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Dr. Kara
Dr. Kara, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 16311
Experience:  Over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian
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My dog is eating grass, alive and dried frantically. He has

Customer Question

My dog is eating long grass, alive and dried frantically. He has been doing it for and a half an hour on and off mostly on. I don't know why? I'm worried he ate something he shouldn't have or is sick. I don't know how to tell!
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. The Veterinarian will know if your dog will be able to digest that. Is there anything else important you think the Veterinarian should know about your dog?
Customer: He eats almost anything. He is a bulldog mix. He keeps swallowing even when he's not eating grass, like something is stuck.
Submitted: 1 month ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Dr. Kara replied 1 month ago.

Hello, I'm Dr. Kara. I have over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian and I'd like to help. Please give me a moment to review your concerns.

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
He just threw up. More than I have ever seen before!
Expert:  Dr. Kara replied 1 month ago.

I am very sorry to hear about your pup eating grass frantically and licking his lips/swallowing.

Some dogs like the taste of grass, but also many dogs with nausea or gastroesophageal acid reflux often eat grass or foreign material to make themselves vomit. They will often swallow repeatedly and lick things trying to soothe their nausea and acid burn. If they can rid themselves of whatever is irritating their stomach that way then all is good. But when they continue to be uncomfortable then we need to stop them from eating any more grass. It becomes a vicious cycle where more grass irritates their stomach, and stomach acid refluxes and burns their esophagus, and the worse they feel, so they try to eat more grass.

Possible causes of nausea and abdominal pain include a sudden change in diet, dietary sensitivities or allergies, or eating things that they should not like too many fatty table scraps or garbage, bones etc. Addison's which is a poorly functioning adrenal gland is another possibility for waxing and waning vomiting and nausea. Metabolic organ failures (kidney or liver disease), pancreatitis, inflammatory bowel disease or even infiltrative cancers are possible causes as well.

Has he eaten anything he should not have recently (toy pieces, bones, garbage)?

Any changes in food or treats?

You can give him an acid reducers to try and settle his stomach. Either:

1) Pepcid-ac (famotidine) at a dose of one 10mg tablet per 20 to 40 pounds of body weight every 12 hours.

OR

2) Prilosec (omeprazole) at a dose of one 20mg tablet per 40 to 80 pounds of body weight every 24 hours.

These will reduce stomach acid and could help settle his stomach. These can be used for several days if necessary as they are very safe.

I'd also pick up his food and water for now. A couple hours after one of the acid reducers you can offer small amounts of water or ice cubes to lick.

No food for 12 hours. Small amounts of water only.

After his food fast then start a bland diet of 1/3 boiled, lean hamburger (or boiled, white, skinless chicken) and 2/3 boiled white rice. Give small meals several times a day. Feed the bland diet for several days, then start mixing in his regular diet and slowly convert him back.

If his nausea and abdominal pain continues then he may need injectable medication from his veterinarian to get his stomach upset under control.

So watch him for continued symptoms even with the acid reducers, blood in his stool or vomit or a fever (more than 103.5F rectally), a tense painful belly or lack of appetite after his food fast. If any of those occur it is time to seek hands on veterinary care.

If this has been a repeated problem for him consider whether he has been getting different treats or lots of table food, or have you been feeding a different diet?

He may have a dietary allergy or a sensitive stomach.

If he has this problem continually it would also be a good idea to have blood tests done as well to make sure there isn't an underlying metabolic problem like early organ failure, pancreatitis or Addison's disease present.

Please let me know if you have any further questions.

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
He is drinking water and threw up again. The first time was a ton of grass and some of his food from last nights dinner. The second time mostly water and some grass and food. He is still continuing to lick his lips and swallow without anything in his mouth. I took his water away because he keeps drinking but his stomach is distended now. When I touch is tummy he doesn't seem like it hurts. He tries to lay down or sit but can't stay still for that long, he's seems really uncomfortable. Is it bad if his stomach is tight and hard now? He is only 10 months and yesterday he jumped into our family pool for the first time and I had to rescue him, he was under water for about 5-10 seconds, I was in the water as fast as I could jump in and get to him. Don't know if he drank water while submerged which could be why he is sick.
Customer: replied 1 month ago.
It is a possibility he could have eaten something but I don't know what. When I keep my hand on his belly it seems as if it is gargling or bubbling. Not sure if that helps.
Expert:  Dr. Kara replied 1 month ago.

Yes, I am concerned he has a tight abdomen, and that he is throwing up food from last night.

Given that he is a fellow that eats things he shouldn't we need to worry about an obstruction, or possibly bloat.

The noises that you are hearing are the result of ingesta moving through the gastrointestinal tract and gas bubbles. In most cases they are completely normal and seem to cause the dog no distress. But in cases where the dog acts uncomfortable it is likely that the pup is experiencing some reflux or abnormal motility, or painful intestinal spasms that are more than the usual. In severe cases this can be linked to pancreatitis which is a painful inflammation of the pancreas leading to increased enzyme leakage.

Pool water can lead to stomach upset, but I would have expected that last night.

If it is a salt water pool and he drank a tremendous amount then salt poisoning is possible.

He is a very sick fellow, I highly recommend an examination given his repeated vomiting and inability to get comfortable.

Expert:  Dr. Kara replied 1 month ago.

Hello, I wanted to make sure that you didn't have any further questions for me, and I'd like to know how things turned out for your pup. If you could give me an update that would be great, thank you, ***** *****