Is Your Dog Throwing Up White Foam? Do This!

This post may contain affiliate links. Read more here.
Follow us on Pinterest | Instagram | Facebook

If you’ve seen your dog throw up white foam, it must have been very upsetting to you.

Well, what does it mean? There are numerous reasons dogs vomit white foam, and they are all related to the digestive system disorder.

Life comes to a complete halt if your little fur baby is sick.

Most of the time, a dog that throws up puddles of white, bubbly foam has nothing more than simple digestive upset.

Indigestion and gas are quite common for dogs.

Vomiting naturally helps the body get rid of whatever in-edible material it devoured.

In these cases, your pooch will recover in a day at the most and be back to wagging its tail happily in no time.

But, if you’re unsure about the cause, keep reading.

In case the white foamy vomiting continues, you should get your dog to the vet as soon as possible as it may indicate something more serious.

Why Is Your Dog Vomiting White Foam?

Common reasons for dogs vomiting white foam include excess gas or air in the stomach, digestive issues, bloat, but also more serious issues like kennel cough, kidney problems, or parvovirus.

The white foam could be an indication of excess gas or air in the dog’s stomach, which means there’s probably nothing left in your dog’s stomach to vomit, that’s why white slime is coming out.

If your dog is throwing up puddles of bubbly, white foam, he may have eaten something he shouldn’t have, as dogs are so prone to doing.

Or your pooch may have eaten in a hurry or exercised too soon after eating.

The composition of the white foam is often a mixture of saliva and gastric juices.

Sometimes the mucous lining becomes irritated and frothy, and your dog will start vomiting white foam.

Dog Coughing Up White Foam and Gagging

Sometimes, dogs are constantly nauseous and make sounds like suffocation, as these are the signs of canine infectious tracheobronchitis, which is also known as kennel cough.

These signs are generally not serious, and dogs recover without treatment.

Dog Coughing Up Thick White Mucus

Dog cough with thick white mucus is a sign of various problems like kennel cough, parvovirus, and pancreatitis.

The basic reason behind a white mucus cough is that there is nothing else left in the dog’s stomach to vomit.

10 Reasons Why Your Dog Is Vomiting White Foam

There are several reasons for vomiting white foam or slime, and some of them are discussed below.

We’ll also go into detail on which signals you should look out for besides basic sickness signals like heavy breathing.

Indigestion

Indigestion is one of the common reasons for vomiting white slime in dogs.

Indigestion in your dog is as common as in humans; the only difference is that your dog will vomit more than humans.

Normally, when the dog begins throwing up white foam, it means that he is trying to expel the substances that cause irritation in the stomach.

Indigestion also occurs as a result of drinking or eating too fast or too much, consuming grass, trash, or rotten foods that will upset the canine digestive system.

If your dog does not vomit too often, there is nothing to worry about, but if he does vomit occasionally, it may be a serious problem.

The first thing is to check your dog’s food, there may be ingredients present in the food that could be bothering your dog.

Contact your vet for proper treatment. You can also give your dog a tablespoon of pumpkin as it works well for indigestion.

Acid Reflux Symptoms

Acid reflux causes a burning pain known as heartburn. It occurs as a result of stomach acid returning to the food pipe.

You will see that your furry friend will vomit white slime in the morning before eating.

Basically, the gastrointestinal tract is irritated by stomach acid, and the condition is more painful when the stomach is empty.

You can prevent this acid reflux symptom by reducing the amount of food in each meal and feeding your dog more frequently.

This practice has many benefits, helps prevent acid buildup, and your dog will not vomit white foam.

Kennel Cough

Kennel cough is a highly contagious infection in dogs and more common in young puppies.

Usually, it is caught at places where there are a lot of dogs together such as kennels (hence the name), animal shelters, and dog shows.

It is important to differentiate between vomiting white foam and coughing up white foam.

The white foam produced as a result of coughing is made up of saliva when filled with air.

So if your dog is coughing up clear liquid and white foam, it’s kennel cough. Kennel cough is similar to the common cold in humans.

