Why Does my Bichon Eat Vomit – Happy Bichon


Why Does my Dog Eat Vomit

Why Do Dogs Eat Their own Vomit

If you spend enough time around your fluffy Bichon Frise, eventually you will witness one of their most dreaded behaviors.

A foamy, warm pile of fresh vomit may make our stomachs turn, but to a Bichon it is simply another second opportunity to enjoy a good meal.

This is especially true when a Bichon vomits after eating too quickly. As we discuss before regurgitation and vomiting are two different processes. Regurgitation is a passive process.

One day you’re sitting comfortably in one room when you hear your cute Bichon retching one room over.

You heard the sound and if you’ve heard the sound before, you’ll never forget what is going to happen to your poor Bichon now.

It’s better than any alarm clock!  You try to reach your Bichon in time, but just as you walk through the doorway, you realize you’re too late.

Not only that poor soul vomited, but also in the process of eating whatever she just expelled.

Whether your adorable Bichon ate too quickly or simply swallow something that doesn’t agree with him or her.

The first thing is first you should know the basics: Have you done any changes to your bichon food recently?

Have you ever seen him competing with other dogs for food? Or has he eaten grass recently?

In this article, we will discuss the possible reasons and try to find what should you do next?

Bichon Chewing process

If you think your Bichon eat as same as we do then you are wrong, their teeth aren’t made for chewing and neither is their jaw.

Have you ever noticed their teeth look different? They aren’t sharp just for self-protection, but they’re made to grab hold and tear pieces of meat to swallow.

If it comes to your attention there are also larger spaces between their teeth and they lack molars which are used to grind their food.

And last but not least, their jaws are rigid. They cannot move their lower jaw sidewise in order to grind their food, so molars would be useless.

For us humans, the chewing process is different, enzymes releases in our saliva to help break down the food. Dog digestion doesn’t work that way.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IRtCDvpIwyk
Why is my Dog Throwing Up?

What is vomiting?

Vomiting is the involuntary, forceful expulsion of the contents of one’s stomach through the mouth and sometimes the nose.

Vomiting is also defined as the ejection of contents of the stomach and upper intestine.

If discussed in medical terms, it’s an active process, meaning there’s some warning, and your dog’s behavior and body language will change when it vomits.

Cause of vomiting:

  • Bacterial infection of the gastrointestinal tract
  • Diet change
  • Food intolerance
  • Ingestion of garbage
  • Foreign bodies (i.e. toys, bones, pieces of chewies)
  • Parasites
  • Acute kidney failure
  • Acute liver failure or gall bladder inflammation
  • Pancreatitis
  • Post-operative nausea
  • Ingestion of toxic substances
  • Viral infections
  • Certain medications or anesthetic agents
  • Bloat
  • Heatstroke
  • Car sickness
  • Infected uterus

Vomiting that occurs sporadically or irregularly over a longer period of time to your Bichon can be due to stomach or intestinal inflammation, severe constipation, cancer, kidney dysfunction, liver disease or systemic illness.

Signs of vomiting

If you have seen these sign and symptoms in your lovely Bichon then you should be immediately contact to your veterinarian

  • Wandering before vomiting
  • Drooling (caused by nausea)
  • Grumbling/growling stomach sound
  • Abdominal heaving and retching sounds
  • Hunched posture and stiffness
What is the difference in my Dog Between Vomiting and Regurgitation?

What is Regurgitation?

If you talk about regurgitation it is defined as the ejection of the contents of the esophagus.

It also refers to the process in which the dog’s stomach contents (i.e., food) move backwards up the esophageal track and into the mouth.

It’s an opposite process from vomiting; it is a passive process, meaning it happens quickly and with relatively little change in behavior and body language. Dogs typically regurgitate immediately after eating.

It is actually a symptom rather than a disorder. Here are some reasons

  • Regurgitation occurs by acquired causes it includes Problems with the throat, often present at birth
  • Enlarged esophagus(Congenital problems with the esophageal tract)
  • Hiatal hernia (Cancer Addison’s disease), narrowing of the esophagus.
  • Gastric reflux
  • Foreign objects
  • Poisoning
  • Rabies
  • Cancer

This condition of your Bichon can be inherited or acquired from any cause. If you do modifications to the Bichon diet, in combination with medication, it will correct the condition.

Signs and Symptoms of regurgitation

Common symptoms associated with regurgitation include:

  • Fever
  • Throwing up water
  • Lethargy
  • Tiredness
  • Vomiting
  • Coughing
  • Weight loss
  • Runny nose
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Bad breath lumps (halitosis)
  • A starving appetite
  • Swelling in the neck
  • Increased breathing noises

How regurgitation differs from vomiting?

