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Posted on 10-12-2014

When Do I Take My Vomiting Dog to the Vet?

Is Vomiting a Serious Risk for My Dog? | Pine Creek Veterinary HospitalVomiting can be a sign of a serious condition, especially if it persists past 12 hours. Client often ask when it’s necessary to bring in their dog when it is vomiting.  We hope to shed some light on this symptom.  Please keep in mind, none of the following information is intended as a substitute for advice directly from a veterinarian, and is intended only a general guideline.

A general rule of thumb: If your dog vomits once or sometimes twice within a 24 hour period of time but otherwise is eating and drinking well and acting completely normal in all other regards, I would recommend waiting it out.  However, if any other signs from the following list are observed, we recommend you seek professional veterinary attention.  Remember, if you are even the slightest bit unsure or worried, take your dog to your veterinarian. We would rather tell you there is nothing to worry about versus we wished we had seen your pet sooner.

Here is the list:

  1. Vomiting more than three times in a 24 hour period.
  2. Continued dry heaving.
  3. Vomiting with diarrhea.
  4. Vomiting after a toy disappeared.
  5. Vomiting in any “deep chested” breed like Great Danes, Doberman Pinschers,  Wolfhounds, Bloodhounds, etc.
  6. Vomiting with a tight or swollen abdomen.
  7. Weakness, collapse, or lethargy noted at the same time.
  8. Vomiting with swelling of the face, eyebrow or cheeks.
  9. Repeated (intractile) vomiting.
  10. Vomiting after eating or drinking.
  11. Vomiting that contains blood or pieces of foreign material.
  12. Vomiting in a patient with a previous history of ingesting a foreign object.
  13. Vomiting after receiving human food.
  14. Vomiting after getting into the trash.
  15. Vomiting with weight loss.
  16. Vomiting in any patients whose thirst level has changed.
  17. If any restlessness or agitation is seen.
  18. If any difficulty of breathing is noted.
  19. If vomiting starts soon after rough play or exercise.
  20. Vomiting in young puppies, especially puppies without proper immunization.
  21. Vomiting soon after starting new medications, especially steroids or NSAID pain medications.
  22. Vomiting with any other unusual symptom.

This list doesn’t cover every situation but is a good start to help you know if vomiting is serious. Generally, most cases of vomiting should be seen. Even if it turns out to be minor, it gives us the opportunity to treat the nausea and provide replacement fluids.

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