Constipation/pooping woes w/potty learning aged children - Page 3 - Mothering Forums

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#61 of 228 Old 11-02-2006, 01:18 AM
 
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for us, skipping days with the miralax results in non-pooping and all the resultant joys, so cutting back on the dose works much better. since it works by drawing more water into the colon to soften the bm, when we get too much, oh yeah, it's a mess! : ds gets a little over half a dose. it is definitely "holy mother of poop"!

I've lost track of who all said what, but we have trouble with dosing too. sometimes the drink gets spilled (last week I *swear* he knew-- he spilled the whole drink 4 days in a row, sometimes more than once in a day! : ), sometimes he doesn't finish it, and I just love those mornings when he *says* he wants juice, so I fix it in juice, then he decides he wants cow's milk! we're finally back on track with dosing for a couple of days in a row, but now we're dealing with halloween candy highs and lows, so the behavior still sucks.

Mata, you mentioned root chakra issues early in this thread and I meant to comment. I have thought about this in that regard also. you mentioned acceptance in the tribe, and I have found it is also affected by security/ stability because it relates to survival. for us we have had a lot of instability over the past few years financially, and we moved three times in 12 months, including our move into our current house this past may-june. I have wondered if this aggravated ds's problem, although it doesn't seem to be improving yet.

I really liked what someone posted about convincing her dc that her pooping process is all up to her. this feels important for us too. this gave me renewed confidence that if I can stay relaxed about it long enough, he will eventually believe that I am relaxed and will relax himself. at least I hope so! I'm afraid it will take a lot longer than 2 weeks for us, though :

off to get my monster to bed now!

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#62 of 228 Old 11-02-2006, 02:01 PM - Thread Starter
 
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oh,bleh-my oldest has strep throat and now I feel like I've completely lost track of youngest dd's pooping and dosing. Thanks again for your input, annekevdbroek, and for yours, goddessjulia-you know, the more I've thought about it I'm not going to do what the doctor said about skipping a day. When dd's poops first got really watery I cut the dosage in half but then doubted myself and checked with the doc. I can really see where skipping a day would be counterproductive.

Goddessjulia-about root chakra issues-I've been doing a lot of soul searching about that. I hope your insight helps your situation. I'm a parent who was an only child, and I think I'm guilty of making dd#2 feel very second child. I've been trying to change that-hopefully it will contribute to her improvement.
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#63 of 228 Old 11-03-2006, 11:33 AM
 
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Goddessjulia-about root chakra issues-I've been doing a lot of soul searching about that. I hope your insight helps your situation. I'm a parent who was an only child, and I think I'm guilty of making dd#2 feel very second child. I've been trying to change that-hopefully it will contribute to her improvement.
good luck with that! I don't know what your beliefs are, but I believe that our children choose us, and we them. so when the lessons are hard, I remind myself that he chose me, and I may not be able to see what the challenges will produce, but I can trust that he is getting what his soul wanted for this lifetime. this helps me to not judge myself too harshly, which otherwise I am *very* prone to do!

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#64 of 228 Old 11-07-2006, 11:55 AM
 
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We're suffering the same thing here. DS's bowels have never been the same since he weaned last Christmas. It's been problematic since then. He's been suffering the encopresis, and usual constipation. It hurts the poor fella. He's out of diapers, but is afraid to sit to poop, as I think he can't control it, or "stop it", in his words. I'm going to see my physician for the miralax. It sounds great. Right now, we use liquid senokot in chocolate milk (it's supposedly chocolate flavoured), but I feel it's the dairy that's plugging him up. Thanks for the ideas. I'm sorry our kiddos are going through this, though!
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#65 of 228 Old 11-08-2006, 01:04 PM
 
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try switching to chocolate rice milk. my ds won't drink regular rice milk, but he drinks the chocolate just fine. I think dairy is a problem for us, too, but I haven't had success eliminating it so far. the whole family would have to do it, and it's hidden in so many things!

