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I've been asked a few times to share Lacey's bloat story so that it may help others. So here goes;
On Saturday Feb 6th, I got up and got all the dogs their breakfast. At that time everyone got Spot's Stew Wholesome Chicken Kibble for breakfast. I took Lacey in to the grooming shop so I could get her ready for a fun match the following day. I bathed her, blew her out, brushed her out, did her scissor work and a partial banding. (I did her clipper work the night before). I took her home and worked on some house work.
I went to 2 meetings. I came home around 6 pm.
I fed Lacey her dinner. Dinner was 1/2 a can of Spot's Stew with some kibble mixed in and a spoonful of natural yogurt.
Lacey eats all of her meals in her crate (her decision).
I left to go meet my friend to put together prizes for the fun match and watch the Eukanuba cup.
My husband let Lacey out about 45-90 minutes after dinner so she could hang out with him and watch TV.
I got home about 10:30 pm. My husband and all the dogs had gone to bed. Lacey was in her crate with the door open. I called her out and let her outside. She went out and pottied and we got ready for bed. She was acting normal.
At 2 am I got up to pee (sorry for the overshare). When I went to get back in bed, Lacey whined. (her crate is right next to the bed on my side) Lacey never ever ever whines. She is a very quiet sleeper. I thought maybe she needed to go outside or that she didn't feel well. She had had one bout of diarrhea the Tuesday before. I let her out and walked to the sliding glass door. It took her a minute to get to the door when she is usually there in a few seconds. I let her out and then stood there watching her through the door. (I don't usually do that) She was walking around with her head down. She let out a whimper and I opened the door and called to her. She will usually come right in. She stayed where she was and looked like she was going to vomit but nothing came up. She came in the house. When she came in the house she had her head down and she was standing with her rear legs spread. I felt her tummy and it felt big and hard. Her gums were pale.(PANIC!!!) I called the breeder, her co owner and said "Something isn't right we're on our way to the vet."
The Pet ER is about 3 minutes from my house. When we were let in the tech said the vet was in surgery and it would be an hour or two before he could see her. He asked if I wanted him to call another ER vet clinic. He directed me to a place about 10-15 minutes away.
When we got there, Lacey just layed on the floor and tried to stretch out long. She didn't cry but she wasn't comfortable.
The vet came in looked her over and said he thought possible bladder problem because she was more tender on one side than the other. I told him her brother had bloated 10 days earlier. He said bloat doesn't work like that. He said we needed an X ray to be sure.
They took the X ray. The vet immediately called me in and said its definitely bloat and her stomach had flipped (torsion). He said first and foremost they needed to relieve the pressure. They put a tube in while I was there and were able to release a lot of the pressure pretty quickly. The vet said she needed immediate surgery to right her stomach and tack it down if it hadn't suffered to much damage. The vet said spaying her at that time would be to risky for shock and possible heart arythmias (sp). By the time I left, (they wouldn't let me stay) they had started her surgery. The vet called me at 4:40 am to say the surgery had gone as well as he could have hoped for and that her stomach had been righted and tacked. Now it was just a waiting game.
I finally slept for a few hours. I called the vet first thing and they said she was resting comfortably and quietly. I said I would like to come see her now. They said it was totally up to me, but if it was going to upset her when I left I should really think twice about coming :'( She goes to work with me every day and is rarely without me. They said I could call and check on her regularly. I checked on her every few hours all day Sunday until I went to bed. I called first thing Monday and they said she was resting quietly and that she had been taken out and had gone pee. Never been so happy to hear my dog peed!!!!! They said she could come home Monday afternoon.
Monday after work I went and picked her up. They gave her a good prognosis but said I had to watch her closely and that she wasn't to be alone for the first week. Not a problem!
She had to eat Science Diet ID for 3 days (she is a picky eater and she did not like that at all). She lost about 5lbs from onset to day number 5. She went from 35lbs down to 30lbs. (she is a small, thin standard)
She was very quiet and slow the first week. She rested most of the time. The second week she was more her normal self but still slow.
The third week she was pretty much back to normal and she got to have bath and get trimmed down (she was in full show coat).
Now we are in week number four and we have started having short trips to the park after work. She runs and plays but for a shorter time.
We expect her to make a full recovery during the next 3 to 4 weeks and then she will be spayed. After she recovers with her spay, we will start our fun classes :)
She is currently 3 weeks and 4 days post surgery.
She is eating Orijen Adult Kibble in the am and Addiction Canned (all grain free) or scrambled eggs for dinner. Plus she gets natural yogurt and cottage cheese.
If you have any questions, I will gladly tell you what I know.
First and foremost, if your dog bloats the vet needs to relieve the pressure BEFORE they start surgery.
 

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Wow, that's such a scary story, I can't even imagine going through something like that. I've had to rush to the ER vet at least three times for my other pets, all just because whatever happened was at night or on a sunday.

