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Why is my dog vomiting?

Vomiting is common in dogs, especially older dogs and puppies. Often without consequence, it can in some cases be a symptom of a serious illness or even poisoning. When the dog vomits several times and shows other abnormal signs, it is better to consult a veterinarian without delay in order to know the exact cause and to avoid dehydration of the animal at all costs. If necessary, an adapted treatment will be prescribed. Let's take stock of the different causes of vomiting in dogs, the risks that it can cause, the possible treatments and preventive actions.

Vomiting in dogs: the main causes

There is no need to worry if the dog vomits immediately after eating. In greedy dogs that eat very quickly, vomiting is very common. Once the overflow is eliminated, everything is put back in order until the animal eats again. But the dog may vomit for a much more serious cause such as :
  • An abrupt change of diet,
  • Food poisoning or poisoning,
  • Ingestion of a foreign body or inedible food,
  • Stress,
  • A food allergy,
  • Medication, if the dog :
    • is undergoing treatment with penicillin, corticosteroids or Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs),
    • takes drugs intended for humans.
  • Gastroenteritis,
  • IBD or Chronic Inflammatory Bowel Disease,
  • Motion sickness,
  • Kidney failure,
  • Liver disease,
  • A neurological pathology,
  • Pancreatitis,
  • A stomach ulcer,
  • A twisting of the stomach,
  • A disease of bacterial origin,
  • An infectious disease,
  • Some cancers.
At the slightest doubt, the veterinarian can ask for additional tests such as a blood test, an X-ray, an ultrasound, a CT scan, a biopsy... Expensive procedures but at least partially covered by the pet health insurance, if the dog is of course insured.

Be careful not to confuse vomiting and regurgitation. These do not require violent effort unlike vomiting. It is therefore easy to distinguish the two. Regurgitation is often linked to an esophageal problem. If they recur frequently, they also justify a consultation with the veterinarian, if possible within a short period of time.

Vomiting in the dog: signs that should alert

Emergency consultation with a veterinarian is required if the dog vomits and at the same time presents one or more of the following symptoms:
  • Bloody or suspicious and foul-smelling vomit,
  • Diarrhoea,
  • Apathy or on the contrary very great agitation,
  • Aggressiveness,
  • Loss of appetite,
  • Pain,
  • Prostration.
It is essential that the origin of the vomiting be identified so that the veterinarian can make a diagnosis and set up the appropriate care protocol.

Preventing vomiting in dogs

When you have a voracious dog that throws himself on his food and therefore frequently vomits after eating, it is necessary to change certain habits and adopt the right gestures to stop this phenomenon (not serious in this case). For example :
  • Reduce the food portion, even if it means splitting each meal into several portions spread over the day. By absorbing a smaller quantity of food at a time, the animal reduces its food bowl. As his digestion goes smoothly, the dog no longer vomits.
  • To put the dog on a diet for a period not exceeding three days, giving him only water to avoid any risk of dehydration.
  • Make sure the dog swallows less air by sucking in air when eating. To do this, simply replace a hollow bowl with a flat one.
  • Make sure that the dog eats alone and not in company of other animals: this limits the risk of instinctive competition. Isolated from his fellow dogs, the dog eats more calmly, without stress and digests better.
  • Encourage the dog to rest for three hours after eating. Many working dogs resume their activities immediately after eating, which encourages vomiting.
Of course, daily supervision is necessary, especially for dogs that regularly take the powder puff. During these solitary walks, they eat a little of what they find, even if it is not always edible. Many dogs, even well fed by their owners, do not hesitate to eat everything they find in the garbage! For a few days, the owner may try to prevent his dog from leaving the property boundaries in order to observe him more easily.

Vomiting dog: what treatment should be considered?

There is no single treatment for vomiting in dogs, but there are several. The veterinarian prescribes the appropriate medication for the pathology causing the vomiting if it is due to a disease. The challenge is to cure the animal.

In an emergency, an injection can be given to stop the vomiting because it leads to dehydration with serious consequences for the dog's health. Moreover, when a dog vomits a lot and frequently, he can be hospitalized to be placed on an infusion. What must be avoided is the loss of minerals due to abundant vomiting. Hospitalization may therefore be the first solution even before the origin of the dog's vomiting has been diagnosed.

Once out of the hospital, the dog enters the convalescence phase. During this variable period - it is the veterinarian who determines the duration -, it is the responsibility of the animal's owners to give it highly digestible food, to banish excessively fatty meals, to split its food portion, and to keep the dog calm, especially after its meals. It is also necessary to ensure that the animal drinks enough water throughout the day. Regular visits to the veterinarian must be observed so that the dog is perfectly supervised.