Bloat in dogs is the second largest killer of dogs. Occurrences of bloat are more frequent during warmer months. At first glance, the word “bloat” seems like no big deal. Maybe just a little bit of gas that will pass, but that is NOT the case with dogs.

Bloat can strike any dog, at any time. It occurs when the stomach fills with air, leading to restricted blood flow to vital organs. Once this happens, the stomach flips and tissue damage occurs and death is possible.

Warning Signs for Bloat in Dogs:

  • Trouble standing and lethargic disposition
  • Distended (swollen) stomach
  • Attempting to vomit (but nothing comes up)
  • Restlessness & pacing due to discomfort
  • Short and shallow breathing
  • Excessive drooling

The dog in this video thankfully saved, but you can only save your dog if you immediately notice the signs and rush them to a Veterinarian.

Important Info to Know About Bloat in Dogs:

– Bloat occurs more frequently after eating.

– Dry dog food expands in the stomach, which increases the chance of bloat.

– Avoid running, exercise, high excitability, and play at least one hour before/after eating. Activity around mealtime can significantly increase the chance of bloat.

– Immediately take your dog to the Vet at the first sign of bloat. Time is of the essence, so do not wait to “see what happens”.

– Pay extra attention to dogs who drink a lot of water after eating.

– Two or three smaller meals each day are better than one larger meal.

– Dogs who are older dogs or nervous/anxious are more susceptible.

– Know where the nearest 24hr. Vet clinic is.

– When in doubt, immediately take your dog to the closest Veterinarian.

This article should not be taken as medical advice, as I am not a Veterinarian. However bloat takes the lives of countless dogs every year (2nd only to cancer), so know the facts that can help keep your dog safe and healthy. Talk with your Vet about specifics in regards to your dog.

Read this article on Summertime Safety Tips for Dogs to find out how to: keep your dog safe this July 4th, prevent burnt paws from hot pavement, and learn the dangers of allowing your dog to have their head out car windows.  Click HERE to help keep your dog safe this summer.