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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I wanted to post this so some of the newbies to Bassets can be aware of this. Yesterday my Speedy (10yrs) bloated. He seemed normal at 6AM when he got up. Had his breakfast went for his daily constitutional (slowly)around the yard came in and fell asleep in the laundry pile. By 7:30 he was making the strangest noises with his mouth like smacking his lips. I asked him if he wanted water and he refused and went to the door. He went out and ate grass like a crazy man. I thought good he'll throw up and then feel better. I left him to his grazing and kind of kept half an eye on him. It looked like he was vomiting so good all will be well. When I went outside with him I realized he hadn't thrown up at all but was having the dry heaves. I looked at him and OMG his abdomen was distended. Into the van he went and off to the emergency clinic. They x-rayed him and sure enough it was bloat but he hadn't twisted yet so the tubed him to release the gas and they got some of the stuff out of his stomach. He stayed the day and came home last night. I have to split his two meals into three for a few days and the vet said he can go to Nationals with us. I would of stayed home if I had to but I'm happy we can go. He's not entered in anything. He just comes for the ride.
Bassets are listed as one of the breed prone to bloat. We however follow the guidelines of smaller meals no heavy exercise before or after eating etc; but had problems anyway. No one knows why sometimes it just happens. We lost our first Basset to bloat so I didn't take any chances. We are glad it had a happy ending.
We are off to Nationals tomorrow as long as Speedy shows no problems.

Karen
 

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So glad Speedy is ok, Karen. Gosh how Scary. I worried about bloat every day from the time I first heard about it. And Roady with his gulping thing used to suck in a lot of air making his abdomen distend. Can't begin to count how many trips we made to the vets for that.

Seems like most of the things we do to prevent bloat don't really matter but I'd still restrict exercise and water after eating. I know some breeders that have had several dogs bloat and then others none. I do think there is a genetic prediposition. Having a first degree relative that's bloated is one of the risk factors in the Glick study if I remember correctly, as are fast eating and a raised food bowl.

Did your vet suggest you feed canned food? How about a gastropexy?

Keep us posted on how Speey is doing. Good luck in the ring.
 

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Glad to hear everything turned out all right. What a relief!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
No, Barbara they didn't recommend a gatropexy. He also told me to just go ahead and feed him his regular food just in smaller meals for a few days. They did do bloodwork to make sure there were no underlying problems making the bloat secondary. His bloodwork came back remarkable so they didn't feel there was anything else going on. This was the emergency clinic I went to but next time I go to my own vet I'll discuss things with him. I just couldn't wait for my own vet to open. I know the emergency clinics are good to have but it just makes it so our own vet isn't on call anymore. I'm just glad I still have him. He's the sweetest!
 

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Links with more information about bloat.

Bloat: The Mother of All Emergencies
Canine Gastric-Dilatation (Bloat)--links to Purdue's epidemiologic study results, with various risk factors.

Symptoms of bloat, from Bloat in Dogs

Symptoms

Typical symptoms often include some (but not necessarily all) of the following, according to the links below. Unfortunately, from the onset of the first symptoms you have very little time (sometimes minutes, sometimes hours) to get immediate medical attention for your dog. Know your dog and know when it's not acting right.

Attempts to vomit (usually unsuccessful); may occur every 5-20 minutes
This seems to be one of the most common symptoms & has been referred to as the "hallmark symptom"
Doesn't act like usual self
Perhaps the earliest warning sign & may be the only sign that almost always occurs
Significant anxiety and restlessness
One of the earliest warning signs and seems fairly typical
"Hunched up" or "roached up" appearance
This seems to occur fairly frequently
Bloated abdomen that may feel tight (like a drum)
Despite the term "bloat," many times this symptom never occurs or is not apparent[/b]
 

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So pleased that you caught him in time. Thanks so much for sharing that info on here as I think most of us are a bit neurotic about this condition. Like Barbara I too have rushed Toby to the vet several times thinking it was bloat because he has coughed and heaved and just been a bit restless. She has given me the usual advice about no exercise after eating etc. She did mention the last time however that in her experience, bloat is more common in spells of really hot weather. Maybe just coincidence. Hope Speedy stays well and enjoys the Nationals. :)

ETA Keep reading that the dog's stomach swells,could someone tell me where exactly that is on a dog?
 

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Gawwwww....... Bloat is one of my worst fears. I am always watchign them after meals to see if they show any signs...... I am so glad he will be oK!
 

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Wow!! I'm sure glad that Speedy is fine. That's tough stuff. You're right to post this and say that all who own basset hounds must be aware of it and how to recognize the symptoms. I highly recommend the information that Betsy posted as required reading for all basset owners. It may save your dogs life.

