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A goldendoodle lays on a white comforter on a bed in The Dig's article about safe ways to help your dog throw up

Health & Wellness

Tips on helping your dog throw up

Don’t use your hands

Dogs can sniff their way into just about anything, and as much as we monitor our pups, sometimes they still manage to get ahold of things they shouldn’t. If you’ve had a similar experience where your dog ate something they shouldn’t have, don’t immediately try to help them throw up. Always contact your veterinarian first for guidance — Dr. Aliya McCullough, Fetch by The Dodo’s on-staff veterinarian is sharing some additional tips to guide you through the process. 

When should a dog throw up? 

Always talk to your vet before helping your dog throw up — some things, like sharp objects or chemicals, can actually cause more harm to your dog when they’re thrown up. If your pup ingested something dangerous (like toxic food), and your vet says it’s OK to help them throw up and provides you with instructions, ask them if you should do it within 30 minutes of ingestion. After the 30-minute window, vomiting may become ineffective as the toxic material may have already been absorbed or passed from the stomach to the small intestine. 

Dogs express the need to throw up through certain body signals. Watch out for these signs if you think your dog may need to vomit: 

  • Lack of appetite
  • Lethargy 
  • Abdominal pain

How to make a dog throw up 

Don’t try to make your dog throw up without talking with your vet first. They can let you know if it’s the right decision and also provide safety instructions. Avoid using your hands to help your dog throw up as it can make them feel even more stressed. Never administer your dog household items, like hydrogen peroxide (an agent used to induce vomiting), without talking to your veterinarian. When hydrogen peroxide gets into a dog’s airways, it can potentially cause aspiration pneumonia, which is serious and dangerous. 

Dogs are curious animals and can wind up in sticky situations. That’s why it’s important to have a pet emergency preparedness plan in place so you can act fast in emergency situations. Here are some quick tips to get you started: 

  • Write down the address and phone number of your nearest animal emergency room.
  • Post the Pet Poison Helpline number (855-764-7661) in a convenient location and save the number to your phone’s contact list.
  • Keep a pet first aid kit in your car and house.
  • Organize and have all of your pet’s medical records and vaccination information handy. 

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How to induce vomiting in a dog fast 

The fastest and safest way to make a dog throw up is to take them to a veterinary emergency hospital. Once they’re at the hospital, the vet may give them medication, like apomorphine, to quickly induce vomiting. It’s quicker and safer than using household items like hydrogen peroxide to help dogs vomit. 

How to induce vomiting in a puppy 

Talk to your veterinarian before trying to help your puppy throw up. Puppies have different health needs than adult dogs and may require different treatment options. 

How to make a dog feel better after throwing up 

After clearing your dog’s health status with your veterinarian, they may recommend a bland diet for a few days and prescribe over-the-counter, anti-nausea medications for your pup.

Photo by Brooke Cagle on Unsplash

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