Dog Vomiting

Sad labrador portrait

What constitutes a visit to an emergency hospital?

If you notice that your pet has been vomiting continuously, this could mean several distressing problems that your dog might be experiencing.  By this time, you have been observing your pet for the duration of vomiting episode.  Yet, you need to see what kind of vomiting is occurring.  Is your dog retching and effort in trying to expel the contents in their stomach?  This could mean that your pet has a blockage, gastritis, or “garbage can”-itis.  Is it regurgitation of food right after a meal because your dog ate too fast? Or is it cough and gaging up phlegm? This is could be respiratory/heart issues and not true vomiting.  There is also concern about Gastric Dilatation Volvulus (GDV) which is the stomach twisting and fills with gas.   This would be a tense bloated distended belly and your dog will be very painful.  In this case the dogs will keep trying to vomit and nothing is happening.  The first observation is the type of vomit your pet is producing.  If you notice blood in the vomit, this could be the result of un ulcer, foreign body, or tumor. 

Another observation that you should make is checking to see the color of your dog’s gums.  If their gums are dry, pale, gray, or dark muddy red, this could be a result of dehydration or poor perfusion.  Your dog needs to be seen and do not wait. 

If your dog is vomiting off and on over several days or weeks, then this would be a case for your local veterinarian.

Vomiting cases for Veterinarians

When your dog or puppy is vomiting over a course of several days to weeks, this could be a concern for your local veterinarian.  In many situations, this could be sudden change in the pet’s diet, getting into the garbage, or ingesting a foreign body.  Dogs love to chew and depending on the activity level of your dog, they will destroy their toy and swallow some contents.  Sometimes, these foreign bodies are small enough that it will pass through your dog.  If your dog ate string, dental floss, ropes or a ball, and vomiting is occurring, your dog needs to be seen immediate.  The only way to see what was swallowed is by taking an x-ray. If there is a blockage, your local veterinarian could perform the surgery or refer you to an emergency clinic.   In other cases, we see dogs eating food from the garbage and this could result in an upset stomach for them.  If you knew what the contents of the garbage were, just know that you would observe your dog closely and, in a day, or two, their vomiting should pass.  However, bacon, pig ears, lunch meat or hotdog can lead to pancreatitis.  Pig ears can carry salmonella or e-coli and we do not recommend you give this to your dog because it will cause vomiting and diarrhea.  Also, owners can get e-coli from the pig ears.

Treating at home

If your dog is not acting quite himself after vomiting and you feel that he has not displayed any of the symptoms or issues stated above.  There are several meals you can try to help your pet.  Making a “bland” diet for your dog might help.  You can boil hamburger and drain all the grease off and then use cooked white rice.  Do not use minute rice.  Minute rice goes right through your dog and it doesn’t get digested.  Other meals you can prepare for your dog would be chicken and rice, baby food and rice, or cottage cheese and rice. Do not season the food.  These simple recipes are all easily digested foods with low residual waste. Which means there’s not going to be much feces from your dog.  These meals will help to slow the digestive tract and will provide some nutrition while your dog is getting better.

Waiting it out

Puppies are always getting into mischief.  If you notice that the puppy vomits once, it’s probably something that you can just kind of monitor and wait it out. For your older dog, you wouldn’t necessarily need to treat anything but at that point you just kind of watch and wait,

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