Estimated Read Time: 4 ½ minutes
Summary: In this blog, we learn all about dog burping and the different things that cause it including gastric torsion, aerophagia in dogs, and acid reflux. We’ll discover how to help and prevent dog burping and what to do in serious cases…
Do dogs burp? The answer is yes! Dogs, like humans, may need to fart or burp to relieve excess gas caught up in their gastrointestinal tract. If it’s only happening occasionally, there’s usually no need to worry but when it’s happening excessively, then this could be a sign of an underlying issue. You’ll want to bring any excessive gas to your vet’s attention as soon as you’re able.
With aerophagia in dogs being the most common reason for dog burping, there are also many other reasons that can cause a dog to burp too…
Aerophagia in dogs is when a pup swallows an excessive amount of air which usually occurs through gulping down food or water. Dogs that scoff their food (usually those who are only fed once a day or eat around other animals that they may perceive as competition for food) are at a heightened risk of ingesting too much air when they swallow. This will cause burping after mealtimes.
Brachycephalic breeds (those with flat faces and short snouts like Pugs, Shih-Tzus and Bulldogs) are more prone to aerophagia and trapped air, as they swallow air more easily due to the way their upper airways are constructed.
If air becomes trapped in your dog’s stomach, this can actually result in being fatal for your dog. If there’s enough air trapped, the stomach can twist and kill your dog - notably, this is more of a risk in dogs with deep chests.
If your dog has burped but remains/seems bloated, you need to get them to a vet as a matter of emergency - time is absolutely critical. Signs of bloating include anxious, agitated behaviour (attempting to be sick or pacing), difficulty breathing, dribbling and/or a distended (large) stomach.
Acid reflux, just like in humans, can be chronic or occasional. This happens when some stomach acid or digestive enzymes creep up into the oesophagus. Because of acid reflux, a dog may burp or in some cases gag. If this happens frequently, it’s always worth discussing with your vet.
There are certain foods that dogs have a harder time digesting than humans. These include lactose (so, dairy products), peas, beans, some spices, soy, fatty foods, pectin and out-of-date food. Try to avoid giving these foods to your dog as they can cause them to burp and fart.
When a dog has abnormal digestion or absorption of food, this means the food that hasn’t been digested can remain stagnant in their GI tract. This can cause gastrointestinal disease, and the foods that haven’t been digested (as they ferment in the gut) can cause wind and burping.
If you suspect this may be the case for your dogs burping, get them checked out by the vet. Gastrointestinal diseases include irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), bacterial overgrowth, internal parasites (worms), cancer and more.
Sudden changes in a dog’s diet can lead to excess gas. You should always change what you feed your dog slowly and gradually. Check out our blog on How To Switch Your Dog’s Food here, to avoid gastrointestinal upset.
Dogs that like to rummage through the bin and eat things they shouldn’t can also cause themselves to burp and fart.
There are several things you can do to help your dog with their excess gas, as well as getting them looked over by the vet. You can try:
If you're concerned with how often your dog is burping, make an appointment at the vet to discuss what to do.