Bloat (GDV) and Twisted Bowel/Stomach in dogs

Bloat (GDV) and Twisted Bowel/Stomach in dogs

Very dangerous conditions that can have fatal outcomes if not recognised and treated early.

What is Bloat?

Nicknamed ‘Bloat’, Gastric dilatation-volvulus (GDV) occurs when food, air or water fills a dogs stomach and consequently twists. Shock can set in and blood flow is restricted, which then leads to far more dangerous outcomes. And it happens fast.


What causes Bloat?

Commonly GDV is caused by consuming too much food or water in a short amount of time and therefore stretching and twisting the stomach. It can also be caused by swallowing excess air when gulping food or water, or if exercising immediately after eating.


There are theories that certain types of food can cause bloat, however these remain largely unsubstantiated. Studies have shown, however, that breed can be a risk factor, mostly affecting large or giant breeds and those with deep, barrel chests (ie Weimaraners, Standard Poodles, Rottweilers) but can affect any size with similar body shape (ie. Chihuahuas, Pugs, Boston Terriers). It can happen in puppies, though the risk increases with age.


What are the symptoms?

Symptoms to look out for include:

  • Panting, laboured breathing
  • Swollen, hard tummy that is painful to touch
  • Drooling
  • Pale gums
  • Retching without vomit
  • Restlessness
  • Difficulty standing and moving


It is critical to seek vet care urgently if you identify these symptoms in your dog. 1—2 hours may be all the time you have! 

Can I prevent Bloat from happening?

Using meal devices such as ‘go slow’ bowls or feeding toys can slow your dog down when eating. A water bowl with a floating panel on top forces the dog to lap up water rather than taking great big gulps. And dogs should always be allowed time before and after meals to wind down.


Owners of breeds that are predisposed to the condition might discuss surgery with their vet to tack their stomachs in place. It is not a foolproof solution but may reduce the risk.


At Dogdayz we avoid feeding our guests immediately after exercise, and always allow them at least 60 minutes of rest after a meal.
At Dogdayz, we prioritise the safety of your furry friends. In addition to providing a safe and nurturing environment, we also offer trusted and reliable Dog Minding services. Your beloved pets will be in good hands while you’re away, so you can enjoy peace of mind knowing they’re well-cared for.