything with tylenol tho, make sure it is regular benedryl.

    The omega pills are a good thing also, great for the skin and coat. But you can just buy regular fish oil that you would take and give that or they make the salmon oil that a lot of people here like so much that is made for the dogs. Tessa said hers is at petsmart i think so you can look anywhere and find one, it comes in a container with a pump on it and you just pump it over their food. Doesnt work for me cuz I free feed and the food would be nasty I imagine pretty quick. lol

    Being a new bully owner is SO confusing, trust me I know. Just keep on here and ask away. You will get it. Oh and as for the food switch, if nobody mentioned yet make sure to switch SLOWLY. Some dogs can handle a fast switch and others cannot and the runny poops are no fun at all trust me. My pug has a stomach of steel but my bully on the ther hand, not so much. At least a weeks time for a switch although I always start way early when I have a lot of food left and just take it slow. 3/1 ratio (old to new) for a bit then 2/2 then 1/3 etc. At least a few days each time but longer isnt bad. What food do you feed or are you switching to? Pink in their faces could be from a number of things and not necessarily mean they need any allergy med. Lamb causes my boy to turn pink like crazy. A lot of foods have beet pulp in them and that will turn them pink and stain the tears also. Watch out what treats you give as they can have all that bad stuff you are trying to avoid by giving a good food. Ok my novel is done.

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    Default Re: How to choose a good Bully vet

    Wow I think @TessaAndSamson and @cali~jenn said it all. I just wanted to post to say 'hi'. hee hee!

    A good question you can ask your vet (that I have just recently started doing) is:

    Are you an English Bulldog vet (all vets will say yes- dummies)
    How many English Bulldog Patients do you have?

    Ta-da, usually question #2 stumps them completely. Another thing to watch for is the staff, and their reaction to your bulldog. If they don't see many of them, they will usually say so. Question them a bit about how many come into the office. This is a key indicator! I had a nurse say once, "OH my, I havent seen a bulldog in ages!!!"

    Everyday is a party when you own a bulldog!
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    Default Re: How to choose a good Bully vet

    Thanks for all the information everyone.

    The wipes the vet gave me are Dermachlor K wipes. For vet use only.

    I Have another dog that is a Fila Brasileiro (Brazzilian Mastiff) and he eats us out of house and home. I feed him a feed from costco called Kirklands and I get the lamb version. I also put cod liver oil on his with a little bit of yogurt. I also give him a joint supplement/ vitamin called NUPRO. So when the bully came in I just did the same thing in smaller portion. But I am going to switch the bully to nature's variety Instinct. I think I will also try the Salmon Oil as well. The kirklands stuff is a 3 star on the rating which isn't bad but the bully eats so little that I am going to go ahead and see if a better food would make a big difference in his skin. He does lick his paws a lot. I almost feel bad for feeding the bully a better food but I just could not afford to feed the mastiff the fromms or anything. He goes through a 50 pound bag every 10-12 days. Plus he seems to be doing great on the mix I have him on. Is that bad?

    I like my vet and she has always taken care of us but she is just not very nice on our wallet. She seems to just give us everything just in case. Which is great till we get the bill. I originally chose her because she would allow me to come back on everything that involved my mastiff. He does not like people very much and really does not like them if I am not around so it just makes me feel better if i can control him while they do what they need to do. But I dont like the whole lets just take everything and surely one of these will cure him. I feel like we are guessing sometimes.

    My last questions I promise.

    I am going to try the Natures Variety first. I am also going to add Salmon Oil. What else should I do? Should I give him the NuPro? How about the yogurt for digestion?

    Thanks for all the info I feel like such a newbie.

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    Default Re: How to choose a good Bully vet

    Yogurt is awesome!! you can also give canned pumpkin(not pie filling) or fresh pumpkin(great for digestion), I also give my babies ocean kelp and for treats I freeze pumpkin,yogurt,carrots,brocolli and apples. If he is licking his paws alot use regular listerine( the old orange kind) and soak them. its a great antiseptic and check in his pads and between his toes if there is swelling you can use preperation H(its amazing what you find in there)

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    Default Re: How to choose a good Bully vet

    we give our yogurt, cottage cheese and carrots... lex just started licking his paws here recently and he could have seasonal allergies. we've been givin him benedryl and it has helped dramaticlly we have been giving our lab benedryl as well cause he will itch his feet till they bleed do not give your bullie any tylenol

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    Default Re: How to choose a good Bully vet

