The stomachs of dogs make similar noises to ours. A noisy stomach in a dog can be a sign of many things.
It is often a sign that your dog’s stomach is empty and they are hungry. Sometimes, the noise is caused by a large meal that has just been consumed and their stomach working to break it down. Sometimes, the noise is caused by indigestion and upset stomach.
How can you tell if your dog’s stomach sounds are a sign of an issue? What the sounds could be and when you should seek vet help.
Does a dog’s stomach normally make noises?
Although stomach rumbling or grumbling is often loud, this noise is a part of normal digestion. The sound of the stomach, or borborygmi as it is also known, comes from the movement of water and food through the digestive system.
The GI tract is made up of the small intestines and large intestines. These organs are all made up of smooth muscles that help move food and fluids through the body.
When these muscles contract rhythmically, they move the food along the digestive tract. The peristaltic motion can cause normal stomach sounds. Your dog may make stomach sounds immediately after eating.
There is no sound to muffle when the stomach or intestines have been emptied. Imagine the sound of water flowing through a hollow tube. It’s no wonder that our dogs grumble more after a long time without eating.
Although stomach sounds are normal for dogs, they may be louder when the dog is upset or has a digestive disturbance.
What does it mean when a dog’s stomach is making a lot of noise?
There are several reasons why dogs may make abnormal or increased stomach sounds.
Some of these issues are minor and will go away by themselves, but others may be more serious.
Diarrhea can cause stomach sounds to increase as water and food move through the digestive system more quickly. Before a dog experiences diarrhea, they may make a lot of noise in their stomach.
Eat Something Different or Bad
Indiscretions in diet can also cause increased stomach sounds. If a dog eats an unsuitable treat or sneaks it into the trash, this can cause digestive problems. This leads to increased stomach noises.
There can be a lot of noises in the stomach if you have an obstruction. This is known as a “foreign body” in the vet’s world.
Dogs will sometimes eat non-digestible items. Socks, corncobs, and bones are all common culprits. They can become stuck in the stomach or intestines and cause an increase of gas. It can cause more noise, which is a serious problem that needs to be treated immediately.
Increased stomach sounds can be caused by underlying gastrointestinal disorders and syndromes such as inflammation bowel disease (IBD), which is caused by chronic intestinal irritation, or Exocrine Pancreatic Insufficiency where there are no digestive enzymes.
Parasites, Bacterial infections
Infections (such as coccidia or salmonella) and parasites can all contribute to increased stomach noises in dogs. Parasites and bacterial infections (like coccidia, salmonella, E. As they colonize the GI system, these bacteria may cause a reduction in the intake of nutrients or produce gas.
Gas can cause increased stomach sounds. Gas is normal. It occurs when intestinal bacteria break down less digestible foods or ingredients. Gas can be produced by carbohydrates, which are a good source of energy. Gas is produced when carbohydrates’ fibers are fermented.
Gas can be produced by gulping air. The panting of a dog can cause it to swallow more air. This will lead to an increase in gas, and stomach sounds.
Gas production in a dog’s gastrointestinal system can vary from one day to the next. Certain dogs are sensitive to ingredients, which can cause an increase in gas production when they receive them as treats.
Your dog may have more gas and, consequently, more stomach sounds after being given a certain treat like a puppy cup. This is because they are having difficulty digesting lactose, which can be found in dairy products.
What should you do if your dog is making stomach noises?
Although stomach sounds in dogs can be normal, sometimes they indicate that there is a digestive problem. Call your vet if you notice any of these signs in conjunction with the stomach sounds.
- Vomiting (or retching)
- Diarrhoea severe or persistant lasting longer than 24 hours
- Lack of appetite or not eating
You should call your vet if you hear stomach sounds that are abnormal.
What to do if your dog’s stomach is making noises?
Stomach noises can be harmless, and they mean your dog is doing the right thing. Here are some things that you can do at home to reduce your dog’s borborygmi if they have a normal appetite and energy, but excessive stomach noises.
- Split their meal into smaller portions and more often. Don’t add a late-night or afternoon snack to your dog’s food. This can lead to excessive weight gain. Divide the food you are already giving into smaller amounts. Instead of giving your dog 2 cups twice a day, you can try to give them 1 and 1/3 cups three times daily. It will decrease the time that your dog is hungry, reducing the noise.
- Ensure your dog always has fresh, clean water available. The water is important for regular bowel movement and peristalsis, the transit system of the gut.
- Slow-feeder dishes are a good option. If a dog is eating too fast, it will swallow more air. Gas and stomach sounds are caused by this air. The kibble may fall into plastic grooves and knobs in the bowl, which forces your dog to use his tongue to remove it.
- Avoid letting your dog overeat. Overeating can occur in bored dogs who are fed freely. Overeating, while it can help reduce the occurrence of borborygmi by allowing your dog to eat smaller meals more frequently, can also increase their stomach noises and cause digestive problems. You may have heard your dog’s stomach growl more after eating a big holiday meal.
- After eating, take your dog on a walk. After eating, walking can improve digestion because it speeds up the digestive process. It also reduces the time food is in the stomach. This only works for walking. Avoid intense exercise and running immediately after feeding your dog, since this can cause dangerous conditions such as bloat.
- Think about calming treats. Some dogs experience anxiety, which can lead to panting, and even swallowing air. This leads to gas, and sometimes borborygmi. Stress can also slow down the emptying of the stomach and send food into the intestines. This increases the amount of gastrointestinal noise.