Protecting your dog from "Bloating Syndrome"

By Lakecia Shockley - bio - email

Posted by Ellen Krafve - email

Given the surprise ending of Marley and Me if you haven't seen it and you plan to, you may not want to read any farther. We don't want to spoil it for you. We bring bring you the story behind that ending, and why dog owners need to be aware.

In the movie he's the most rambunctious dog.

Marley and Me is based on a true story and has some crazy antics, but the ending is like catching a sucker punch.

"My friends felt the same way. You really want to go see the movie as a comedy but when you're walking out there's not a lot of people laughing it's sad," said dog owner, Robin Maley.

At the end, Marley dies from Bloating Syndrome.

"I read all the book. My husband read all but the last chapter because he expected it to be sad," said Robin. "He didn't want to think about that happening to her."

Robin is referring to her 8 year old mixed lab Sadie.

"She's in the middle of opening christmas gifts, birthday parties. Every night when we're trying to eat she's right there," Robin said.

Dr. Kenny Kimbrough with Kimbrough Animal Hospital said Bloating Syndrome affects the stomachs of larger breed dogs.

"All of a sudden it's torus here and torus there so it just gases up until your stomach finally will rupture. It's a real acute death. It happens pretty fast," the Doctor explained. "Be careful when you feed your dog that it doesn't go straight to the water and drink...drink..drink."

Dr. Kimbrough said that feeding your dog digestible and nutritional dog food can help. Also, some vets can perform a procedure that inserts a scope through a tiny incision relieving the stomach.

"It is a big responsibility to have them but they give you back so much more," said Robin.

Kimbrough said he normally sees about four dogs a year with Bloating Syndrome. He also said that because of the economy, more dogs might get the syndrome, simply because dog owners may only be able to afford lower quality dog food.