Why is my dog's stomach making noises? Perhaps of the first symptoms suggesting an upset stomach in dogs that dog owners notice, is a sudden increase of noises. The gurgling noises are often perceived as a troublesome sign even when the dog appears to be doing well. What causes these noises though, and are they are sure sign of a digestive problem?
The medical term for stomach noises is "borborygmos." Often, these noises are quite normal, just produced by the digestive process when food moves through the intestinal tract. However, at times, dog stomach noises noises are louder than usual or present for a prolonged period of time. There may be several causes for this.
Stomach Noises After a Dietary Indiscretion
Loud stomach or intestinal noises in dogs may stem from dietary indiscretion. If your dog was in the trash or if he stole food from your table, these dietary changes can cause increased noises and stomach upset, that generally resolve in the next 24 to 72 hours without long-term health effects.
Another common cause of digestive upset in dogs that leads to noises is abrupt changes in diet. When your dog is put on a new diet, it's important to switch dog foods gradually, introducing small amounts of the new food to the old in small amounts and then increasing the quantity some more until the new food replaces the old. This should be done over the course of several days.
If your dog's stomach seems upset, unless your dog ate something toxic or has an underlying health condition, your dog may be a good candidate for dog upset home remedies.
Stomach Noises After Drinking Water
Sometimes, dogs may lap up quite a lot of water when they're thirsty such as after romping in the yard or when it's hot.
If their stomach happens to be empty, you may end up hearing the noise of the water passing through the dog's digestive system. Of course, this is quite normal, and it happens to humans too!
Usually, this noise is nothing to worry about, and it should be self limited, meaning that it doesn't cause your dog any harm or cause to feel sick.
If your dog's stomach keeps making lots of noises after drinking or your dog seems to have problems though, he may be having digestive upset due to other causes. See your vet if your dog becomes nauseous or tends to vomit after drinking. There may be an underlying medical condition causing this.
Stomach Noises After Ingesting Air
In some cases, those gurgling sounds are caused by the presence of air in the stomach. You may wonder, how do dogs ingest air if they don't drink carbonated drinks? Dogs often ingest air from eating or drinking too fast. This excess air travelling in the digestive system may cause gurgling sounds, and in addition, it may be expelled through a burp or through flatulence.
There are many things you can do nowadays to help dogs stop drinking to fast. There are specific food bowls that can slow your dog down, but some dog owners find putting large, smooth rocks in the bowl equally effective. It's important to slow down a dog's eating as this can lead to digestive problems and even bloat in predisposed dogs, like those deep chested breeds out there.
Night-time or Early Morning Stomach Noises
If the noises appear mostly at night time or in the early morning, the noises may be suggestive of increased stomach acidity. Veterinarians refer to this condition as "bilious vomiting syndrome." It's a sort of canine version of heartburn seen in humans. This is often seen in active, high-strung dogs with a fast metabolism. Because of their metabolism, these dogs tend to use up the food in their stomach quite quickly, which results in an empty stomach.
At night, the prolonged hours with no food in the stomach cause the release of gastric acid which is irritating to the lining of the dog's stomach. Because there is no food to soak up this excess acid, the stomach becomes irritated, causing stomach noises, nausea and even vomiting of yellow bile in affected dogs. How can these dogs be helped?
A good place to start is to break the vicious cycle is giving these dogs a bed-time snack; however, in some cases, affected dogs may need medication from your vet--common medications prescribed for dogs prone to getting an upset stomach and vomiting bile in the night or early morning are famotidine (Pepcid AC) or ranitidine (Zantac). Consult with your vet if your dog's stomach makes gurgling sounds at night or in the early morning. It may be just hunger, but it could also be too much acid is being produced which may need addressed.
"With dogs, they use up the food in their stomach very quickly, and then their stomach is empty. The stomach contains gastric acid, which is very irritating to the stomach lining, especially when there is no food to soak it up. When the stomach is empty, the acid irritates the stomach so much that there are loud rumbling sounds and the dog starts to feel nauseated." ~Dr. Fiona, veterinarian
The Bottom Line
Fortunately, many cases of stomach noises in dogs are caused by minor things. If your dog displays excessive stomach noises, supervise your dog and check for other symptoms suggesting an upset stomach such as lack of appetite, nausea, vomiting or diarrhea. If you notice these, see your vet so your dog can be diagnosed and treated properly.
If your dog seems fine, it may not hurt to fast your dog for a few hours so to give his digestive track a little break and then start a bland diet. For sensitive stomachs, nowadays there are many special diets out there and products that can help your dog feel better. Always consult with your vet when adding supplements to your dog's diet.
Did you know?
A lack of stomach noises in dogs can be one of the many signs of bloat, a life threatening condition often diagnosed in deep-chested dogs.