When I first brought home Feist, my 4-pound Chihuahua puppy, I knew that she would be a handful from the start. She had an obsession with pulling off buttons on shirts, biting on human hair, chewing up house slippers, and eating random “things” she found in the yard. Anything that she could put in her mouth, she would. While I watched her as much as I could and tried to deflect her fascination of “oddities” with actual dog toys, it came to no surprise when I came home and found her at the foot of my bed, sick with a belly ache.
Small breeds, like Chihuahuas, are often favored because they’re cute and stay “puppy-sized” their whole lives. But while their small stature may have you saying “aww,” their small intestines and organs may just have your puppy weeping “oww.” This is because unlike with larger breeds, smaller dogs tend to get stomach aches more often—their digestive systems, especially in puppies, are not properly developed which can cause an array of health complications, including dehydration. While stomach aches can indicate something more serious like gastric torsion (canine bloating) it’s more than likely it’s something minor brought forth by something your pup ate. That said, if you want to see if you can help your dog resolve the issue naturally before taking him or her to the vet (which can get costly), continue reading below.
1. Watch Your Pet Closely. The first thing you want to do is monitor your pet as closely as possible. Upset stomachs are typically the result of eating miscellaneous items that are found in the house or backyard, like trash or toilet paper. So watch to see if your pet is getting into the trash bin or anything else he or she is not supposed to. Even if you don’t catch your pup in the act, it’s best to go out of your way to make certain things inaccessible to your dog anyway—make a barrier, put the trash in a different location etc.
2. Hold out on the Treats. Many new dog owners love to spoil their new pups with treats, but what they don’t know is that too many treats can be bad for small dogs, especially if there is an ingredient your dog is allergic to or can’t readily digest. It can cause your dog to have severe stomach aches, accompanied with the works: vomiting and diarrhea. So refrain from giving your dog its usual treat to see if the situation improves. In the meantime, make sure it is getting a good amount of water (especially if diarrhea is present) and let your dog eat grass if he or she wants to—this is the natural way that dogs purge their stomachs to get better. Some medical experts also say that letting your dog fast for a day can also help the body naturally get rid of toxins causing the stomach ache. Did you recently switch your pup’s dog food to a different brand or flavor? This could be the culprit too. You need to slowly ease your dog to its new food by combining equal parts of new and old for a few days and then slowly omitting the old so that your dog’s digestive system can get used to it.
3. Whip Up Bland, Home Cooked Dog Food. Lastly, dogs (just like humans) can soothe their stomachs by eating light broths. Pass on the hearty, heavily seasoned meaty dog food you may originally feed your pet and boil some pieces of chicken (no bone) and rice. Add in a tiny bit of broth to make somewhat of a soup. Serve with a side of fresh water and see if that does the trick.
If your pet still seems to be sick with no improvement, definitely consult your veterinarian.
This is a guest post by Nadia Jones who blogs about education, college, student, teacher, money saving, movie related topics. You can reach her at nadia.jones5 @ gmail.com.