What is bloat

The following are true stories. This owner consented to allow us to tell her stories to help other Rottweiler owners avoid similar disasters and heartbreaking loss. Following these stories is information to help you save your Rottie’s life. Please, read all the way to the bottom!

Kelly rescued “Skinny” from a rough start in life — she’d been chained 24 hours a day and starved. Kelly provided love and compassion and they shared a great life together for almost six years. Then one day Kelly came home and discovered Skinny had eaten nearly two pounds of treats out of a five pound sack. Kelly set to work putting the treats out of Skinny’s future reach and started cleaning up the mess. Unfortunately, she didn’t think to pick up the bowl of water, nor did she notice when Skinny drank it dry.


However, 10 minutes later, Skinny started to whine and soon after that her stomach nearly doubled in size. Kelly called the closest vet, a cattle vet, being the closest Vet to Kelly’s remote home. The vet told her to bring Skinny in right away. However, when he saw Skinny, he told Kelly to get her to a canine vet in Great Falls right away. It was an hour and a half away! Kelly took off. The trip took too long; by the time Kelly pulled into the Great Falls vet, Skinny was in shock. It was too late for Skinny; her stomach had twisted and her intestines had died. However, it is not too late for you to learn from Kelly and Skinny. Learn how to prevent your companion from bloating, learn the warning signs of bloat, and if you ever see the signs, get to the vet immediately. The only thing that can save your pal is quick action!

A few years later, Kelly was ready to open her heart to another canine companion. She searched and searched and finally adopted Koda, a rescued Rottweiler from Big Sky Rottweiler Rescue. It was a match made in heaven! Kelly and Koda did everything together…they walked, they ran, they exercised the horses together, they hung out on the couch together, they were simply inseparable.

Kelly fed Koda about 2:00 p.m. in the afternoon as she usually did. They spent the afternoon and evening together as they always did and then went to bed. Koda woke Kelly up with his restlessness about 1:00 a.m. Kelly thought he either had to relieve himself or his stomach was upset, so she let him outside, waited for him to come back in, and then they went back to bed. But Koda didn’t return to sleep; he was still restless. Kelly felt his tummy every few minutes. About 1:30 a.m. it started to feel just a little “tight.” She called the vet clinic in Great Falls to tell them she was on her way and she took off.

During the hour drive to Great Falls, Koda’s stomach had doubled in size, but he was still alert and able to walk into the clinic under his own steam. Kelly was allowed to be in the operating room as they first tried to relieve the pressure. Then they opened Koda up. Unfortunately, Koda’s stomach had twisted right where it attaches to the esophagus and the intestine was dead. The vet told Kelly this was the worst place for this to happen because there is no way to cut it out and re-attach the two living sections. He recommended that Koda be put down. As Kelly cried, the vet told her that there had been nothing to speak of in the intestines, and there were no other visible signs as to why Koda had twisted. There was simply no explanation. He comforted her by saying she had done everything right. It didn’t matter to Kelly; she’d just lost her best friend.

Bloat, Gastric Torsion. Twisted Intestine, Gastric Dilatation-Volvulus (GDV). Call it what you will, this is a serious, life-threatening condition of large breed dogs. Bloat symptoms should always be taken seriously and acted upon quickly. The life of your dog may depend on it.