Mesenteric Volvulus in US Military Working Dogs

Mesenteric volvulus (MV) is a rare, often fatal disorder involving intestinal rotation around the root of the mesentery. The etiology is unknown however certain associations have been hypothesized. Prognosis is grave with high mortality rates. A consensus of many studies is that German Shepherd Dogs (GSD) are at increased risk for MV compared to other breeds. The GSD is a common breed utilized as working dogs around the world. There is raised concern about an apparent recent increase in the number of MV in US Military Working Dogs (MWD).  A retrospective case control study of 54 MWD affected with MV was performed from 1990-2014.  Forty-six risk factors were analyzed with six found to be associated with MV. The results of this study provide invaluable information to the care and monitoring of working dogs particularly the GSD.  

Authors: Shane J Andrews, Todd M Thomas