My Dog Is Throwing Up White Foam: Do I Need To Worry?

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Dog vomit on floor (caption: dog throwing up white foam causes & cures)Periodic dog puke is practically a given when you’re a pet parent. Aside from the hassle of having to clean it up, should you be concerned when your dog spits up white foam?

7 Causes For Dog Throwing Up White Foam

NOTE: In most cases, a dog vomiting white foam isn’t a cause for serious concern. However, sometimes it could require a visit to your vet for your dog, especially if they have other symptoms.

1. Indigestion

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Dogs get indigestion just like humans, but they throw up a lot more frequently. In most cases, throwing up white foam is due to your dog’s body trying to get rid of a substance that’s upsetting its stomach.

It could be that your dog ate too much grass, wolfed down their food or ate and drank excessively right after exercising. As long as your dog isn’t vomiting consistently, they’re likely just experiencing regular indigestion.

2. Acid Reflux

Is your dog vomiting white foam in the morning before eating? It could mean it has reflux gastritis, also called acid reflux. This condition occurs when your dog’s gastrointestinal (GI) tract becomes irritated by stomach acid, which happens more often when the stomach is empty. Dogs suffering from acid reflux often vomit white or yellow foam.

Tip: Reducing the portions while increasing the frequency of your dog’s meals can help prevent the buildup of stomach bile and acid, which causes digestive problems down the road.

3. Kennel Cough

What Is Kennel Cough?If your dog has recently been in close quarters with other dogs and is now coughing up white foam, they may have contracted kennel cough. This upper respiratory infection is very contagious but mild and usually clears up on its own in 7-10 days.

Kennel cough is usually easy to diagnose as its primary symptom is a pronounced hacking or honking cough that can produce white foam. Other symptoms include a runny nose, sneezing, lethargy and a loss of appetite.

4. Bloat

Dog laying on back in grass (caption: What Is Canine Bloat?)A severe condition, bloat most commonly occurs in deep-chested adult and senior dogs. Bloat causes a dog’s stomach to fill with gas, fluid or food, making it expand. One of its early symptoms is a dog spitting up white foam.

Besides an enlarged abdomen and vomiting white foam, dogs will suffer several other symptoms from bloat, including the inability to defecate, pale gums, excessive drooling and coughing.

If you suspect your dog has bloat, take them to your vet immediately. Without treatment, dogs can die from bloat because the enlarged abdomen can restrict blood flow to your dog’s heart and put pressure on the lungs, making breathing difficult.

5. Pancreatitis

PancreatitisDogs sick on bed causes inflammation in the pancreas, an organ that’s vital for healthy digestion in mammals. Dogs suffering from pancreatitis throw up their food frequently, and this vomit could include white foam.

Other symptoms include a hunched back, abdominal pain, diarrhea, loss of appetite, weakness and dehydration. If you notice all or some of these symptoms, take your dog to the vet as soon as possible.

6. Kidney Disease

A dog throwing up white foam, accompanied by problems urinating, lethargy and disorientation could be suffering from kidney problems. Kidney disease, left untreated, eventually will result in complete kidney failure. If you notice these symptoms, take your dog to your vet to test their kidney functions.

7. Parvovirus

Parvovirus is a highly-infectious and potentially-deadly virus that typically affects puppies and very young dogs. One of the initial symptoms is your puppy throwing up white foam. Other symptoms include bloody diarrhea, lethargy and a fever.

If you’re worried your puppy may have parvovirus, the video below gives you a rundown of causes, symptoms and treatments.

What Do I Do If My Dog Vomits White Foam? (When To See The Vet)

If your dog is a puppy, elderly or has pre-existing medical problems, you should see your veterinarian immediately if they’re throwing up a lot of white foam.

In addition to identifying a severe underlying condition, your vet can treat your dog for dehydration from vomiting.

If your adult dog is otherwise healthy and only occasionally spits up white foam, it’s likely just regular indigestion.

