Definition of Ulcers
Stomach ulcers, also called gastric ulcers, are sores or disruptions in the lining of the stomach. Ulcers can penetrate deeply into the sensitive layers of the stomach wall and be extremely painful. They can be caused by a number of things, including ingestion of caustic substances or foreign objects, administration of irritating medications, stress, shock, allergies, infection, cancer, pancreatitis, inflammatory bowel disease, Addison’s disease, liver disease and kidney failure. Dogs suffering from stomach ulcers often vomit and have abdominal pain manifested by a “praying” or “bowing” posture. They tend to be depressed, weak, nervous and anxious. Their appetite wanes and they lose weight, become dehydrated, disoriented and may even collapse. One of the most important complications of stomach ulcers is anemia, which is caused by the loss of blood that accompanies this condition. In severe cases, the stomach can perforate or burst, causing septic peritonitis, shock and sudden death.