If you own a Chihuahua, you’re aware that these small dogs can suffer from intestinal troubles. An upset stomach can be painful for your pet and may necessitate a trip to the veterinarian. In this blog post, we’ll go through the causes of an upset stomach in Chihuahuas and what you can do to help your pup if they’re having digestive problems.
Let’s dive in!
Causes of Upset Stomach In Chihuahua
There are several possible causes of stomach problems in chihuahuas. Some common causes include:
If you are switching your chihuahua’s diet or introducing new foods, it’s important to do so gradually. Sudden changes in diet can cause digestive upset in chihuahuas. It’s important to feed your chihuahua a diet that is appropriate for their age, size, and activity level. Feeding them a diet that is too high in fat or too low in nutrients can cause digestive upset.
Infections can cause stomach upset in chihuahuas, as well as in other dogs, by affecting the digestive system.
Bacterial infections, viral infections, and parasite infections are all examples of illnesses that can damage the digestive tract. Bacterial infections may be transmitted by bacteria that are consumed in contaminated food or water, or by contact with other organisms or surfaces. Viral infections, such as parvovirus, can be spread through bodily fluid contact or through the air. Infections caused by parasites, such as worms or protozoa, can be spread by contaminated food or water, or through contact with sick animals or their feces.
Allergies in chihuahuas can create stomach difficulties by causing inflammation in the digestive tract. This might result in symptoms such as nausea, diarrhea, and stomach pain. In rare situations, allergies can result in a lack of digestive enzymes, further disrupting the digestive process and causing gastrointestinal disorders.
If your chihuahua is having digestive issues as a result of allergies, consult a veterinarian for accurate diagnosis and treatment. To manage food allergies and reduce digestive health issues, the veterinarian may offer a hypoallergenic diet or other treatment alternatives.
Stress can affect the digestive system of any animal, including chihuahuas. When an animal experiences stress, its body releases stress hormones, such as cortisol, which can disrupt the normal functioning of the digestive system. This can lead to acid reflux, which can cause heartburn, nausea, and vomiting. Stress can also cause the muscles in the digestive system to contract abnormally, leading to diarrhea or constipation.
🟪 Other medical conditions
Chihuahuas may also develop stomach aches due to underlying medical conditions such as inflammatory bowel disease, pancreatitis, or liver disease. Check the next section to know what other medical conditions affect the digestive system of your chihuahua.
Conditions That Can Manifest Stomach Issues In Chihuahuas
Some common stomach issues that Chihuahuas may experience include:
Gastroenteritis, also known as “stomach flu” or “gastric flu,” is a common condition that can cause stomach pain, diarrhea, and vomiting in dogs, including chihuahuas. The condition is usually caused by a viral or bacterial infection, or by the ingestion of something toxic or inappropriate.
If your chihuahua is experiencing gastroenteritis, it’s important to take them to the vet as soon as possible. The vet will be able to diagnose the cause of the upset stomach and recommend the appropriate treatment, which may include over-the-counter medications to control vomiting and diarrhea, fluids to prevent dehydration, and dietary changes. In severe cases, hospitalization may be necessary.
Bloat, also known as gastric dilatation-volvulus (GDV), is a potentially fatal illness that can affect any breed of dog, including Chihuahuas. It happens when the stomach fills up with gas or fluid and twists on itself, cutting off the blood flow to the stomach and other organs.
Bloat symptoms include a large or inflated abdomen, agitation, panting, drowsiness, and vomiting. If your Chihuahua exhibits these symptoms, seek veterinary attention immediately, since bloat can be fatal if not addressed properly. Bloat can create significant complications such as shock and organ damage in addition to upset stomachs.
In chihuahuas and other dogs, an upset stomach, often known as gastrointestinal (GI) distress, can be an indication of pancreatitis. Pancreatitis is an inflammation of the pancreas, an organ that aids digestion and blood sugar management.
Pancreatitis in dogs can also cause abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhea, poor appetite, and fatigue. If your chihuahua exhibits any of these symptoms, you should see a veterinarian as soon as possible because pancreatitis is a dangerous ailment that requires immediate treatment.
🟪 Intestinal parasites
Intestinal worms can cause inflammation and irritation in the digestive tract, leading to symptoms such as diarrhea, vomiting, and abdominal pain. In severe cases, these parasites can also cause weight loss, malnutrition, and anemia.
Intestinal parasites need to be addressed as soon as possible because these parasites can travel to other parts of your Chi’s body like the kidneys.
Symptoms of Chihuahua Stomach Issues
A Chihuahua is a small dog with an even smaller stomach. If you suspect your Chihuahua has an upset stomach, it’s best to take them to the vet for a diagnosis. The symptoms of an upset stomach in a Chihuahua are similar to those in humans and can include vomiting, diarrhea, cramps, and more serious conditions such as pancreatitis or colitis.
Here is what you should look out for if you think your furry friend might be suffering from an upset stomach:
🟪 A sudden change in behavior
If your Chihuahua suddenly starts acting strangely, there could be a problem with its stomach. If it begins to whine or lick a specific region of its body, it may be feeling discomfort from an upset stomach. Panting and tremor or shivering are also signs of there’s something wrong with your Chi’s health. Your Chihuahua may also appear restless, which can be an indication of pain caused by an intestinal illness like colitis or pancreatitis.
