Gastric dilatation–volvulus (GDV) is a life-threatening medical and surgical emergency. The acute medical crisis is brought on by massive gastric distension, which compresses critical vasculature, causing gastric ischemia, impaired venous return, and poor cardiac output. This leads to hypovolemic shock, myocardial ischemia, cardiac arrhythmia, electrolyte imbalance, visceral necrosis, and other detrimental effects.
Large- and giant-breed dogs, underweight dogs, and dogs with a large thoracic depth:width ratio are at greater risk for developing GDV. This risk increases with age. One study found large and giant purebred dogs to have a lifelong risk for developing GDV of 24% and 21.6%, respectively.1