Dogs can experience upset stomach symptoms similar to humans, but while we may know how to manage our discomfort, knowing how to help our furry friends in these situations can be challenging. What steps should you take if your dog is suffering from an upset stomach?
Signs & Symptoms of Upset Stomachs in Dogs
Vomiting and diarrhea are typical indications of gastrointestinal upset in dogs and puppies, which can result from an inflamed or irritated stomach and intestines.
Other symptoms of an upset stomach in dogs include nausea, acid reflux, loss of appetite, and lethargy.
The severity of their symptoms should determine the appropriate course of treatment for your dog.
Severe Symptoms of Upset Stomach
If your dog displays severe signs of illness, such as repeated, frequent vomiting and diarrhea, bloody diarrhea, or fever, contact your vet or local emergency veterinary hospital immediately.
If you have a puppy between 6 weeks and 6 months old that is showing severe signs of upset stomach, call your vet immediately. Parvovirus (parvo) is a very serious and contagious condition that can be fatal for puppies.
What are the remedies for an upset stomach in dogs?
If your dog is vomiting occasionally, there's likely no need to worry. However, it's best to consult your veterinarian before administering any remedies to your dog.
Here are some tips to help your dog feel better if they have an upset stomach:
- Give your dog's stomach a break from the hard work of digesting food. Have your dog skip a meal or two while their GI track deals with the issue. Fasting for 24 hours will not harm your dog and may help your dog's tummy to recover more quickly.
Provide your dog with ice cubes.
- Rather than providing a full bowl of water for your dog to gulp down, provide small amounts of water in their bowl or a couple of ice cubes every few minutes. It's important to keep your dog hydrated while they have an upset stomach, but drinking too much water may make your dog's tummy feel worse.
Give your dog bone broth to drink.
- Dogs love home-cooked bone broth, and providing your dog with small amounts of bone broth is a tasty way to keep your canine friend hydrated. Bone broth takes a long time to prepare, so it's a good idea to have some in your freezer in case of emergencies.
Feed your dog canned pumpkin.
- Canned 100% pumpkin is an excellent remedy for indigestion. Pumpkin has a low glycemic index which means it is absorbed slowly by the body, which can be soothing for an irritated GI tract. Be sure to buy pure pumpkin and not pumpkin pie filling containing sugar and spices. How much pumpkin to offer your dog will depend on weight. Contact your vet for guidelines on how much pumpkin you should give your dog.
- Probiotics are beneficial bacteria that can help restore the balance of good bacteria in your dog's gut. You can find probiotic supplements specifically made for dogs at your local pet store.
- Ginger is a natural anti-inflammatory and can help settle your dog's stomach. You can give your dog a small piece of fresh ginger root or ginger powder mixed with water.
- Chamomile tea can help reduce inflammation in the digestive tract and calm your dog's stomach. Brew a small amount of chamomile tea and let it cool before giving it to your dog.
Remember, if your dog's symptoms persist or worsen, it's important to consult with your veterinarian. Additionally, some of these remedies may not be appropriate for all dogs, so it's important to check with your vet before trying any new treatments.
Causes of Upset Stomach in Dogs
If your dog vomits or has diarrhea frequently or continuously, it's best to take them to the vet for a checkup.
Chronic digestive issues could indicate an underlying health problem, ranging from indigestion to cancer. If necessary, your veterinarian can perform an examination and tests to identify the issue and provide suitable treatment.
Common causes of upset stomach in dogs include:
- Intestinal Parasites
- Viral Infection
- Reaction to Medications
- Intestinal foreign bodies
- Heat Stroke
- Change of Diet
- Kidney Failure
- Liver Failure
- Inflammatory bowel disease
- Toxins or Poisons
- Ingestion of toxic substances
- Uterine Infection
- Stomach ulcers
- Food sensitivities & allergies
- Bacterial Infection
Most of the conditions listed above are treatable, particularly when treated as soon as possible after symptoms appear.
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.