Your dog’s body is an odd thing. While consuming various foods (and sometimes your shoes) that are impossible for a human to eat, other human-friendly treats will result in a very bad day.
Furthermore, your dog’s immune system will respond differently to stimuli, edible or otherwise. You can take care of your own needs on a day-to-day basis, whereas your dog relies on you to keep them healthy and content.
Thereby, when your dog’s stomach starts gurgling, you may have numerous reasons for concern. Your dog may have eaten something they weren’t supposed to, or something more worrying could be occurring inside their body.
We’ll go over some of the causes behind dog stomach gurgling and help you better answer the question, “why is my dogs stomach making noises?”
For now, don’t panic! Both you and your pup will likely be just fine.
- Identifying Dog Stomach Gurgling
- Dog Stomach Gurgling Causes
- Addressing Dog Stomach Gurgles
- Treatment for Dog Upset Stomach Gurgling
Identifying Dog Stomach Gurgling
What, though, is the noise coming from your dog’s stomach? While identifying a gurgling noise may seem like a straightforward process, the kinds of noises that come from your dog’s stomach can vary, making it a bit more difficult than expected.
You may be used to the sound of your dog’s stomach growling, especially when you break out her bowl for dinner or when you head into the kitchen to make yourself a snack. But now you need to determine what constitutes unusual gurgling?
Your dog’s stomach gurgles should sound much like your own stomach when you’re attempting to pass gas or when you have just seen an appetizing treat. Gurgling is most frequently, in humans and dogs, a sign of ongoing digestion.
Usually, gurgling sounds rather bubbly, but the noise dissipates rather quickly. If gurgling is extended, then you may have cause for concern.
Dog Stomach Gurgling Causes
While there are some standard causes for stomach gurgling, there are also reasons behind your dog’s noisy stomach that may be the result of a more serious issue.
If you find yourself thinking, “I don’t know why my dog’s stomach is making noises,” then keep in mind some of the following:
As previously mentioned, most of the noise coming from your dog’s stomach results from digestion. Your own stomach works similarly.
Once you’ve consumed food, the gases and acids in your stomach work to break that food down and move it through your intestines.
Those gases aren’t quiet; they’ll make a considerable amount of noise throughout the digestion process – such is also the case for your dog. Once you’ve fed your pup, they’ll likely need time to rest and let their food work through their body.
The noise that comes from your dog’s belly immediately after they’ve eaten, then, is to be expected.
Likewise, there can be noise coming from your dog’s stomach when they’re hungry.
Once you’ve returned home from a day of work, you’ll likely be greeted by a very enthusiastic dog who is both eager for your presence and dinner.
If you press your ear to your dog’s stomach, you’ll likely be able to hear their stomach gurgling. This kind of noise is just as natural as digestion; it’s a sign of your dog’s intestines contracting in an attempt to reach for nutrients.
Eating Something Unusual
It’s also possible, though, that the gurgling is a result of your furry friend trying to digest something they shouldn’t have eaten.
There are certain foods your dog cannot consume, some of which will actively hurt your furry friend. These sorts of foods include grapes, chocolate, alcohol, and garlic.
If your dog, overly-enthusiastic for dinner, happens to get one of these foods into their mouth, you’ll want to do everything in your power to keep them from swallowing it. If they do swallow it, you’ll likely hear an increase in the amount of gurgling from her stomach.
You may also notice that your dog becomes more lethargic or starts to eat grass in an attempt to vomit. Much the same will occur if your dog eats something inedible, like carpeting, wood, or plastic.
In these cases, you may need to take them to the vet or give them a while in the backyard to vomit up their bad decision.
Your dog doesn’t have to eat something inappropriate to start feeling nauseous, but sometimes the two causes of doggy stomach noises can go hand in hand.
Your dog will display signs of nausea after eating too quickly, for example, or if they’re dehydrated. Symptoms of nausea include general listlessness, lethargy, or an inability to maintain balance.
If your dog starts to act less energetic than normal or generally odd after a meal and that behavior change is matched with odd noises coming from their stomach, check their stomach for any hardness. Do your best to keep them from eating anything else.
You’ll want to get your dog to the vet as soon as possible to see if the noises from their stomach are the result of a more serious illness.
How loud is the dog’s stomach gurgling? If you are hearing loud intestinal noises that are louder than regular stomach gurgling sounds and are accompanied by diarrhea, a poor appetite, and vomiting, it may be due to intestinal parasites.
Other symptoms that may point to intestinal parasites include scooting, a distended abdomen, weight loss, decreased activity, and a dull coat.
Inflammatory Bowel Disease
Humans can develop inflammatory bowel disease, and so can dogs. This condition causes inflammation in the dog’s intestines and gastrointestinal tract and disrupts normal digestion. Inflammatory bowel disease can easily be managed with medication and a special diet.
To determine if this is the cause of your dog’s noisy stomach gurgling and stomach problem, the vet will conduct blood tests and then inform you of the best treatment options available.
Gastric dilatation is also known as bloat and can be another reason your dog’s stomach is gurgling. If not treated, bloat can actually prove to be fatal for your dog. It causes the stomach to fill with gas. This can then twist the stomach and cause swelling. If you notice signs of bloating, it is best to see your vet immediately.
