Hi. I’m Dr. Mary Stauder from Manchester West Veterinary Hospital.
I wanted to bring up the topic of vomiting and diarrhea.
It’s one of the things that we get frequent phone calls about and I want to cover, because there are a lot of things out and about feeding bland diet and using over- the- counter medications.
Just to summarize dogs and cats have a very responsive gastro testital tract. They tend to go out and eat stuff in the yard, mostly dogs, and then later realize that it wasn’t healthy for them and they evacuate. As a result diarrhea and vomiting does occur frequently. Dogs will tend to be very stoic about other things for example; you’ll see a dog limping around on a broken leg, chasing a ball. They are very stoic but vomiting and diarrhea does get them down.
The first rule of thumb, if your pet has vomiting or diarrhea, the best thing to do is hold the food and water. By not putting anything into the system you can let it rest and calm down; then it’s worth a phone call to the vet. We can filter through what’s been happening such as, has your dog been digging through the trash, is it a young dog, has it been chewing up toys, is it an old dog that was feeling fine yesterday? There are a lot of things that we can filter through and get an idea of what’s going on.
Unfortunately vomiting and diarrhea can also be a sign of a serious disease.
We never really like to treat it over the phone; we like to see your pets to see if we can determine whether it requires further testing.
A young puppy for example, that you may not even realize, has chewed yup a toy has some foreign body rolling around in its stomach and it may just have a little vomit today but tomorrow it may obstruct and then it becomes a life threatening situation.
An older dog can develop pancreatitis which is very severe vomiting that requires hospitalization.
Some of our other dogs may have very light diarrhea but then it converts to bloody colitis and it needs a little intervention.
So we do ask that you make that phone call so we can see if we can determine if it can be treated at home.
It’s a rule that over-the-counter medications for humans are not safe for dogs and cats.
For example, Pepto-Bismol contains sluicegates that are toxic to cats, it attends to cause stomach ulcers in dogs. So ammonium, pamomity, there are some uses for over-the-counter drugs but we need to know the pet first; there are some general recommendations.
So if you have a vomiting dog, withhold the food and water and give us a call.
I should mention the bland diet, that is very helpful to recover; we need something easy to digest. Not just dry dog food, like some people try to do. You actually need to go blander. The basic bland diet recipe is two parts of cooked rice, and one part protein source. Protien can be a lean ground beef, chicken, also cottage cheese works very nicely. You will want to cook any of these items and chop finely. Mix the two parts of rice to one part of the chicken. For example if you have two cups of rice only do one cup of chicken. That can be mixed up and kept in the fridge, then scooped out in small meals.
For a dog that is vomiting do not allow them to drink a large bowl of water. It’s very simple, if they drink a large bowl of water because they are thirsty and they have a bad taste in their mouth then the stomach will stretch triggering the vomiting reflex and up it comes. First thing is no food and water for a period of time followed by a bland diet, under the supervision of one of our veterinarians, here at Manchester West Veterinary Hospital. Thank you.