As luck would have it, my dog finally stopped throwing up after a few days, but I wonder if you might add some insight into the cause. My dog is just under a year old and is a pitbull cross. She is spayed and fully vaccinated. Two weekends ago, I took her to a large outdoor festival where there were a lot of dogs with their owners. Many of the dogs drank water from the same bowls as we made sure to hydrate them during a hot day. The following day, I gave her some treats with some of the meat trimmings left over from our barbecue. It was the next day that she started vomiting some yellow bile in the early morning and this happened a few times as well as the next day. Could either the shared water or the meat been the cause of her vomiting? I want to make sure that I avoid exposing her again to whatever made her sick. Lastly, should I be concerned? Could she have picked up a parasite?
Sometimes we do not know what causes a dog to vomit. Vomiting may occur immediately after ingesting something that does not sit right with the stomach, or it can occur some time later. What you describe is called bilious vomiting, which is sometimes seen with an empty stomach, more often in the morning hours due to stomach acidity and a lack of food. It is usually not problematic and can be corrected by changing diet, time of feeding or medications as needed.
As such, it may be that neither the shared water bowls nor the meat trimmings caused what you observed and since it seems to have resolved there is little need for concern. There can always be some small amount of risk associated with many dogs being together, including parasitism, so having a fecal sample tested for that might be worthwhile. Giving a dog meat trimmings needs to be done carefully since some dogs have sensitive stomachs and too much fat can lead to a bout of pancreatitis.
Between your two events, there is always the possibility that your dog may have also ingested anything else that might have triggered an upset stomach but luckily it sounds as if things have resolved. Should the vomiting return, I would have your veterinarian take a look at your dog.
Dr. John de Jong owns and operates the Boston Mobile Veterinary Clinic. He can be reached at 781-899-9994.