Although it’s not a miracle cure, putting your dog on a bland diet can work wonders if they are vomiting. For optimum digestion, bland foods should be served at room temperature. Be sure to feed your dog smaller, more frequent meals until the vomiting stops. One large meal might be too much for the digestive system.
Dogs love to eat whatever they can get their mouths on, but this can wreak havoc on their digestive systems.
Every dog owner knows what it’s like when their dog has gastrointestinal distress. An upset stomach can indicate many potential issues with your dog, but it can also be as simple as your pup eating something that does not sit right with them, leading to vomiting or diarrhea.
Bland diets are a great way to counter vomiting and diarrhea that come from a less severe issues, but if you do not know what is causing your dog’s stomach problems, always take them to the vet.
If your dog just needs a little TLC to recover from its stomach issue more quickly, a bland diet can be your dog’s best friend.
What’s In a Bland Diet?
Bland diets focus on giving your dog the amount of nutrition they need without adding extra spices, flavors, or other ingredients that could upset their stomach even further. Every bland diet follows a few key ingredients.
Bland diets require:
The protein has to be low fat. Chicken, eggs, lean beef, or turkey are all excellent sources of lean protein for your dog’s bland diet.
Your protein source should not be high in fat, as fat can exacerbates vomiting. If your dog eats too much fat, the excess fat in their intestines will pull more water into their system, causing diarrhea.
Carbohydrates are a necessary part of your dog’s diet. They help absorb the same water in your dog’s intestines that can cause diarrhea—the most common carbohydrate source in bland diets is white rice. You can use other sources such as squash or pasta, but white rice is the best at absorbing water.
This ingredient is optional but recommended. You can add a vegetable of some kind to increase the fiber content in your dog’s diet, which will help clean out their system faster. You can use anything from pumpkin to cucumber or lettuce.
An imbalance of bacteria in the gut causes almost all stomach problems. Probiotics are designed to replace the good bacteria while fighting the bad bacteria.
Your dog’s bland diet still needs to meet the very basic nutritional requirements of their bodies. The goal of a bland diet is to keep their digestive system running while allowing them to detox and remove any irritants in their digestive system that is causing them to vomit.
Bland Diet Recipes to Stop Vomiting
The good news is you don’t have to be a master chef to prepare a bland diet for your dog. Here are a few ideas when prepping a bland diet.
Cook the protein source by boiling it. Make sure you don’t add any spices or seasonings. You can boil eggs, chicken, turkey, or lean beef. If using a meat source, make sure that it is fully cooked before feeding it to your dog.
Just like the meat, carbs should be boiled. Rice, pasta, and squash can all be boiled to soften and ready them. Carbs should consist of about 70% of a bland diet.
If you choose to give your dog vegetables in their bland diet, make sure they are blanched. Most vegetables require you to cook them to blanch or soften them before feeding them to your dog.
Aside from boiling eggs, you can scramble them to add to your dog’s bland diet. Eggs are a prominent part of a bland diet because they are cheap and easy to cook. Just remember to not add salt or pepper to your dog’s food!
How to Serve a Bland Diet
You should focus on giving your dog smaller, more frequent meals until the vomiting goes away. Mix all of the ingredients together into a mash for your dog; this will promote easier digestion.
You would ideally store each of the ingredients separately in the fridge in their own Tupperware. Always warm up their food before serving, but do not make it too hot. A bland diet is best served at room temperature to avoid any temperature issues with digestion.
How Long Should I Feed My Dog a Bland Diet?
Depending on how severe your dog’s digestive issues are, you may need to feed your dog a bland diet for longer than you may expect.
Any changes to your dog’s diet should be made slowly under normal circumstances, but a bland diet should be implemented as soon as your dog needs it.
You should feed your dog this bland diet for at least 5 days to make sure their system has returned to normal. By this time, their stools should be on their way back to normal and the vomiting should come to an end.
If your dog continues to have stomach problems beyond this point, consult a trusted veterinary professional for advice. Your dog may have something more serious going on.
When you decide to go back to a more traditional diet for your dog, slowly make the transition. Too much of an abrupt change from a bland diet may be a shock to your dog’s digestion and cause the vomiting or diarrhea you are trying to avoid.
Cause of Your Dog’s Digestive Issues
Your dog may have stomach problems for a number of reasons. Dogs will eat anything, but their digestive tract cannot process everything that goes into their mouth.
The reasons your dog may have issues can range from trivial to severe. If you are unsure why your dog is having stomach problems, take them to the vet.
Digestive issues can be signs of a more serious underlying issue. That being said, here are some of the more common causes of stomach problems for dogs.
Eating Too Quickly
If your pup gets overly excited at mealtime, they might gobble their food down in a snap! This is not the best way to eat.
Eating too quickly can overload your dog’s system and cause them to expel the food they are unable to digest.
You can remedy this problem by getting your dog a slow-feeding bowl. These are designed to make your dog work a little more for their food, preventing them from sucking it all down at once.
Your dog may have picked up an internal parasite. While this sounds scary, there are plenty of treatments available!
Tapeworms or other internal parasites aggravate the intestines of your dog, causing them to expel the internal intruder however they can.
If your dog has a parasite, your vet will likely recommend some kind of medicine to kill the parasite and cleanse your dog.
Dogs will often not be able to tell that food is rotten or going bad when they are eating it, so they may keep consuming food that is no longer good for them.
Dogs will also try to sneak food from the trash if they are able. If this is the case, a bland diet is often the way to get your dog back to normal.
Your dog can have digestive issues for other reasons as well. If your dog has been exposed to a toxin or unsafe chemical, vomiting or diarrhea is a common symptom.
Stomach cancer, pancreatitis, or different types of infection can also cause stomach problems. If any of these are the root cause of your dog’s issues, you need to get them to the vet immediately. A bland diet will not be able to fix these problems.
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