Bloating in your dog may cause extreme discomfort and pain, and can eventually prove to be life-threatening. It’s important to remember that flatulence in your pet must be taken seriously. Bloating can occur quite suddenly, but your dog may present some symptoms that warn you.

Clinical signs of bloating in dogs:

  • Restlessness
  • Drooling and panting
  • Has a swollen distended stomach
  • Trying to stretch with their front paws forward and rear end upwards
  • Dry retching or unproductive vomiting

These are just the harbingers of the more severe symptoms which may involve shortness of breath, feeling weak, and ultimately collapsing. If you suspect your dog has signs of bloat, you must seek veterinary help immediately.

Why is bloating so harmful for dogs?

You may be wondering how bloating can negatively impact your dog. A build-up of gas, food, or fluid can make your dog’s stomach expand. The stomach then exerts pressure on the other internal organs. This means your pet can have a harder time breathing, while preventing adequate blood flow to the heart. 

Bloat can also lead to Gastric Dilatation and Volvulus (GDV), a life threatening disorder most commonly seen in large, deep-chested dogs, although any dog may be affected. A GDV is a progression of the bloat into a volvulus, in which the huge, gas-filled stomach twists upon itself so that both the entrance and exit of the stomach become blocked. This is a life-threatening emergency that requires surgery to correct. 

What to do

Some behaviors aid bloating and as a pet parent, your job is to be a conscientious observer. Veterinarians agree that eating too quickly and being hyper-active immediately after a meal can increase the risk of developing bloat issues. Overeating or drinking too much can also cause these problems. 

Develop a habit of checking your dog’s stomach regularly for any irregularities like tenderness to touch, warmth or unexplained swelling. Feed them smaller meals, restrict exercise before and after meals, and create a stress-free environment during meal times. You can also help maintain a healthy intestinal tract and support proper digestion with supplements like Organic Probiotics with Prebiotics. Our veterinarian-formulated probiotics include organic prebiotics that support normal microbial balance and the growth of beneficial bacteria in your pet's intestines.

Probiotic benefits include:

  • Helps maintain a healthy intestinal tract and supports proper digestion 
  • Aids in reducing loose stool due to environmental stress and/or changes in the diet 
  • Helps maintain proper gut flora by providing a source of beneficial intestinal bacteria
  • Helps maintain proper gut pH and supports normal digestive function
  • Supports skin health and may reduce severity of scratching, itching, hot spots from allergies
  • Helps support the immune system and immune response

Even if your pet takes supplements, there is no home remedy for a bloated dog in distress. The safest thing to do is to seek a veterinary professional right away.

Additional facts about GDV:

  • Dogs weighing over 100 pounds have approximately a 20% risk of bloat during their lifetime.
  • Gastric dilatation (bloat), usually without volvulus (twist), occasionally occurs in elderly small dogs.
  • The distended stomach pushes the posterior rib cage so that the dog appears swollen or "bloated". This is most obvious on the left side and gentle tapping of the swelling just behind the last rib often produces hollow, drum-like sounds.
  • The enlarged stomach presses on the diaphragm and breathing becomes labored.
  • The swollen stomach presses on the larger blood vessels in the abdomen and circulation is seriously compromised, resulting in systemic shock.
  • Ultimately, the dog collapses and the distended abdomen becomes readily apparent as the dog lies on its side.

Factors Increasing the Risk of Bloat

  • Feeding only one meal a day
  • Having a family history of bloat (i.e. a parent or sibling that has suffered from this condition)
  • Eating rapidly
  • Being thin or underweight
  • Having a fearful, anxious or nervous temperament
  • Having a history of aggression toward people or other animals
  • Male dogs are more likely to bloat than females
  • Older dogs (7 - 12 years of age) were the highest risk group in a recent study
  • Moistening dry food particularly if citric acid is listed as a preservative

Factors Decreasing the Risk of Bloat

  • Eating two or more meals per day
  • Adding canned dog food to the diet
  • Having a relaxed, contented or easy-going temperament
  • Feeding a dry food containing a calcium-rich meat meal (such as meat/lamb meal, fish meal, chicken by-product meal, meat meal, or bone meal) listed in the first four ingredients of the ingredient list



Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.

Also in Blog

Plan A Picnic for Your Dog

Your dog is going to love you for planning this delicious health packed picnic!

Here are 3 easy sandwich recipes along with a homemade bone broth elixir recipe!  Each sandwich is made with dog friendly ingredients commonly found at the grocery store and enhanced with Fera Pet Organic supplements! Homemade bone broth takes many hours to simmer so it is best to get it boiling right away.

Dog Friendly 4th of July Snacks

Looking for ways to include your dog in 4th of July celebrations? We’ve got two amazing recipes for your dogs! The theme is red, white, blue, and delicious. First, we’re making a mouth-watering watermelon cake. Filled with Fera Pet Organics supplements and topped with Greek yogurt and blueberries! After some fun in the sun, cool down with one of our 4th of July Pupsicles. We guarantee your dog is going to love these snacks!

Congestive Heart Failure in Dogs and Cats
Congestive Heart Failure in Dogs and Cats