Dog Throwing Up White Foam – 9 Reasons Why and What To Do

dog throwing up white foam

Should your dog be expelling white foam through vomiting, it could be an indication that a veterinary visit is in order. Let’s delve into the causes and possible solutions for dogs regurgitating white foam.

Why is my dog throwing up white foam?

Dogs are prone to vomiting just like humans. As a pet parent, your dog’s vomiting can be really upsetting. If you are concerned about your dog throwing up white foam, you’ve come to the right place.

Dogs vomit due to multiple reasons. Their vomit can often appear green, yellow, white, or even foamy. While the reason your dog vomited white foam may not always be concerning, it’s almost always worth exploring.

Potential reasons for a dog expelling or regurgitating frothy white substance can stem from various factors such as indigestion, acid reflux, inappropriate dietary choices, infections, heat-related illnesses, kidney issues, parvovirus infection, pancreatitis, and bloat. Additionally, some dogs with kennel cough might also produce white foam, which could be confused with vomiting.

If your dog has only had a single episode of throwing up white foam, it might not be that concerning. 

However, you might need to rush your dog to the nearest vet if your dog vomits white foam frequently, or has had multiple episodes in a single day!

Here are some of the most common reasons why dogs vomit white foam. Read more below to find out how concerned should you be if you find your canine making belching noises and throwing up behind the couch.

9 reasons why dogs throw up white foam

As mentioned before, dogs vomit white foam due to multiple reasons. Frothy white vomit can be caused by infections, GIT (gastrointestinal tract) obstructions, toxins, and even an upset stomach!

Here are some of the most common reasons why your dog can’t stop throwing up.

1) Indigestion

Indigestion is the most common cause of throwing up in many animals. Dogs like to sniff around for food in the trash and other unhygienic places. Most of the time, the food they find does not end up agreeing with their gut.

An upset stomach can cause your dog’s gut to move in the opposite direction, causing everything to come out from the mouth. 

This is usually not a huge problem and most dogs feel fine instantly after throwing up whatever caused indigestion in the first place.

2) Acid reflux

If your dog vomits white foam before breakfast, this may be due to excessive acid or bile salts in the stomach. Both the acid and the bile salts can irritate the lining of your stomach, causing projectile vomiting.

Vomiting due to acid reflux is also very common in dogs and this is usually resolved by giving the dog small but frequent meals throughout the day.

3) Pancreatitis

Pancreatitis is one of the most serious causes of vomiting white foam in dogs.

Pancreatitis refers to inflammation of the pancreas, which is an emergency condition. typical symptoms of pancreatitis, other than vomiting, include diarrhea and a complete lack of appetite.

4) Gastrointestinal inflammation

Inflammation of the gut lining, regardless of where its located, can cause the food to travel in the reverse direction and cause vomiting in dogs.

If your dog keeps throwing up white foam, it might have an active inflammatory lesion in any part of its small or large intestinal tract.

5) GIT obstruction

If your dog keeps projecting white foamy vomit, remains irritable, curls up on the floor, and seems in intense pain, it might have a gut obstruction.

A gut obstruction at any point in the GIT can block the normal passage of food. Food starts accumulating behind the obstruction. 

Once enough pressure is built up, your dog may throw up in a projectile manner, i.e. throwing up in an explosive manner.

GIT obstructions are an emergency condition and any dog with multiple episodes of projectile vomiting should be rushed to the nearest vet.

6) Toxins

White foam vomitus can also occur if your dog eats any toxic material lying around the house, such as medications, expired food, cleaning supplies, and other such materials.

Other symptoms that appear after a dog ingests something toxic include weakness, trembling, and fever.

7) Rabies

Infections are notorious for causing vomiting. Rabies infection, while rare in the United States, can cause nausea and bubbling in the mouth that appears similar to a collection of white foam.

8) Overeating

A dog’s stomach can only accommodate so much food, and when dogs overeat it usually results in white foam vomit. Overeating also contributes to a majority of dog vomit cases every year in the United States, as well as around the world.

9) Kennel cough

Kennel cough and other respiratory infections can lead to excessive foaming and even white foam vomit.

What to do if your dog is throwing up white foam?

Free stock photo of dog sad

It’s not always a cause for concern if your dog ate something and started vomiting a foamy liquid. Vomiting is a natural phenomenon and your dog throwing up white foam is not always dangerous. 

Still, keeping a sharp eye and staying vigilant is always a good idea if your pet seems unwell or starts to show any signs of erratic behavior.

If your canine has only vomited once, does not seem unwell, is playful and active, and has no other symptoms, there is no need for an immediate emergency intervention.

Simply make sure to withhold food for the time being and assess your pet for any other symptoms, such as weakness or lethargy, diarrhea, trembling, blood in vomit, or a lack of appetite.

If your dog throws up multiple times, or develops any of the symptoms listed above, make sure to rush them to the nearest vet emergency immediately!

How can I prevent my dog from throwing up white foam?

The best way to prevent your dog from vomiting white foam is to keep a vigilant eye on it. Stop your pet from licking or eating anything that it should not, such as cleaning supplies, medicines, or even most human food.

Infection prevention is also a great way to ensure that your dog does not get sick. Make sure to give your dog regular baths and try to cover up any open wounds if present.

All the same, sometimes, illnesses can still develop without any apparent causes. The best way to minimize the chances of your pet getting sick is to maintain a healthy diet for them. 

Another great way to make sure your dog remains healthy is to schedule regular visits to the vet clinic, no matter how much your dog disapproves!


What does white foamy vomit mean in a dog?

A dog vomiting white foam can mean a dozen different things. Sometimes, white foamy vomit does not indicate anything sinister, e.g. when dogs throw up after a huge meal. 

On other occasions, however, a dog throwing up white foam may indicate the presence of a bigger underlying systemic disease process.

What should I do if my dog is throwing up white foam?

If your dog is throwing up white foam, it’s important to monitor their behavior closely. This can be a sign of various conditions, ranging from indigestion to more serious illnesses.

Ensure your dog has access to water to avoid dehydration and avoid feeding them for a few hours. If the vomiting persists, shows signs of lethargy, or is accompanied by other symptoms, it’s crucial to consult a veterinarian for a proper diagnosis and treatment.

Should I be worried if my dog is throwing up white foam?

A single episode of vomiting with no other symptoms usually does not warrant any immediate intervention. 

But you should be worried if your pet has had multiple episodes of vomiting and also has other constitutional symptoms, such as generalized weakness and shaking.

What can I give my dog for vomiting white foam?

Trying to treat your dog’s vomiting on your own is not recommended. Do not give your dog any over-the-counter anti-emetic or other types of drugs without consulting your vet. 

It’s always a good idea to pay your vet a visit if you are concerned about your dog’s health.

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