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Diarrhea, upset stomach, and vomiting are common experiences for pet owners. Dogs can vomit for several reasons, and depending on whether or not it is frequent or severe, it may or may not need immediate attention. Vomiting is also a commonly reported concern among parents of raw-fed pups. While most healthy dogs transition to a raw diet without any problem, some may be more sensitive or picky and tend to throw up at times.
In this post, let us discuss all you should know about handling a dog that throws up a raw diet. We try to understand whether it is common and talk about the considerations and possible solutions.
Dog Throwing Up Raw Diet? Here’s What To Do
Most dog owners looking to transition their pups to raw diet report problems like throwing up frequently. While it can be a concern for parents, it is normal for dogs to vomit for a few weeks after starting a raw diet. There are several reasons this happens and does not need a vet visit unless it can’t hold water or vomits multiple times in a short time frame.
A weak digestive system is the most common cause a pup vomits in the first few days of switching to a raw diet. When a dog eats the same food for an extended period, it lacks the right bacteria, enzymes, and acid for digesting the new foods you introduce. The gut would take some time to get accustomed to the raw diet. You should consider giving it a stomach-friendly protein to ease the problem.
Another way you can help the pup digest raw foods is by incorporating enzyme supplements into the diet. You can even switch to canned dog food and gradually introduce new foods over a period. If your dog throws up right after eating raw food, it is caused by a reflex. The dog’s stomach expects what it eats every day, and prepares the appropriate enzymes. When the new food enters the stomach, it rejects it and the dog vomits. The solution is to try a switching method and have patience.
If you have been giving the pup a raw diet for a few weeks and it starts throwing up all of a sudden, it can be an attempt to get the body rid of toxins. However, if it vomits frequently, you should check with the vet to rule out any underlying condition like food poisoning or something more serious.
Dog Regurgitating Raw Food
It is quite common for dogs to regurgitate raw food in the first few weeks of the transition. If you notice that the pup throws up food within minutes of eating, it is regurgitating and not vomiting. There are several reasons this can happen. The most common cause is the pup’s habit to swallow big chunks, often as big as the throat can allow. If this happens, they may regurgitate and then eat again. Another reason is the dog eats too quickly. You can train it to slow down the eating speed and the problem should resolve.
There are other normal instances when the pet can regurgitate raw food. The pup may be hungry in which case the bile in the stomach increases and it experiences a hunger puke. As raw food digests fast, the stomach can be too acidic, causing a yellowish puke. If the dog had consumed too much water on an empty stomach, it can throw up white foamy stuff. Feeding it will solve both the problems. Another reason for regurgitating raw food is the rejection of something the stomach doesn’t accept.
How To Introduce Dog To Raw Diet?
Every pet benefits from a raw diet and it is easy to switch when the pet is healthy and young. However, dogs who have been fed cooked food for a good part of their lives can be reluctant and require some effort. The best way is to introduce raw food all of a sudden. The pup may hesitate for some time before accepting the new diet. An omnivores dog should not find the transition much difficult. Most healthy pets who tend to eat whatever is thrown at them would also co-operate.
Another way is to go slow with the transition. You can try giving cooked and raw diets together, either side by side or mixed together. You can gradually shift the portion towards raw until the diet is all raw. You can even try alternating meals – one meal can be his old food and the other raw. The goal is to slowly eliminate the old diet and keep the new.
Here are some tips that should help introduce a raw diet more easily.
Understand the pet – Every pet is unique and has its own way to adjust. Its health, character, and eating habits ultimately decide what the switch will be like.
Use hunger – A stubborn pet can be kept hungry for a day. It will not only benefit its digestion but also persuade it to eat raw foods if it is resistant.
Add enzyme supplement – Pets who ate processed foods lack certain enzymes. It is advisable to supplement with proenzymes to help the digestive system during the switch.
Try different things – Your pup may like eating raw meat but may not find a single type appealing. You can try more than one type of meat to make it easy.
Start with chicken – Chicken is the best raw food option for dogs as the bones are soft enough to be chewed. You can get started with chicken and consider adding more variety gradually.
Raw Diet Killed My Dog – Warnings & Side Effects
There are several instances of toxicity and death of dogs from feeding raw foods. Studies point to some adverse effects of raw diets and discourage undercooked and raw meat for dogs. Here are some side effects and warnings pet owners should be aware of before switching to a raw diet for their pooch.
A change in diet can have a direct effect on the dog’s stools. Diarrhea is one of the most common side effects of a raw diet. Giving a big quantity of vegetables can contribute to this. It is also common for a dog to have dry stool from the bone content in the diet.
As the pet’s stomach is made to digest a raw diet, it can process it much faster than a grain-based diet. This means you need smaller quantities of food to provide it the necessary energy and nutrition. It is best to stick to the recommended portions and observe for a few days before increasing the quantity if it demands more.
Raw meat is known to contain potentially dangerous pathogens that could not only sicken the pup but also transmit to you and the family. Uncooked meats, milk, cheese, and vegetables could contain bacteria that spread and multiply easily in the refrigerator. Some types of meat are also known to contain toxic chemicals. Not only does the dog get exposed to an increased risk of cancer from such meats but it can sometimes develop sensitivities to some foods if it finds trouble processing them.
It is completely normal for a dog to throw up on a raw diet. While there are several reasons it can happen, you can try some simple solutions to resolve the issue. It can take some time and patience to get the pup accustomed to a new diet. We hope this guide helps you understand what you can expect from a dog on a raw diet and what you can do to keep it happy and healthy.