Believe it or not, dogs can have very sensitive stomachs. What's more, inflammation of the lining of the stomach as well as the intestines can cause alarming symptoms, such as bleeding. If your dog suffers from any stomach ailment for an extended period of time, they may vomit blood. While scary, the presence of blood is not always an indicator that something terrible is wrong. However, it is a sign that your dog needs medical attention right away to find the cause. Following are four things that can cause bloody vomit in dogs.
Food intolerance is one of the main causes of stomach inflammation in pets and humans alike. If your dog is allergic to a certain ingredient in their food, such as gluten, they may start to have stomach issues. If left untreated, you may start seeing blood. The same is true if you change your dog's food and it doesn't agree with them. To prevent stomach issues caused by food, be sure to feed your dog a high-quality food, and do not change their diet suddenly.
Internal parasites, such as hookworms, roundworms, and tapeworms, attach themselves to the walls in your dog's digestive system. Some merely hang out, absorbing nutrients from the food your dog eats, while others actively suck blood and nutrients through the intestinal walls. Regardless of how they feed, internal parasites can cause bleeding in the digestive tract. If your dog is losing a lot of blood due to parasites, you may start to see it in their vomit and stool.
Just like humans, dogs can get stomach ulcers, which are sores located on the lining of the stomach. If left untreated, ulcers can perforate and start to bleed profusely. If this occurs, your dog may start vomiting large amounts of blood. If your dog has a slow-bleeding ulcer, you may only see traces of blood in their vomit.
Unfortunately, bleeding can be a sign of stomach cancer. The symptoms of stomach cancer can mimic those of the conditions above, so you may not know that you're dealing with cancer right away. What seems like an upset stomach may progress to very serious symptoms over the course of months.
There are many things that can cause bloody vomit. Some of them are terminal, while others are treatable. The best thing you can do for your dog is to see a veterinarian at a clinic like Northwest Animal Hospital at the first sign of trouble.