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Gluttony Bloat

By: Dr. Debra Primovic

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Bloat is a term used to describe severe distention of the stomach. It can be caused by over eating referred to as "gluttony bloat" or by a life threatening condition in which the stomach not only is distended but also twists called "Gastric Dilatation-Volvulus (commonly called 'GDV' or Gastric torsion)". For more information on this life-threatening disorder – go to Gastric Dilatation-Volvulus (Bloat).

Gluttony bloat is caused by over-eating. The common scenario is a dog or puppy that gains access to human food, dog food, or the trash and over eats. As the stomach enlarges, the dog becomes uncomfortable. As the stomach presses on the diaphragm, dogs will breath faster and seem restless. Some dogs will also drool when they are nauseated.

An enlarged stomach has the risk of rotating causing the Gastric Dilatation-Volvulus mentioned above.

What to Watch For

  • Drooling
  • Nausea
  • Restlessness
  • Fast or labored breathing
  • Abdominal distension
  • Abdominal pain
  • Vomiting

    Diagnosis

    The diagnosis can usually be made based on the history and physical examination.

  • Physical examination should include abdominal palpation and auscultation of heart and lungs.

  • Radiograph can confirm the present of a large distended stomach full of food. This can also help differentiate gluttony bloat from gastric dilatation-volvulus.

    Treatment

  • Initial treatment of gluttony bloat will depend on your dogs symptoms and severity. Some dogs will be made more comfortable by inducing them to vomit and this eliminating all the food from their stomach.

  • Some dogs can benefit from decompression of the stomach by lavaging the stomach (gastric lavage). This is also referred to as pumping the stomach.

    Home Care and Prevention

    Prevent your dogs access to garbage, human foods or his bag of food. Keep food stored in a sealed container.


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