Have you noticed your fur buddy vomiting a yellow-green substance all of a sudden? That substance is bile!

In this blog, we'll discuss everything you'll need to know about dog vomit bile—from its causes to its possible treatment.

So if your dog recently vomited something yellowish, you better scroll down!

As dog parents, we can't help but worry when our pup suddenly feels unwell. It is only natural for us to feel protective of the ones we love.

But why is the dog vomiting bile anyways? Before that, let’s know what bile is first. 

Jack Russell dog vomiting

Dog Vomit Bile: But First, What is Bile?

The bile has a sticky liquid texture and is yellow-green, sometimes it may have a foam found in the bile.

Bile is made up of bile acids and salts, cholesterol, conjugated bilirubin, electrolytes, phospholipids, and water.

Bile is a digestive fluid produced by the liver and stored in the gallbladder. 

The gallbladder releases the bile when the food arrives from the esophagus. 

Bile helps in digestion. It breaks down fats during digestion.

Bile also absorbs fat-soluble vitamins. It excretes waste and excess cholesterol. 

Symptoms for Dog Vomit Bile

Here are the symptoms of dogs vomiting bile: 

  • Vomiting a yellow-green liquid
  • Vomiting a yellow-green liquid with foam
  • Discomfort or pain in the abdomen or stomach
  • Inflammation or bloating  of the stomach
  • Retching or repeated attempts to vomit
  • Nausea
  • Inappetence
  • Sudden change in mood
  • Drooling

Possible Causes of Dog Vomit Bile

Dogs who vomit bile may have complications in gastrointestinal function. Each condition may differ in diagnosis and treatment. 

Therefore, owners must be keen on observing their dog's condition after vomiting bile.

This can help the veterinarian narrow down the possible cause and treatment for the dog.

Keep in mind that these are only possible causes of why dogs are vomiting bile.

Seek professional aid for your dog to properly diagnose and treat their condition.

What are the possible causes of dogs vomiting bile? 

Allergies or Intolerance

One of the symptoms of food intolerance or allergy may be the dog vomiting the food with bile.

When a dog consumes food that their stomach is not compatible with, it may irritate the digestive lining which may initiate vomiting.

This can be accompanied by other symptoms such as diarrhea and itchy skin. 

Owners should immediately stop giving the specific food the dog has vomited and consult with the veterinarian for further analysis. This can avoid any anaphylactic reaction in the future. 

Stress and Anxiety

Dogs can also vomit due to immense anxiety or stress.

Since their muscles will likely contract due to shaking or discomfort, over time it may cause them to vomit because of the intensity.

Owners may try to comfort and assure their dogs by removing them from uncomfortable situations.

Owners may also take upon trying to refocus their dog’s attention elsewhere to lessen their anxiety. 

Bilious Vomiting Syndrome

Bilious vomiting Syndrome is when dogs vomit bile, a yellow fluid, or foam instead of food.

This is often caused by not having a meal overnight until the morning.

Dogs may display symptoms such as nausea, smacking of the lips, and inappetence. 

Although this condition is not fatal, owners should have their dogs consulted with the veterinarian if other symptoms occur. 

Bloat

Dogs who have Gastric Dilation and Volvulus or Bloat are often found dry heaving or vomiting with a little amount of bile.

The exact cause is still unidentified but it is associated with excessive amounts of water and/or air in the stomach. 

This condition is often inherited as well. Bloat is very painful—thus, owners should immediately seek professional help if their dog is suspected to have bloat.

Aside from vomiting the dog may also display swollen stomach, painful stomach, excessive drooling, pale gums, and collapsing. 

Dog Vomit Bile Example

Gastrointestinal Disease (Gastritis and Pancreatitis)

Gastritis is the disruption of gastric function due to blockage, inflammation, or ulceration.

This will cause the dog to vomit excessively and may become chronic in the future if left untreated immediately. 

Dogs with Gastritis will often vomit bile, foamy bile, blood, or food.

Other symptoms include gagging, painfulness, repeated attempt to retch, and lethargy.

Gastritis should be treated immediately as it may accumulate infection and other complications in gastrointestinal function. 

In pancreatitis, when the Pancreas becomes inflamed, it may leak harmful digestive enzymes to other gastrointestinal organs causing disruption and damage.

Pancreatitis is caused by premature enzymes being activated earlier in the pancreas instead of in the small intestine. 

Dogs with pancreatitis are often found vomiting consumed food or bile.

It may also be accompanied by symptoms such as nausea, lethargy, abdominal pain, inappetence, fever, and diarrhea.

In untreated and worse cases, dogs may experience acute shock, severe depression, and sudden death. 

