Understanding and Managing Vomiting and Diarrhea in Dogs

The truth is that dogs eat anything they can get their paws on. Not only is that frustrating, but also dangerous because this behaviour can cause vomiting and diarrhea.

Watching your pet fall sick is never easy; we’re here for you.

In this blog, we’ve outlined reasons why your dog may be sick, understanding the symptoms, and ways that you can help.

A dog’s vomiting and diarrhea can be caused by various factors, ranging from simple stomach bugs to serious illnesses. As a pet parent, it is essential to understand the causes, signs, and management to ensure your pet’s well-being.

Common Causes of Vomiting and Diarrhea in Dogs

Vomiting and Diarrhea in Dogs

There are multiple reasons why your dog might be suffering from vomiting and diarrhea, the severity of which can vary. Some of these common causes are listed below:

● Poor-quality diet or dietary changes,
● Eating from the trash or rotten food,
● Consuming something that they shouldn’t have (dietary indiscretion),
● Post-operative recovery after veterinary treatment,
● Allergies to food or environmental factors,
● Being in a stressful situation, such as when a puppy is still adjusting to a new home.

A Detailed Overview of Major Causes of Vomiting and Diarrhea in Dogs

Severe health issues in dogs often require veterinary treatment and a longer recovery period. As a pet parent, staying informed and in touch with a vet is important. Take your dog to the veterinarian clinic at the first sign of trouble.


Parvovirus is a highly contagious virus passed on from direct contact with an infected dog, its fecal matter, or a contaminated environment.

Parvo can be fatal, especially for young puppies and older dogs. Ensure your dog is vaccinated and rush to the clinic when you start seeing symptoms. Early detection and the right treatment can save your dog’s life. But vaccinations are available to prevent this virus, so be sure to talk to your vet about getting your pup vaccinated.


Poisoning can happen from ingesting harmful substances that are fatal, like poisoned food or household items such as poison for pest control.

Seek veterinary care immediately if you suspect your dog has ingested something poisonous. With prompt treatment, your dog can survive.


Pancreatitis is an inflammation of the pancreas that can be deadly if left untreated. Symptoms include fever, loss of appetite, a hunched back, and abdominal pain.
Consult your vet if your dog displays any of the signs listed above.


Parasites, pesticides, and bacterial infections can cause Gastroenteritis. If you witness your dog vomiting or having diarrhea for over 24 hours, know that it is time to consult a vet.

Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Inflammatory Bowel Disease can cause chronic inflammation in your dog’s digestive tract, leading to symptoms such as vomiting and diarrhea.

Liver or Kidney Diseases

Liver or Kidney Diseases can result in decreased organ function, vomiting, and diarrhea. Your dog may require medication and dietary management to maintain its health.


Cancer can have various symptoms (including vomiting and diarrhea). The treatment depends on the type of cancer and the stage of the disease. It may require combined treatment (surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy). But frequent vet consultations always come in handy and will ensure your pet is safe.

Symptoms to Lookout For

You must keep an eye out for certain symptoms associated with vomiting and diarrhea. Sometimes, these symptoms resolve independently or after minor treatment. If your dog is not recovering from the symptoms listed below, getting in touch with a vet is crucial.

● Reduced or no appetite,
● Drinking too much water or not at all,
● Feeling lethargic,
● Visibly painful abdomen,
● Change in behavior/temperament
● Absence of feces (which means no poop)
● Drooling too much or licking their lips often.

Note: Keep a sharp eye on any other symptoms that might appear besides the ones listed above.

When to Seek Veterinary Care for Your Dog

Vomiting and Diarrhea in Dogs

Have you ever wondered, “At what point should I take my pet in for a checkup?”
As soon as that thought enters your head, take that as a sign to go. Your veterinarian will be able to identify the cause of the vomiting and diarrhea and provide a proper treatment plan.

When your dog has diarrhea and vomiting, giving them a bland diet is advised. It will help settle their stomach and prevent further irritation.

Seek veterinary care immediately if you notice blood in their vomit or stool. It could signify a major underlying condition that needs the vet’s attention.

Here are other signs that may indicate when to seek a veterinarian:

● Your dog is constantly lethargic or depressed,
● Your dog has been vomiting/having diarrhea for more than 24 hours,
● Your dog is not eating or drinking,
● Your dog has blood in their vomit or diarrhea,
● Your dog has persistent diarrhea that is watery or bloody,
● Your dog has a fever,
● Your dog has abdominal pain or bloating.

What to Expect During a Veterinary Exam

The vet will write down your dog’s medical history, symptoms, and recent activities and perform a physical exam.