You should see your vet to rule out any medical problems if the vomiting episodes become more frequent, your pet exhibits other symptoms or is behaving abnormally.

Tips On Feeding My Dog

Many people don’t realize that some common human foods are dangerous for dogs (and cats). Make sure you’re not feeding them human foods that are toxic for dogs.

If you suspect your dog has eaten a potentially toxic food or substance, read our guide on how to treat a poisoned dog. But if your pup only has the occasional upset stomach, be sure to check out our tips to cure your dog’s upset stomach.

What digestive issues does your dog suffer?

About The Author:

Sally holds a BA in English from James Madison University and began her 25-year writing career as a grad student at the UNC-Chapel Hill School of Journalism & Mass Communications. She’s been a pet parent since college years (and spent her whole childhood with pets). Her work has appeared in many notable media outlets, including The Washington Post, Entrepreneur, People, Forbes, Huffington Post, and more.

Now as a parent of two teenagers, she’s made sure to raise her daughters to learn how to love and care for pets (and other animals) in the most responsible and loving ways. As a result, she and her daughters now have 5 rescued dogs and cats who essentially rule their home! Sally has also volunteered over the years to help raise funds for various animal nonprofit organizations.

Disclaimer: The information provided through this website should not be used for diagnosing or treating a health problem or a disease. It is not a substitute for professional care. If you have or suspect you may have a health problem, you should consult your health care provider.

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August 18, 2020 5:36 pm

Hi, last week my family and I went to the beach for a vacation and I had a friend watch the dogs for us. When we left, my 12-year-old pit bull Chaos seemed healthy and fine but about the fourth day, she said he could not keep anything down all day and night he just kept throwing up liquids and then got restless and laid around only to die the day before we came home. I can’t help but to blame myself and think if I were home I would have watched him better and he’d be alive. I was wondering if it sounded like anything familiar to anyone. I need closure.

Apiffany Gaither Billings
August 19, 2020 9:51 am
Reply to  Sarah

I think what you’re feeling is a pretty normal guilt that we all feel as pet owners when something happens to our pets. My best friend recently lost her senior rescue dog and she has been full of guilt similar to how it sounds you are feeling. I am so sorry to hear about your loss. Here is an article where maybe you can find some comfort and closure.

Amanda Pablo
February 17, 2020 4:28 pm

My 8 month old maltipoo just fell from a balcony about 15-20 feet high. He bounced up and ran straight to me. I checked him thoroughly. He didn’t wince or whine and nothing seems tender.He’s happy and playful but scared. He has been throwing up foam( he does this normally from time to time). He has done it about 5 times within 15 minutes and the last one had a tiny bit of blood. I’m not sure if it’s because he threw up so frequently in such a short time or if he’s seriously injured. I’m terrified. He’s my little baby boy. But he’s happy and playing so I’m unsure of what to do. I just spent a large amount of money because the breeder didn’t tell me but ALL OF HER PUPS HAD PARVO!!! I just got him three months ago. He’s so precious! Please help me. I honestly cannot afford another vet visit right now but I will take him if necessary. He’s just like a little baby to me and I love him dearly! His resilience is just AMAZING!

April 28, 2020 1:31 pm
Reply to  Amanda Pablo

If blood is shown its a warning and all warnings need to e checked out thoroughly by a vet,even if just to put mind at rest.your not a vet you cant see whats going on inside him he may need an examination or even an xray or ultrasound .if it was me yes may of paid a lot of money to buy her so why not pay to get him or her checked out!!Thoroughly by a well established veterinarian ,hate to lose my pet over something that was easily checked may of cost £60-£80 i am sure your family would help you out in an emergency my parents wod eve ose friends if i was stuck.

Apiffany Gaither Billings
February 18, 2020 10:01 am
Reply to  Amanda Pablo

Hi Amanda, we always recommend seeing a vet when you think something is wrong with your pet. If you cannot take your dog to a vet, perhaps this online vet service can help.

