Megaesophagus & The Bailey Chair

I get so many visitors to the site looking for information on Megaesophagus & Bailey Chairs, I’m updating the post. If your dog has just been diagnosed, I want you to know there are lots of people out there who are dealing with the same thing and want to share what they’ve learned.

I recommend joining the Yahoo megaesophagus group—they’re active, responsive, & helpful.  Look under “Files” for years worth of invaluable information on everything to do with megaeshophagus.  There is now a Facebook support group for megaesophagus which is also active & growing.

Megaesophagus is a condition in which a dog’s esophagus is enlarged to the point that food remains in the esophagus and never makes it down to the stomach and is instead regurgitated. The muscle contraction and relaxation that normally takes place to move food down to the stomach doesn’t work. Megaesophagus can be present since birth or can develop in adult dogs. If left untreated, it can cause a range of problems, including starvation and aspiration pneumonia.

  • The Mar Vista Vet site has a crash course on megaesophagus, including:
    • how regurgitation differs from vomiting
    • x-rays comparing a normal esophagus to a megaesophagus
    • interactive videos demonstrating megaesophagus
    • plus information on cause, diagnosis, & treatment

The Bailey Chair was designed by, Donna & Joe Koch, the owners of a dog (Bailey) diagnosed with megaesophagus. The dog sits in a “begging” position to eat, drink, or take medication and gravity does the work to bring what’s ingested to the stomach. There are a few ways you can acquire a Bailey Chair:

  • The creators will send you a DVD or video of instructions for building your own Bailey Chair for $6.00 to cover costs. Send email to Matthew1@earthlink.net to inquire about the address.  (Find out more in the Yahoo Megaesophagus Group.)

This “highchair” for dogs can be made of different materials and in different sizes to accommodate small and large dogs.
smallbaileychair.jpg largebaileychair.jpg

With proper eating position, diet, and medication, these dogs can have almost normal lives. Like Roxie, Rocket, Jasmine, Mattie, Diyoji, and in particular Tobin, whose caretakers’ describe their trials, errors, and successes in ongoing journal entries.

159 thoughts on “Megaesophagus & The Bailey Chair

  1. Is there anywhere I can order a Bailey Chair? I have a 50lb Standard Poodle with ME. I live in Phoenix, Az.

  2. I have a brand new Bailey chair that I made for an 85 lb Golden Retriever that I would be very happy to donate to a needy family. If your dog is similar in size, contact me. If you have a FedEx or UPS account, it would make it easier for me.
    bryanf7177@gmail.com
    Or you can post your phone # on this site and I will call you and send you pictures.
    This is a very nice chair, never used and can easily be broken down for travel.
    If you don’t hear back from me, that only means that some other needy dog has received it first. I’m sure it will go fast, so don’t be upset if you don’t hear back from me.
    Good luck to all of you dog lovers!

  3. Hello, I just found out my 7 month old Rottweiler/Newfoundland mix has M/E yesterday she is being treated for aspirated pneumonia, and seeing if Valley Fever could have caused this. She has lost 4 pounds in the last week and really need a Bailey’s Chair, if anyone could give me a good way of making one or where i could get one made near Tucson, AZ, that would be amazing. My baby girl really needs it. Email me at Stephaniejoyb10@aol.com Thanks! I really appreciate it.

  4. Hey how’s it going my Shepard just got diagnosed with mega, I would be interested in bailey chair, he is two years old and i am grateful it is mega , instead of cancer, I live in Long Island New York, look forward to speaking to you, take care Brendan

  5. For all the people unable to obtain a bailey chair quickly the alternative is to hand feed your dog whilst it is in the sitting position – I have been doing this for my Lab Penny who was originally diagnosed in April 2012, the difficulity now is her back legs are no longer strong enough to support her due to other medical conditions she has(shes almost 14). But I hope this info helps as opposed to just elevating the food dishes.

  6. I really need to see who builds the Baily’s Dog Chair. They are called different names but they do the same thing and that is help a dog with Magaesohagus. I am adopting a small 11 Lb Terrier Mix who is 4 years and has been mistreated for along time. I want to give her a forever home. Does anyone build them to sell or know where you can buy one?

  7. Hi,
    I am new on the site as my golden retriever was just diagnosed with megasophicus we are devastated as they want us to put him down. He is 10 but is full of life and energy. Can anyone please help I dont know much abou the Bailey Chairs but it looks like we could use one as soon as possible. My golden Rex is 100 pounds can anyone please help us as he is having an awful time at nite with the regurgatating. My email is jeffswindell@yahoo.com or my phone is 941-932-5791. Thank You so much we are willing to try everything to keep him. Hope to hear from someone who may have one or can build us one ASAP. Thank-you,.Jeff

  8. Hi. I have a bailey chair for a border collie size dog. Our dog Buddy is a 45 lb mix. We built the bailey chair and have discovered we can manage without it. If you live in the Seattle area, it is yours for free. ddwhite99@yahoo.com.

  9. Hi, Could you help me with the Bailey chair? I need to know how this works, and how much time do I need to put my dog in this position?
    Thank you!

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