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#66 of 228 Old 11-12-2006, 11:58 PM
 
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I'm glad to see this thread - at least I know this is not an unusual problem. DS is 3.5 and been suffering from these constipation/pooping issues for 2 years. He was getting potty trained but seems to be afraid, at times, of using it. I'm sure his resistance is related not only to his bowel issues but also to the arrival of his baby brother this summer. For 2 years, the screaming and crying because of his bowel issues was just awful. The family doc. prescribed a few laxatives but I was uneasy about using them on a long term. I've come to a solution that works for DS - the solution keeps his bowels running regularly so at least he's not constipated. I grind flax seeds every day in coffee grinder and cook them in water on a pot then I throw in Red River cereal or organic Oatmeal (rolled or steel cut) and serve the hot cereal to DS. He loves the cereal and the grains along with the flax seed just seems to keep his bowels regular - for the first time in years.

Now that he is older, I try to stress over and over how important it is to eat and drink specific things to "help me poop" as my son says. DS is enthusiastically eating fibrous veggies like kale and cabbage knowing it will help his "bum". As long as I'm strict about serving the hot cereal and flax every day and making sure he drinks some prune juice and eats veggies, he is "regular". I also make sure he eats about 1 cup of plain yogurt each too. Too much white flour product or dairy and he backs up, though.

He's not remotely interested in potty training (he uses the potty 2 times a week!) but I figure at least if I keep him from being constipated, in his own time, he will eventually get himself on to the toilet without fear. No real solutions here but good to know we're not alone.
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#67 of 228 Old 11-13-2006, 11:34 AM
 
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Thanks for the idea of ground flax seeds in oatmeal, Tuesday. Sounds like a good idea!
BTW, congratulations on your baby boy. I had DS2 in the summer, too.
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#68 of 228 Old 11-13-2006, 11:12 PM
 
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I hadn't tried the flax in the oatmeal either. we did have the best luck with regularity without miralax when ds was eating oatmeal *every day* for breakfast, but then he quit wanting to eat it (and if he missed one day, forget it!). I know others have mentioned difficulties with eating habits. has anyone figured out a way around this? as some of us mentioned early in this thread, if ds knows I'm too vested in getting him to eat or drink something, it's a sure bet he won't touch it. we still can't talk about eating things that help him poop either; that results in definite refusal to eat said food. I am so tired of the battles, and now that I'm pg dealing with his poop is becoming seriously difficult!

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#69 of 228 Old 11-13-2006, 11:40 PM
 
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Oatmeal is wonderful for pooping - and it is also one of DS's favorite foods. Dairy, according to the GI doc, acts like "glue" in the gut and can contribbute significantly to constipation. We try to limit it as much as possible. Fortunatly DS prefers soymilk over cow's milk.

I just wanted to add that this week we have had 4 (FOUR!) poops in the potty for the very first time. I had a Thomas lumbermill I bought over a year ago as a reward for pooping in the potty and DS finally earned it. YAY!
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#70 of 228 Old 11-14-2006, 12:11 AM
 
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So far, so good for us. For a couple of weeks now DD1 has been going more regularly. Sometimes she goes three days between poops (not her norm...maybe it's her new norm). And those poops are huge! But not painful or laborious to get out, thankfully.

As for food we do talk about what helps you poop and what doesn't. It works for us. I know some of you have said your child will resist food you tell them will make them poop. She's beginning to choose better foods. As a result her poop is getting easier.

As for oatmeal, what about cookies? Or those oatmeal bars? You can hide oats in things like that. Muffins...just ideas.
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#71 of 228 Old 11-14-2006, 09:16 AM
 
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My son won't eat regular oatmeal but he will eat oatmeal cookies (no raisins).
It does tend to help. Molasses cookies helps him too.
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#72 of 228 Old 11-14-2006, 11:52 AM
 
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Hi again (wave to Owensma - congrats! ). I posted above about about grinding flax and using it along with hot oatmeal or Red River cereal (which contains rye & flax grain). In our case, the thing that is working is grinding the flax seed, then boiling the ground flax in water on the stove. Once the water turns into a kind of "flax soup", I throw in the cereal grain and cook the cereal. The Red River cereal is great because it is cheap, all-natural and already has flax in it. The only oatmeal I use is the long cooking type - nothing processed (i.e. quick cook oats). As long as I keep in eating this flax & cereal every day or every other day, his bowels move normally.

