You know the feeling…a full tummy, you couldn’t eat another bite if you tried and you look like you’ve instantly swallowed a watermelon. Bloat in dogs presents similarly–their tummies feel heavy and they extend further than they typically do. But, dog bloat is very different from human bloat and can be very dangerous. In fact, if you’re wondering, “Will a dog with bloat poop?” the answer is, “Not likely,” and you want to talk to your vet as soon as possible.
Is dog bloat like human bloat?
When a human gets bloated because of what they eat or drink, the condition typically goes away within a few hours and there’s not much repercussion. When a dog has bloat, that’s a whole different story and it could be deadly.
Dog bloat is very painful and can be deadly depending on the extent of potential twists in your dog’s stomach. Your dog may have diarrhea but a dog with bloat probably won’t poop firm stool.
What is dog bloat?
There are stages of dog bloat, though bloat in dogs at any stage is scary. When your dog is suffering from only general stomach distension (a full belly), that’s often referred to as ‘simple bloat in dogs’ or ‘gastric dilation in dogs’. What’s happening is that your dog’s stomach is filled with extra gas. Think of it like a balloon with a lot of extra air and that bigger ‘balloon’ of a stomach puts pressure on the internal organs around it–organs like your dog’s intestines, diaphragm and even large veins in his abdomen. This makes it hard for him to breathe and can even prevent blood from flowing properly, slowing down his blood pressure and making him pretty lethargic pretty quickly.
As the gas slowly releases through burps and farts, simple bloat in dogs can too, but they may also suffer from a more severe condition known as gastric dilation and volvulus in dogs (GDV). This can be fatal if not treated so you should always contact your vet immediately if you suspect bloat.
When your dog has GDV, his stomach is filled with gas and just like a balloon can rotate and twist, so can his stomach. In fact, it can rotate anywhere from 180-360 degrees, closing his stomach off, sometimes at both ends. What this means is that NO gas can escape your dog’s stomach and it also means there is no consistent blood supply. Without blood flowing to his stomach and other organs, he’ll deteriorate pretty quickly. His body could go into shock and this could even lead to death.
Why do dogs get bloat?
Honestly? No one really knows. Some theories behind bloat in dogs simply involve your dog taking in too much food or liquid and having excessive gas. Sometimes they may drink or eat too quickly and take in excess air. Some researchers believe genetics play a role in bloat in dogs, particularly for middle-to-larger sized dogs. Some research supports that a dog’s gut health is behind bloat–if he’s not digesting food appropriately, he may be creating excess gas in his digestive system.  That can generate bloat conditions. (Check out this blog if you are wondering why your dog farts too much)
Breed and dog bloat
Middle-to-larger size dogs with deeper chests like Irish Setters, Rottweilers, Standard Poodles, Doberman, Great Danes and Saint Bernards are more likely to experience dog bloat though dog bloat can occur in any breed.
Eating habits and dog bloat
When dogs eat quickly, they often take in extra air as they gulp. This puts them in a higher risk for bloat. Your dog may eat quickly because he loves it, or because he feels anxious if there are other animals or people around and he doesn’t want them to take his food. You can prevent dogs eating too fast using puzzle feeders or snuffle mats, or even putting their food on a stand to help keep less air out. Smaller portions may help too.
How will I know if my dog has bloat?
If your dog has bloat, you’ll probably see them try to throw up or dry heave. And to answer the question of, “Will a dog with bloat poop?” you likely won’t see any because his stomach is blocked off. You may also see him drooling and pacing and restless as he’s trying to comfort himself and alleviate the pain. His breathing may be shallow and you may see his stance getting more open as he’s trying to allow his lungs to bring in more air. Panting is likely to occur too, and he may simply have no energy at all. All of this is of course in addition to the likelihood you’ll see a stomach that’s visibly full.
How do I treat bloat in dogs?
Short answer? You don’t!
Bloat is very serious and you should contact your veterinarian immediately. If your dog has GDV, he’ll likely need surgery and may need medicines and blood to prevent him from shock. This is not something to treat at home.
Can I prevent bloat in dogs?
Another short answer? Quite Possibly!
In addition to ensuring your dog’s meals are smaller, and that he’s not wolfing his food down, you can ensure his gut health is the best it can be. Giving your dog Bernie’s Perfect Poop means you’re helping him digest his food as efficiently as he can, and this in and of itself can help eliminate lots of that excess gas that typically would come out as chunky burps or stinky farts. The premium fiber in Perfect Poop will prevent gas buildup and the pre- and probiotics in Perfect Poop will ensure that there’s no overgrowth of bad bacteria in his gut–as those nasty critters are often culprits of excess gas creation. The digestive enzymes in Perfect Poop will also ensure his food is broken down for maximum absorption and as we all know, good health begins in the gut!
Bernie’s Perfect Poop cannot treat bloat in dogs, but we may be able to help prevent conditions which could lead to dog bloat, so make sure you’re working on your dog’s gut health every day!