Why is Your Dog Dry Heaving but Acting Normal

When your dog starts dry heaving, it can be a concerning sight, especially if they otherwise appear completely normal. Dry heaving—making retching noises without bringing anything up—can seem alarming, but it’s not uncommon. This blog post explores what dry heaving might indicate about your dog’s health, when to seek veterinary care, and how to monitor your dog for any additional symptoms that may warrant a visit to University Veterinary Hospital.


What Causes Dry Heaving in Dogs?

Dry heaving in dogs can be triggered by a range of factors from benign to serious. Simple causes include excitement or temporary throat irritation. However, it could also be a sign of something more concerning like gastrointestinal blockages or serious conditions affecting the respiratory system.

More Serious Concerns

In some cases, if a dog is dry heaving but acting normal, it could indicate a risk of a developing condition that isn’t yet showing other symptoms. Conditions like bloat, which is a life-threatening emergency, can start with symptoms as mild as dry heaving. This makes it important to closely monitor any changes in behavior or health following episodes of dry heaving.

When to Contact Your Veterinarian

If you notice that your dog is dry heaving, keep an eye on them for other symptoms such as lethargy, loss of appetite, or a bloated abdomen. These could be signs of a more serious condition developing. It’s crucial to get in touch with a veterinarian if dry heaving is frequent or accompanied by other concerning signs. Call University Veterinary Hospital at (318) 797-5522 or request an appointment online to ensure your dog receives a thorough examination. Our skilled veterinary team can help determine the underlying cause and the best course of action.

Diagnostic Processes

Examination and Tests

Upon visiting the veterinarian, they will likely conduct a full physical examination and may recommend diagnostic tests. These could include blood tests, X-rays, or an ultrasound to look for any abnormalities that might be causing the dry heaving.

Understanding Test Results

The results of these tests can help pinpoint the exact reason your dog is dry heaving and guide the subsequent treatment plan. Whether it’s a minor issue that can be managed with medication or a more serious condition requiring further intervention, getting a precise diagnosis is key.

Preventive Measures and Home Monitoring

While waiting for your veterinary appointment, keep your dog comfortable and monitor their behavior and eating habits closely. Make sure they have a quiet place to rest and avoid any undue stress or physical exertion. Regular check-ups and keeping up with your dog’s vaccinations and parasite control can help prevent many causes of dry heaving. Discuss a preventive health plan with your veterinarian to keep your dog in top condition.

Addressing Your Dog’s Dry Heaving 

While a dog dry heaving but acting normal might not seem like an urgent concern, it’s always best to err on the side of caution. Monitoring your pet and consulting with a veterinarian can help catch any potentially serious issues early. If you’re concerned about your dog’s dry heaving, contact University Veterinary Hospital for guidance and to secure an appointment. Your dog’s health is always our top priority.

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About University Veterinary Hospital

UVH has a phenomenal team of veterinarians and specialists available to meet all your pet’s needs. From the moment you walk through our doors, you will be met with friendly faces and warm greetings from our wonderful front desk team, and then ushered into an exam room to meet with your veterinarian. We are deeply invested in your pet’s longevity and happiness, and in your satisfaction.