I wanted to clarify because I re-read my post and realized I wasn't clear enough. HTH
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#73 of 228 Old 11-14-2006, 11:58 PM
 
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Oatmeal is wonderful for pooping - and it is also one of DS's favorite foods. Dairy, according to the GI doc, acts like "glue" in the gut and can contribbute significantly to constipation. We try to limit it as much as possible. Fortunatly DS prefers soymilk over cow's milk.

I just wanted to add that this week we have had 4 (FOUR!) poops in the potty for the very first time. I had a Thomas lumbermill I bought over a year ago as a reward for pooping in the potty and DS finally earned it. YAY!
congrats on that! yeah, I've heard several folks call dairy (cow dairy) products "butt glue" we don't eat soy products here though, I'm concerned about the hormonal effects, and although ds will drink chocolate rice milk, he won't drink the vanilla kind. it's not that ds doesn't like oatmeal, it's that he won't eat the same things for too many days in a row. I get exhausted trying to be creative for days on end with all these clever ways of getting the right stuff into him. and, until I can get dh to agree to being a no-cow's-milk household, going off dairy will be impossible. ds would eat goat cheese all day, but when the other stuff is around he wants that too. I know we'll have to eliminate it to get him off the miralax, though... sigh, one day at a time!

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#74 of 228 Old 11-15-2006, 12:29 AM
 
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Oh boy--I so far don't have these problems but I really feel for you all....Poor kids! Poor little tummies! Do you all try yogurt/acidophilus? That certainly helps ME poop. My son was also totally fascinated by putting playdough into a straw and pushing it out, after I told him that was what the tube in his body that made poop was like.
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#75 of 228 Old 11-15-2006, 12:43 AM
 
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it's that he won't eat the same things for too many days in a row. I get exhausted trying to be creative for days on end with all these clever ways of getting the right stuff into him.
that's our problem here too. although i have to admit, i'm that way. i can't stand to eat the same thing too many days in a row, even if it's good for me. but it is exhausting to think of new foods to cook for the kids all the time. esp when they're picky. hey -- i just realized maybe i'm trying to project my need for variety on my kids. maybe i should just make the same dern foods every day. sure would solve some of my problems.

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My son was also totally fascinated by putting playdough into a straw and pushing it out, after I told him that was what the tube in his body that made poop was like.
AWESOME idea! i love it. DD1 is super tactile. she'd love that.
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#76 of 228 Old 11-15-2006, 01:33 AM
 
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I was a little hesitant to post this, especially on the heels of the all-natural ground-up flax seed success stories, but here it is. :

I got this idea after reading another thread in this forum about success with small edible bribes for potty learning. I was surprised at the enthusiasm for doing this, and decided to come up with a system for our situation. Which, as you may recall, involves a lot of anti-social behavior (hitting, whining, pushing) as my son tries to hold it in for days. So I wanted to come up with a system that decreased that behavior and encouraged regular pooping.

Here's the system: at the first sign of withholding (usually high-stepping around the room), I put five chocolate chips on a plate. If he hits, one chocolate chip goes back in the cupboard. After the poop comes out, he can eat all the chocolate chips left on the plate.

My son is not one to be persuaded by incentives--when we've tried to use them in the past, he decides he just doesn't want the incentive. The chocolate chips seem to be small enough that they don't make it be a Big Deal, but attractive enough that he's pleased to eat them. I think they help him stay focused on not hitting and on the fact that things are better after the poop comes out. It's like the chocolate chips make it more concrete for him.

We've been doing it for several weeks, and we're in a pretty good place right now, albeit still on Miralax. He's pooping every other day or even every day, there is very little of the pre-poop drama, and he's even able to get to the bathroom to start pooping (he does it in his diaper, but he likes to be in the bathroom). We've been talking up wearing underwear on his 3.5 birthday, at the end of the month, and I think he might be ready to try both pee and poop.