Thank you for sharing her story, and wow, she is a TINY standard! It's good to hear she's on a full road to recovery!
 

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I am so glad Lacey is doing okay..My lab has bloated twice about 6 -7 weeks apart..he was just recovering from the first when he had the 2nd..It was one of the scariest things I've ever seen...I really couldn't believe when it was happening again..Of course they were both after hours and at the time we didn't have an ER vet so it was the vet on call so two different vets for each bloat and he had torsion both times..in fact in the 2nd surgery (which I actually got to watch) they had to undo his tack because he had twisted so much around she couldn't get him untwisted..then the stomach was so fried it wouldn't hold the sutures when she tried to tack it again..so about 3 weeks later we had to go to WSU Vet school (about 3 1/2 hours away) so they could tack him laprascopically (sp) so they wouldn't have to open him stem to stern again..He was always a gassy dog so he got a gas -x with each meal and when ever he looked a little "bloaty"...

The good news ... that was 5 years ago..he is now 12 and doing good.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I am so glad Lacey is doing okay..My lab has bloated twice about 6 -7 weeks apart..he was just recovering from the first when he had the 2nd..It was one of the scariest things I've ever seen...I really couldn't believe when it was happening again..Of course they were both after hours and at the time we didn't have an ER vet so it was the vet on call so two different vets for each bloat and he had torsion both times..in fact in the 2nd surgery (which I actually got to watch) they had to undo his tack because he had twisted so much around she couldn't get him untwisted..then the stomach was so fried it wouldn't hold the sutures when she tried to tack it again..so about 3 weeks later we had to go to WSU Vet school (about 3 1/2 hours away) so they could tack him laprascopically (sp) so they wouldn't have to open him stem to stern again..He was always a gassy dog so he got a gas -x with each meal and when ever he looked a little "bloaty"...

The good news ... that was 5 years ago..he is now 12 and doing good.
WOW!!!! What a horrible experience that must have been! I'm so glad he is doing well now :)
 

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Thanks for sharing and never to much info. Seemed like a normal day for her. Do you have any idea what could of triggered it? Did she eat more than normal or less than normal? Drink alot of water? It just so scarey to think that one minute they are fine and next they aren't? I thought once they do the stomach tack that takes care of it. Can they bloat again?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
As far as I can recount, it was a pretty normal day for her. Grooming took a while but she is used to that. She ate her usual food in a normal amount. She did not drink an unusual amount of water. My husband said she played with her toys and laid on the couch in her usual manner. She did put herself to bed early. She goes in and out of her crate at will, unless we are going to be gone. She came right out when I came home.

The only differences:
I did leave her for several hours. (this doesn't normally bother her, although she is with me most of the time)
She vomitted once a day or two before.
She had one bout of diarrhea 5 days before.
The short parts of her continental had been kept longer for the winter and I cut them down that day for a fun match the following day.
Her littermate brother bloated 10 days earlier.

Dogs can bloat again after they have been tacked.
80% of bloat dogs that are treated conservatively (i.e. no surgery) will bloat again
5% of bloat dogs that are treated with surgery (i.e. tacked) will bloat again

I am seriously considering switching her to a raw diet as that appears from my research to be one of the best things for post bloat dogs. For now she is grain free.
 

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Thanks for sharing and never to much info. Seemed like a normal day for her. Do you have any idea what could of triggered it? Did she eat more than normal or less than normal? Drink alot of water? It just so scarey to think that one minute they are fine and next they aren't? I thought once they do the stomach tack that takes care of it. Can they bloat again?
Yes they can bloat again ..they don't usually have the torsion again because of the tack but they can obviously as my lab did..now when we went to WSU Vet school they did say the 1st vet that tacked the stomach tacked it on the opposite side then they usually do although it wasn't unheard of tacking on that side (and I don't remember which side is the side most often tacked)..so the 2nd time he was tacked on the more usual side.

When Riley bloated the 1st time we were at agility class..he hadn't eaten that morning which wasn't too unusual and had only had a few training treats..he did his 1st run great took a break and when I went to set him up for the 2nd run he didn't want to run and kept trying to get into the corner of the field to throw up but couldn't..as I was packing up to go I noticed his sides starting to expand..he was in surgery less than an hour later..I think some how the stomach flipped while he was jumping on an empty stomach

The 2nd time he was 6 or 7 weeks out from the 1st surgery and he had eaten his breakfast and lunch no problem (he was eating 3 times a day by then)..I had given him a CET chew that is suppose to dissolve in the stomach if they get to big of piece in the afternoon as a treat..he had a couple since his surgery with no problem..I gave him his dinner and he didn't want to eat..he went upstairs and when I followed him he started to try and throw up..I just couldn't believe it (it was the day after christmas too)..It was harder to tell if his sides were expanding as his ribs were still sprung from the 1st time...anyway off to the vet again..turned out he had swallowed the CET chew in 3 large pieces and I think while he tried to throw it up the motion again some how twisted the stomach.

