Why Dogs Vomit & How To Treat It

Mr. Barkley Author: Mr. Barkley
Posted: 10 May 2024 Human Reading Time: 4 Minutes
Dog Reading Time: 28 Minutes
Why Dogs Vomit & How To Treat It

It’s never a nice thing to experience, but dogs vomit, and it can be super distressing. Almost every pet owner has to deal with their dog vomiting. Recall the last time it happened to you…

You were entering the kitchen when you stepped into a pool of half-digested food, or your dog vomited in the middle of the night and woke you from sleep. Gross? Yes, but a part of life with a pup. 

You'll undoubtedly have a lot of questions - why is this happening? Is it serious? What should I do?

We can help you with these questions to determine how to react in the case of a dog vomiting episode. This is exactly why we have put this article together. Read on to discover why dogs vomit and how to treat it.

The cause: why do dogs throw up?

Sudden or severe vomiting is a significant indication of several illnesses, disorders, and complications, like…

  • Eating chocolate
  • Toxins or poisons
  • Pancreatitis
  • Kidney failure
  • Liver failure
  • Heatstroke
  • Diet change
  • Viral infection
  • Medication reaction
  • Bloat
  • Bacterial infection

The dog will typically feel relieved after throwing up in these situations. Since the body is trying to get rid of a chemical inside it, throwing up once is acceptable. However, if the dog keeps throwing up, call your veterinarian right away.

While you may treat the symptom on your own, it's crucial to have your vet involved to identify the root problem and treat it. 

When your dog throws up food but does not feel any relief from the motion, or throws up repeatedly even when the stomach is empty, it is an indication of something more serious. Another alarming indicator that necessitates quick action is when a dog vomits foam.

Dogs and motion sickness

Did you know dogs can also suffer from motion sickess? During hot weather journeys, dogs may be more prone to motion sickness, particularly if they are in warm cars or playing with other types of motion. Motion sickness in dogs can result in vomiting. But how do we avoid this?

How to help dogs suffering from motion sickness

  • Give your dog access to fresh water.
  • Use a safety harness.
  • Keep the car as cool as possible: open windows or keep the air conditioning on.
  • Avoid large meals before journeys.
  • Provide travel toys to distract them.

When to contact your veterinarian

It's important to monitor your dog's vomiting, especially if it's persistent, accompanied by other symptoms, or if your dog is in distress. 

If vomiting is severe, frequent, or lasts for more than 24 hours, it's best to seek veterinary care to determine the underlying cause and appropriate treatment.

The treatment: how to treat vomiting in dogs

Once you call your veterinarian, they may ask you to bring in a sample of the vomit in addition to performing a physical examination of your dog.

Determining the reason for the vomiting can be done by analyzing the actual vomit. Blood in the vomit may be an indication of ulcers, while bile may point to an inflammatory condition.

The recommended treatment by your veterinarian depends on what is causing the vomiting. Changing the dog's diet, whether it is the kind of food or the quantity and frequency of meals, can frequently help with vomiting problems.

Additionally, your veterinarian may suggest using specialised medications made to stop vomiting. As always, you must adhere to the dosage and frequency recommendations closely and finish the entire course of medicine.

Your vet may also recommend fluid therapy. If your dog has a serious vomiting condition, he may need to undergo surgery.

If the vet dismisses the underlying concerns after the diagnosis, you may only need to do as little as a diet change. Home-cooked food like skinless chicken, boiled potatoes, and rice are good short-term options. Avoid feeding your dog raw food until the vet advises you to.

Dog vomiting isn't necessarily an indication of a dangerous condition necessitating an urgent visit to the vet. It's important to know whether your pet's vomiting is a one-time incident or a chronic problem that needs to be treated immediately. If you have any major concerns, your veterinarian will be able to help you.

Dogs vomiting in heat

As the summer months approach, the days get longer and warmer. Although this is fun for us, it’s not always the case for our furry friends.


Heatstroke is one of the most serious causes of vomiting in hot weather. Dogs who are overheated may experience symptoms including vomiting, panting excessively and weakness. When a person has heatstroke, their body may try to control its temperature and remove toxins by vomiting. This is exactly the same for dogs. Don't ignore any of these symptoms. 

Although heatstroke is everybody’s first thought when a dog is vomiting and it’s hot, there are also other reasons that could be at play here.

Illness in the heat

Dogs can experience heat-related illnesses including heat cramps or fatigue, even if they are not as serious as heatstroke. Look out for symptoms including excessive drooling and a fast pulse. These illnesses can produce vomiting.


Dogs can easily get dehydrated when it's very warm, particularly if they aren't given enough water or are exercising vigorously. Keep your dog’s water bowl topped up at all times to prevent this. 

So, what's the takeaway here? 

Simple. When it comes to dog vomiting, don't brush it off or wait and see. Pay attention to your pup's cues, monitor their behaviour closely, and if in doubt, reach out to your vet pronto. 

Remember, a little bit of vigilance today can mean wagging tails and belly rubs tomorrow.

Shop the best dog accessories

We hope you’ve found our guide to causes and treatment for vomiting dogs useful. Invest in high-quality dog collars and other accessories to increase your dog's safety when they are outside. 

We stock a whole host of high-quality dog leads, dog harnesses, and other safe dog-walking gear, from dog walking bag to comfortable safety dog muzzles, so don’t leave without browsing our full selection—your four-legged friend will thank you later.

Not quite finished? Why not explore more blogs you might be interested in…

Dog & Puppy Dental Care Guide | Dog Grooming and Care Guide | How To Muzzle Train A Dog

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