The distinct difference is that vomiting is done involuntarily. Vomiting is an involuntary expulsion of stomach contents, and regurgitation is the voluntary return of undigested food from the esophagus back to the mouth.

While regurgitation is an important step in weaning canines, and it’s a practice still seen in domestic dogs

When your Bichon vomit, it’s simply because he’s eaten something disagreeable to his system or ate down too much food, too fast.

Vomiting can also indicate something serious, your Bichon may have swallowed a toxic substance, or may be suffering from a condition that requires immediate medical attention.

Vomiting can also be associated with gastrointestinal and systemic disorders that should be evaluated by a veterinarian.

Regurgitation is referred to as the evacuation of food, mucus, or fluids from the throat. It differs from vomiting in a way that your Bichon will not have abdominal contractions and nausea.

 However, there are ways to tell in Bichon whether the vomit is from regurgitation or from the stomach. One of the most obvious signs is that the food will be completely undigested so it will look just like it did when your dog ate it.

Role of Bichon’s mother in this Process

It may seem very disgusting to you but scraping down their own vomit is normal canine behavior with some reasonable explanations.

A foamy, warm pile of fresh vomit may make our stomachs turn, but to a Bichon it is simply another second opportunity to enjoy a good meal.

This is especially true when a Bichon vomits after eating too quickly. As we discuss before regurgitation and vomiting are two different processes. Regurgitation is a passive process.

The digestive system of Bichon simply rejects what has been swallowed and expels it back out before it even reaches the stomach. It happens with great speed that the food is still undigested and it carries the same pleasant aroma.

Now come to the point that how mother helps stimulating this behavior. When cute Bichon puppies changeover their diet from mother’s milk to solid food, there is a time in between during which they need help breaking down whole foods into soft mushier food.

Their mouths or their digestive systems are not ready for solid food yet. This is when regurgitation comes into act. His mother helps him to soften the food by regurgitation.

The Bichon Breeders will often help their fluffy pups in this process by providing soft pulpy and breakdown food to them.

This mush is often composed of soaked then dog food enriched with warmed goat’s milk. It is the same as their mother would do for them. Research shows that 60 percent of mother Bichon are involved in this process.

From day one of life, this instinctual behavior is present in the mother dog. Without the benefit of humanitarian aid to feed their puppies, regurgitation was necessary to ensure the survival of the litter. 

Transitioning to a New Dog Food

Sudden changes to your lovely Bichon’s food may result in gastrointestinal issues, so switching dog food (varieties or brands) too quickly can upset his stomach.

Above all, it’s important to transition to a new dog food slowly, typically over 7-10 days.

Before you make the decision to change dog foods you should discuss with your veterinarian. If you continue to see signs of stomach issues or your dog does not stop vomiting, you should bring him in as soon as you can.

 Your Bichon may have an allergy or food intolerance, or he may have a more serious problem (foreign body in the stomach, systemic disease, etc.).

If you’ve recently begun the transition to a brand food, be sure to start small and gradually build up the amount until it’s the only food you’re only offering.

Quick Eating due to Anxiety

Although most Bichon parents assume that a dog vomiting after eating may have a sensitivity to the food, it isn’t necessarily the case.

Anxiety or fear may be the driving force to why a Bichon throws up after eating. Does your Bichon compete with other dogs in the house for food?

This sense of territory can make him eat faster, which may overload his stomach and decrease the amount of saliva normally swallowed with the food that acts as a buffer. And just like us, nervousness and stress can make your lovely Bichon feel nauseous and increase acid in his stomach.

When fluffy Bichon eats too quickly, they don’t take the time to chew their larger pieces of kibble. They also ingest a significant amount of air, both of which can come back up by regurgitation or by vomiting.

If possible, feed your nervous Bichon in a secluded area, without any other animals around.

Start with small meals and gradually build back up to a normal-sized dinner once you see he’s calmed down at each meal.

There can be other underlying issues associated with a dog’s anxiety that can affect his ability to keep his food down.

Have there been changes in the house that might have disrupted his routine? Have you moved lately or changed your work schedule?

Changes like this can make your Bichon anxious, which can affect his digestive system. If you suspect that something like this could be why your lovely Bichon is throwing up after eating.

Then you should continue to show him you love him. Give him praise, pet and play with him, and reassure him that everything is okay

Slowly, over time your beloved Bichon Frise will adapt to the changes and get back to his old self.

