Dealing With Dog Stomach Problems

Dog stomach problems are very often accompanied by the symptoms of vomiting or diarrhea. If you're lucky, the resulting mess will be outside, but uncannily most of the time it will be deposited somewhere you'd least want to see it such as the bedroom carpet or worse - your bed!

white dog with paw over face

Identifying The Causes

Quite often the cause of an upset stomach in dogs will be from a garbage adventure.

But sometimes it will be the aftermath of a well-meaning-but-ill-advised handout from someone in the family who doesn't have to clean up after the dog!

  • Probably the worse and most alarming cause is when a pet gets into something toxic.

When the cause results from garbage or a food sensitivity, these type of stomach problems do not usually last very long.

However, if it goes more than a day, it's a good idea to check it out with the vet especially if he or she is running a fever.

Fasting For Dog Stomach Problems

To help a dog get over the vomiting related to a food upset, one of the best things owners can do is:

  • Put their dog on a fast.

Don't worry, it doesn't hurt a dog to skip a meal or two. Water should be available frequently to avoid dehydration, but only in small quantities.

It's important that the water isn't gulped down as this can restart the vomiting or cause uncomfortable nausea. So just encourage your dog to sip by providing on a little at a time.

Other Solutions

A couple of other solutions that can be tried along with fasting to speed up the recovery of dog stomach problems, are remedies that provide some "internal" help for the stomach.

  • One such helper is Bismuth, a substance that has both calming and soothing effects. It coats the stomach lining and can bring some temporary relief.
  • Pepto-bismol is a good source of bismuth and is readily available at the the grocery store. Your vet should be able to advise on the recommended amount to give your dog.
  • Other useful helpers are digestive or detoxifying supplements.
  • One old-time remedy that is soothing for dog stomach problems is peppermint tea - works for people and apparently can be helpful to dogs also.

Reintroducing Food After A Fast

When the fasting is having the desired effect of easing the turbulent stomach, vomiting has stopped, and your dog is acting like she feels much better, small amounts of bland food can be offered throughout the day.

For a delicate stomach things like:

  • Boiled hamburger meat,
  • Cottage cheese,
  • Poached chicken, 

mixed with some potato or rice are usually easier to handle at this stage of her recovery.

As long as the portions are kept very small, they can be presented to the dog patient more often if she appears to be getting her appetite back and is interested in eating a larger portion.

probiotic supplement for dogs

When the Issue is Causing Diarrhea...

When dog stomach problems are resulting in diarrhea as opposed to vomiting, the same fasting treatment can be followed, except that the water intake needs to be plentiful.

If your dog doesn't have much enthusiasm for drinking water and needs to be encouraged to take more fluids, you can spike the water with some flavorful broth as an inducement.

When To Call Your Vet For Help

If a dog's symptoms of vomiting or diarrhea are not slowing down and/or she is showing signs of illness beyond the vomiting, calling the vet for advice is definitely advised.

Furthermore, if there is any indication that a dog has ingested a toxic substance, this warrants an emergency call to your vet as treatment in this case needs to be swift.

Other causes of dog stomach problems that go beyond an allergic response to eating unfamiliar food or ingesting some rank food from foraging in the garbage, could be related to an inflammatory gastrointestinal problems such as ulcers.

If any blood is seen in the vomit, an infection or tumor may be the cause.

The bottom line is that prolonged symptoms of stomach distress need prompt professional diagnosis.

Supplemental Help

Keep this number handy if you think your pet may have ingested something poisonous:

ASPCA Animal Poison Control: (888) 426-4435  This number is available 24/7.  You may be charged a fee.

Alternatively, for a modest fee, you can get advice about your pet's problem by using the widget above to connect directly with a vet online.

The bottom line is that prolonged symptoms of stomach distress need prompt professional diagnosis. Recognizing the early warning signs of dog illnesses and taking quick action is very important in getting your dog back to good health.

I recommend owners obtain a copy of Dr. Pitcairn's Guide to Natural Health For Dogs, a valuable book, written by a renowned vet, containing information about numerous dog health issues, useful home remedies, plus advice about which dog illnesses need a prompt consultation with a pet professional.

More Health Related Topics

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  2. Dog Diseases
  3. Stomach Problems

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