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Aliases: English Greyhound

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Bloat In Greyhounds

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Tags: Greyhound, Behavior, Exercise, Bloat, Health, Feeding

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Like all large dogs, greyhounds are also susceptible to bloat. This condition is fatal if not treated quickly enough. Bloating can occur without notice and might even be mistaken for indigestion. It can sometimes have the appearance of a bloated belly, which is where the name comes from, and you may even see the stomach twisting and turning. However, you can't be sure that it will be that noticeable. Once the stomach starts to twist and turn it can torsion, which can be fatal. It cuts off the circulation in the stomach and blood gets pushed into the main organs while the stomach dies.

No one really knows what causes bloat but there have been some behaviors that appear to accompany dogs that experience bloat. Nervous or high-strung dogs can be susceptible to bloat and there is an indication that stress plays a part in the disease. Dogs that are fed dried dog food in large quantities also may experience bloat more than others. Whether this is due to some food allergy or sensitivity is not known.

Dogs that drink a large amount of water with their meals also can experience bloat more than others. You will want to limit the amount of water a dog takes with its meals. It might be due to the additional air that is taken in with the food that causes bloat or some other unknown factor.

In general, a natural food diet seems to be beneficial for dogs that experience bloat. At least try to avoid cereal-based kibble and stick with something that is more wholesome. Instead of feeding the dog a large meal once a day, seek to feed the dog more frequently but in smaller quantities.

Exercise may also contribute to bloat if done just prior to eating or directly after eating. Try to exercise you dog in between meals and not close to meal times. You can still walk the dog close to meal times, but no excessive vigorous exercise should be undertaken one to two hours before and after meals.

Above all, if you have any question whether your dog is torsioning take them immediately to the veterinarian. You can try to give the dog a bit of water to see if it comes right back at you. If it does, this is a very good indication that the dog is bloating. However, even without that indication, your dog's life may be in danger if it is torsioning. It might need to undergo surgery to relieve the distress as quickly as possible. This should only be done at your veterinarian's. Some owners may try to relieve the pressure on the stomach by poking holes in the dogs skin, but this can easily cause a greyhound's skin to rupture. Do not attempt to relieve the dog's distress if you are not someone who knows how to do this without hurting the dog.

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