Symptoms and treatment of torsion of the stomach in dogs

Inversion of the stomach in dogs is an acutely occurring disease, which is accompanied by a rapid increase in the volume of the abdomen (within a few hours) and a sharp deterioration in the condition of the animal until death.

Characteristically mainly for dogs of large breeds: Eastern European, German and Central Asian Shepherd Dogs, Great Danes, Dobermans, Giant Schnauzers, Black Terriers, Bullmastiffs, Labradors, etc.

Symptoms of stomach torsion in dogs

  • The state of the animal is deteriorating against the background of external well-being. Usually, a tightly eaten dog after an active walk.
  • At first the dog begins to behave restlessly, groans, does not find a place for itself. Her saliva flows, there are unsuccessful attempts to vomit, and the stomach begins to increase significantly. If you tap on the abdominal wall, you will hear a booming sound on the left side of the last rib.
  • In just a couple of hours, the phenomena of respiratory distress are increasing, frequent heartbeat, weakness of the hind, and then the front paws, pale mucous membranes, the temperature decreases.

Reason of torsion of the stomach

It has been observed that dogs with a deep chest are especially prone to torsion of the stomach. Also, the causes of the disease is abundant feeding once a day with substandard food and bulky porridges and vegetables, active walks after a dense meal, the dog's greed when eating food and swallowing air while eating.

The motility of the stomach can also be disrupted as a result of chronic stretching of the walls with bulk food, as well as gastric diseases such as neoplasm of the wall or chronic gastritis, chronic diseases of the pancreas, liver and bile ducts, helminthiasis.

As a result of volvulus, the stomach expands sharply due to the gases accumulated in it from the fermentation of feed. This causes a spasm of the gastric sphincter, which leads to disruption of the blood supply and innervation of the stomach wall.

After that, the gas-filled stomach twists around its axis. Together with the stomach around the esophagus, the gastro-splenic ligament and the spleen rotate, the vessels pinch, and blood circulation is disturbed throughout the body.

Blood stagnates in the spleen, and because of the lack of air in the lungs, toxic products accumulate in the body, and the work of all organs is disturbed. In this case, malnutrition of the heart muscle leads to death.


If the dog suddenly became ill and had the first signs of bloat, you should contact the veterinary clinic with a surgical department as soon as possible. Assistance should be provided within 4-6 hours from the appearance of the first signs of the disease. Otherwise, the animal will definitely die.

When making a diagnosis of "torsion of the stomach," the dog needs an emergency operation to return the stomach to its normal position, washing and freeing it from gases and feedstuffs and then stitching it in the lateral abdominal wall. The success rate of the operation is on average 70%, but without it, the mortality in dogs from torsion of the stomach is 100%. After surgery, the dog needs good postoperative care.

What can be confused?

Young dogs have an expansion of the stomach without twisting it. It also requires medical care, but the consequences are not so dramatic.

If the stomach remains in place, then the operation is not necessary to the dog. In this case, the doctor will empty the dog's stomach with a probe, rinse it thoroughly and inject anti-ferment preparations: lignitin, activated carbon, enterosgel or other. Of course, it will be necessary to change the exercise and diet, and if necessary (for example, in case of relapse) to undergo a routine examination and, possibly, treat the digestive organs.



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