I did a lot of research on bloat after Riley's problems as he really didn't bloat for any of the reasons you usually hear about and basically for every article that said to do things this way another article said to do it the exact opposite way..so basically had to figure out what worked best for your dog.

Sorry for having written a book but this is a subject near and dear to my heart.
 

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Thanks for sharing the story and with such a detail , since she was obviously not so usual case and it only shows how important it is to bring a dog to the Vet with any sudden unusual behavior : (((.

I am so glad to hear that she is now almost completely recovered (KTW) and may she stay that way forever :rainbow:

Does anybody knows at what age bloat starts to be a possibility ??? Can a puppy ever bloat : (( ???
 

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Oh this is so scary! I'm sorry to hear than ANY dog owner has had to have this experience... hearing these stories, It makes you wonder how much control we have over keeping our dogs from bloating or not. Scary.

You mentioned you feed grain-free now, is this supposed to be better for decreasing bloat chances?? I've been thinking about switching... but haven't read much yet.
 

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I am so sorry to hear about the scare that both of you had with you dogs. I have never had anything like that happen with my dogs and reading both of your testimonies are great information for me should it ever happen to us. Thank you for sharing you stories.
 

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Thanks so much for sharing what was a very frightening experience. You both are very lucky that you were there when it happened. And that you sought vet care immediately.
Is there a certain age that this usually happens?
I plan to have Greta's stomach tacked when I get her spade. If that wouldn't be to much to do at one time. I am also considering getting Cooper done. Do you know about recovery time for doing the preventive surgery? Would it be considered a major surgery?
I guess I am just a little paranoid. I want my spoos to live a long and healthy life. Even though I haven't ever experience bloat, I have experienced things going wrong.... losing a puppy at 6 months..so sad and heartbreaking.
I am doing a raw diet and I am really considering not giving vaccines every year but doing titers.:)
 

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Here's a pretty good general article for basic bloat info with some links to others

http://www.woodhavenlabs.com/bloat.html

Dog can bloat any time but see it most often mid age 4-7 (Riley was 7)..I think adding a tack to a spay would not be that more invasive but check with your vet..doing without the spay I'm not sure..we elected to have it done laprascopically (sp) at the vet school as no one in town could do it that way and I didn't want him open for the 3rd time in under 3 months..even then the kept him over night but they also did some biopsies of his stomach and removed several lipomas..and when they released they had us stay in town another night just to be sure.
 

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SO scary- and so glad you caught it.

Not a poodle but i lost my tigger to bloat. HE had a deeper chest and was fairly narrow in the waist- but not nearly 'poodle' depth of chest. He was a GSD x APT I fed at night and fed higher quality kibble (Think we were on nutro). the dogs were outside it was summertime... at the time i knew nothing about bloat. anyway fed dogs went to bed- got up in the morning playwed with them a bit- (he never relaly plays his idea of playing was to sit on your feet and be petted- my aussie was the one running around). Checked on them when i left for work later that afternoon. worked til close- came home went out to fed and check on the dogs and he was dead. :( confirmed by vet it was bloat.

I have switched to raw since and do feel much more comfortable feeding it however it only prevents ONE type of bloat. I do feel like colic- dogs can twist with out being food related. I can say 100% HE HAD An empty stomach at the time. he had not been fed in over 20 hours
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I have talked to a few breeders that now recommend that you have your spoo tacked when you have them altered. As always discuss it with a vet you know and trust.
My understanding is that having your dog's stomach tacked as a routine surgery is similar to a spay in invasiveness.
I've also talked to a few agility people that say they have their large breed dogs tacked as a routine surgery due to the rigors of agility.
I haven't heard of any dogs bloating while on raw diet. Has anyone out there heard differently?
 

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Apologies if I had missed this elsewhere, but how old was Lacy when she got bloat?
She, and her brother of course, were under 2 years old.
I'm so glad to know they both made it.

Thank you for sharing Lacey's story with us. We hope to learn through others, although so much makes little sense.
There are lots of great articles on the subject... feeding raw may help but I have heard of dogs that were on a raw diet that still bloated.

I like this article:
http://www.showzymes.com/prevention.htm
Although we can do 'everything right', it can still happen. Which leaves us with this huge ??? about genetics. Best to breed away from the risk of it.

Karen
 

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I really like that article as well. Karen thank you so much for your wealth of knowledge. You have really helped me start researching and building my own knowledge base.
 

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interesting articles!!!

so no 'cookies' if feeding raw to reduce the carbs... hmmmm. I've been using a grain free kibble as our 'cookies' in our house- they only rarely get a real 'dog cookie" now adays... or i used the dehydrated meat...
 
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