While diarrhea and vomiting in dogs are common signs of an illness or food poisoning, they result from a digestive system in distress. An isolated episode shouldn’t be a cause for panic, but if your dog vomits more than twice in 24 hours, it could be alarming. If you’re unsure of what to do in these cases, this article answers the question, “What to give a puppy for upset stomach and vomiting” for you.
Why Do Puppies Get an Upset Stomach?
Your dog’s upset stomach could be the result of many different things; it could be due to a new food introduced to their diet, they may have eaten too much, or they may have eaten too fast. Common causes of stomach issues in dogs include eating rotten food or scavenging through trash. There are times when our dog’s digestive system can be sensitive, which is why we should always be careful of what we feed them, but there are other times when the problem can be more serious.
According to experts, an upset tummy accompanied by other symptoms could warrant a visit to your vet and should be given medical attention immediately. If your dog’s stomach ache comes with other symptoms such as loss of appetite or motion sickness, then even an isolated case will need to be evaluated by a veterinarian. Thankfully, there are also a few home remedies that you can try for sensitive stomachs in young puppies.
Symptoms of an Upset Stomach in Dogs
Signs of stomach upset in dogs include the feeling of being overwhelmed with abdominal pain — if you notice this, be sure to take your sick dog to a veterinarian right away. Your dog’s upset stomach could become dangerous if left unchecked, so be sure to have them examined to get a diagnosis.
Moreover, your furry friend could lose water from diarrhea and vomiting, which will make them dehydrated, weak, and vulnerable to bacterial infections. When it comes to digestive upset, a dog’s symptoms will usually present themselves through one or more of the following:
- Loss of appetite
- Eating grass
- Stomach noises
It’s also a good idea to look for these clinical signs in your canine companion. These can indicate more serious conditions behind your dog’s stomach pain that may not be apparent to a new pet parent:
- Weakness of the body
- Huge weight loss
- Collapsing and staggered movement
- Excessive drooling
- Blood in stool and vomit
- Excessive diarrhea and vomiting
Apart from these signs and symptoms, it will also help you to check your dog’s temperature with a rectal thermometer to determine if your pup is sick. Your dog needs to be at 101.5◦F to be considered healthy; anything higher than 102◦F or lower than 99◦F indicates that your dog is sick and should be taken to the vet immediately.
Any of these signs may point to severe medical conditions that will need to be examined at your nearest veterinary hospital. They should provide blood and stool works on your pup to check on all of the possible conditions that may affect them.
Natural Remedies for a Dog’s Upset Stomach
Luckily, there are some things that can naturally soothe your dog’s digestive tract without having to go to the vet in mild cases. These remedies aren’t toxic to your dogs and can also be used regularly to help strengthen your pet’s immune system.
You can try putting your dog on a fast for 12 to 2 hours, which can help to relieve them from their tummy upset. While adult dogs can function without food for 24 hours, puppies should only be allowed to fast for up to 12 hours. Feeding a pup while having digestive problems can only make the situation worse, but fasting will help the GI tract to recover from irritants.
Ginger has anti-inflammatory properties that make it great for an upset stomach and may also aid dogs with inflammatory bowel disease. Ginger is rich in Shogaols and Gingerols compounds, which are effective in treating nausea by promoting proper digestion. However, you should only feed your dogs small amounts of ginger and never feed them ginger ale as it can only worsen your dog’s condition.
Rosemary is another handy herb to have in your kitchen as it can help to alleviate stomach-related health issues. It can help to ease diarrhea, constipation, and bloating, and is also a powerful immune booster, helping to protect your pup from viral infections. Be sure to add 1 tablespoon of rosemary to your dog’s food during mealtime to reap the benefits of this natural remedy.
Regulate Water Intake
A great way to resolve your pup’s stomach issues is by regulating their water intake. Because dogs lose a lot of water as a result of diarrhea and vomiting, this should be replaced before they become dehydrated. You can check your dog for dehydration by observing their lips, which will be dry, along with their mouth and gums.
