Why is my dog vomiting?

Med. vet. Fulya Şafak

Vomiting is a clinical sign and it has so many different reasons. Maybe your dog ate too quickly, or hardly digested food or grass. Also, some medication can also cause vomiting.  Most of the time, it has no consequence for its health. Nevertheless, it is important to make sure that it is not a sign of an emerging disease; such as cancer, kidney failure or neurological disease.

Vomiting or regurgitating?

It is good to know the difference. Vomiting is caused by a reflex contraction of the abdomen which allows your dog to get out what it has in its stomach (fluid, food or foam). On the other hand, regurgitation takes place without contraction of the abdomen and it is the rejection of poorly digested food. Regurgitation is usually associated with problems affecting to eosophagus. 

If you observe that your dog is trying to vomit but is not succeeding, you should urgently go to a veterinarian. He may be suffering from a stomach torsion that needs immediate surgical intervention.

Why is my dog vomiting?

Vomiting is a general and common symptom. It can have multiple causes. 

Maybe your dog ate too quickly or ingested a foreign material. Sudden dietary changes, allergies and some drugs (eg antibiotics, xylazine) can also cause vomiting.

Dog’s vomiting can also be linked to diseases that affect the gastrointestinal system (eg parvovirus, coronavirus) or metabolic diseases (diabetes, cancers, pancreatitis, etc) or even intestinal obstruction from foreign bodies.

sick dog

Is it serious that my dog vomits?

Most of the time, vomiting disappears in 24 hours, if it has not stopped in 2-3 days, you should take your dog to your veterinarian. Vomiting can lead dehydration and nutritional loss. 

It is necessary to observe your dog and the content of his vomit. If your dog appears weak, tired or has fever, diarhea, abdominal pain, and vomiting accompanies this signs, it is a sign that your dog is sick. It’s best to take him to the veterinarian so they can find out the cause of the vomiting.

The content of your dog’s vomit will also give you important information. You should be alarmed if there is blood, or if they are black in color with a bad odour. 

What to do if my dog vomits?

If your dog is vomiting, check if his airway is obstructed or not. Of course, you should never put a muzzle to a dog just vomited, if it vomits again, he could choke. 

Depending on your pet’s health status – which is difficult to assess without your veterinarian’s advice- you can set up a diet of 12-24 hours. You can start re-feeding your dog with an easily digested diet (such as boiled rice, boiled chicken or prescribed diet). 

Water should be freely available during this time period for rehydration.

Although vomiting in dogs is a common and inconsequential condition, it is important to monitor your pet’s general health and to consult a veterinarian.

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