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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 21201
Experience:  Hello, I am a small animal veterinarian and am happy to discuss any concerns & questions you have on any species.
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My 7 year old mastiff is showing great signs of distress and

Customer Question

My 7 year old mastiff is showing great signs of distress and whimpers when moving and will not lay down. His stomach is hard. We did recently change dog foods. Do you think this is constipation?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.

Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you with your wee one today.

How long has he had these signs?

Any gagging, retching, lip licking, vomiting, or straining to pass stools?

Any breathing changes?

Are his gums pink or pale/white? Moist or sticky?

Does he belly look distended?

Could he have eaten something he should not have (ie bones, toys, plants, chemicals, etc)?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
It started yesterday. No vomiting, wrenching, or straining that I have noticed but he usually goes in the backyard and I don't notice that stuff.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
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Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.

Thank you,

And does he appear distended or his gums pale?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Gums are pale but he's slobbering like normal. Stomach isn't to distended but is hard.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I gave him a baby aspirin earlier thinking it was his hips bothering him.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
He ate dog food earlier which is a new kind that we decided to switch to because of our other mastiffs allergy to grains.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.

Oh dear,

While constipation can cause belly discomfort, dogs usually are straining to pass stool when that is present. Therefore, given that he isn't and that his gums are pale (a sign of reduced circulatory perfusion) alongside those other signs, we'd be worried that we may have a bloat here or even a gut blockage. As well, if he ate a lot of the new food then we could even have a food induced bloat.

Therefore, it is a situation where you do not want to leave him like this. We instead need him to the local vet urgently. They can start injectable pain relief (aspirin is poor at that and can actually harm the gut), palpate +/- xray to determine which is present. If one of these emergency issues is found, then addressing it quickly will give him the best chance here.

Just in case you need a local emergency vet, you can check @ or via

Please take care,

Dr. B.


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