How to Cure Your Dog's Tummy Ache at Home
If your dog vomits, has diarrhea, or both, it may be that he has an upset stomach. As a matter of fact, vomiting and diarrhea are two of the most common reasons dogs are seen by veterinarians each year. This may be due to the "scavenger" nature of dogs; they often pay visits to the garbage can and eat things that do not agree with them. They may also be the result of a sudden diet change or stress.
But when a dog has an upset stomach, he may still act lively and not mope around. Very likely if the symptoms are mild and the upset tummy can be easily treated at home. With some stomach rest, proper hydration, and the use of a few ingredients easily found in your kitchen, your dog may be back to normal in a couple of days.
However, if your dog is lethargic, the diarrhea is severe, the vomiting continuous, or if there is blood in your dog's stool, then it is not recommended that you treat at home. In this scenario, the dog may get dehydrated fairly quickly require IV fluids from a veterinarian. This particularly applies to puppies, which can become critical fairly quickly.
Dogs should also be seen if there are other worrisome symptoms, such as fever. There are many conditions such as Parvo, that are serious and can even be deadly. If you are concerned about dehydration, you can check yourself by lifting your dog's skin over the back or shoulder blades. In a well-hydrated dog, the skin will spring back promptly. In a dehydrated one, the skin will have a delay in going back into position, or worse, may remain lifted. For more information, read the section on checking hydration levels in this article about upset stomachs in dogs.
Home Cures for Mild Stomach Problems in Dogs
Gather together the following items:
• Chicken or Hamburger
• Ice chips
• Pancake syrup
• Plain yogurt or cottage cheese
Step One: Fast Your Dog
At first the dog's stomach must be given a rest. Ideally, the stomach rest should last at least 12 hours. An overnight fast will suffice for puppies. Adult dogs may be fasted for 24 hours.
- Water may be offered, however, some dogs may not be able to hold it down and may vomit it right back up. In such cases, it is best to offer ice chips.
- Puppies may have their gums rubbed with maple syrup in order to keep their glucose levels up. This may give the dog an immediate energy boost and actually perk dogs up.
- The water bowl may be filled with half water and half Gatorade to allow the dog to replenish electrolytes that may have been lost due to the diarrhea and vomiting.
Step Two: Bland Diet
Once 12 to 24 hours have passed with no food, the dog must be fed a bland diet that is easy on its stomach.
- Boiled rice with either chicken or hamburger may be served at this point. The chicken must be boneless and skinless and the hamburger must be lean and have the fat drained off.
- Serve food in small quantities and often throughout the day.
- Offer the bland diet until vomiting subsides and the stools become firm again.
Step Three: Monitor and Introduce Normal Diet
- It is important to re-introduce the regular diet very gradually. Failing to do so may cause a relapse.
- Adding a dollop of plain yogurt or a bit of cottage cheese to food or offering on it own may introduce good, healthy bacteria that may help soothe the irritated intestines.
Step Four: Monitoring Recovery
Vomiting and diarrhea may mean nothing more than a dietary indiscretion, however, there can be more serious issues at bay. Always practice the "better safe than sorry" philosophy when it comes to your dog's health. Minor cases of upset stomach should show improvement pretty quickly. If symptoms do not resolve quickly, then a more serious problem may be present. Take your dog into the vet for examination.
Disclaimer: This article is not to be replaced for professional veterinary advice. If your dog is sick, please seek veterinary advice before attempting home remedies.