 It is still important to monitor his eating habits to make sure that there isn’t a larger issue at hand.

If it is happening more than once every few weeks, you should consult your veterinarian. Vomiting due to other health concerns is more common than due to anxiety.

Why Do Bichons Eat Their Own Vomit?

Have you ever seen it? Your lovely Bichon is eating their meal, suddenly they throw it up and then they start eating their vomit. What will you do about it?

You should walk away and let them finish. It doesn’t happen often but the fact is this kind of dog vomiting is Mother Nature’s doing and it’s a good thing.

Nature knows there is a certain “fit” needed going down the esophagus in order to be digested properly. Think of it as a built-in filter to be sure the right ratio of food to stomach acid is maintained for good digestion.

If the fit isn’t just right, the food is promptly sent back up and out. While we tend to think of it is disgusting, Maybe your Bichon thinks it’s a special treat to eat twice at one meal.

Your dog eats her own vomit because of her incredible sense of smell. You may look at a pile of dog puke and think, ewww. But your dog smells the same pile of puke, recognizes all the food particles it contains, and thinks, yum.

You may notice that sometimes your lovely Bichon gives vomit a sniff and doesn’t eat it. Whether or not she dives in may have something to do with how digested the contents of her vomit are.

If the food is still relatively whole, it’s more appetizing. If the food is broken down, or if the vomit contains mostly bile, it may not seem so tasty. Of course, if your Bichon is feeling sick, she probably won’t have any interested in eating more food

Your Bichon possesses about 300 million olfactory receptors in their noses compared to 6 million for us humans.

These receptors are responsible for our detection of odor molecules, and they help send signals to our brains which help us differentiate different smells.

Our sense of smell is relegated to a small region on the roof of our nasal cavity, as well as our main airway path. So when we smell something it goes in and out quickly with the air we breathe.

In Bichon roughly 12% of the air they breathe gets detoured into a special area in the back of the nose dedicated to smells. It’s filled with olfactory receptors that allow dogs to process and recognize more smells.

So when your dog pukes up his dinner he’s not going to be grossed out by his stomach contents lying there on the floor. He’s going to immediately recognize that “hey, there’s lots of food in there.”

Bichon Loves the Taste of vomit

Similar to anxiety eating, your Bichon may indulge too fast if he loves the taste of his food. There’s nothing wrong with enjoying a meal, but you want to be sure your Bichon gets all the nutrition he can get without it coming back up.

One way to reduce this trend is by feeding him smaller portions until you notice his intake naturally slows down.

Another option is to serve your beloved Bichon’s meals spread out on a large flat plate or cookie sheet. This forces him to take longer to locate and ingest each piece, reducing the chances of him vomiting after eating.

There are also special dog food puzzle toys that require him to work a little harder to get his food out. This can be a good exercise for him, but also force him to eat more slowly. Just be sure to monitor that he is still eating all of his food, and doesn’t get frustrated by his new meal delivery system.

When your Bichon Recently Ingested Grass?

Your Bichon may eat grass for variety of reasons with no adverse effects. Maybe your adorable Bichon is not feeling well because they have eaten something wrong then they habit to eat the grass so, that they can vomit their stomach content to feel better.

Once your poor Bichon Frise vomits the grass and food, he will feel better and shouldn’t need any additional medical care if just a simple upset stomach.

Just remember to keep your lovely Bichon hydrated and watch him closely to ensure vomiting doesn’t persist, and there is nothing else is wrong with him.

If your dog simply cannot stop vomiting after eating food and grass, bring him to the vet or emergency animal clinic as soon as possible.

 There could be something else wrong. Your Bichon may have infectious or systemic disease. He may have a foreign body or even a twisted stomach. Whatever the case, quick attention will make him feel better.

The other reason behind grass eating is thought to be more of instinctive behavior. This is thought to be a purposeful attempt to induce vomiting after they’ve swallowed something that makes them feel ill.

It is possible your lovely Bichon is suffering from an upset stomach, and their instinct is to throw up as a form of relief.

If your lovely Bichons are eating grass to make themselves vomit. They usually swallow grass as quickly as possible, barely even chewing it. It is believed that the long, unchewed pieces of grass tickle their throats to stimulate vomiting.

Is eating Vomit is Normal for Bichon?

If your lovely Bichon ate his own vomit you don’t need to worry about that behavior itself. It’s gross indeed, but it’s a common behavior in dogs.

Dogs sometimes vomit after eating too quickly or eating something disagreeable. But vomiting can also be a sign of a much more serious condition.