February 22, 2020 12:33 pm

Blunt force trauma can cause internal bleeding. The patient will not be aware until it’s almost too late. It happened to my father after he was hit by a car. Have you dog checked immediately. 20 feet is very high.

January 30, 2020 3:33 am

Hi my puppy is a pitbull she recently around 6 pm ate or licked up some powder detergent, I had immediately washed her face off and mouth but a few hours ago around 9 she started throwing up and the first one looked like poop and the second she didn’t throw up much but she had threw up what looked like yellow mucus, after she started to gag up foam from her mouth, not significant amounts but a little bit of foam. she hasn’t thrown up again but she’s asleep right now. I’m not sure if I have to rush her to the pet hospital, but I feel like waiting it out till tomorrow.

Kimberly Alt
January 30, 2020 10:55 am
Reply to  Alexandria

I hope your dog is doing ok. Any time your dog ingests a chemical substance you should call the poison control hotline: (888) 426-4435. A professional will help you know how to best help and care for your dog. In this instance, many hours have passed so your dog has most likely absorbed the substance fully into her body but could still be experiencing many of its effects. We would recommend having your dog looked at by a professional asap to prevent further potential damage to your dog.

January 26, 2020 1:23 pm

my dog is suffering from yeast infection and also infection on his paws area he is very agressive sooo its really hard to take him to vet and he dont let me apply medicene on his paw and ear and from 2-3 day he is also suffering from vomiting like white liquid type thing pls reply mee I love him soooo much and I also wanted to be a veterinarian and he is also having some problm of hair he is suffering from something dandruff type and having red skin

Kimberly Alt
January 27, 2020 11:04 am
Reply to  Riya

It sounds like your dog needs vet care. I would try your best to get him to the vet or call your vet and see if he/she can come to your home. Another option is to try out this online vet service to get help for him.

January 23, 2020 1:16 pm

Other websites and my vet recommends for acid reflux to reduce food portions but increase frequency to prevent build up of acid in an empty stomach. This article seems to suggest to reduce food portions and frequency.

Michelle Schenker
January 23, 2020 5:07 pm
Reply to  JP H

Thanks JP. Good catch. We left a word out and have updated it to reflect the correct info. I have acid reflux and know that this tip works for humans as well. 😉

Lori Huber
January 7, 2020 10:47 am

My 3 yr old 14 lb Shih-tzu/Bichon mix dog has begun frequently vomiting white/yellow foam. It’s not constant but at least a few times a day. She also vomits undigested food. Tried feeding less and Pepto Bismol, which DID seem to stop the vomiting for 24 hrs but she vomited again this morning, including the food she ate yesterday. We feed at 5 PM and our other dog isn’t exhibiting any of the same symptoms. She isn’t lethargic and definitely has an appetite. No diarrhea, no excessive urination, no bloating or apparent pain. She is behaving normally except the no-warning vomiting 1 to 3 times a day in the past week. She has been regularly immunized and on Nexgard and Heartgard. There is a stomach flu going around in humans in the area and I wonder if it’s possible it she’s caught a form of that although shows no other symptoms other than the obvious nausea and vomiting. Any ideas?

October 27, 2019 10:24 pm

Yes, it’s true. Normally dogs sometimes suffer from vomiting. Liquid vomits could be from ingesting stuff on the ground which is usually healed in a couple of days. There can be other causes too. But if your dog vomits with blood in it, then it could be a serious problem. If this happens then your dogs need immediate medical attention. If there are unusual signs then take your dog to a vet and have it diagnosed. Thanks for sharing this informative post.

July 28, 2019 5:49 am

My dog vomits white and yellow foam and she lose her appetite after that, Can i ask how i return her appetite?

