Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Louie's Story, Part 8: Save Louie

I thought long and hard about what I was going to do to feed Louie, once those two cases of his prescription food were gone. As far as something else to feed him, I had no answers. I could walk up to the edge of a likely disaster and just wait until I was forced to try the new formula, but that just didn't seem like a reasonable thing to do. My biggest fear was that I was not going to be able to find anything else he could eat, and that I'd be forced to watch him slowly waste away again, this time with nothing else I could do. I couldn't see letting that happen.

That is when this blog and the companion site at came into being. We started out with a letter writing campaign in the hope that Royal Canin would consider making the old formula again as a separate product in their line. When it became clear that this was not going to happen, I realized that I had to shift my focus quickly. There was still old product out there on shelves all over the continent, but it would not be there forever. At the urging of a friend, the Save Louie Food Drive was born, and I was able to purchase over 500 cans of the old formula food for Louie, all thanks to the kindness of those who spread the word, made calls, purchased food and shipped it to me.

Louie will soon be twelve years old. If we're lucky, he will have three more years or so. He eats a can a day, so 500 cans is not quite enough, but it's a good start. And just recently, we discovered a new protein source that he can eat: Tofu.

I'm stretching those cans of food for as long as I possibly can by mixing them with tofu and, sometimes, rice. In the next few months, once I dig out from under the expense of shipping 500 cans of dog food to California from all over, I will speak to a veterinary nutritionist about how to best balance Louie's diet. For now, I believe that Louie is finally saved.

This is an insidious disease. It can rear its ugly head at any time, but now that he is stable, remissions are relatively long and relapses are infrequent. Louie today is as happy as he can be. He feels good, his skin has healed, his muscle tone has improved and his energy is good.

He owns my heart, and I am so very grateful that he's doing well.

Yes, there is hope.


  1. What medicine is Louie on?

  2. Louie is no longer on any meds, we control his disease with diet alone. When he was very sick he took cyclosporine in large doses and assorted meds for nausea (cerenia), stomach acid (pepcid) and different antibiotics to try to target bacteria that might be living in his intestines and making him worse. Many dogs take steroids like prednisone with this condition, but Louie could not take them so we had to figure out other ways to help him.