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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Veterinarian
Category: Large Animal Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 17686
Experience:  As a veterinarian, I have been educated to treat all animals, big and small.
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I have a 13 year old llama. Her belly is very extended. I

Customer Question

I have a 13 year old llama. Her belly is very extended. I haven't seen her chew her cud for 2 days but she is eating and I've seen her urinate and poop
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. Strange behavior is often perplexing. I'm sure the Veterinarian can help you. What is the llama's name?
Customer: Suzy
JA: Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about Suzy?
Customer: She burps up gas but doesn't chew her cud
Submitted: 4 months ago.
Category: Large Animal Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 4 months ago.

Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you with today. I do apologize that your question was not answered before. Different experts come online at various times; I just came online, read about your wee one’s situation, and wanted to help.

Again I do apologize that my colleagues could not aid you sooner, but can you tell me:

How long has she been distended?

Does it feel fluidy, firm, or gassy?

Are her gums pink or pale/white?

Has she had any diarrhea or is she passing more/watery urine?

Any fever or does she seem sore?

Any recent change of her diet or is she eating less hay?

Customer: replied 4 months ago.

She has always had a large belly. It is firm. She eats and I've seen her urinate and poop. But her belly get so huge sometimes that she can lay down and get comfortable. I've heard her burp up air but haven't seen her chew her cud for several days. No diarrea..no fever...no change in diet

Expert:  Dr. B. replied 4 months ago.

Thank you,

Now I have say that I am concerned to hear that her belly has always been large. This is because where we could see sudden distension with bloat or gas (which we could give activated charcoal to reduce gas), if she has been distended for a while and now even more so this raises concerns of organ enlargement (ie liver, kidney, heart dysfunction, etc) or a possible tumor. In both cases, we can see these progress to a point where they can start to develop fluid build up in the abdomen which in turn can distend the belly even more. And if this becomes severe it can compress the GI leading to issues with passing stool, burping to pass gases, or even eating. Therefore, we do need to tread with care and consider having a check with her vet. They can fully examine her +/- ultrasound to see which issue is present and sample any fluid there. Based on their findings, they can target treatment to support any compromised organ or reduce fluid build up for her to reduce this.

Kind regards,

Dr. B.

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