|Barked: Thu Jan 10, '13 6:11am PST |
|Not my personal dogs, but I know dogs who have. It turns out like any other symptom - all you can do is try to chase down the cause and fix it. It's just a really horrible symptom.
I also know dogs who have bloated for no reason at all. No meal, no exercise, no underlying disease. The musculature around their stomach just lets go and it twists, sometimes with no symptoms at all.
With my personal dog, it was hemorrhagic gastroenteritis, not bloat. Vance began vomiting and bleeding from his intestines, while dehydrating quickly. It's very different from bloat... you have a little more in the way of reaction time, but ultimately it's just as dangerous. Same thing - bloodwork was all screwed up. We did chest x-rays, abdominal ultrasounds and liver biopsies which all turned up inconclusive. I could have pursued intestinal biopsies, but chose not to because of what a dangerous, invasive procedure it is when in his case the payoff would have been minimal. He stabilized and I took him home to continue carefully managing his diet.
I assumed there was an underlying cause, since he was in every way in the wrong demographic for HGE and did have a history of poor digestion. But, like bloat, there is no known, universal cause. All we could do was guess, and guesses only lead back to carefully managing his diet anyway. A solid year later, it turned out he did have a benign growth on the exit of his stomach. It was invisible until it grew so large it began to cover his liver - all the testing in the world and we would have almost no chance of finding it. If we had, there wouldn't have been anything we could do anyway. It sucks beyond measure, but in the end I know I did the right thing.
Interestingly my boyfriend [human] is currently in surgery because his stomach turned upside down as a complication of surgery. They messed with his diaphragm when they took margins on a tumor... 2 weeks later his stomach just flipped. I had no idea it could even happen in humans - and apparently it isn't an immediate emergency like it is in dogs. The poor surgeon had to about peel me off the ceiling when he told us what happened. I guess stomachs can just flip, and we don't know why.
Anyway, I wish you guys the best. I hope you get better answers than I did with Vance. I'm definitely thinking of you.
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