He Bloated

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U have no toy to- throw? Ill get- you one!
Barked: Thu Jan 10, '13 5:33am PST 
Hi everyone. I haven't been on the boards in quite some time, but I am hoping that someone might have some experience with bloat.

Kodie, bloated last night after not having any increased exercise, and not eating any dinner. Kodie did drink a lot of water, however he has been doing that the last couple days. Kodie has thrown up water a few times in the last couple days, been drinking a lot, and either peeing a lot or throwing all the water up.

The stomach didn't twist but they had to pass a tube twice because within an hour of the first tube being passed gas began to build back up. So, my boy is sitting in the ICU right now.

So, my question is has anyone dealt with there being an underlying cause to bloat besides breed, eating, etc the normal factors? Meaning has anyone dealt with it when there has been underlying cancer, disease, etc? We are waiting to hear this morning on Kodie's blood work; last night his platelets were so low that they thought he would bleed out even if he needed surgery. And they are doing an ultrasound of his intestines. Kodie has had issues with his stomach and diarrhea over the last year. So they think cancer or intestinal bowel disease could be underlying.

So, any experience?

Honestly, I think I am still in shock that it happened. Thankful that I caught it, but I'm surprised that at 10 1/2 years old he all of a sudden bloated.
Vance CGC

You kids g'off- my lawn!
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.

Barked: Thu Jan 10, '13 8:14am PST 

My experience with Jasper when he bloated was this...vet said any breed, at any time can bloat for any reason. All of the suggested pre-cautions are just guesses. They really aren't sure what really causes bloat.

Take care hug

Toto, CD, RN, CGC

We don't do- doodles!!!
Barked: Thu Jan 10, '13 8:52am PST 
My male lab bloated years ago with a double twist at 9 1/2 years old, no reason to be found. His bloodwork was all over the place after surgery, but I was told that is common from the bloat and resulting surgery.
He was away from home and the emergency vet clinic where he was taken refused to treat him as he had a pacemaker so it took me 12 hours to drive down and get him to bring him back to my vet for surgery. I knew a veterinarian on the way so we stopped there and she got him on some IV's and did xrays so my vet would have them available when needed. Fortunately, that same pacemaker kept him alive during that time AND he had previously had his spleen removed so he did survive and lived a healthy five more years since the major immediate causes of death from torsion are heart failure and/or rupture of the spleen. His stomach was stapled during the surgery to help prevent any future twisting.

Member Since
Barked: Thu Jan 10, '13 9:18am PST 
Age seems to be a major contributor to bloating. Our Doberman had GDV/bloat when he was about 12 and a half. Obviously at that point he wasn't doing any strenuous exercise at all. He was also raw fed.

He had surgery to untwist his stomach and everything was OK. At that time he also had a gastropexy. Until he passed away at 14.5 from old age he never had complications with it again, but I would strongly recommend you look into a gastropexy... it seems animals which have bloated or have had GDV before, increase their likelihood to have it again in the future.........

U have no toy to- throw? Ill get- you one!
Barked: Thu Jan 10, '13 9:42am PST 
Thank you for all the stories. It is nice to know that older dogs can come back from bloat. I've heard from the emergency veterinary clinic and Kodie did have a good night. His stomach did not bloat again, which is great. When they did rounds though, the internalists thought that it might be his liver causing the issues, but who knows. We are waiting on the ultrasound though, and hopefully that will lead us in a direction, even if it is that this was just a who knows why bloat case.

SO fingers crossed that we get good news from the ultrasound!

Cave canis- vigilo omnis
Barked: Thu Jan 10, '13 11:16am PST 
My 2-year-old GSD mix from years ago did exactly as yours did, Kodie. It was fortunate that I caught it almost immediately and she recovered quite well, but it scared the snot out of me. shock

She was quite the scavenger though and would eat carrion if she could, and as we'd just cleaned up a possum carcass earlier in the day, the vet surmised that eating some of it might have caused a lot of gas, and that she became symptomatic after eating her regular meal of kibble on top of it.
HoneyBunny- 1993-2006

Recycle- Love--Adopt!
Barked: Thu Jan 10, '13 11:20am PST 
Our Honey bloated at age 13. She also had the occasional fits of vomiting water. I read somewhere afterwards that vomiting water is a "pre-bloat" symptom. Sadly, Honey passed quickly (she was in renal failure before the bloat). I wish your pup a speedy recovery.

U have no toy to- throw? Ill get- you one!
Barked: Fri Jan 11, '13 9:17am PST 
Well Kodie came home from the ICU last night! He had a bit of a rough night and became nauseous around five am, and I sat with him on the couch until 6:30am. But after that he seemed to settled down.

I don't know why, but I expected him to be more energetic coming home, but he was out of it and extremely wobbly last night. However, he is better this morning. Has a bit more energy and is wagging his tail a bit.

In terms of why it happened, after the ultrasound (which was clear of cancer), the opinion was that he either bloated because of the who knows reasons and breed predisposition, or inflammatory bowel disease. We had two options of treatment. Either surgery and take intestinal biopsies, or medication to discourage bloat combined with medication for intestinal bowel disease (basically treat him as if he has it). We decided on the medication route. Honestly, Kodie has been through five surgeries in the past six years and we decided that we didn't want to put him through another right now. After seeing how shaky he is I'm more comfortable with the decision. We'll see how the medication for the bowel disease does and if he doesn't show improvement on his stool and stomach issues, then he probably doesn't have that and we'll reevaluate surgery options.

Right now our hopes is that the medication works.
Ginger DSA- ThD TT CGC - &hearts

My Angel
Barked: Sat Jan 12, '13 7:17pm PST 
Well, my Golden Ginger bloated (with torsion) at 11 years old, first/only time, no history of issues, had not eaten that day, had not exercised or drank a lot of water. She had to have emergency surgery but we had caught it quickly and she was healthy and in good condition besides that so she came through it really well.
It is possible her spinal spondylosis could have contributed to the torsion occuring, because she had poor muscle tone in her abdomen (due to not being able to curve her back very much) but not the bloating.

Edited by author Sat Jan 12, '13 7:25pm PST