The Best Cane Corso

Bloat (Gastric Torsion, Gastric Dilation-Volvulus, or GDV)

Gastric dilatation and volvulus (GDV), commonly called “bloat” or “torsion,” is an extremely serious medical condition where a dog’s stomach becomes filled with gas that cannot escape. The stomach also can rotate around its short axis, often carrying the spleen along for the dangerous ride. By itself, “bloat” technically refers only to the gaseous distension of the stomach, without the flipping-over, or “torsion,” part of the condition. Think of it as if the stomach is a balloon that keeps filling with gas, but the “escape route” is twisted or tied off. Eventually, the balloon will rupture. Similarly, the stomachs of dogs suffering from gastric dilatation and volvulus can rupture, spilling intestinal contents into the abdominal cavity. Bloat is life-threatening and requires immediate and aggressive medical attention if the dog is to survive. Without emergency treatment, bloat can be fatal within a matter of hours of the appearance of clinical signs.
The precise triggers of GDV are not well-understood. Why this process happens is still a medical mystery. A number of different contributing factors have been suggested, but none have been proven. Dogs that eat a single, large meal of dry kibble and then drink large amounts of water and/or become active seem predisposed to bloat.
Bloat is a life-threatening condition. Without immediate medical care, the chance of survival is extremely low. If you own a large deep-chested dog – or indeed any dog — please make sure that you have a good relationship with your local veterinarian and that you are familiar with the signs of this condition, so that if it happens to one of your dogs, you are prepared to deal with it immediately.

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