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GDV / Bloat / Torsion... Bramble survived - and is still going strong!

To end the year on a positive note, here is a new photograph of Bramble, taken on December 26th 2012. She is enjoying a sedate life as an old lady seven months after her emergency operation for gastric torsion. Bramble will be 13 years old in March. We are so thankful that she is still with us.

I know not all have been so fortunate, having lost their loved dogs to this dreadful disease. Thinking of all who have lost their four-legged friend too soon, whatever the reason. 

Dear 'Brambles' is coping very well with our new addition, 4 month old Annie. No way will Bramble share her bone or her dinner with the little upstart!!!  (Tell you the truth it is thanks to Annie that Bramble eats up her dinners so nicely... :-))


previously: on 28th May 2012

I hope all Setter owners know about this life threatening emergency: Gastric Dilatation Volvulus (GDV) also referred to as bloat, torsion. We have just been through the experience with Bramble, our 12 year old Irish Setter bitch and we are extremely fortunate that she is one of the lucky ones: Bramble has survived! 8 days after the emergency op on a Saturday night she is steadily improving.

Our experience had a happy outcome but it could so easily have gone very badly wrong. To avoid this happening to anyone else, here is our story:

At 8pm on Saturday May 19th my father realised something was badly wrong with Bramble. Bramble usually lives with him since the death of his old girl Ginger a couple of years ago. He phoned the emergency vet number and was told the vet on duty was three villages away. He contacted them saying he suspected GDV (having lost a dog many years ago to this condition he knew the signs) and took Bramble in. The emergency vet confirmed the suspicion... and said he could not operate!!!

It was now 9 pm. Bramble is 12 years old... did we want to operate? Yes, Bramble had no serious health issues at the time. We wanted to try to save her and her vital signs showed there was still a chance. BUT this vet could not operate, not having the necessary help available. We al know with GDV every second counts...   

My father was then told to drive 1 hour to a clinic where they would try to save Bramble's life. After searching for the clinic my father finally got there after 10 pm with Bramble in a very serious condition in the back of the car. We were lucky, Bramble was successfully operated on and after three days of being critically ill we were were finally allowed to pick her up. From then on she is steadily improving and we hope she can share a bit more time with us.

What really shocked me was that despite my father telling the emergency vet that he suspected GDV, he was not sent immediately to a clinic who could actually operate!

Please, all setter owners, make sure you know where your closest emergency vet is who can operate on GDV. Check before there is an emergency and make sure you know where the clinic is to avoid losing your way in an emergency, possibly at night. Ask you vet before the emergency occurs!!! You may be able to save your dog's life.

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I am so sorry, Dianne, that you too have been through this ordeal! But also happy to read that Flame survived! Thankfully you aEC was equipped and Flame was strong enough to pull through despite the time you lost at your local vet. I know that with GDV even getting there in time can not guarantee a good outcome and many younger dogs (and their owners) have not been as fortunate even with the best treatment.

If this message can help just one dog and owner to recognise the signs and to contact their vet in advance, then all was worth while.


So nice to see Bramble looking so well, after all she's been through, give her a big hug from us, wishing you all a very Happy New Year, Ellen and Finlay xxx

Thank you, Ellen!

Wishing you and all setter friends a happy and healthy 2013!!!

Nice to hear Bramble survived ! at this age, it's a kind of miracle. My dog "Lucky" who had also a torsion in January was also fortunate "lucky" as his name, and we could celebrate in 4th birthday in February.

Hope Bramble is recovering well.

I'm happy to hear that torsion can be cured at such old age ...

Best wishes for our favourite breed who is the 3rd breed touched by bloat !!!

So very happy for you Jean-Luc and your boy Lucky :0) Bloat is such a horrid condition, I hope Lucky makes a speedy recovery.
Susan, how is Bramble doing? I think often about her.

Jean-Luc, I know what a worrying time you have been through and am very happy to hear your Lucky is doing well.

Dianne, thanks for asking about Bramble, she will soon be celebrating one year 'post-GDV'! She is still doing surprisingly well considering she celebrated her 13th Birthday on March 26 2013. She enjoys her short trips to the stream and has a paddle and just loves slurping the cool water. She has never had any digestive problems since her op.



Thank you for letting me know how your Bramble is going. Wonderful news and what a magnificent photo of her :0))
Keep you always in our thoughts Bramble. Take care Dianne and Irish x

Lovely Photo of Bramble glad she is doing so well (",)

Glad to hear that Bramble is doing well.




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