Anyway. I hope this might help someone else! Must run, baby calls.
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#77 of 228 Old 11-15-2006, 11:29 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I don't know if dd had a tummy bug yesterday or what, but she had D 8 times, and was complaining about her tummy hurting. I didn't dose her yesterday, put her on the brat diet, and will call the doctor again this morning to see what she has to say.
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#78 of 228 Old 11-15-2006, 01:02 PM
 
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Mata--I hope your DD is OK. When my son was about 14 months old, and had been on Miralax for months, he had a stomach bug with diarrhea. I also stopped the Miralax immediately, and then we had about 6 months of happy, laxative- and issue-free pooping. It kind of jump-started his system. I hope that you have similar happy results.
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#79 of 228 Old 11-15-2006, 03:15 PM - Thread Starter
 
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p-chan, thank you. I hope that's the case! I'm feeling upset for her lately.
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#80 of 228 Old 11-16-2006, 10:09 PM
 
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I got this idea after reading another thread in this forum about success with small edible bribes for potty learning. I was surprised at the enthusiasm for doing this, and decided to come up with a system for our situation. Which, as you may recall, involves a lot of anti-social behavior (hitting, whining, pushing) as my son tries to hold it in for days. So I wanted to come up with a system that decreased that behavior and encouraged regular pooping.

Here's the system: at the first sign of withholding (usually high-stepping around the room), I put five chocolate chips on a plate. If he hits, one chocolate chip goes back in the cupboard. After the poop comes out, he can eat all the chocolate chips left on the plate.

My son is not one to be persuaded by incentives--when we've tried to use them in the past, he decides he just doesn't want the incentive. The chocolate chips seem to be small enough that they don't make it be a Big Deal, but attractive enough that he's pleased to eat them. I think they help him stay focused on not hitting and on the fact that things are better after the poop comes out. It's like the chocolate chips make it more concrete for him.
rock on!! I think I read that thread too. I thought, you lucky mommas! because incentives don't work for us, either. every one I've ever tried has backfired ROYALLY. this sounds great though-- it's just subtly different enough to address the issues going on with this problem. I'm going to think about how I can incorporate something like this... thanks so much for sharing!!

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#81 of 228 Old 11-16-2006, 11:31 PM - Thread Starter
 
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yeah, p-chan-sorry I didn't say it yesterday-I was so wrapped up in our stuff-but that is wonderful! I'm so happy you found something that works!
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#82 of 228 Old 11-17-2006, 02:40 AM
 
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I'm crossing my fingers that this could lead to a long-term solution. We've been doing it for about four weeks or so now, and it took about two weeks to see a noticeable change of behavior. One time, over the span of two days, he lost all of the chocolate chips but wasn't that bothered that there weren't any to eat. Now he's pooping before I even have the chips on the ready.

He usually feels the urge while I'm nursing the baby down for her nap. He'll peek in the room and say, "Mama, I have to go to the bathroom. I have to poop!" And I'll say, "OK then!" And he'll go do it.

I was expecting yesterday to be an "off day," so I was surprised when he said that he had to poop. He soon came out of the bathroom and announced that nothing came out. I saw this as a new success, that he could feel that he might have to go and didn't try to hold it in--he actually tried to push and then realized that it wasn't going to happen. It was all very nuanced and subtle. This sometimes happens to me, so I was pleased that he's doing something so normal!

Goddessjulia, it sounds like our boys are the same incentive-wise. I hope that you can find a variation that works for you. I try to avoid rewarding the poop itself--he should poop because he needs to poop, not because I'm giving him chocolate--and focus more on the behavior.

Mata, how is your daughter?
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#83 of 228 Old 11-19-2006, 10:58 AM - Thread Starter
 
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that's great p-chan-four weeks sounds like you're well on your way! And your ds sounds like a cutie, btw.

my dd is ok-the D stopped, I put her back on a reduced dosage of Miralax, but today is day #3 w/out a poop. We're taking our girls on an outing today and I'm trying not to obsess-hopefully she'll go before we leave and I won't have to tote a bunch of pullups or deal with explosive D and multiple changes on our outing.