If your Bichon throws up then you should pay attention to his behavior. If he’s acting differently, he doesn’t want to eat, seems tired, or throws up more than once it may be time for a trip to the vet.

How to Discourage Your Dog from Eating Vomit?

If you don’t like that your lovely Bichon is eating vomit than the best way to stop your Bichon is to immediately remove them from the situation after they threw up.

Unfortunately, it can be really tempting for some Bichon, they don’t like it.

So now after your Bichon vomits, you should immediately take him outside and keep an eye on him. Since Bichons often puke more than once it’s also a nice way to avoid another cleanup inside.

When does my vomiting Bichon need to see a vet?

If your adorable Bichon only vomits once or twice and is still bright and happy and eating and drinking then you may choose to wait and monitor your Bichon at home.

Do you know what’s really important is?  You should know what signs to watch for and to get your Bichon to the animal vet if vomiting continues to occur.

If your Bichon is an adult dog and is vomiting multiple times within a day, is lethargic, or is vomiting and not eating/drinking then you should take your Bichon immediately to a vet.  

These signs along with vomiting may indicate a more serious condition and could be a cause for alarm.

There are times when a vomiting Bichon requires immediate treatment. If your Bichon exhibits any of the following symptoms, call a veterinarian.

  • Frequent vomiting – If your Bichon vomit frequently and quickly becomes exhausted. This is especially true for elder one or individuals who have health problems.
  • Projectile vomiting – potentially a sign of an obstruction in the stomach or intestine.
  • Lethargy and depression – indications that the Bichon’s whole body is being adversely affected
  • Severe diarrhea – the combination of severe vomiting and diarrhea can quickly result in dehydration
  • Decreased urination – decreased urine production is seen with dehydration
  • Abdominal pain and/or enlargement – these symptoms are generally seen with the more serious causes of vomiting in Bichons.
  • Repeated attempts at vomiting but nothing is produced – this is a classic symptom of gastric dilatation and bloat, a potentially life-threatening condition. 
  • The presence of anything abnormal within the vomit, including foreign objects, blood, evidence of poisoning, etc.

What to Feed a Bichon after Vomiting?

On the other hand, if your adult Bichon has only vomited once or twice and seems to feel pretty good, your vet will sometimes recommend the following home treatment:

  • Take away all sources of food and water for six to eight hours.
  • If your Bichon does not vomit during that time, offer a small amount of water. If your dog can hold that down, gradually reintroduce larger amounts of water.
  • If after 12 hours of being allowed to drink, your dog is still not vomiting, offer a small meal of boiled white meat chicken without bones and skin mixed with white rice.
  • If your beloved Bichon can eat this without vomiting, increase the size of his meals over a day or two and then start mixing in his regular dog food.  

Prevention of Vomiting

 There are many causes of vomiting that cannot be prevented, but for those that can, observe the following rules:

You cannot change the diet of your lovely Bichon immediately. Always start gradually and it is the best approach. Sudden food changes are a common cause of intestinal upset in Bichons.

If you want to prevent gastrointestinal irritation or blockage then you should not give your beloved Bichon a toy that can be swallowed or chewed into pieces.

You should not offer bones to your lovely Bichon. These, too, are routinely implicated in vomiting episodes. If it is necessary to give your dog bones, large, uncooked varieties (such as femurs or knuckles) are less likely to break into sharp shards.

You should avoid human food to your Bichon because some human foods are absolute dangerous for dogs (e.g., grapes, raisins, chocolate, onions, garlic, chives, macadamia nuts, and high-fat items) but Bichon with sensitive stomachs may not even be able to eat “safe” foods without vomiting.

Don’t let your Bichon to search. “Garbage gut” is what veterinarians commonly call the gastroenteritis caused by consuming scavenged items. Scavenging also increases the risk of foreign-body ingestion and toxin exposure.

Watch overly-inquisitive Bichon carefully when out and about. A basket muzzle to keep them from eating anything they find may be in order.

You can provide your Bichon homemade food such as boiled potatoes, rice, and well-cooked, skinless chicken. In certain situations, your Bichon may require fluid therapy, antibiotics, a change in diet, antiemetics (drugs to help control vomiting) or other medication.

Your vet may recommend taking a pet off solid foods for 24 to 36 hours. During this period you can help your pet stay hydrated by giving fluids such as chicken or vegetable broth.

If your Vet recommends electrolyte then you can also introduce small amounts of electrolytes.

Article FAQ – Bichon Frise – 81 Frequently Asked Questions

Recent Content