Stomach gurgling can also sometimes be a sign of intestinal blockage. If your dog has eaten a foreign object, it can cause this kind of obstruction in their intestines. This is considered an emergency and will require surgery in many cases.
In dogs, hemorrhagic gastroenteritis or HGE is considered an emergency health situation that pet owners need to know about. This condition is marked by dog vomit and bloody diarrhea resulting from superficial necrosis of the mucosa in the dog’s intestines. It also poses a high dehydration risk for your dog as well.
If you hear your dog’s stomach gurgling and notice other signs when looking into it, check for pain in their abdomen, a decreased appetite, lethargy, and fever. You may also notice some exhaustion as well.
There is no definitive test for this condition. More serious cases may require hospitalization and close monitoring, IV fluids, antibiotics, and anti-nausea medications. This can help prevent the spread of any bacteria through the bloodstream.
It’s also possible that the gurgling in your dog’s stomach is a sign of Canine Parvovirus. Canine CPV is an exceptionally contagious disease that houses itself in a dog’s intestines.
This illness reveals itself to owners through the symptoms of diarrhea, weight loss, and vomiting, as well as increased nausea and louder noises coming from your pup’s stomach.
You’ll want to keep an eye out for blood in your dog’s stool and extreme weight loss, as your dog will no longer be able to absorb nutrients from the food that they do manage to eat.
It’s also possible that your dog’s body temperature will be lower than the standard 101°F, as CPV causes warmth in the body to drop.
CPV’s presence and impact on your dog do have obvious symptoms, but you will need to make a trip to the vet to determine whether or not your dog has contracted the virus.
Addressing Dog Stomach Gurgles
If your dog’s stomach is constantly making gurgling noises, it may be a sign of a more serious issue.
As such, there are certain things you can do to assess your dog’s health beyond observing their general behavior, which will let you know whether or not a trip to the vet is necessary.
Check the Dog’s Temperature
Make use of a thermometer made for dogs to check your dog’s temperature. Most dog breeds run between 101°F and 102.5°F. Anything higher than these numbers is worthy of concern.
While it may be tempting to feel their forehead or underbelly for a similar reading, dog fur presents an obstacle. Unlike humans, feeling the dog’s body to gauge their temperature is much less accurate.
If you don’t own a dog thermometer, then continue with the rest of this checklist.
Check for Dehydration
If your dog has been neglecting their water bowl, the noises coming from her stomach may be a sign of dehydration.
It will be in your best interest to try and encourage your dog to drink, either by bringing their water bowl to them or by giving them some ice to lick.
Keep an eye on them as they’re working with the ice cubes, though; you don’t want them chewing the ice instead of licking it.
Consider whether or not you’ve recently changed your dog’s food. Different dog food brands can bring different responses from your pup; the gurgling may result from an ingredient in the food that doesn’t agree with them.
Alternatively, if your dog hasn’t been getting the nutrients they need, then their stomach will not react positively and will gurgle more than normal.
Treatment for Dog Upset Stomach Gurgling
When treating the gurgling in your pup’s stomach, it is usually safe to assume that the noise is coming from a benign source.
Other marked changes in behavior will accompany dog upset stomach gurgling, so unless your dog is acting strangely, consider the following home treatments:
It’s possible, as previously mentioned that a change in your dog’s diet will have resulted in the additional noise. To treat this, first assess what kind of food your dog has been eating.
If the brand has changed, consider making your way back to their previous food. If this isn’t possible, look over the ingredients in their new food brand and see if you can determine the explicit differences between the two.
You may have discovered a new allergy and may need to buy an entirely different brand to soothe their stomach.
Alternatively, if your dog has frequently been vomiting, you should alter their diet, so they’re eating baby food or rice mixed with cottage cheese.
These types of foods will ensure that the dog continues to get nutrients since they are gentle enough to remain in their stomach.
Also, as previously mentioned, dehydration may be a culprit. As such, try and get your dog to drink a bit of water, either by making sure their bowl is full of fresh water and near the place they’re sitting or by encouraging them to lick ice.
This ice can be presented to your dog in a bowl or on a plate. As long as they continue to lick the ice, they get the hydration they need.
Water is good for the body and essential for gut health. It is also important to help your dog maintain regular bowel movements.
Avoid Overfeeding Your Dog
When a dog overeats, it can increase stomach noise and makes it more difficult for its digestive system to do its job. Free feeding is dangerous for dogs, especially if they get bored.
Go for a Walk
A nice walk after a meal can help improve your dog’s digestion. It speeds up the process and reduces the amount of time the food just sits in their stomach.
A nice brisk walk rather than intense exercise or running is recommended. Too much too fast, and you can increase your dog’s risk of bloat.
Slow Feeder Bowl
Finally, if your dog eats too quickly, they swallow a lot more air. Excess air can lead to gas and loud stomach noises.
A slow feeder bowl is designed with grooves that the kibble falls into. This forces your dog to slow down while eating and use their tongue to very carefully remove each kibble piece from the grooves.
If worse comes to worse, a visit to the veterinarian will allow you to determine whether or not the gurgling from your dog’s stomach is louder than normal or if it’s a sign of something more sinister.
Here’s a video with more details on dog stomach gurgling.
The cause of the dogs stomach making noise varies, so it is important to pay attention to your pup when it happens. This will help you narrow down the root of the problem to find the right treatment.
Do you have any tips on gurgling and other dog stomach noises?