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Vomiting and Diarrhoea are very common, especially in dogs. Both are symptoms of other conditions rather than diseases themselves. There are a huge number of reasons why your pet may have Vomiting and/or Diarrhoea and in many cases the problem can be successfully treated without finding out exactly what caused the tummy upset in the first place. The information you give us however is vital in deciding whether the case is serious enough to warrant further investigations and/or treatment.
Many cases of Vomiting and Diarrhoea are caused by dietary indiscretion (scavenging behaviour) which causes a mild food poisoning. This normally last 24-48 hours and then the animal recovers. As long as the dog remains bright and is able to keep water down it may not need to be seen by a vet initially and can be monitored at home. To speed recovery we normally advise starvation for 12-24 hours then small meals of bland food such as chicken and rice or boiled white fish and pasta. Some animals may not respond to this and will require to be seen by one of our vets. In this case anti-emetics (drugs to stop the animal vomiting) may be given and also something to dry up the diarrhoea. If we are concerned that there is an underlying infectious cause for the Vomiting and Diarrhoea or the animal is debilitated in some way then antibiotics may be required. If your pet is dehydrated or very sick it may need to stay in the hospital on an intravenous drip. Occasionally there can be more sinister causes for Vomiting and Dairrhoea and further tests may be required e.g. blood tests, x-rays etc. Sometimes dogs eat things like socks and children’s toys (known as foreign bodies) which can become stuck in the intestines and need to be removed surgically. This is more common in puppies and young dogs and is classed as an emergency.
Very sick puppy suffering from bloody diarrhoea caused by parvovirus