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Chronic water-related vomiting

November 3rd, 2010, 03:25 PM
Hi, I'm new to the forum, I'm here because I have pets with chronic and non-life-threatening (per the vet) problems.

My poor dog has a very tricky tummy. When we got her (rescue dog) she smelled bad (like fish) and she was constantly scratching herself, all over. She's half Golden, so i did some research and switched her to a hypo-allergenic diet (with veterinary consultation) and the scratching and smell went away. :)

The problem now is if she eats something her tummy doesn't like, it seems to make it very sensitive and she throws up for days afterward. The vomiting only happens after she drinks water. She can eat and be fine, but as soon as she drinks more than a few tablespoons at once, she throws everything up. The first time this happened she got very bloated and threw up TONS of food before we could get her to the vet, the bloat then went away and the vet said she wasn't emptying her tummy properly and gave her something to help it empty, which stopped the vomiting. Its happening again (I foolishly let her chew on a smoked beef bone from the pet store) and a different vet (there's several in the same office) told us she could have any number of things, there was no way to tell what was wrong without doing a whole battery of tests. The vet said there was a chance the tests wouldn't actually show what was wrong but she didn't want to treat without them (?). The vet said this wasn't too serious right now, and that the first step was probably to try to stop the vomiting by calming her tummy. This is what I've been doing (before taking her to the vet), and its been working somewhat, problem is its been going on for almost a week and the only way to help her keep her food down is to feed her very small amounts of canned food 5-6 times daily, and only give small amounts of water at a time. This is not a feasible long term solution, not only are we not always around often enough to ensure she's getting the correct food/water, I'm scared we're not giving her enough of each. This is why we took her to the vet. Very disappointed we came out of the visit in exactly the same situation we were in beforehand.

Help! What do i do to calm her tummy and why does the water seem to cause vomiting? I asked the vet this, but she seemed to be more interested in telling me to do things we were already doing, and didn't seem to understand/believe my responses that we were ALREADY soaking her food/monitoring her water intake/feeding her a bland diet. :cry:

November 3rd, 2010, 03:47 PM
Welcome to the site! :thumbs up Sounds like alot of frustration...Did the vet say she has Bloat? or something else? I am wondering if she is getting cold water, warm water and does it make any difference? I think someone once mentioned to me that bloat can be brought on by cold water...I have no idea if thats possible or not?

Does she vomit if you hold back her water intake for say 10 minutes or 1/2 hour does she still vomit?

Was she prescribed any medications?

November 3rd, 2010, 04:02 PM
Hi, thanks for the welcome, and the response! :)

Nope, no bloat, thank goodness! The vet seemed reluctant to give any possibilities other than pancreatitis or a blockage or tummy irritation. There was no fever, and her poops seem normal, which I think probably led to the vet telling me to do what we've been doing and see how it goes.

The water is room temperature, when its first put down I make it lukewarm but it doesn't seem to matter. She vomits if she drinks too much water at any point it seems, the longest time between feeding and water/vomiting has been 2 hours. She's fine with just a little bit of water, but if she's been outside charging around or on a walk she gets really thirsty and laps up about a cup at once (judging from the evidence left on the floor..). This always leads to vomiting, and sometimes as little as half a cup will do it.

We were worried in the past that she was bolting her food down too fast, leading to vomiting, so now we soak it in warm water and feed her 4 times day in one of those bowls with plastic pieces in them designed to slow them down and stop food-bolting.

It really seems to be water related, but i don't want to stop her from drinking when she's thirsty, and I can't always be around to give her a little bit every 15 min :(

November 3rd, 2010, 04:05 PM
Also, she's drinking out a clean bowl/plate every day, and the kitt drinks out of the same dish with no problems. So i don't think its something in the water :shrug:

November 3rd, 2010, 04:15 PM
I know this is totally unrelated,but my cat Rocky would drink a lot of water,then five minutes later,vomit all the water and if he had eaten his food came up too.
However he had cancer of his para-thyroid and was very sick,i am sure your dog don't have anything like that.

November 3rd, 2010, 04:26 PM
I'm so sorry to hear about your kitty! That sounds terrible :cry:

I don't think its anything like that, she's pretty bouncy still and she's actually not dropping weight as fast as you would expect. That's part of the frustration, she seems just like a normal, happy, friendly retriever.. its just that we're mopping her messes up every time the poor puppy drinks something!

