Dogs are lively, playful creatures to have in our homes. So, it is very noticeable when your dog suddenly becomes lethargic and weak. Illness is one of the most common causes of a weak, less playful dog. Dog diarrhea and vomiting could be alarming. No pet owner would like to see their dog throwing up food and eliminating wastes more than they should. If you see this in your dog, it’s time to take action.
My dog has diarrhea and vomiting for 3 days – what do I do?
Bowel movement or eliminating stools are a normal occurrence in dogs. However, this only becomes bad if the frequency increases. Passing stools for more than 3 times a day is already considered diarrhea – no matter the consistency of stools. Contrary to popular belief, diarrhea isn’t about the appearance of stools. It is about the frequency of passing them.
Meanwhile, sometimes, dogs vomit for various reasons. If they have been eating too quickly or not familiar with the new food, vomiting may be observed. In this case, it is only normal. However, if the vomiting is consistent and mostly consists of previously ingested food, there might be something wrong.
If your dog continues to eat food and drink water, there’s probably nothing to be worried about. You might need to observe for a while. However, if a dog starts losing its appetite and decreases its feedings, your dog might already need your attention.
If you suspect your dog to having infectious diarrhea, quarantine your dog immediately. Of course, the next step would be to bring your dog to its vet for further evaluation and management. Remember to do proper handwashing as well. There are some dog stomach bugs that humans can contract. Thus, you should always protect yourself. After all, you can’t care for your dog if you are not healthy.
What is alarming about constant diarrhea and vomiting?
If you’ve been witnessing dog diarrhea and vomiting for a long time, you should be alarmed. In this context, the long time means three days or more. Dehydration is the main problem in dog diarrhea and vomiting. When your dog eliminates and throws up, it doesn’t only lose nutrition but also water in the body. This is especially if your dog passes loose, watery stools.
Dogs also lose essential electrolytes and minerals when they get dehydrated. Among these include sodium, potassium, chloride, and others. These electrolytes are important in the normal functioning of cells. If they have an abrupt decrease in any of these electrolytes, they may exhibit neurologic manifestations such as paralysis, seizures, and disorientation. Of course, you don’t want things to come this far.
Diarrhea alone is not always alarming. However, if coupled with vomiting, it is already considered a red flag. Furthermore, the presence of blood in the stools or vomit should warrant a quick trip to the emergency room. Your dogs should never eliminate bloody stools or puke blood.
If your dog is a young puppy or an elderly dog, simple diarrhea could be fatal. In this case, even without alarming symptoms, it would be of your best interest to bring them to the vet right away.
Why is my dog having diarrhea and vomiting at the same time?
Diarrhea and vomiting are both manifestations of gastrointestinal problems. This could either be as benign as an Acute Gastroenteritis or could be something else more serious. Diarrhea involves more of the lower part of the gastrointestinal tract. Meanwhile, vomiting involves the upper portion of the GI tract. While both of them are GI-related, they could mean different things.
Often, if they only happen once in a while, pet owners shouldn’t be bothered too much. Teaching your dogs the proper eating technique can remedy the situation.
What causes dog diarrhea and vomiting?
As previously mentioned, dog diarrhea and vomiting are signs of a disease that is gastrointestinal in origin. Thus, it might be helpful to look into your dog’s diet. Has your dog been on a new diet recently? If yes, your dog’s GI tract may still be adjusting to the new types of food.
Have you given your dog new medications recently? If yes, check out the medications’ adverse effects and see if it might be causing the symptoms on your dog. If you are unsure, it is best to talk to your dog’s vet to find out.
Dog diarrhea and vomiting could also mean that your dog has ingested something toxic or irritating to the gut. When something unwanted goes inside the dog’s body, the tendency is to expel them out. Hence, diarrhea and vomiting will be observed. In this case, diarrhea and vomiting may be a defensive strategy.
Sometimes, dogs find their way to human medications and ingest them without the knowledge of their pet owners. This could harm them and potentially intoxicate them. Administer fluids and bring them to the vet as soon as possible to provide an antidote or neutralize any chemicals ingested.
However, if you suspect that your dog has ingested a foreign object, go to the nearest animal emergency room immediately. Gastric obstruction is a dangerous condition and should be reversed immediately.
Is my dog’s diarrhea and vomiting infectious?
Finding out if dog diarrhea and vomiting are infectious in origin would be the burden of your veterinarian. However, some obvious hints would tell you it’s infectious. Your vet will run some lab tests on your dog’s blood and stool to find out if there is an ongoing infection.
Parasite infestation is a pretty common illness for dogs and other animals. If you haven’t brought your dog for a deworming, parasites may be the culprit. Worms may be small, but some can be visible in your dog’s stool if the infestation is going out of control and depending on the type of worm.
Protozoans such as coccidia and Giardia can also cause intense diarrhea in dogs. This will also be detected in your dog’s fecal analysis. The good thing is that they can easily be treated with an antibiotic.
Isolate suspected infected dogs from other pets as this may be transmitted from an animal species to another.
What are other causes of dog diarrhea and vomiting?
In some cases, diarrhea and vomiting are not gastrointestinal in origin. Anxiety is a common illness of dogs. This can often present in somatic manifestations. Just like humans, emotions tend to affect our gut health. When we are in a stressful phase, we may experience more frequent or less frequent bowel movements. Furthermore, we also experience stomach aches and bloatedness.
Dogs are also like this. Thus, we should also check up on their emotional health if we can’t find any organic cause of dog diarrhea and vomiting.
What do I have to know about treating pet dogs with diarrhea and vomiting?
Rehydration is key when it comes to diarrhea and vomiting. As we’ve previously talked about, your dogs lose a lot of water in their body when they puke or poop. Thus, it’s highly recommended to give your dogs plenty of fluids until you combat what causes dog diarrhea and vomiting. You can do so by giving oral rehydration solutions such as this one from Remedy + Recovery.
When your dog experiences dehydration, they lose not only just water but also electrolytes. Thus, it’s essential to give them drinks with electrolytes as opposed to just plain water.
How do I keep my dog’s digestive system healthy?
Not all dogs are very susceptible or prone to catching GI bugs. This depends on the breed, type of diet, nutrition, and overall well-being. As with any disease, prevention is certainly better than cure. It’s a good thing that there are things you can do to prevent your dog from contracting stomach bugs.
There are probiotics for pets currently in the market, such as food topper from Basics. This meat-flavored food topper can be topped on any dog food and will ultimately give your dog immune support and good gut aid without any hassle. You can also give probiotics in the form of bites as a daily treat. These bits from Zesty Paws are highly effective for stomach aches, as well as constipation.
Vaccinating your dogs against preventable illnesses is also the best thing you can do. Most of these diseases can be harmful and fatal if left untreated. Vaccines are successful in protecting dogs from these diseases. They are also safe and highly effective.
Ultimately, you should always leave the treatment of illnesses such as gastroenteritis and other GI problems to the experts. Consult with your pet’s veterinarian if your pet has had diarrhea for more than three days.
Not panicking in times of dog distress and illness is one of the best things you can do as a pet parent. Educating yourself about various diseases that may affect your dogs is very helpful. This will ensure you’re doing the right thing at the right time so you can give the proper help that your dog needs.