- Gastric torsion is a condition where a dog's stomach is distended with gas. It has the ability to come on suddenly and usually affects large, deep-chested dogs. However, any dog can be affected by this condition. This condition must be treated immediately. Signs of abdominal pain and distress typically shown by dogs with this condition include shaking, crying, having a tender stomach, refusal to eat, arching of the back, vomiting, crying and difficulty breathing.
- Liver disease is a serious condition which affects dogs. Symptoms of liver disease are recurrent abdominal or gastrointestinal flare-ups including pain, loss of appetite, vomiting, diarrhea or constipation. Pain associated with the abdomen or stomach is largely in part due to swelling of the liver. Hepatic encephalopathy, or changes in behavior and brain dysfunction due to liver impairment may also occur around meal times when the dog will exhibit pacing, circling or even seizures. Reactions to abdominal pain will also be exhibited by the dog when he is touched or picked up by the stomach area. Liver disease should be treated early to prevent complete liver damage or serious complications.
- Pancreatitis is a condition where a dog suffers pancreatic inflammation. During this condition, the dog has severe pain in his abdomen, which is distended. Symptoms include loss of appetite, dehydration, vomiting, diarrhea and yellow, greasy stools. A dog may also be running a high temperature or fever. More serious conditions that result from pancreatitis include heart arrhythmias, sepsis (an infection spread throughout the body), difficulty breathing, and disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC), which can cause multiple hemorrhages.
- An ulcer is an area in a dog's stomach where a mucous membrane is damaged and causes inflammation. Ulcers in a dog can be caused by medications such as NSAIDs like ibuprofen. It may also be caused by medications such as aspirin. When medication is found not to be the root of the problem, veterinarians look for liver disease, kidney problems or stress on a dog's body from prior illness or surgery. Ulcers may also occur when a dog's body is in shock caused by a severe bacterial infection, heart or blood-pressure problem. Vomiting is a sign of having an ulcer. Sometimes old or brown-colored blood is in the vomit.
- It is important to have a regular vet or 24-hour vet service to take your dog to in case of emergencies if you suspect the animal is suffering from a serious complication. You should be able to tell within the course of a few hours or days if your dog is exhibiting symptoms of a more serious condition. Vigilance is the key in assessing your pet's condition and what actions should be taken to correct it. Please be observant of abnormal behaviors and reactions in your dog, so you can know how to help him best.