It is contagious but has mild signs that usually go away after a few weeks.

The primary symptom of kennel cough is honking or hacking sound, just like a goose honk.

The dog suffering from kennel cough does not seem sick. They appear active by drinking, eating as usual while coughing excessively.

However, sometimes your dog also shows signs of vomiting, gagging, eye discharge, and a runny nose. These symptoms appear four to five days after infection.

If your dog is not feeling well, contact your vet immediately. Kennel cough can be prevented by vaccinating your dog with the Bordetella vaccine.

If you wish to ease the symptoms for your dog in a more natural and organic way, raw honey is a great healthy ingredient to soothe the throat.

Raw honey also has antibacterial, antiviral, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial and anti-fungal properties so it is super beneficial for overall health.

A medium-sized dog should be given half to 1 teaspoon of honey up to 4 times a day.

Bloat

Bloat is a condition in which the stomach is filled with an abnormal accumulation of air.

Swelling is more common in large and giant breeds with deep chests and narrow waists like the Great Dane or Rottweiler.

The swelling can be fatal because it resulted in constriction of the veins and blood flow.

Common symptoms associated with swelling are white foam coming out of the mouth, increased drooling, inability to defecate, and cough.

Avoid letting your dog devour large meals or do strenuous exercise too soon after eating.

This will reduce the chance of your dog suffering from bloat. Seek immediate medical attention if you suspect your pet pooch is suffering from a bout of bloat.

Kidney problems

Kidney disease is one of the main causes of vomiting white foam.

In mild kidney problems, dogs begin to urinate more than usual, and in severe cases, vomiting occurs with white slime.

Contact your vet right away and discuss what you can do to reduce this problem.

Your vet may recommend some dietary changes with a moderate level of protein and a low level of phosphorus. Kidney diseases can be fatal if left untreated.

Rabies 

Keep your dog up to date with vaccination. If you have followed the vaccination schedule, then there is no chance that the white foam is a sign of rabies.

Dogs that suffer from rabies show many signs like aggression and muscle spasms, and the white foam is one of the last symptoms to appear.

Bilious Vomiting Syndrome

Bilious vomiting syndrome is a condition similar to that of acid reflux in humans. Bile acids produce naturally and aid in the processing and digestion of food.

Bile can cause severe irritation when the dog has an empty stomach. It will ultimately cause anorexia and vomiting in extreme situations.

The vomiting that occurs in bilious vomiting syndrome is white, yellow, green, and brown in color, and is sometimes accompanied by slimy mucus.

The best and easiest way to control this condition is to feed smaller meals at regular intervals ideally 2-3 small meals and snacks in between.

Another remedy is to give your dog medication which your veterinarian can provide.

This approach can be used if the smaller meals don’t seem to be helping or if you don’t have time to feed your dog that often due to a busy lifestyle.

Pancreatitis

Pancreatitis is defined as inflammation of the pancreas. Pancreatitis will result in an alteration of normal digestive function.

When food is not properly digested or undigested, then processed food has no choice but to eliminate it except vomiting.

The vomit that occurs as a result of pancreatitis is white and frothy.

Dogs suffering from diabetes are at high risk of developing pancreatitis, so the white foam in vomiting is associated with diabetes.

Fever, abdominal pain, and hunched over position are other symptoms related to pancreatitis. A trip to the vet should be made right away.

Parvovirus

Parvovirus is a deadly condition that can lead to the death of dogs.

In parvo infection, the inner lining of the intestine is damaged, and when the intestine is damaged, water and food will not be absorbed; as a result, the dog will suffer from malnutrition and dehydration.

During a viral infection, a secondary infection can also appear, and bacteria are seen in the bloodstream.

This combination of malnutrition, dehydration, and infection creates deadly problems.

The common symptoms that appear in Parvo are foamy vomiting and diarrhea.

The condition of the dog’s body becomes so weak that when they try to eat or drink, they get sick. There is no easy way to treat parvovirus in dogs.

Regurgitation

Regurgitation is the process in which the dog vomits foamy food that has not yet been digested, and the food ingredients are easily recognized.