Make sure to monitor your puppy’s water intake; don’t give them too much water to drink, and only give them small amounts of water in their water bowl daily. If your dog can’t keep the water down for more than a few hours, you can try giving them ice cubes instead. Alternatively, you may also give your dog ice chips once every two to three hours to help them stay hydrated.
Home Remedies for Your Dog’s Digestive Issues
If you find that your puppy is suffering from a regular case of stomach upset, here are a few ways to help your four-legged friend better cope with their condition.
Bone broth is the best way to help your pup get over an upset stomach and can be highly beneficial for your dog’s tummy. To make this healthy dog food, start by simmering meat and bones with water and apple cider vinegar inside a crockpot. Because it will take approximately one day to make your broth, make sure that you freeze it for later, but skim off fats before you do so.
This rice-based probiotic can help to soothe your pooch’s stomach which tastes much like chicken. It can provide quick relief from stomach problems, but if it doesn’t take effect right away, take your dog to the vet quickly.
Once your pup has finished fasting for 12 to 24 hours, has stopped vomiting, and can keep down their liquids, you can introduce them to a bland meal, which consists of the following:
- Boiled white rice (75%)
- Cooked chicken breast without any bones or skin, or an extra-lean burger (25%)
When doing this diet, be sure not to add any fats, oils, or spices to bland foods. Dog owners can then gradually increase the food provided — starting with just one tablespoon every two hours. If your pup can manage that, you may continue increasing the amount from half a cup to one cup every three to four hours. Once your dog is feeling better, you can add small portions of regular dog food and when fully recovered from their upset tummy, they may switch back to solid food.
Fiber supplements are a good option to boost the dietary fiber and digestive enzymes they need to return to their regular bowel movements. Once they feel better, try feeding them plain yogurt that contains dog probiotics such as Proviable, FortiFlora, or Prostora. These contain friendly bacteria that live within the gastrointestinal tract which can help strengthen your pup’s immune system and protect them from tummy aches.
OTC Medicines for a Dog’s Upset Stomach
Even if you know the cause of your dog’s digestive problems, don’t rush to your medicine cabinet right away. A lot of over-the-counter human medications aren’t safe for our pets, but here are a few options that you may use to treat their stomach ache.
Safe for Dogs
Your vet could suggest options such as Mylanta, Gaviscon, or Pepcid except for dogs with kidney disease or liver failure. Imodium may also be suggested to help treat diarrhea, while oral probiotics may help with stomach pain, but ensure that it doesn’t contain toxic substances such as xylitol. Probiotic supplements may also help to restore healthy gut functions to heal an upset tummy.
But before you give any kind of medication to your pet, be sure to consult your vet first.
Not Safe for Dogs
Whether you have young pups or older dogs, don’t give them Pepto-Bismol or any other products that contain salicylic acid because they can inflame and irritate smaller dogs and senior dogs. It’s also a bad idea to give your dog Tums, which contain xylitol; even the xylitol-free Tums may lead to an increase in calcium levels in your dog’s blood and could result in kidney problems.
Dog-Proofing Your Home
The best thing you can do for your dog is to prevent instances of food allergies, intestinal parasites, intestinal obstruction, and dietary indiscretion. Because dogs are naturally curious and are always eating things they shouldn’t be eating, it’s up to us to ensure that they don’t consume human foods. Here are a few things that you can do to protect your pup’s stomach:
- Wash their water bowls regularly
- Never feed them the scraps from your table
- Stop them from drinking out of unsanitary sources such as streams, lakes, gutters, and buckets
- If you wish to change your dog’s diet, do so slowly to allow time for their digestive system to get used to it
- Make sure that your leftovers and other harmful foods are kept away from their reach
- Visit your veterinarian regularly
What You Can Give Your Puppy for Upset Stomach
Adult dogs are hard enough to protect as it is, so be sure that you keep an eye on your pup’s behavior; if they’re restless, it could be a sign that something’s not right. When they’re experiencing an upset stomach, be sure to feed them plenty of water and bland foods that can be digested and absorbed easily by your puppy. Make sure that you don’t starve or overfeed your dog either, and that if the situation isn’t improving, head straight to your vet to have them diagnosed and treated.