December 8, 2019 3:49 pm
Reply to  Jhenne

She upchucking yellow white form

May 30, 2019 10:01 am

My soft haired wheaten terrier is almost 4 years. She suddenly started having the dry heaves with white foam. Started the night before last and has continued. I’m reading this could be normal upset stomach, but how do I treat her?

Paul Miller
September 12, 2019 7:21 pm
Reply to  Rah

Oursmall dog is 8 years old and she has been throwing up and she threw up some white foamy stuff and it has us worrying now what could be the problem with her?

Kimberly Alt
May 30, 2019 2:25 pm
Reply to  Rah

I’m sorry your dog isn’t feeling well. Have you read this section: What Do I Do If My Dog Vomits White Foam? (When To See The Vet)? It depends on the frequency as well as if she is displaying any other symptoms.

Also, do you think she has gotten into something she shouldn’t have?

If you think it’s just an upset tummy, you could try giving your dog a little pumpkin puree or rice with chicken watered down to help keep her hydrated. However, you should check with your vet before administering any of these to make sure it’s safe for your dog. I am not a licensed vet and can only speak from my experience and research.

I hope she starts feeling better soon!

November 15, 2019 4:26 pm
Reply to  Kimberly Alt

Yes me too!

November 15, 2019 4:29 pm
Reply to  Ray

I don’t know why he’s doing throw up foam. If gets worse then I will try to get him to a vet

Kimberly’ Stevens
July 27, 2019 11:25 pm
Reply to  Kimberly Alt

Mine has been like this today also

April 18, 2019 7:40 pm

my puppy has started to throw up his food it is not digesting when he throws it up some is and some is not , and now he is throwing up white foam does not want to eat and drinking a lil water ..

September 24, 2019 11:42 am
Reply to  donna

What ended up being wrong?

Molly Brogan
January 2, 2020 7:10 pm
Reply to  Luke

My dog has only started today to vomit white foamshe won’t eat or drink water and is very lethargic what can I do .?She is 4years old and a Cavapoo

February 5, 2020 9:07 pm
Reply to  Molly Brogan

I have a 4 yo Maltese, he has been vomiting up his food and treats for the past 2 days, now its white foam and he won’t eat. He tries to drink his water but vomits it back up too. He only likes around now. I took him to the vet about 2 weeks ago for an ear infection. He was vomiting some when I took him them. I told his doctor. Any suggestions on what it could be. If he is no better I’m taking him to the Vet in the morning.

February 12, 2020 5:33 am
Reply to  Lucy

My yorkie is doing the same especially when she gets excited like running to the door to bark at people she will often throw up white frommy stuff.

May 12, 2020 11:02 am
Reply to  Tyrone

Any answers to all these questions on white foam after throws up dog food!

Penny Henson
July 27, 2019 2:29 am
Reply to  donna

My dog is throwing up white foam, won’t eat or drink now. She did get into in-laws cat for sat. an sunday. What do i do.

Sakshi Etwaru
November 18, 2019 10:42 am
Reply to  Penny Henson

How did she get well? Even my dog is having the same issue.

November 16, 2019 11:44 am
Reply to  Penny Henson

My dog is not eating and throwing up white foam

May 28, 2019 9:45 pm
Reply to  donna

How did you treat your pup? The same thing is happening with mine and I dont know what to do…

andrew doan
October 4, 2019 5:46 pm
Reply to  Jhunela

My Beagle does it due to the fact:
1. I overfeed him.
2 . My solution is treating his upset stomach with small dosage of Pepto Bismol. His reaction is very positive. He starts to eat his food in a few hour later.

Disclosure : My Beagle would not eat any dried dog foods. I have tried Blue Buffallo/ Nutro dried and wet can but he won’t touch it.

His daily comsumption is the HEB rottiserie chiken and that is all he would eat. I also give him a six ounce can of Tuna in water twice a week.

By cutting down on his meal portion, he stops eating grass to throw up, Occasionnally, I have to give him a small dose of PepTo Bismol but only every three for four months.