    Kirkland is not a bad food, 3 star is fine if it works for your mastiff. I can understand that you may feel a little bad for feeding Louie the Natures Variety and not your mastiff but I think that may be your best choice, you can't go broke over it and you really need a good food like that for Louie's allergies. If he licks his paws alot that is normally something they do because of their allergies, like my Samson. So because of the obvious signs of allergies I think Louie could greatly benefit from a food change and adding salmon oil. The joint supplement is a good idea, bulldogs are prone to hip and joint issues so starting young could help in the long run. Yogurt is good, I give my Samson a couple spoon fulls of the nonfat plain yogurt on his food everyother day. Oh and back to the antihistamines, if he is licking his paws alot I would keep him on that for a while. After being on a good new food for a couple months you may want to try taking him off it to see if he still needs it. The food change alone may take care of the problem. If it doesn't you can try other foods, no one certain food work for every bully. Or he may just need it all the time, like my Samson. No matter what food he eats his eyes water like crazy and he licks his paws like crazy without his daily antihistamine.

    "Looking at a bulldog is said to cure the worse of the blues, living with one, serves to prevent them!" -Author unknown

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    Default Re: How to choose a good Bully vet

    I agree with Tessa, kirklands food isnt bad at all. Until recently I had always fed 3 star foods and they were all good foods. I have just been on a mission to find the best lately so I have gone with fromm for now. We had great success on diff foods and so long as the foods are 3 star and up you are doing good by your pup. If it works for your pup then stick with it, no reason to change. Now if you were feeding pedigree I wouldnt say this, lol. so you are fine. I think the allergies should go away within a month or so of switching foods, if it is going to help that is. Once you switch over to natures variety and say find the licking hasnt stopped, you can switch within that food to a different protein type with no worries about having to do it gradually. So get him on whatever food you want to try first and see how he does with it and then try diff ones and you may see that 1 protein works better than another.

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    Default Re: How to choose a good Bully vet

    Thanks everyone. I think I am going to keep giving the omega oil pills to Louie, but cut out the antihistamine just to see if it is helping. The vet put him on it the first day we got him so I don't know if it is helping or not. I will also switch the food this weekend and see how things go. I will be adding yogurt since everyone seems to think that is still a good idea. Also adding Salmon oil and continue the joint supplement. The fur kid is eating better than the skin kids. I probably need to look into there diets as well. lol

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    Default Re: How to choose a good Bully vet

    I think contacting an EB rescue is a great suggestion. Or if there's a reputable breeder in your area, they should be able to suggest a good Bully vet. I just lucked out with my vet. I've gone to the same vet for about 12 years. I had a different breed, but I always saw lots of EBs there. EB people there for artificial inseminations and C sections, etc. So I knew he was a good EB vet, so I didn't even have to switch.

    If you have doubts about what your vet has sold you for your Bully, I would follow the advise given here. Even tho no one is a vet, when you add up all the years and years of Bully experience here, I always follow the advise given here. I was completely new to this breed in July, when I got Gertie and then Ida a couple months later. I joined here the day after I brought Gertie home and it was absolutely the best idea I had! This group is GREAT! I use the salmon oil sold at Petco and both my girls have beautiful, shiney coats and healthy skin. I know they're a little young for skin issues, but I'm hopeful I'm doing everything right as "preventive medicine".

    I feed Nature's Variety Prairie Chicken and Brown Rice. They love it and are doing great on it. As far as your Mastiff, I'd leave well enough alone if he's doing well on the Kirkland food. We also have a 3 year old St. Bernard. We switched him off a really bad food to Natural Life and his shedding disappeared (it was incredible the difference it made!). But once I started reading about the ratings I was concerned because he was getting a food with 2 stars and the girls were getting a 4 star, so we switched him to Nature's Variety too and he promptly had a bad reaction to it. (He panted hard and slobbered, way worse than usual. He drank an obsurd amount of water.) So we took him off it immediately. Then we tried the Kirkland brand, because he was on that as a puppy, but we moved where it's a long ways to Costco. But we rejoined and made the trip. He liked the Kirkland brand, but his shedding got really bad again. So he's back on the Natural Life. Even tho it's a 2 star food, it works for him. So we're going by the old saying, "If it's not broken, don't fix it". If your Mastiff is good on the food you have him on, I'd leave well enough alone.

    There is nothing nicer than two sweet Bully girls, unless it's THREE sweet Bully girls!!
    Julie, Gertie, Ida & Clementine in Az.

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