There is a lot of conflicting material out there on bloat, especially on the Internet. We had a vet with a very extensive background with bloat, both research and actual experiences, speak at one of our basset hound club meetings. She said she didn't have a clue what truly caused it. From her experience she did say that feeding dogs two meals rather than just one was a good idea, but it wouldn't prevent bloat. She has seen dogs that haven't eaten bloat on the operating table during surgery for an unrelated problem. Even the rather extensive Purdue study doesn't say what causes it. Some of what they say in their study conflicts with other information on bloat that I have read.

We've lost one to bloat and saved another one. Our first one bloated while we were at work. We cama home and found him in his dog house. It was a very sad day. Our second case happened in the middle of the night with our Moose. We knew right away what was happening and got him to the emergency vet that's about 20 minutes from our home. Eventhough his stomach had twisted, he was able to walk in under his own power. The tech who took him back didn't even think he had bloated and asked us if we really wanted to pay for an x-ray. A friend of ours was on duty that night and as soon as they were sure that he bloated she started preping him for surgery even befote the vet presented us with the results and estimate. Either the bloat or the surgery upset his pancreas, which is fairly common. He had to stay in the hospital several days before that cleared up.
 

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Somewhere I got the notion that giving a dog a Gas-X after eating will help prevent bloat. I can't find any mention of that in the articles Betsy posted. Anyone know anything about Gas-X as a bloat preventative?
Sharon Hall
 

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I'm not sure about Gas-X working on bloat, though it does seem to help an upset stomach. Bloat is one of my biggest fears, as it was when I had a horse. It can come on very quickly and it kills.

Karen, I'm relieved to hear Speedy's okay. By the time you read this, I'll have seen both of you in Gettysburg :D !
 

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From what I've read, nothing will prevent bloat, but there may be things we can do to lessen the chances of our dogs getting it. Unfortunately none of the studies seem to agree with each other. One for example says to elevate the food bowl anf another says that dogs that ate from elevated bowls were more likely to have bloat. The same can be said for moistening food. Some say it helps prevent bloat and others say it doesn't. Most do seem to agree that feeding at least twice a day does help.
 

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We've always fed our dogs two meals a day, but that didn't prevent our lab from bloating last October. He had every one of the symptoms in Betsy's post above. And of course it happened on a Sunday afternoon. He ended up losing his spleen and having heart complications that put him in intensive care for a few days. $4,000+ later, he was home and now we no longer worry about him bloating. When they did the surgery, they attached his stomach so it can't flip around in there any more.

I do wish there was an easier way to prevent bloat. I still have to worry about Dixie.

Glad to hear that Speedy is okay!
 

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I also read somewhere that bloat isn't as common amongst dog's that are fed wet food. Would love to find statistics on this. I changed kibble because I read not to add water to dried food that uses citric acid (vitC) as a preservative, as this causes gas. I soak Toby's food first and then add some wet. It doesn't turn mushy however, but more a spongy texture.(as if it's glued together.) I'm not sure that I like feeding him kibble (even the high grade ones) at all. I used to make his food and he done really well on it (vet's recipe) but have found that since changing over,he eats a lot more grass a thing he hardly ever done before.
 

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... $4,000+ later, he was home and now we no longer worry about him bloating. When they did the surgery, they attached his stomach so it can't flip around in there any more.

...
[/b]
Having the stomach attached will not prevent bloat either. The dog can still bloat, but the stomach won't turn over. If the stomach is attached usually a tube can be used to expell the gas. In some cases surgery may still be necessary. I know of bassets that have bloated after the surgery.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks for everyone's concern about Speedy. We got home from Nationals yesterday and Speedy enjoyed his week at the hotel. No one would of ever guessed that just a week ago he could of been dead. He was happy and ate well and enjoyed walking around the grounds. Believe me, we will keep an eye on him. There are many conflicting articles about bloat. I'm not sure that anyone really knows the real deal. I'm following the regular guidelines like I have been doing but with a watchful eye.
 

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My German Shepherd had a near bloat experience years ago. I lived in Philadelphia at the time. My Vet was the Veternarian for the Philadelphia Police K9 unit. He told me that if your dog was showing any of the early signs of bloat, that giving a GasX could help. I had several times when Maggie Mae (ATB) seemed very uncomfortable after eating. I did give her one several times over the years. He said it (could) make a difference in the final outcome if given early enough. At least I learned giving one can't hurt them so if I ever have a doubt I use them.
 
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