How To Make A Dog Throw Up

Kate Barrington
by Kate Barrington
Yep, it’s gross. No denying that. But sometimes you need to know how to make a dog throw up. A little bit of vomit just might save his life!

If you have owned a dog for any length of time, you have probably noticed their tendency to eat anything and everything. Our little furbabies love nothing more than filling their faces with anything even remotely edible. In fact, some dogs don’t even bother to discriminate between edible and inedible objects. If it looks or smells good, dogs are practically guaranteed to eat it. While in many cases this doesn’t harm your dog (aside from occasionally piling on some extra pounds), there is always the possibility that your little fido could accidentally get into something toxic, poisonous, or dangerous. If your pup doesn’t discriminate what he shoves into his mouth, things will end badly. So, if your dog does end up ingesting something dangerous, you may need to induce vomiting to get the poison out of his system. It’s not pleasant or something that any dog owner wants to do. However, these situations could easily become a matter of life and death for your pup. It’s gross, but important. So without further ado, here’s how to make a dog throw up.

When to Induce Vomiting

It is important to know which types of substances may necessitate induced vomiting and which do not. In some cases, forcing your dog to throw up may actually do more harm than good. So, Before you induce vomiting, it would be wise to check the label for the product that your pet ingested to see what the warning label suggests. The only times that you should avoid inducing vomiting is for corrosive materials and for hydrocarbons or petroleum distillates. Corrosive materials include oven cleaners, drain cleaners, batteries and lime removal products. Hydrocarbons and petroleum distillates include kerosene, gasoline and motor oil. Products in both of these categories can cause damage to the esophagus during vomiting. Petroleum distillates may also be inhaled into the lungs which can cause aspiration pneumonia. So while it’s still a medical emergency when your dog ingests these harmful materials, inducing vomiting is not the solution. That would be like throwing gasoline on a fire. Instead, it’s best to call the pet poison control centre hotline or rush your dog to a vet immediately.

Related: Can Your Neighbor Make Your Dog Vomit?

Induced vomiting is only recommended in the following situations:

  • If the substance is listed as poisonous on the label.
  • If the ingestion took place within the last hour (any later than that and the substance will be too deep in his digestion system for vomiting to be a possible solution).
  • If the dog is not showing signs of poisoning.
  • If the dog is healthy and not at risk for aspirating vomit.
  • Only if 3% hydrogen peroxide is used to induce vomiting.

Related: Poisonous Plants For Dogs

Steps for how to make a dog throw up

Before you attempt to induce vomiting in your dog, you should call the pet poison control centre hotline to make sure this tactic is recommended. The hotline representative will walk you through the necessary steps, but for your edification this conversation will likely go as follows:

  1. Inform the hotline representative of your dog’s weight as well as any known health problems (even if you don’t think they will necessarily relate to this issue).
  2. Tell the representative exactly what your dog ingested and an approximate amount. It’s important to get these details right.
  3. If the dog hasn’t eaten within the past 2 hours, offer him a small meal to encourage vomiting. It would be ideal if his vomiting could happen without induction.
  4. Measure out 1ml of 3% hydrogen peroxide per pound of your dog’s body weight (1 teaspoon is approximately 5ml). Be very careful and do not give your dog more than 45ml, even if he weighs more than 45 lbs. Overdoing this portion will cause even more serious problems than the ones that you are currently dealing with.
  5. Use a syringe or turkey baster to squirt the hydrogen peroxide into the back of the dog’s throat. Unpleasant, but necessary.
  6. If the dog hasn’t vomited within 15 minutes, administer a second dose. Be extra careful with the quantity of the does since you’re in dangerous territory here.
  7. If vomiting hasn’t occurred after the second dose, call the hotline back for further instructions. This situation may have gotten more serious.
  8. Once the dog has vomited, collect a small sample in a leak-proof container so you can have your veterinarian test it to be sure of what your dog ingested. Obviously, this will be rather unpleasant, but it’s incredibly important to determine the precise cause of what happened.
  9. Thoroughly clean up the vomit (ideally while wearing rubber gloves to avoid contact with hazardous materials).
  10. Take your dog to the vet immediately for evaluation and continuation of treatment. Just because your pup has puked up the poison doesn’t mean that you’re out of the woods. It might be the beginning of additional health problems that need to be assessed and treated as quickly as possible.

The method described above is the ONLY method recommended for inducing vomiting in a dog at home. Other methods such as sticking your finger down the dog’s throat, using salt or mustard, or administering syrup of ipecac are unsafe for dogs and should be avoided. While they may seem obvious, they can cause more problems that you won’t want to deal with. Even if your dog seems to be fine after inducing vomiting, it is still essential that you take him to the vet for evaluation and for treatment to prevent poisoning from whatever substance he ingested. Dogs ingesting poisonous materials is a very serious problem. While it might be important to induce vomiting to get that substance out of his little system, it is not a miracle cure. Sure, you dog might be fine once he’s puked out the poison, but he might also require further treatment to avoid permanent damage.

Only your vet will be able to determine what steps need to be taken next. So always defer to a vet for further treatment. This is a very serious problem that needs to be taken seriously. It’s not an exaggeration to suggest that this is a matter of life and death. So take the time and make the effort to act accordingly. Time is of the essence in these scenarios. So don’t waste any time and get to an expert immediately. Your dog’s life depends on it.

Those are the basic steps to induce vomiting and care for your dog if he has ingested potentially poisonous material. Do you have any experience with this horrifying scenario? If so, feel free to tell us in the comment section below. While it might be hard to share this story, it could help another pet owner save their pet’s life. So, it’s worth it.

Kate Barrington
Kate Barrington

Kate Barrington is the loving owner of two cats (Bagel and Munchkin) and a noisy herd of guinea pigs. Having grown up with golden retrievers, Kate has a great deal of experience with dogs but labels herself a lover of all pets. Having received a Bachelor's degree in English, Kate has combined her love for pets and her passion for writing to create her own freelance writing business, specializing in the pet niche.

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