Owners who suspect their dog of Pancreatitis should seek immediate help. This condition can worsen rapidly and may cause fatality. 

Intestinal Blockages

Intestinal blockage is often caused by food or fluid completely blocking the intestine and preventing proper flow for digestion.

This can cause dogs to be in great discomfort and may attempt to vomit and may vomit bile. 

Other symptoms include inappetence, straining bowel movements or unable to defecate completely, burping, lethargy abdominal pain, and many more.

Prolonging intestinal blockage may cause infection and necrosis of the intestinal wall. 

Owners should have their dogs checked as soon as possible to prevent other complications.

Prolonging the condition can be fatal especially if lasted more than 3 days to a week.

Parasites or Worms

Dogs who have worms often have a symptom of vomiting ingested food, bile, or even worms.

Worms may obstruct gastrointestinal function and will upset the stomach of their host. Therefore, dogs who have worms may vomit the worm.

Observe the dog’s condition after they have vomited bile.

Owners should take note of any symptoms such as lethargy, inappetence, fever, abdominal pain, restlessness, diarrhea, worms, and other uncommon behaviors they may display in the time being.

After observing, owners may contact their veterinarians for further instruction on whether to further observe or have the dog consulted and tested. 

Some complications involving vomiting bile may rapidly worsen. For any life-threatening symptoms, owners should rush it to the nearest veterinarian clinic r hospital. 

Diagnosis for Dog Vomit Bile

As soon as you think that you see your pup vomiting often or excessively, it's best advised to consult with your vet right away. It is suggested to begin a vomiting record.

List down how often your dog vomits. It should specify if the vomit includes bile only, or if is it mixed with digested food.

With these records, it can help your vet have a faster diagnosis. The quicker the diagnosis, the faster the vet can find possible treatments for your pup.

It is advisable to undergo a thorough physical evaluation with the veterinarian.

This can help the veterinarian evaluate any physical and behavioral changes and consider what symptoms are present or may occur in the future. 

After the physical examination, the vet can also conduct a blood count, blood profile, and chemical profile.

Usually, it is paired with urinalysis. It is also great if you have a sample of your dog's vomit.

The vet can also order a few diagnostic tools such as a radiograph or ultrasound for them to have a much better look if there's a presence of an obstruction or foreign body.

Dog Vomiting

Treatment for Dogs Vomiting Bile

Just like any medical condition, the treatment for dogs who vomit bile will depend on the cause of the vomiting.

Communicate with your vet about your dog's recent and long-term medical history.

It can also help them if you can tell them your dog's diet or if they are currently on medications.

You can also add anything you've felt like he has eaten recently lick plants, chemicals, or harmful foods.

Treatment usually begins with anti-nausea medications, antacids, or GI-protectant drugs.

However, keep in mind that the first doses will be given via injection to help stop the vomiting.

Fluid therapy is the one recommended if excessive vomiting results in dehydration.

Dehydration with pancreatitis, systemic illness, and infectious diseases can often require hospitalization.

If the cause of the vomiting is poisoning, your vet will now perform a treatment specifically for that toxin. This procedure can sometimes require hospitalization as well.

Unfortunately, if the vet finds out that the cause is GI obstruction, the treatment for that is surgery or endoscopy.

Frequently Asked Questions About Dog Vomiting Bile

Is it normal for dogs to throw up after taking medicine?

Some medications may be too strong and may cause mild reactions to severe reactions in the stomach.

The reaction may even lead to vomiting and some may also experience diarrhea. This mostly occurs with strong medication like antibiotics. 

Do dogs vomit after taking deworming medicine?

Yes, it is more likely an effect of the medication. Aside from defecating, vomiting may also be an effect of deworming medication. 

This may mean that worms affected by the medication have been compromised.

Should I give my dog water after vomiting bile?

If the case is a single vomit, it would be best to hold back on food for at least 6 hours but ensure that they have access to water.

However, don't give them too much water as this can lead to further vomiting.

chihuahua vomit at the cement path

Dog Vomit Bile: Summary

Unfortunately, our fur buddies may experience vomiting their bile sometime in their life.

Although it may be uncomfortable, hopefully not painful, all we can do as owners is to help them ease their discomfort and pain.

It may be difficult to watch our fur buddies experiencing these, but observing and knowing what other symptoms they have will be a huge helping hand for our trusty veterinarians. 

With the help we offer, they will be able to narrow down possible diagnoses and treatments for our pets. Thus, it may even shorten the healing time. 

RELATED: 11 DOG STOMACH PROBLEMS (GASTROINTESTINAL AND DIGESTIVE): CAUSES AND TREATMENT

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