This condition is not serious and occurs as a result of your dog eating food too quickly.

As a result of this, you may see your pup suffering from (mostly harmless) dog hiccups.

What To Do If Your Dog Vomits White foam?

If your dog is continuously vomiting white foam, the best idea is to call your vet. If the symptoms are not severe, then there is nothing to worry about.

If you know your dog has eaten a lot of grass and vomits white foam, don’t worry, he will be fine after a few hours.

If there is any other reason behind the white foam, it is better to seek professional medical help.

Under normal stomach upset, your goal should be worry to calm foaming in the intestine.

Do not offer your dog food for up to 12 hours, and then offer ice instead of water until symptoms subside. Often a sick dog will do this itself intuitively and refuse to eat.

When you think your dog is ready to eat, offer him easily digestible food like rice and boiled chicken.

Offer food in small amounts, and if he tolerates it, your puppy is free of infection.

Some dogs sure will eat the strangest of objects. We have heard stories of digested tennis balls, unidentifiable garbage, plastic kids toys and other random objects.

If you notice your dog is a furry garbage disposal unit on legs that will consider any object a potential snack try to keep them out of reach as much as possible.

We know it’s not easy to take away every object but especially make sure anything toxic can’t disappear into the mouth of your dog.

Some dog owners, especially those living rurally or on farms, would be shocked if they knew what their dogs had eaten in the past.

Also eating anything and everything in sight might be a sign your dog is bored and needs more exercise and stimulation, especially if they are also scratching and digging things around the home.

German Shepherd panting at veterinarian.

When Should You See The Vet?

In normal cases, when the dog vomits white foam, it may be due to indigestion.

If your dog is vomiting white foam due to pancreatitis, parvovirus, swelling, and kidney problem, it’s time to see the vet.

The same applies if your dog also shows any of the following signals for sickness:

  • Bloody diarrhea
  • Disorientation
  • Dehydration
  • Problems urinating
  • Excessive drooling
  • Inability to defecate
  • Fever
  • Pale gums
  • Pain in the abdomen
  • Weakness

Conclusion

The dog may vomit white foam or slime due to different reasons.

It can be an infection, indigestion, kidney problems, regurgitation, acid reflux symptom, or sometimes when the stomach is empty.

If your dog is also anorexic and is dehydrated with vomiting white foam, contact your vet immediately.

If you are unsure if your dog just has a case of indigestion or if it might be something more serious, take a trip straight to the veterinarian for your own peace of mind.

Our pets are like our babies and it weighs heavily on our hearts when they are not well. We hope your furry companion is feeling better and back on his paws soon.

Disclaimer: This blog post doesn’t substitute veterinary attention and does not intend to do so. If your dog shows any signs of illness, call your vet immediately.


.
Danielle
In love with dogs, their behavior and psychology. I am writing on this blog since February 2019 to provide you with valuable information on everything dogs. When I am not working on my blog, I study research articles and enjoy the time with my beloved Rottweiler Amalia.

10 thoughts on “Is Your Dog Throwing Up White Foam? Do This!”

    • Hey Alyssa, as outlined in the article, there are multiple reasons why your puppy might be throwing up white foam. Paired with diarrhea, it could hint at digestive issues. With puppies, it’s best to have them checked out by a vet if you’re unsure but following the tips should help too.

      Giving something that calms the stomach can actually help (rice is good for that). Before that, fasting helps for some dogs while others are vomitting because they did not have enough food intake (was and still is the case with my Rottie when she skips a meal. Every dog needs different meal times).

      Reply
  1. My daughter’s high energy Yorkie vomits up foamy looking saliva usually in the am before he eats. It happens maybe 3 times a week. He continues to be active and eats chicken breast and kibble and seems to have a good appetite. Stools seem normal. Any thoughts?

    Reply
    • Hi Shirley,

      vomiting white foam in the morning can very well mean your daughter’s Yorkie has an empty stomach.

      Try changing the feeding times. Personally, I feed my dog raw and some people include one day per week without any meal at all while other dogs absolutely don’t thrive on that. Some dogs need meals 2-3x (or even 4x if it’s extreme) per day.

