Dog Disease: Gastric Torsion in Dogs symptoms and treatment

Gastric torsion in dogs

What is gastric torsion in dogs?

Gastric dilation and volvulus syndrome (GDV), commonly known as bloat or gastric torsion is a serious condition that can threat the life of your dog.  This disease causes the stomach to dilate and rotate on its small axis. This may cause other serious problems on your dog´s stomach, abdomen, and even his cardiovascular system.  It can also cause your dog´s perfusion to decrease. Perfusion is the process of delivering nutrients to the organs via arteries.  Therefore, your dog may suffer cell damage and even organ death from low perfusion.

What causes gastric torsion?

The exact causes of gastric torsion are unknown.  Environment, genetics, and anatomy are usually considered risk factors.  The condition only affects certain dog breeds.  Deep-chested dogs are at special risk of contracting it.  These breeds include standard poodle, Great Danes, and German Shepherds. 

Other factors thought to cause GDV or gastric torsion are too much exercise after eating, eating or drinking too much, or delayed emptying of the digestive system.  Excess oils and fats in dogs dry food may cause delayed emptying.

Symptoms of gastric torsion in dogs

Symptoms are not very different to the symptoms of any other type of distress.   When a dog is suffering from gastric torsion he will display anxious behavior and depression. Other symptoms include distention, abdominal pain, difficult breathing, excessive drooling, and vomiting.

Further examination will detect other symptoms.  In some cases, the condition might lead to arrhythmia, weak pulse, and pale mucous membrane.

What to do if my dog suffers gastric torsion

This is an emergency medical condition. If your dog is displaying any of the above symptoms, take him to the veterinarian immediately.  Here in Dogalize you will find a great online directory of the veterinary clinic closest to you.

Your dog has to be hospitalized and treated aggressively.  First, the veterinarian will stabilize the heart.  Next, he will insert a tube from the mouth to the stomach and perform a gastric decompression.  Surgery then repositions internal organs, such as the stomach and spleen.