“A man’s best friend” is not enough label to dogs. They are more than a friend or a companion at home; my dog is a part of my family. It could be the reason why seeing them suffering from an illness always make your heart break. Though they could not talk, you can feel their pain through their eyes as their owner. The topmost dog killer disease is canine cancer. Most dog owners fear this disease. However, it is not just cancer which you should be afraid of. Bloat in dogs or Gastric Dilation-Volvulus (GDV) is another chronic canine disease that you must protect your dog from.
How does Bloat Kill Big Dogs
GDV or Bloat in Large Dogs is a serious health risk to your pets. According to studies, this condition is prone from large to giant dog breeds such as Great Danes because of their deep chests. Although it is prominent to certain kinds of dog, canine bloat can strike to any size and dog breed.
The primary root of dog bloat is the filling of dog’s stomach with gas, fluid or food causing the organ to expand. When the stomach begins to inflate, it will create pressure to other organs resulting in complications and death. Such situation leads to poor blood circulation along the dog’s heart and stomach lining, tearing of stomach walls and difficulty in breathing. On some occasions, as the stomach swells it can rotate or twist trapping the blood in the stomach and blocking it from circulating to the heart and other body parts. All of these will lead your dog to shock.
Bloat acts inconspicuously. This disease can take your dog’s life in a blink of an eye. In fact, thousands of dog owners are not aware that their pet has this condition. Thus, it is essential for you to observe the health of your dog and know any abnormalities in their behavior. You can still prevent this disease by detecting its symptoms. Here are the leading symptoms of dog bloat that you should take notice of your pet.
- Unusual behavior like acting restless
- Attempts to vomit but unsuccessful
- Heavily salivating or drooling
- Swollen stomach
- Pale gums
- Erratic heartbeat and difficulty in breathing
Albeit the symptoms might appear differently with other dogs, this list includes all the most common indicators of the said condition. Now, if your dog is having more than one of the above symptoms, it is best to take your pet immediately to the nearest vet in your place for diagnosis.
Until now, medical studies on GDV could not identify the origin behind bloating in dogs. It is still a mystery on what are the real cause of this disease and how does it start to appear. However, professionals on this matter included the following causes which trigger the risk of dog bloat.
- Letting dog eat a large meal a day
- Eating on a raised food bowl
- Quick eating
- Excessive running and physical activities after eating
- Inherited from the dog’s ancestors with this disease
- Having deep and narrow chest
- Age and size of the dog
- Too much eating and drinking
How to Avoid
Bloat is deadly. Despite the risk it offers, you still have the power to prevent this condition from attacking your beloved pet. Here are some of the essential approaches on how to avoid GDV or dog bloat.
- Never use a raised bowl when feeding your dog unless your vet says to do so.
- Avoid your dog from doing extreme physical activities like running and playing immediately after eating.
- Only feed your dog exact amount of food. It is preferable to feed your pet twice a day- one in the morning and another in the late afternoon. Giving snacks will do between meals, however, do not offer excessive amounts.
- Let them eat slowly.
- Feed them with high protein diet.
- Avoid them from stressful situations.
Top 5 Large Dogs Easy to Bloat
There are hundreds of large dog breeds in the world which are susceptible to bloat. However, among these dog breeds, there are five dog families with a great chance of having this disease. These types of dogs are the following:
- Great Danes
- German Shepherds
- Doberman Pinschers
- Irish Setters
- Basset Hounds