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What is Bloat?

Gastric dilatation-volvulus (GDV) is also known as "bloat," "stomach torsion," or "twisted stomach."
Bloat is an extremely serious condition, and should be considered a life-threatening emergency when
it occurs. There are no home remedies for bloat, therefore dog owners must contact their
veterinarians immediately if they think that their dog has bloat. Dogs can die of bloat within several
hours. Even with treatment, as many as 24-35% of dogs with GDV die.
The gastric dilatation is one part of the condition and the volvulus or torsion is the second part. In
bloat (dilatation), due to a number of different and sometimes unknown reasons, the stomach fills
up with air and puts pressure on the other organs and diaphragm. The pressure on the diaphragm
makes it difficult for the dog to breathe. The air-filled stomach also compresses large veins in the
abdomen, thus preventing blood from returning to the heart. Filled with air, the stomach can easily
rotate on itself, thus pinching off its blood supply. Once this rotation (volvulus) occurs and the
blood supply is cut off, the stomach begins to die and the entire blood supply is disrupted and the
animal's condition begins to deteriorate very rapidly.
not all dogs that have a gas buildup and resultant dilatation develop the more serious and life
threatening volvulus. However, almost all dogs that have a volvulus develop it as a result of a
dilatation. Bloat is a very serious and life threatening condition. Understanding the signs, prevention,
and need for prompt treatment will help reduce the risk of mortality if your dog develops this
problem.

What dogs are more susceptible?

*Large Breed *Genetics*Eating habits*Temperament*exercise

Breed
There is a significant link between the likelihood of occurrence of GDV and the breed and build of the
dog. GDV is much more likely to occur in large breeds with deep, narrow chests. The problem can
occur in small dogs, but only rarely. The University of Purdue conducted a study of hundreds of
dogs that had developed GDV, and they calculated a ratio of likelihood of a particular breed
developing the problem as compared to a mixed breed dog. For example, using the GDV risk ratio, a
Great Dane is 41.4 times more likely to develop GDV than a mixed breed dog.

Breed GDV Risk factor Risk Rank
Great Dane
41.4
1
Saint Bernard
21.8
2
Weimaraner
19.3
3
Irish Setter
14.2
4
Gordon Setter
12.3
5
Standard Poodle
8.8
6
Basset Hound
5.9
7
Doberman Pinscher
5.5
8
Old English Sheepdog
4.8
9
German Shorthaired Pointer
4.6
10
Newfoundland
4.4
11
German Shepherd
4.2
12
Airedale Terrier
4.1
13
Alaskan Malamute
4.1
14
Chesapeake Bay Retriever
3.7
15
Boxer
3.7
16
Collie
2.8
17
Labrador Retriever
2.9
18
English Springer Spaniel
2
19
Samoyed
1.6
20
Dachshund
1.6
21
Golden Retriever
1.2
22
Rottweiler
1.1
23
Mixed
1.0
24
Miniature Poodle
0.3
25
Genetics

In addition to breed predilection, there appears to be a genetic link to this disease. The incidence is
closely correlated to the depth and width of the dog's chest. Several different genes from the
parents determine these traits. If both parents have particularly deep and narrow chests, then it is
highly likely that their offspring will have deep and narrow chests and the resulting problems that
may go with it. This is why in particular breeds we see a higher incidence in certain lines, most likely
because of that line's particular chest conformation.
Age
Dogs over 7 years of age are more than twice as likely to develop gastric dilatation and volvulus as
those who are 2-4 years of age.
Gender
Male dogs are twice as likely to develop gastric dilatation and volvulus as females. Neutering does
not appear to have an effect on the risk of bloat.
Eating habits
Dogs fed once a day are twice as likely to develop GDV as those fed twice a day. It appears that
dogs who eat rapidly may also be at increased risk.
Temperament
Dogs that tend to be more nervous, anxious, or fearful appear to be at an increased risk of
developing bloat.
Exercise soon after a meal may also be at increased risk .

What are the signs?
The most obvious signs are abdominal distention (swollen belly) and nonproductive vomiting (animal
appears to be vomiting, but nothing comes up) and retching. Other signs include restlessness,
abdominal pain, and rapid shallow breathing. Profuse salivation may indicate severe pain. If the dog's
condition continues to deteriorate, especially if volvulus has occurred, the dog may go into shock
and become pale, have a weak pulse, a rapid heart rate, and eventually collapse. A dog with gastric
dilatation without volvulus can show all of these signs, but the more severe signs are likely to occur
in dogs with both dilatation and volvulus.

Please note: The information presented in this page is gather from other sources, we do not
guarantee the accuracy. We strongly recommend using clear judgment. If you think that your dog
is acting sick, call you veterinarian, do not wait or call a none qualified person for advise. You know
your dog, if he or she is not feeling good, you will know just by looking at it, in any case make that
call. Better safe that sorry. Call your veterinarian and explain what you see. If your veterinarian is
not available, do not wait, try another one. Bloat is not a waiting game... seconds counts and your
dog is counting on you to get better.

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