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Upset Stomach After Eating Bone

Vomiting from Bone Fragments

Dog Upset Stomach After Eating Bone: if your dog develops an upset stomach and is vomiting after eating a bone such as rawhide, chicken bones or ham bones, there can be several causes for this, but it's important to consider that serious complications may arise from the consumption of such bones.

To play it safe it's a good idea to see your vet sooner than later as things can go downhill quickly. Following are some conditions that may result in an upset stomach or more after eating a bone.


This is an inflammation of the stomach and intestines and can occur as a result of eating something different. Sudden, abrupt dietary changes or dietary indiscretions are known for causing this, so this is a possibility if your dog isn't used to eating bones on a regular basis.

Generally, this type of upset stomach is short-lived and the inflammation subsides if the stomach is given time to rest followed by a dog upset stomach bland diet.


Pancreatitis is the inflammation of the pancreas and can be seen when bones are flavored and high in fat, explains veterinarian Dr. Gabby. Signs of pancreatitis include vomiting, pain when the abdomen is palpated, loss of appetite, diarrhea, dehydration, lethargy and weakness. Pancreatitis requires prompt veterinary care especially for severe cases.

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Gastro-intestinal Blockage

One of the most common complications when eating bones is a blockage. This takes place when bones or parts of bones are swallowed in large enough pieces to block the passage of food. Since food cannot make it past the blockage, depending on its location, affected dogs may regurgitate the food shortly after eating (as seen in blockages of the esophagus) or may vomit the food back up after several minutes or hours.

Generally, items ingested should pass through the intestinal tract and be expelled within 48 hours. Inspecting the stools for signs of the ingested item can be helpful, but since certain items may not be able to pass, it's imperative to seek veterinary treatment before complications set in. Blockages are treated by removing the lodged bone either by endoscopy or surgery. Sometimes, bones may pass on their own, but there's no guarantee and the dog will be in pain. Bones known for particularly causing problems include rawhide, steak bones, rib bones and turkey carcasses.

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This is one of the most serious complications that may arise from the ingestion of bones. The peritoneum is a membrane that lines the abdominal cavity and is responsible for supporting the abdominal organs. Cooked bones, unlike raw bones, are more likely to splinter and create problems as they pass through the gastrointestinal tract.

A big problem occurs when the sharp edges of a bone perforate the peritoneum, causing leakage within the abdominal cavity. Affected dogs will develop vomiting, diarrhea, weakness, lack of appetite, fever, a distended abdomen, pain and left untreated, septic shock. This condition is life threatening and requires immediate veterinary attention.

Vomiting from Bone Fragments

When a dog eats a bone, bone fragments, which are not digestible, may settle in the dog's stomach. The affected dog may eat fine and keep food down, but then later in the day or in the middle of the night, or early morning, the dog may vomit these fragments. If the fragments are sharp, they may scrape the lining of the esophagus causing the appearance of a few drops of blood; however, these lttle blood clots may also be seen as a result of vigorous vomiting which may rupture the small blood vessels lining in the stomach.

Constipation from Bone Fragments

[adinserter block="5"]If the bone fragments pass through the stomach and make it into the digestive tract, once they are through the colon and ready to be eliminated, they can accumulate and make the passage of stool difficult. Since these ground up bone fragments solidify into a very hard stool, affected dogs may strain, become constipated and the bone fragments may be painful to pass even causing bleeding as they pass through. In some cases, dogs may also develop diarrhea with or without blood. A vet appointment may be needed t help the dog expel the hardened stools.

As seen, bones can cause a variety of problems in dogs and it could be more than just an upset stomach especially, when they're not chewed up properly. If your dog ate a bone, and develops vomiting, diarrhea, constipation, lethargy, loss of appetite or abdominal pain, it's important to see your vet to rule out a possible serious condition such as a blockage, perforation or bout of pancreatitis.

Did you know?

Dog's Upset Stomach About

While in nature wild canines eat bones, it's important to consider that they eat them raw and since they also ingest the fur of an animal, this fur helps "cocoon" the sharper edges of bones, making them easier to pass.

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