I really should keep a sense of humor about it all, shouldn't I? At least dd has been happy and active the past couple of days-not like before when she was clearly jammed up and uncomfortable from it.
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#84 of 228 Old 11-19-2006, 01:42 PM
 
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Hi again,
Back to report that ds1 has been on lactulose (similar to miralax, I think) since just before Halloween and it is helping somewhat, although I'm not sure we have gotten the dosage just right yet. Do your dc on miralax have multiple poops during the day? Some days ds will poop 4-5 times, but only small amounts. The drama around the pooping event has subsided, but he does still try and hold it in. Also, gack, what a mess to clean up with the medication (he's still in diapers)! Anyone have good tips for easier cleaning?

Keeping busy with 2 boys & 1 girl ('04, '06, '08)
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#85 of 228 Old 11-19-2006, 05:08 PM
 
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VBMama - Lactulose is a nondigetable sugar - which helps draw water into the bowel. It is a bit like taking corn syrup, in principal and taste. DS was on it when very little and we just couldn't get him to eat enough of it (3 tablespoons when he was 7 or 8 months old and barely into solids at all). Miralax is a disolvable, flavorless power - but it also helps draw water into the bowel. They are different, but the ultimate result is the same, pooping. With miralax we get one poop a day - but again, as the gut and child adjust the results will change with time.

In terms of cleaning - make sure the diaper is on tight, have towels ready on hand to stand child on if leaks start - along with plastic bags to scoop dirty clothes into, etc. Those blowouts can really be something!
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#86 of 228 Old 11-19-2006, 09:01 PM
 
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Thanks for the info about miralax vs. lactulose, annekevdbroek. So far he does just fine taking the lactulose from a medicine dispenser, I think it might be harder to convince him to down a drink with a powder mixed in - I'm always pushing him to drink more liquids 'cause I don't think he gets enough water and he often resists when I push. You have to be so darn subtle with toddlers!

P-chan, can you give me a link to the discussion about using edible treats? Sounds like it's a system that's working for you, that's great.

Keeping busy with 2 boys & 1 girl ('04, '06, '08)
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#87 of 228 Old 11-19-2006, 09:21 PM
 
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http://www.mothering.com/discussions...d.php?t=540912

Mmmmmm, truffles.

We're off the usual weekday routine and that seems to have thrown him off--he's resisting it today. I'm hopeful we'll be back on track soon....
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#88 of 228 Old 11-20-2006, 08:56 AM
 
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Hi everyone,
I can't post our story now, but it sounds really similar to most of yours. Ds is 3 and has pooping issues from birth I think.....but concretely since 2 when he potty learned. We were also on glycolax for some time.....it didn't solve anything and in some ways made things worse because poops became even more irregular/unpredictable (he's been potty learned since 2 and would throw a fit when he leaked in his underwear) and watery.
I was in Whole Foods one day talking to the clerk about this issue when another customer overheard my story and chimed in with her advise. I shrugged it off as yet another mean-well but useless and what-do-you-know piece of information. It just seemed too easy. Out of desperation, I did eventually go back and buy what she had suggested. It worked! Ok, the issues are not completey gone, but if I remember to give him his "medicine" everyday, he poops on the potty, mostly on his own every other day or so. Every once in a while, he must get a flashback or something and will try and hold his poop and then we cope with the behavioral issues while I give him a double dose of the "medicine". I know it sounds to good to be true and way to easy, but it really has helped us. It's the Fiber supplement for kids by Yummibears. Mostly made from Chicory root. They look like gummi bear candy and my DS loves to take these everyday. The dose is 4 per day, but I only give him 2/day and it seems to be enough most days. Hope this helps you. I'll check back in when I have more time.
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#89 of 228 Old 11-20-2006, 10:30 AM
 
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treelover -- great suggestion on the fiber. esp if you're like we've been. we haven't needed to go the Rx route yet, but getting her to eat right and drink enough water has been difficult at times. gummy fiber would be awesome! i'll get some next time she gets constipated.
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#90 of 228 Old 11-20-2006, 12:38 PM - Thread Starter
 
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thanks treelover-I'll look for that.
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