Happy Tummies, Happy Pups: A Fur Parent's Guide to Managing Your Dog's Upset Stomach | Dr.Shiba
Hey there, fur parents! We all know that our beloved doggos are like family, and just like us, they can sometimes experience tummy troubles. An upset stomach is one of the most common health issues in dogs, and if left untreated, they can lead to more serious problems.
But don't worry, fam! We've got your back (and your dog's tummy). With the right supplements, care, and loads of love, you can help reduce the risk of stomach aches and make sure your pupper enjoys the best playtime ever!
Causes of Your Dog's Stomach Ache
Our furry friends can get an upset stomach from eating the wrong diet or chowing down on too much food, which can lead to digestive problems.
Just like us, they're also prone to indigestion and other stomach issues that can result in acid reflux. Let's dive into the common causes of your dog's stomach ache:
- Dietary indiscretion
Dogs are known for their adventurous (and sometimes not-so-smart) eating habits. They might devour something they shouldn't, like leftovers from the trash, which can upset their stomachs.
- Food sensitivities or allergies
Some dogs have sensitive tummies or allergies to specific ingredients, like chicken or grains, which can cause digestive issues.
- Bacterial imbalances
An imbalance in your dog's gut bacteria can lead to digestive problems. This can happen if they're on antibiotics or have had a recent illness.
Intestinal parasites, such as worms, can cause tummy troubles in dogs. Regular deworming and check-ups with your vet can help prevent this issue.
- Chronic conditions
Some dogs suffer from chronic conditions like inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) or pancreatitis, which can cause ongoing digestive problems.
Signs of Upset Stomach in Dogs
If you see your dog munching on grass, it could be because they're feeling sick and trying to make themselves throw up.
The two most common signs of an upset stomach in dogs are diarrhea and vomiting. However, there are other symptoms to look out for:
- Loss of appetite
If your usually ravenous pupper suddenly turns up their nose at mealtime, it might be a sign that they have an upset stomach.
- Drinking less water
Dogs with tummy troubles might avoid drinking water, which can lead to dehydration if not addressed.
- Lip licking or excessive gulping
These can be signs of nausea or discomfort in your dog.
A dog with an upset stomach might be more lethargic than usual, preferring to rest rather than play.
- Uncomfortable body language
A dog with tummy troubles may appear restless, pacing, or constantly changing positions as they try to find relief.
- Stretching more often
Dogs with an upset stomach may stretch, especially in a "praying" position with their front paws on the ground and their hindquarters raised. This can be an attempt to relieve abdominal discomfort.
- Fainting or looking depressed
In severe cases, your dog might become weak, faint, or display signs of depression due to the discomfort.
If you observe any of these signs, it's best to call your vet for a consultation. Remember, it's better to be safe than sorry!
Remedies for a Dog’s Tummy Troubles
To keep your dog from having an upset stomach, watch what they eat and ensure their diet is well-balanced and appropriate for their breed and lifestyle. Here are some things you can do to help your dear doggo feel better:
- Keep a food diary
Tracking your dog's meals and treats can help you identify potential triggers for their upset stomach. This will also be helpful information to share with your veterinarian.
- Introduce supplements
Some supplements can help support your dog's digestive system. One good example is Happy Tummy dog treats by Dr. Shiba, which contains pre- and probiotics that aid in the digestion of hard-to-digest foods and boost your dog's immune system.
These nutrients are vital for your dog's gut flora and can significantly affect digestion, promoting healthy bowel regulation and actively supporting your dog's digestive tract.
- Fasting and hydration
In some cases, fasting for a short period may be beneficial for a dog with an upset stomach. However, always consult your veterinarian before attempting this. To keep your dog hydrated without encouraging them to gulp down water all at once, offer them ice chips.
- Adjust your dog's diet
For dogs experiencing acid reflux, your vet might recommend a permanent diet change.
Opt for foods rich in fiber, healthy fats, and easy-to-digest proteins that support healthy stomach acid levels and won't aggravate your dog's acid reflux. Some tasty options include:
- Peeled or baked sweet potatoes
- Pumpkin puree
- Rice (cooked longer than usual)
- Fish and chicken
- Bone broth
Steer clear of foods that may exacerbate acid reflux, such as spicy or oily dishes, allergens like gluten, soy, and dairy, as well as preservatives and artificial colorings.
Whip up some dog-friendly meals with these paw-some recipes made for pups with sensitive stomachs:
- Keep an eye on your dog's weight
Rapid weight loss can be a sign that your dog isn't getting enough nutrients due to an upset stomach. Monitor their weight and consult your veterinarian if you notice any concerning changes.
- Create a peaceful environment
Stress can contribute to stomach problems in dogs, so make sure your pupper has a quiet, comfortable space to rest and relax when they're feeling under the weather.
- Prevent scavenging
To keep your dog from getting into things they shouldn't eat, keep your trash secure and don't leave food unattended.
Keeping Your Dog's Tummy Happy and Healthy
As doting fur parents, we can't help but smile when we see our doggos happily devouring their favorite foods. However, overindulging or eating the wrong foods can wreak havoc on their health.
That's why we need to be mindful of their diet, monitor their habits, and always look for the best options suited to their needs, as well as take the time to consult with the vet regularly.
By knowing what to do and what to give our precious pups during digestive troubles, we can make sure they have the happiest tummies all day long!
What can I give my dog for an upset stomach and vomiting?
If your dog is suffering from an upset stomach and vomiting, try giving them a bland diet of boiled, skinless chicken and rice. Make sure to consult your vet before making any significant changes to your dog's diet, especially if the vomiting persists.
Are there any over-the-counter medications I can give my dog for an upset stomach?
While there are over-the-counter gastrointestinal medications like Imodium (loperamide) that can help with a dog's upset stomach, use these with caution.
It's always best to consult your veterinarian before giving your dog any medication. Your vet can provide proper guidance on the appropriate dosage and ensure the medication is safe for your dog's specific condition.
How long does it take for a dog's upset stomach to heal?
A dog's upset stomach can heal within a few hours to a couple of days, depending on the cause and treatment. If your dog's upset stomach doesn't improve or worsens, consult your veterinarian for further advice.
How can I prevent an upset stomach in my dog?
To prevent your dog from getting an upset stomach, maintain a consistent, well-balanced diet that is appropriate for their breed and lifestyle.
Avoid giving them table scraps or foods that can cause irritation. Regularly monitor their eating habits and consult your veterinarian if you notice any changes or concerns.