There’s not much more unpleasant than the topic of pet vomit. Seeing or hearing your pet vomit is tough, as is coming home to it after a long day. It’s relatively common for your pet to vomit occasionally — once every few months or so — but if the vomiting occurs regularly or shows certain traits, it could be time to call us for an evaluation.
Occasional vomiting for harmless reasons may be due to:
– Changing food or diet too suddenly
– Scavenging or eating people food
– Expired pet food or food with incorrect nutrient percentages, like too much or too little protein or grain, for your pet’s dietary needs
– Eating too fast
– Stomach bugs due to viral or bacterial infections
– Ingesting foreign objects, such as small toys, bone pieces or plants
In these cases, your pet may eat grass in order to induce vomiting naturally to empty the stomach of the unwanted or indigestible item. You should remove all food and water for 12 hours, providing ice cubes or very small amounts of water to keep your pet’s mouth moist. For hairballs, ensure fur is brushed regularly or consider shaving long coats. Check for abnormal symptoms, such as lethargy or pale gums, both of which should be reported to us immediately. If the vomit has lots of mucus in it, it’s likely a benign incident. Bile, however, may mean something more serious.
Persistent vomiting could be due to something more serious:
– Head trauma
– Toxin exposure, such as from antifreeze, other chemicals or human foods
– Gastrointestinal obstruction
– Pancreatitis or diabetes
– Cancer or other undetected illnesses
If your pet tries to regurgitate multiple times without producing anything, this could be a sign of a serious medical problem. If the vomit is dark in color, looks like coffee grounds or has what appears to be blood in it, contact us immediately for an examination. Blood work, fluid therapy or medication may be necessary.
In both cases, extra TLC can go a long way to helping an uncomfortable pet get relief. If you’re ever in doubt about the cause or severity of your pet’s vomiting, don’t hesitate to call us for help.