November 3rd, 2010, 05:17 PM
Other than her kibble, what are you feeding her in terms of snacks and chewies? Does she get rawhide? Are you still giving her the smoked bones? Both can cause stomach upset. Rawhide expands in the digestive system and can cause blockage. Smoked bones are dehydrated (same as feeding cooked bones which can be dangerous). Both are treated with chemicals and may still contain harmful bacteria.

Some other tips...raise her water bowl several inches off the ground. Offer her water 30+ minutes after a meal to give her some time to digest. While playing, interrupt her frequently to offer small amounts of water so she's not gulping it all down after playtime is over. We normally have a rest period (no play/walking/running) for 30 minutes before meals and 1 1/2 - 2 hours after meals as well.

What brand of kibble are you feeding her? Keeping in mind her allergies, a quality food with highly digestible ingredients might be something to consider as well.

Hope some of this helps.

November 3rd, 2010, 06:59 PM
She doesn't usually get food-based treats, and probably won't from now on at all. Never rawhide, and that bone was the first time she'd had one. Other than that the only thing she ever gets (and rarely) is a tiny bit of peanut butter inside her kong. I think I'm going to stop that as well. The vet mentioned carrots and broccoli, I was considering using them to replace the other treat options, if we ever do decide to risk it again. Opinions/experiences? I'd love some feedback, I didn't leave the visit feeling too confident in the advice I was given.

Raising her dish is a great idea! I'm going to do that right now. And its funny you mention stopping to water the dog (lol) while playing, because I was just out buying her one of those portable water dishes to use when we're outside, for that very reason! Glad to have some reassurance that it was a good idea! We'll start to regulate her excersise as well as the water intake, I might remove the water dish 10-15 min before meals and not put it back for another half an hour or so.. is that ok you think? Or mean? I don't want her to go thirsty, and I'm scared she'll be damaged if she doesn't have 24hr access to water.

As for kibble, we tried the orijin as well as just a regular grocery brand (oops), when she was still itching and smelly on the orijin we consulted a vet and switched to Hills z/d (ultra allergen) with some salmon oil mixed in for skin/coat health, it completely solved the problem! Now she doesn't itch or smell at all :) I was told the z/d is supposed to be easily digested because the protein in it was already partially broken down? I can tell you one thing for sure, it smells awful when its brought back up. She's been vomit free for almost 36hrs now, I think I'll give her food on her regular feeding schedule starting tonight and see how that goes. Thanks so much for the ideas! Wish me luck!

November 3rd, 2010, 08:07 PM
Our GSD Chimo used to bring up every time he had cold water. He could not drink cold water. Never did find out why???

November 4th, 2010, 05:22 AM
My dog went throuh a faze where he would gulp down his water, and it would come right back up a few minutes later - happened a few times a week for a while.
Raising the water dish did help. However I think eventually, he just learned to "drink differently" which was the ultimate solution (he didn't like throwing up either obviously).

It's kind of funny to watch him drink now. He basically drinks up the side of the bowl, instead of gulping from the middle.

You said you have one of those bowls that slow dogs down when they're eating. Did you know you can get water bowls that do the same thing? They're designed to make them drink slower. Might be worth a shot.

Here's one from Costco, but I'm sure if you look online you can get them anywhere.|20161&N=4010183&Mo=53&No=45&Nr=P_CatalogName:BCCA&cat=22471&Ns=P_Price|1||P_SignDesc1&lang=en-CA&Sp=C&topnav=

Good luck!

November 4th, 2010, 05:54 AM
the first three years of my dogs life was spent tossing up everything after she drank, it was especially bad after walking/exercising, she'd drink and then what ever she had to eat before the excercise came right back up with her water, I tried warm water, tried pepto bismal then dummy here realized it was only when she put her head down to drink and then lifted it back up that she would bring it all up, she never did it when she'd drink from the taps. have you tried elevating her water bowl? worked for us. Hopefully you find your solution too and its nothing too serious.

November 4th, 2010, 07:42 AM
I would be trying maybe limited diet kibble such as Natural Balance duck and potato, I did not like the z/d. My friend has a dog sensitive to everything and she's on a vet canned food, I'll find out the name. The canned food was way better than the kibble. I'll get back to you. Feel as though it's an allergy to food with the scratching, the good thing is it disappeared which is a good sign, now you have to play the game of elimination. No treats at all and try the food for 12 wks at a time. Go makes a duck and quinoa as well. No rice I think? There are a ton of food choices for this situation.