Gastric Torsion & Bloating

At Urgent Pet Care Omaha, we provide emergency treatment for life-threatening injuries. Our two offices are open nights, weekends, and holidays. Learn symptoms of gastric torsion, why it occurs, and how to stop gastric torsion and keep your pet healthy.

Bloating in dogs looks similar to human bloating. Gas fills the stomach, pushing it out and placing pressure on your dog’s diaphragm. You may notice your dog is experiencing difficulty breathing. For this reason, you should always take bloat seriously and seek attention from an emergency veterinarian in Omaha.

Gastric torsion occurs when the stomach not only bloats, but twists on its short axis. This is a very dangerous condition; when the stomach twists, it places the abdomen under pressure, stresses the cardiovascular system, and blocks nutrient distribution in your pet’s body. Gastric torsion symptoms include bloating and respiratory distress. Dogs with gastric torsion may also drool, vomit, appear distressed or anxious, or collapse.

Older dogs are more likely to develop gastric torsion and bloating, as are large breeds with deep chests, including Great Danes, German shepherds, standard poodles, and Setters.

There are still a lot of unknown variables around causes of gastric torsion, but anatomy, history, and environment are believed to contribute to this life-threatening condition. There is a genetic correlation to this condition. If your dog has a family history of gastric torsion, they’re more likely to suffer.

Bloating is likelier to set in if your dog exercises right after eating. Overeating or ingesting too much water can also lead to bloat or gastric torsion.

When the stomach twists, it can put your dog in shock, impair your pet’s organs, and lead to death if it is not addressed in time. Thus it’s critical that you learn to recognize causes and symptoms of gastric torsion and seek urgent pet care immediately if you think your pet is in bloat.

To confirm a diagnosis of gastric torsion, we will take x-rays of your dog’s abdomen and test their urine. Other conditions that look similar include food bloat from overeating or bacterial infection.

If your pet is in shock when you arrive at our veterinary clinic, we will first stabilize them. If your dog is in cardiovascular distress, our vet in Omaha will treat those problems first. Once the heart has been stabilized, we can then treat the bloating. Depressurizing the abdomen, which we do by intubation, relieves the pressure on your pet and reduce the symptoms they are experiencing.

Once your dog’s stomach has been depressurized, we will evaluate the health and position of other organs. We may need to perform surgery to move the spleen and the stomach to their correct positions.

If your dog is prone to gastric torsion, we can perform surgery to affix the stomach so it does not rotate. If we think your dog is a good candidate for this surgery, we are happy to discuss it.

Other preventative measures include feeding your pet more frequent, smaller meals and resting your dog after heavy eating or drinking.

Our emergency veterinarian in Omaha is here for your needs anytime in two locations, Papillon and Millard. If your pet has a life-threatening issue, such as gastric torsion and bloating, call us right away to let us know you need emergency help, then come to the closest clinic. Call 402-991-9444 for our Millard office or call 402-597-2911 for the Papillon location.