      My Rottie gets two meals per day (morning & evening) and if you skip her morning meal (long car ride ahead or whatever), you’ll hear her stomach grumble and vomit white foam right before her evening meal. If she goes without an evening meal, chances are that she could vomit before going to sleep or in the early morning. Nights without food are definitely worse.

      The fact that he’s active and eating otherwise and has healthy stool speaks for the fact that your Yorkie is healthy. If you’re unsure, a vet visit is always your best vet.

      Cheers,
      Danielle

      Reply
  2. I have an older female cocker spaniel (she’s about 18 y.o.) who has been coughing and coughing like she has something caught in her throat. but then she coughs so hard that she coughs up phlegm. Just when you think she’s ok, she starts coughing and hacking up this nasty phlegm. She does not have kennel cough as I have no other dogs. She’s not around other dogs, just 2 cats.
    Parvovirus might be ruled out because she’s not around other dogs, just the 2 cats. So I’m kind of wondering what to do. Going to the vet is kind of hard to do with the covid-19 thing happening, appointments are a month or 2 out. Any suggestions on what might be going on with my girl and what can I do to help her?

    Reply
    • Hey Scott, if you can absolutely rule out contact with any other dogs, it could still be one of the other reasons listed above or just a symptom of another health issue (especially considering your Cocker Spaniel’s age). Please be aware that I’m not a vet either, but maybe I can give you some ideas.

      Simple reasons include regurgitation, indigestion, and bloat. Something might also just be stuck in her throat (my Rottie had a small stick really strangely stuck sideways deep in her throat when she was a pup). However, phlegm doesn’t really sound like any of these. Could it be that your dog has a cold?

      To diagnose any disease, more tests are necessary which means you’d need to see a vet. You could also try out the “Ask A Vet” stuff online. Most respond quickly and are free (although not all of them; some require a subscription). I know that Banfield hospital offers this service, as well as Wag or Chewy for members. Dozens of others also offer this, just make sure it’s legit.

      Explaining your issue in detail and maybe even attaching a picture will help a great deal. If it’s an emergency, I’m sure you could skip the month of waiting time.

      Hope your dog gets better soon!
      Danielle

      Reply
  3. My puppy he has been throwing up from the morning and refusing to eat anything and he has a diarrhea, yesterday he was just fine , I think it is because we are trying to teach him peeing outside and the weather is cold, is it normal or should I take him to the vet???

    Reply
    • Hi Rawan,

      even though puppies can really hate the cold weather, this shouldn’t affect their appetite/stool as long as they do go potty outside.

      However, if you mean that you’re trying to teach him and he does not go outside at all, it’s definitely possible that your pup holds the poop or that appetite and thus the stool is affected. Puppies need regular food intake for proper growth, so I’d definitely consult the vet if he’s not eating a single bite for an extended time period (24 hours+). Diarrhea is not too big of an issue if it doesn’t last long and could be caused by dietary changes or simple stress but can also just be a symptom of something else and visiting the vet will rule out health concerns.

      Cheers,
      Danielle

      Reply
  4. Hi I have a 7 weeks old Dalmatian and he throws up clear phlegm a few minutes after drinking water for the last 3 days. His stools are normal. No diarrhea and he’s very active-for a 7week old pup. He had his first round of shots at 6weeks. Should I take him back to the vet?

    Reply
    • Hey Ashley, it may just be that your dog’s drinking too fast if it really only occurs then. Depending on what you feed, you could try to soak the kibble in water. If you’re feeding raw, water intake should already be partly covered through the diet.

      Great that there’s no diarrhea and that the stool looks normal but regular water intake is still essential, especially with puppies. Consulting your vet might be a good option if his last shots are just a week ago and to clear any serious issues. 7 weeks is a bit early to get a puppy – is there a breeder behind this? If so, s/he might also be able to offer advice (doesn’t substitute veterinary attention, of course).

      Cheers,
      Danielle

      Reply

Leave a Comment