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February 01, 2023
Does your dog gobble down their food before you even finish filling their bowl? Is your dog burping after every meal? Or does your pup throw up often after eating? If these things are the norm, your dog could have indigestion. Instead of expecting to clean up yet another puddle of vomit, there are things you can do to ease your pal’s discomfort.
Your dog’s indigestion can cause various symptoms, including vomiting, diarrhea, weight loss, gagging, frequent burping, or stomach bloat. Visit your vet to eliminate underlying issues like GERD or Canine Bloat (GDV). To help alleviate indigestion, encourage slower eating, try canned pumpkin, and talk to your vet about a diet change. Your dog may also need medications to help with their gastric issues.
It’s hard for some people to understand how dogs get indigestion. You hear stories about dogs that swallow socks, pieces of toys, and garbage and do just fine. These tales of unusual doggy diet mishaps lead many to believe that dogs have tough stomachs and digestive systems.
But your dog is susceptible to gastric issues just like you are. Indigestion happens when your dog overeats or eats too fast. It also can occur if your dog eats a new food or a specific type of food.
Indigestion happens for one of three primary reasons: stomach inflammation, excessive stomach acid, or intestinal inflammation.
According to the Merck Veterinary Manual, stomach issues are common in dogs. Various issues can manifest similar symptoms, so it’s always important to visit your veterinarian if your pup has problems.
If you suspect your dog has indigestion, you’ll likely notice the following signs:
Nobody wants to see their dog in discomfort or pain. Your poor pup is likely miserable if they can’t eat dinner without having a bloated stomach or diarrhea. Luckily, you can do several things at home to help ease your dog's indigestion.
If indigestion isn’t a frequent issue for your dog (maybe they got a hold of something they shouldn’t have), wait a bit. Observe your pal to see if they can get rid of the offending food on their own, and avoid feeding them for 12 to 24 hours.
Avoid giving your dog a bowl of water if they’re vomiting or have diarrhea. Excess water can exacerbate the problem. Instead, offer ice chips so they can still hydrate without increasing their water intake too much.
Many vets recommend offering your dog some canned pumpkin to help relieve gastric issues, including diarrhea and constipation. Check with your vet about the proper amount to give your dog. Also, make sure you get plain pumpkin and not pumpkin pie filling. Otherwise, you’re also feeding your dog a mix of sugar and spices (which isn’t everything nice when it comes to indigestion).
The above tips also work well if your dog regularly deals with indigestion to help relieve symptoms. However, if indigestion is common for your pup, you also need to make broader changes.
Visit the Vet — A trip to your vet is imperative to assess your dog’s condition. Take note of your dog’s symptoms and how often they occur so you can give your vet an accurate picture of what’s happening.
Change Your Dog’s Diet — Your vet might recommend a diet change. But don’t switch your pal to their new diet immediately. Instead, offer small amounts gradually. Mix it with their former food, over time reducing the amount of the former food and increasing the amount of the new food.
Encourage Your Dog to Eat Slower — Eating more slowly can help alleviate your dog’s stomach issues. When your dog eats fast, they’re likely to swallow excess air, leading to unpleasant consequences. They also can’t digest their food correctly if they’re gulping it down whole.
Use bowls like The Niner or other slow-feed bowls that encourage slower eating. For example, The Niner features nine raised bumps that spread out your dog’s food into tiny pockets. Your dog has to work around these obstacles as they eat, providing mental stimulation and a safer eating pace.
A few changes in your dog’s eating habits can go a long way to relieving their indigestion. But if the problem persists or worsens, schedule a follow-up with your veterinarian. Sometimes other things are at play below the surface that could be causing your dog’s burps, heaves, and other issues.
Check out the Neater Pets blog for more tips on taking the best care of your furry friends. Also, follow us on Facebook and Instagram for all the latest product updates that can make life with your pets easier, healthier, and happier.
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