What to Do if Your Dog isn’t Eating & His Stomach is Making Loud Noises
Has your dog lost his appetite and this is being accompanied by loud gurgling noises from the dog’s stomach? Digestion or stomach-related issues can arise due to a number of causes with the following being the most common reasons for dogs that may exhibit these symptoms and behaviors.
Sign of Bloat
Bloat, also known as gastric dilatation-volvulus (GDV), refers to a medical condition when the dog’s stomach starts to fill with gas and becomes twisted. Bloat can become a life-threatening condition for dogs if it isn’t treated quickly.
It’s not uncommon for dogs to exhibit symptoms like a lack of appetite when they suffer from bloat. Given the stomach is filled with gas and digestive content, it also shouldn’t come as a surprise to hear a lot of audible noise from the dog’s tummy.
Bloat in dogs can develop due to a number of factors such as how quickly the dog eats his food. It can happen to any dog although certain dog breeds, such as standard poodles and rottweilers, are known to have a higher risk of suffering from this medical condition than others. It’s vital you get your dog to the vet right away if you suspect he is suffering from bloat.
Foreign objects in stomach
The dog’s stomach could also be making loud noises because there is a foreign object in the dog’s digestive system that’s causing blockage. Dogs can be quite silly sometimes and their curiosity would lead them to eating things that can’t be digested easily.
This could be things like shoe laces, plastic bags, or food wrappers. Your dog is not going to want to eat if he feels something uncomfortable in his stomach.
Again, it’s important to take your dog to the emergency vet straight away if there’s something inside the dog’s stomach that isn’t allowing the digestive content to pass along. Surgical removal might be necessary if the foreign object can’t be safely removed through the endoscopy method.
Presence of Intestinal Parasites
A lack of appetite accompanied with loud stomach noises might also suggest the dog is suffering from the presence of intestinal parasites. There are a number of common parasites that affect dogs, including roundworms, hookworms, whipworms, and tapeworms. These parasites can affect your dog’s health and behavior in a number of ways. In addition to stomach noises, your dog may also exhibit symptoms like diarrhea, vomiting, and scooting.
Other Digestive-related Diseases
Lack of appetite could be indicative of other digestive problems that dogs suffer from including a common gastrointestinal upset, gastritis, colitis, and pancreatitis. For puppies, you might want to also double-check that the symptoms are unrelated to diseases like the canine parvovirus.
While mild stomach gurgling can be seen as normal, a lack of appetite for an extended period of time isn’t. Don’t second-guess whether your dog is sick and book in a trip to the vet as soon as you can as any of the reasons we have highlighted above could be indicative of something serious.
Preparing for a trip to the vet
There are certain steps you can prepare in advance to give as much context as possible to the vet. This may include the preparation of information such as how long it has been since your dog last ate, how well your dog is sleeping, how active your dog is, and how often you have seen your dog exhibiting other worrying symptoms.
It will also be helpful to note down any environmental or dietary changes the dog went through prior to showing the stomach noise symptoms. Did you, for example, change the type of water your dog drinks from? One of our readers noted that his dog started to eat again and no longer had stomach noise problems after switching from tap to distilled water.
You may want to also ask if it’s necessary to bring a sample of the dog’s stool. There are certain steps you need to take for the sample to be valid for analysis such as making sure the dog poop is fresh, and storing the sample in a bag that’s completely sealed.
Minimizing Health Dangers and Risks
You should double-check with your vet but there are certain steps that may help minimize your dog’s discomfort and pain while the symptoms are being diagnosed. This includes making sure that your dog always has access to fresh clean water and not give your dog any treats or foods that aren’t easy to digest for the time being.
You should also minimize anything that may make your dog feel more anxious or stressed, such as reducing encounters with strangers and other animals (if it’s something you know your dog doesn’t like).
Last but not least, you may want to add dietary supplements that are known for being beneficial to a dog’s digestive health. One popular choice is slippery elm bark powder. This powder may support your dog’s digestive health by helping to reduce inflammation associated with gastrointestinal issues.