If you have a large or giant breed dog, then you might be familiar with the term “gastropexy.” Larger dogs are prone to a condition called gastric dilatation volvulus (GDV), more commonly referred to as “bloat.” On a very basic level, bloat happens when gases suddenly fill up in the stomach, which then starts to twist and cuts off blood vessels. This can quickly lead to shock and even death if not caught in time. While large dogs are more susceptible, smaller breeds are not immune. The good news is that there is a way to significantly reduce the likelihood of it happening to your furry friend: a gastropexy.
This strange sounding term is just a fancy way of saying that the stomach is tacked to the abdominal wall to prevent it from flipping or twisting. There are several types of gastropexy surgery, the one your veterinarian would perform is determined by their training and expertise. No matter the procedure, gastropexy as a preventative is eligible for reimbursement under Embrace’s Wellness Rewards† routine care plan.
Ideally this procedure is done before your dog bloats as a preventative measure. But in the event of GDV, it is highly recommended to do a gastropexy while the pet is in surgery to avoid reoccurrence. According to the US National Library of Medicine, dogs who have experienced GDV and did not have a gastropexy done are up to 50% more likely to experience it again.
If a gastropexy procedure is not something you’re ready to move forward with, perhaps take some other precautions. Knowing what signs to look for, and being able to take quick action, could quite literally save a life.