How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Dr.Fiona Your Own Question
Dr.Fiona, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 6273
Experience:  Small animal medicine and surgery - 16 years experience in BC, California and Ontario
Type Your Dog Veterinary Question Here...
Dr.Fiona is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

Our 3-4 month old puppy keeps throwing up. I took him to the

Resolved Question:

Our 3-4 month old puppy keeps throwing up. I took him to the vet and he had a parasite - giardia or something like that. He was on medicine, we finished he seemed better, vomitting had stopped.   But, it's 4:00 am here and the puppy was whining, my daughter just took him out and she said he threw up 2 times. He probably ate some dog food, but that would have been quite a few hours before. He was re-checked for the parasite on Saturday, and they said he was fine. The Dr. thought maybe he was eating too fast, but since he just threw up - hours after he had eaten and he did not do it in his cage - he waited to go out first. Any thoughts?
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr.Fiona replied 8 years ago.
Hi there,

Welcome to Just Answer! I would like to try to help you and your pup, but need a bit more information in order to better assist you.

Is he fully vaccinated?

With this recent vomiting - how many hours since he ate? What was in the vomitus (food, bile, other)?

how are his energy levels?

Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Hi - we just had his second round of vaccinations on Saturday. He had thrown up right after breakfast that day and I think the day before. Mostly food, is in his vomit. He probably ate around 8 hours ago -
Expert:  Dr.Fiona replied 8 years ago.
Ok... so he vomited FOOD and it was 8 hours after eating?

Does he seem to know when he is going to vomit - walk around smacking his lips? drooling? Then, multiple heavings and up it comes?

Or is it more like a burp with food in it?

Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Yes - my son put him in his cage around 10:30 pm. He may have eaten sometime between 6:30-8:00 pm, he was whinning at 4:00 am to go out and threw up two times (my daughter let him out). He typically will walk around and find a spot and then throw up. It seems more like a couple of heaves then comes out versus just a burp. My kids are primarily the caretakers so I have not paid complete attention, and they are in bed. But, the few times I have seen him throw up in the house or outside it's more like your first point. Not so much smacking lips though and drooling . . .
Expert:  Dr.Fiona replied 8 years ago.
Ok, thanks for that information!

I need a few minutes (about 10) to write up a detailed answer and will be right back!

Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Expert:  Dr.Fiona replied 8 years ago.

Hi again,

There are a lot of different possibilities for what may be going on with your dog.The vomiting may be related to the diarrhea, or it may not be... they could be totally separate issues (such as with giardia and a foreign body).

The ones that I would be considering if he were on his way in to see me are:

1. One of the things that I think of first in a young dog is that he may have a Gastrointestinal Foreign Body.

This is a big worry because there was food in his stomach 8 hours after eating! That is not normal at all. Usually, all food is gone from the stomach within 1-2 hours. So, something may be preventing that food from moving out.

Dogs eat the strangest things - plastic bags, children's toys, bones, bits of towel, socks, rocks and other things. Often, these foreign bodies pass through the intestinal tract, but sometimes they do not. They may get caught in the stomach or the small intestines.

The symptoms of a GI foreign body are generally vomiting, loss of appetite, depression and dehydration. If your dog consumed an object that is caught in the small intestines, it might explain the symptoms that you are seeing. This would be particulary true if the object were something like a ball that could bob over pylorus (outflow from the stomach) and then move away again. Thus, water could pass through but not food.

In the case of an obstruction, surgery is often needed to remove the foreign object.

I will include further information about GI foreign bodies:

If I examined your pup and was concerned about a foreign body, I would probably recommend x-rays to see if a foreign object were visible. A plastic bag would not show up on x-rays. It does, however, show up very well if the dog is given some barium (a type of milkshake like drink) by mouth. Then a determination can be made about how best to get this out of the dog, or whether it might move through on its own.

Usually, rawhide sticks will soften and move through, though it can take several days for them to do so. I would certainly stop giving them for now!

2. It is possible your little dog simply has gastroenteritis from eating something he shouldn't have.

Table scraps, those raw hides or twigs and leaves could be the culprit! Gastroenteritis is an inflammation of the stomach and intestines and can be caused by a large number of things, including sudden dietary changes.

Puppies are notorious for being curious and eating all kinds of things!

3. Another possibility is Parasites.

Here is a link to information about whipworms which are notoriously hard to identify by fecal analysis, and are not killed with pyrantel pamoate (standard puppy dewormer):

4. A bacterial infection:

Dogs can be affected by overgrowths of bacteria in the intestines. In an adult dog these might not be more than a nuisance, but in a pup they can be serious. The 3 most common are Campylobacter, Salmonella and E.Coli.

Here is a link with more information:

5. Parvo virus.

This has been going on for too long for me to really think this is likely...

Parvo is a highly contagious virus that causes vomiting and diarrhea, often with blood, in puppies. It causes severe dehydration, and untreated often results in death. Usually, it would take a couple of days of untreated vomiting and diarrhea before the puppy died.

Puppies are routinely vaccinated for Parvo virus as part of their regular vaccines. These are usually given at 8, 12 and 16 weeks. Once fully vaccinated, there is a virtually zero chance of a dog getting Parvo virus. Some breeds are more susceptible to Parvo - this means that they get sicker and take longer to recover than other breeds. The susceptible breeds are Rottweillers, Dobermans, Pit Bulls and Labrador Retrievers.

Here are links to more information:

The botXXXXX XXXXXne is that there are a number of possibilities for what may be going on. Your vet would need to do a physical exam and possibly some diagnostic tests to figure out what the underlying problem is. I would start with a fecal sample, blood test and abdominal x-rays. It sounds like it is time to find out what is going on!

If he is feeling unwell at the moment, there are some things you can do at home until you can get him in to the vet:

1. WITH-HOLD FOOD for 12 hours since he has been vomiting today. This gives the intestines a chance to rest and heal.

2. When he is fasting, he can have lots of clear fluids.

So, water is fine, but also she can have pedialyte, Gatorade, apple juice diluted 50:50 with water, or chicken or beef broth diluted 50:50 with water. Give the fluids in small amounts frequently. For a dog this size that means about 1 cup an hour.

3. After 12 hours, you can start your dog back on a bland diet.

For patients that I see, I recommend a mixture of 75% cooked white rice, and 25% low fat protein. For the protein you could use extra lean ground beef, boiled with the fat scooped off, or chicken breast boiled with fat scooped off or even scrambled egg cooked without fat in the microwave. Feed small frequent meals. For a dog this size, I would suggest 1/2 cup every 3 to 4 hours.

4. After 1-2 days on the rice mix, you would gradually change your dog back to the normal dog food.

So, on day 3, give the rice mixture, but bigger meals, spaced further apart. On day 4, mix a little tiny bit of the normal food in there, and decrease the frequency so it is down to 3 meals or so. And so on.

5. Keep your dog as quiet as possible - just out to relieve himself and back in.

If your pup continues to vomit, develops blood in the stool, is lethargic or shows signs of abdominal pain, please contact a veterinarian promptly. I do think that it is time to find out what may be going on with him. My top concern would be a rawhide that is stuck. It may just take a few days to soften and move. Good luck with your puppy!

If this has been helpful, please "Accept" my answer and provide feedback.

If you need more information, click on reply and I will still be here to answer further questions!

The above is given for information only. Although I am a licensed veterinarian, I cannot legally prescribe medicines or diagnose your pet's condition without performing a physical exam. If you have concerns about your pet I would strongly advise contacting your regular veterinarian.

Best wishes to you and to your dog!


Dr.Fiona and other Dog Veterinary Specialists are ready to help you