Owning a dog requires a huge commitment. Our pet’s health is in our hands, which means we must be prepared in case there is an emergency. Sadly, dogs are not vocal about how they are feeling, but we can check for signs to see if they need our help. Although dog vomiting can be natural on some occurrences, we need to when is dog vomiting an emergency.
Why Do Dogs Vomit?
There are various times that dog vomits should not be a cause for worry. Understanding why these dogs vomit will allow us to understand when vomiting suddenly appears abnormal. Why do dogs vomit in the first place?
Dogs sometimes regurgitate and not vomit. These two things are entirely different, although they may appear similar. Regurgitation is an ejection of undigested food without the abdominal motion. It usually happens not too long after a meal.
Vomiting, on the other hand, is ejection requiring force and includes, not only partially digested food but the contents of the stomach and upper intestine. One of the key things to observe would be how dog vomit contains bile. Bile is a yellow fluid secreted by the liver.
Knowing the difference between the two is essential when you want to identify the cause and address the concern.
Here are some reasons dogs vomit:
- Stomach issues – This is one of the most common causes of dog vomiting. Gastritis in dogs is similar to a human having an upset stomach. Ingesting something irritating can be a cause for this. Have you seen your dog eating some grass? They sometimes do this on purpose to purposefully vomit something bothersome in their stomach.
- Rough activity after eating – just like humans, dogs have to relax for a while before engaging in something strenuous after eating. Otherwise, this untimely activity can be a cause for vomiting
- Bloating – may occur because of actions after eating and can be increased by overeating
- Overeating and eating too fast – if your dog ten to eat too quickly, control the amount of food intake
- Motion Sickness – yes dogs can experience motion sickness in a car as well
- Gastroenteritis – inflamed stomach or intestines
- Food allergies/ Intolerance to a particular food
- Intestinal Parasites
- Something blocking the intestines
- Serious health issues – vomiting can be a sign of some severe health issues like kidney or liver disease, meningitis, extreme anxiety, and brain tumor.
Some of the items in this list sound more than alarming, but when our dogs vomit, the reasons could vary. Now that we know some of the reasons why dogs vomit, we need to sharpen our skills of observation by knowing how to trim the issue, so we know the next course of action.
How To Identify Dog Vomiting As An Emergency: Factors To Consider
At this point, it may be useful to play amateur sleuths here and to level up your skills of observation. These are the things to look into carefully when answering the question when is dog vomiting an emergency.
Type of Vomit
- Chunky/Lumpy – undigested food is usually so evident in these types. Substantial activity after eating can be a cause for lumpy types of vomit.
- Granular/Grainy – somewhat of liquid consistency but contains fine traces of food, making it look grainy.
- Liquid – it looks a little yellow, clear and is generally not food-related. It may also appear a bit foamy and is quite slimy.
Color of Vomit
- Yellow dog vomit often is a lower concentration of bile, which is usually green. Yellow dog vomit should not be a cause for alarm unless the behavior of the dog indicates weakening.
- White – This may sometimes appear as white dog vomit because of the foam. White dog vomit should not be a cause for concern unless it suddenly affects your dog’s behavior.
- Green dog vomit indicates high levels of bile, and if your dog vomits green, foamy liquid and is feeling weak afterward, it is best to see a vet.
- Your dog has been outdoors, eating grass and other plants might cause the green in their vomit. You must look closely to see whether that is the case.
- Brown dog vomit should only be a cause of concern if you are sure they haven’t ingested anything that should be brown like soil, etc. Otherwise, brown vomit could be an intestinal blockage and must be brought immediately to the vet’s attention.
- An irritation or inflammation in the stomach lining may cause a red dog vomit. If this happens once and is in small amounts, it should not be alarming.
- Red dog vomit is another story. Usually made of digested blood and is almost black. A stomach ulcer causes this. Bring your dog to the vet immediately.
Here are some other questions to guide you
How Many Times Did Your Dog Vomit
- Once – usually, this does not signal a cause for concern but observe the behavior of your dog after vomiting. When they appear active and ready to eat afterward, they should be ok.
- Multiple times – when your dog is vomiting various times, this might lead to dehydration. Go to the vet immediately.
Does your dog have preexisting conditions? (Kidney disease, chronic pancreatitis, etc.)
- If yes, vomiting should be an emergency.
- If no, observe the dog’s behavior further.
Is your dog throwing up blood?
Fresh blood or blood that appears darker than usual should immediately be addressed.
Is your dog trying to vomit, but nothing comes out?
This may be a sign of bloating. Go to your vet immediately as it will lead to difficulty of breathing.
There is an undeniable truth as to why dogs are considered man’s best friend. Their presence in our lives signify genuine companionship, loyalty, and joy. We look to them for unquestioning acceptance, and in return, they look to us for security and love. Although dogs don’t communicate to us in our way, knowing how to answer the question such as “When is dog vomiting an emergency?” will help us look out for our furry friends the best way we can. Get more tips on first aid.