Vomiting in Dogs

When your dog begins to vomit it can be very concerning and there can be many different reasons why it happens. Today, our Rochester vets discuss the causes of vomiting in dogs, what you can do to treat it and when you should seek veterinary care.

Why is your dog vomiting suddenly?

Vomiting (and diarrhea) in dogs is a common sign of an irritated stomach and inflamed intestines or gastrointestinal upset. It can happen anytime that your dog is feeling generally unwell.

Everyone knows that this is not a great situation to experience and that it can be distressing. Unfortunately, it is your pet’s way of emptying their stomach of indigestible material to prevent it from remaining in their system, or from reaching other areas of their body.

What are the causes of vomiting in dogs?

There are a number of reasons why your dog may be vomiting and it can occur in all dogs, regardless of health.

It’s possible your pooch could have eaten too quickly, dined on too much grass or eaten something their stomach simply doesn't agree with. This type of vomiting may be a one-time occurrence and not be accompanied by any other symptoms. So, vomiting in dogs isn't always a reason for concern. There are also cases of induced vomiting in dogs if they've eaten something they shouldn't have.

Some of the causes of sudden vomiting in dogs might include:

  • Heatstroke
  • Ingestion of poisons, toxins or food
  • Bloat
  • Reaction to medication
  • Bacterial or viral infection
  • Kidney failure
  • Liver failure
  • Pancreatitis
  • Change in diet

When is vomiting in dogs a concern?

Vomiting may be cause for some concern and constitute a serious veterinary emergency if you see any of these signs:

  • Vomiting in conjunction with other symptoms such as lethargy, weight loss, fever, anemia, etc.
  • Suspected ingestion of a foreign body (such as food, objects, children’s toys, etc.)
  • Vomiting a lot at one time
  • Vomiting with nothing coming up
  • Vomiting blood
  • Chronic vomiting
  • Continuous vomiting
  • Bloody diarrhea
  • Seizures

Chronic or Frequent Vomiting

If your dog has been vomiting frequently or it has become a long-term or chronic issue, this is cause for concern, especially if you’ve noticed symptoms including abdominal pain, depression, dehydration, blood, poor appetite, fever, weakness, weight loss or other unusual behaviors.

Long-term, recurrent vomiting can be caused by:

  • Cancer
  • Liver or kidney failure
  • Uterine infection
  • Constipation
  • Intestinal obstruction
  • Colitis

As a cautious pet owner, it’s always best to prioritize safety and caution when it comes to your pup’s health. The best way to learn whether your dog’s vomiting is normal or not is to contact your vet. 

What if your Dog Won't Stop Vomiting?

If your dog won't stop vomiting you should reach out to your vet to schedule an examination. Your vet will then take everything from your dog's health history and recent behaviors into consideration. For example, if your dog has been curiously exploring the kids’ rooms or you’ve caught him sniffing the refrigerator, it’s possible he could have gotten into something he shouldn’t have.

Steps to Take if Your Dog Ingested a Toxin

Immediately contacting your veterinarian or Poison Control is the best thing you can do after your pet ingests a toxin. This way, our Rochester vets can immediately provide advice about whether you should bring your pet in, or if they think you can or should induce vomiting at home.

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.

If your dog is vomiting and in need of emergency care please contact our vets in Rochester or your nearest after-hours emergency clinic right away.