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For many animals, vomiting is a natural way to detox or purge things they can't properly digest. Vomiting could also be a sign that your pet got excited and ate their meal too quickly. If your pet is vomiting frequently, however, there may be a medical condition that you should discuss with your veterinarian.

Common Reasons Your Pet Is Vomiting

pug and person pointing at the vomit on the ground

In some cases, vomiting is a completely normal function of your pet's digestive system. If your pet is vomiting uncontrollably or consistently, however, stay alert for any warning signs that could signal a more serious issue.

Food Allergies

Allergies can cause a variety of different reactions in humans and animals. While most symptoms of an allergic reaction in animals are itchy skin or hives, digestive troubles like vomiting can also be a way that their body reacts to an allergen. Pay attention to which foods may trigger these reactions so you can avoid giving them to your pet in the future.

Eating Too Quickly

Humans might suffer from an upset stomach if they eat too quickly. It can be the same in pets, who might also vomit after eating too fast. This shouldn't cause any serious issues, but you may want to discuss options with your vet. There usually is not too much you can control when it comes to the speed your pet eats, but you can control what food you feed them and how frequently.

Motion Sickness

While your pet may love riding in the car with you, the motion of the moving vehicle could trigger motion sickness. Motion sickness is typically connected to a disconnect between what you're seeing and what you're feeling or a disturbance to the inner ear. In younger pets, an underdeveloped inner ear can contribute to an increase in motion sickness, leading them to vomit more than older animals. Motion sickness is common and is not normally a cause for medical concern.

Toxin Cosumption

Toxic substances can also make animals vomit. For example, chocolate and grapes have harmful chemical compounds that can be dangerous for dogs to consume. Cats may vomit if they eat garlic or onions. The consumption of these toxic substances should never be taken lightly. Always contact animal poison control or your nearest vet for advice.

Foreign Object Consumption

Some dogs and cats like to chew on or eat objects that aren't food, such as food wrappers, sticks, tissues, clothing tags, and other items. Since objects like these are not meant to be eaten, your pet won't be able to digest them properly, which may trigger their gag reflex and result in vomiting.

Underlying Medical Condition

While many of the above vomiting causes are not serious, there are some underlying conditions that usually require treatment or attention from a medical professional.

Bacterial Infection

Bacterial infections like gastroenteritis or salmonella, which comes from contaminated food, can cause severe vomiting in pets. If you notice your pet showing symptoms of illness, take them to a vet so they can be treated properly with antibiotics or fluid intervention.

Do You Think Your Pet Has a Bacterial Infection?

Common symptoms to look out for in a bacterial infection include cramps, fevers, and excessive vomiting.


Parasites like stomach worms can get into your pet's digestive system and cause them to vomit frequently or have other stomach issues such as diarrhea. Your pet could get such a parasite by eating undercooked food or eating off of a contaminated surface. If a parasite is the cause of the vomiting, your vet will likely need to prescribe medication such as praziquantel or mebendazole to kill the intestinal parasites.

Do You Think Your Pet Has a Parasite?

Common parasite symptoms to look out for include diarrhea, loss of appetite, and weight loss.

Heat Stroke

Heat stroke is a serious medical condition. Like people, pets can overheat in the summer. This is especially true if they are not drinking enough liquids or are unable to stay in a dark, cool environment. Heat stroke can worsen if professional care is not received in a timely manner.

Do You Think Your Pet Has Heat Stroke?

Common symptoms to look out for in heat stroke besides vomiting are lethargy and trouble breathing.

What Should You Do if Your Pet Keeps Vomiting?

If your pet is vomiting at a high rate, it will be important to pin down the exact cause to help determine any needed next steps.

Assess Their Diet

The cause of vomiting may be as simple as the food you are buying for your pet. Make sure none of the ingredients could trigger an allergy and make sure that you are giving your pets a balanced meal so that they don't scarf down too quickly. Changing their day-to-day diet could dramatically decrease the occurrence of vomiting.

Reduce Exposure to Foreign Substances

If your pet has easy access to things that make them vomit, like chocolate or small wrappers, it would be worthwhile to keep unsafe items out of your pet's reach.

Consult a Vet

In cases of severe vomiting or illness, always consult your veterinarian, who can assess their health condition and, if necessary, apply treatment to your animal. Vomiting is not only uncomfortable for your pets, but it could also be a sign that something needs addressing with their health and safety.