Depending on the severity of the symptoms, the veterinarian may recommend some diagnostic tests, such as bloodwork, fecal testing, x-rays, or ultrasound. These tests help identify the underlying cause of the symptoms and form a diagnosis. Once a diagnosis is in place, the vet will provide an appropriate treatment plan.

Using PetMyPal Application for Non-Emergency Situations

As mentioned earlier, sometimes the symptoms resolve independently, but staying connected with a vet is always helpful. PetMyPal is a great way to stay in touch with a licensed vet for non-emergency situations. The application will allow you to talk to a vet from the comfort of your home.

You can also ask a health-related question to help you manage your dog’s condition.
For instance, if your dog is throwing up and you are unsure what to do, it is always a good idea to chat with a vet about the details of your pet’s symptoms and what they might be throwing up. A vet can advise whether your furry friend needs some time or if you should drive up to a clinic immediately.

Treating Vomiting and Diarrhea at Home: Tips and Strategies

It’s distressing to see your furry friend unwell. Luckily, there are several treatments you can try at home to provide relief to your dog.

Importance of Fasting and Giving Them a Break From Food

Withholding food and water for approximately six hours is advised to give their stomach a rest. Post-six hours, you can offer small amounts of water and food.

Avoid extending the six hours fasting period as dogs and puppies can quickly become dehydrated, especially if they’re already experiencing vomiting and diarrhea.

What if the Vomiting and Diarrhea Continue?

If the vomiting and diarrhea continue despite a break from food and water, it is essential to seek veterinary care as soon as possible. While diarrhea may take longer to resolve, a significant improvement should be visible within 12-24 hours, and your dog should be able to keep food and water down.

Importance of a Bland Diet

A bland diet can help settle your dog’s stomach and should not irritate it further. The food should be fed in small portions, 4-5 times daily. Avoid giving your dog any treats or milk apart from bland food, as it may irritate their stomach and intestines.

Please Note: As a pet parent, it’s important to remember not to give your dog any medication meant for humans without consulting with a vet first, even in urgent situations.

Remedies for Vomiting and Diarrhea in Dogs

Many pet parents are interested in using home remedies to treat vomiting and diarrhea in dogs. While some home remedies may be beneficial, others can be harmful or ineffective. Here are some popular home remedies for vomiting and diarrhea in dogs:

● Probiotics or Prebiotics: Probiotics can help restore the natural balance of gut bacteria in dogs, which may aid digestion and boost your dog’s immune system. However, it is essential to choose a prebiotic or a probiotic specifically formulated for dogs and consult your vet before you give it to your pet.
● Pumpkin: Canned pumpkin is a natural source of fiber that can help regulate bowel movements in dogs. However, it is essential to avoid pumpkin pie filling or canned pumpkin with added sugar or spices.
● Psyllium Husk: This supplement can help ease your dog’s discomfort. It can be beneficial if your dog suffers from Irritable Bowel Syndrome and will help your dog to digest meals better and stop vomiting and diarrhea.

Please Note: Home remedies are not a substitute for veterinary care, and you should always consult your veterinarian before trying a remedy.

Rehydrating a Sick Dog: What You Can Do?

Vomiting and Diarrhea in Dogs

Your dog can become severely dehydrated if it is constantly vomiting or has diarrhea. This can cause further discomfort and stress leading to other health problems.

When your dog is vomiting or has diarrhea, drinking water can help replenish lost fluids and electrolytes, which usually prevents dehydration in healthy pets. Doing this will promote faster recovery.

Offering small amounts of water frequently and gradually reintroducing bland, easily digestible food can help your dog recover. Your veterinarian may also recommend prescription diets or supplements to support your dog’s digestive health and recovery.

How You Can Prevent Vomiting and Diarrhea in Dogs: Tips for Maintaining Your Pet’s Health

Vomiting and Diarrhea in Dogs

Preventing vomiting and diarrhea in dogs is key, and there are steps you can take to do so:

  • Feed your dog a high-quality, balanced diet,
  • Avoid giving your dog human food,
  • Keep your dog’s environment clean,
  • Ensure that your dog’s water bowl is always full with fresh water,
  • Stay up-to-date with your dog’s vaccinations and deworming treatments,
  • Monitor your dog’s behavior and health closely and seek veterinary care when required.


Vomiting and diarrhea are common health issues that dogs experience occasionally. As a pet parent, it is essential to understand the causes, signs, and management of these symptoms to ensure your dog’s well-being. By working closely with your veterinarian, following their recommendations, and taking preventive measures, you can help keep your dog happy and healthy for years.

Jessica Smith

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