🟪 Reduced appetite
If your Chihuahua is not eating, something is wrong. If you notice that your Chihuahua isn’t eating or drinking, you should take them to a vet right away. The chances are that they have an upset stomach and need some medical attention. In many cases, this will be enough to get them back on their feet and feeling better again!
If your Chihuahua isn’t eating or drinking anything at all, then there’s probably something wrong with them. You shouldn’t try to force-feed them any treats either; it won’t help their condition and can even make things worse if they’re already very sick!
Vomiting is a natural reaction to an upset stomach or the intake of anything your dog should not have eaten, but it can also be an indication of other issues. When chihuahuas vomit, you should pay attention to whether they vomited bile or blood. Bile vomiting may suggest an intestinal obstruction, in which food or stool becomes impacted and is unable to move through the digestive tract.
Blood in the vomit implies internal bleeding from the stomach or intestines. If you see one of these symptoms, contact your veterinarian right away because additional testing may be required to discover what is causing the condition and whether surgery is required to correct it.
In addition to being a symptom of a medical problem such as blockage, chihuahua vomiting can also indicate poisoning (both intentional and unintentional), allergies, infection by bacteria like salmonella or E coli, or even parasites like worms in the gut!
🟪 Flatulence or passing gas
If your Chihuahua is passing gas, this may be a sign of an upset stomach. However, it can also be a symptom of something more serious. If your dog has been gassy for several days and doesn’t seem to be getting better, you should talk to your vet about other possible causes of the gas (such as inflammation or even cancer). In the meantime, try giving the dog some watermelon seeds or pumpkin seeds as a gentle laxative.
🟪 Excessive drinking and urinating
When a Chihuahua drinks extensively and urinates frequently, the dog is dehydrated. The Chihuahua may vomit or exhibit other symptoms of illness (such as lethargy or depression), causing them to drink more. Excessive drinking and urination might also result in a fever. This will make your Chihuahua feel hotter than usual, increasing thirst. Take your Chihuahua to the vet right away if you detect one of these behaviors!
🟪 Retained weight for a day
If your Chihuahua is retaining weight, it’s time to take a trip to the vet. Retained weight means that there’s something in the digestive tract that shouldn’t be there, possibly a large piece of food or an obstruction. Once your vet has removed this blockage and given it back its figure, then you can start treating any scarring caused by gastrointestinal distress.
Upset Stomach: List Of Causes And Tips To Soothe Your Chihuahua’s Tummy
If you don’t have time to go to the vet, you can do some ways to soothe your chihuahua’s stomach. This is a very crucial step because we want to make sure that the food you give is suitable for your chihuahuas’ sensitive stomachs.
🟪 Feeding a bland diet
A bland diet is one that consists of solely readily digestible foods. These foods are simple for your Chihuahua’s stomach to digest and typically include little or no fat. Rice, sweet potatoes, oats, bananas, and applesauce are examples of bland foods. You can also feed shredded chicken with water (1/8 cup water per pound of chicken) to your dog. Instead of additives like salt and pepper, opt for basic cooked veggies like carrots or green beans.
🟪 Feed your dog rice water
If your chihuahua has an upset stomach, rice water is a great alternative to chicken broth. In fact, it’s said to be even more beneficial for dogs than most other natural remedies because of its high concentration of nutrients and electrolytes. Rice water is easy to make at home and can provide your Chihuahua with much-needed relief from digestive irregularities.
🟪 Add a little bit of rice to their regular meals
You can also include a small amount of rice in their daily meals. Just one tablespoon every meal is more than enough to help ease the stomach. However, don’t overfeed, since this may result in diarrhea rather than helping with upset stomachs.
If your Chihuahua does not generally consume dry food, mix it into wet food (such as canned dog food) rather than offering it dry food on its own. This will make it easier for them to digest and will prevent them from having problems with their teeth or gums when chewing their dinner. Other foods, such as carrots or applesauce, can also make the rice more appealing to your dog!
🟪 Introduce broth or low-sodium chicken stock
If your chihuahua has been vomiting or experiencing diarrhea, you can use broth to help replace fluids lost through these bouts. The bone broth is also a good source of electrolytes essential for proper hydration. This may be especially important if your dog has had diarrhea for several days in a row, as this can cause dehydration.
🟪 Give your chihuahua more fiber
If you want to improve your chihuahua’s health, get dog food with more fiber in its diet! Fiber is also good for digestion in general. It helps with diarrhea and constipation (and weight loss). Finally, it helps reduce hairball problems in chihuahuas by making them less likely to swallow their own fur while grooming themselves, and who hasn’t had a Chihuahua do that?
🟪 Boil some pumpkin puree
If your chihuahua seems to have a sensitive stomach, adding pumpkin to his diet may help him feel better. Pumpkin is slippery/slimy, and high in fiber and beta-carotene, which may help ease a dog’s upset stomach.
To give your dog a pumpkin, start by boiling the pumpkin puree into his food. You can use homemade or canned pumpkins, but you should avoid giving him fresh pumpkins because they contain toxins that could make your pet sick.
🟪 Offer them some bananas or applesauce
Bananas and applesauce are both low in calories and high in fiber. Bananas can be crushed into a paste and fed to your chihuahua with a spoon. Because it comes in a jar, applesauce is easier to administer. However, keep in mind that your chihuahua is sensitive to strong aromas and flavors, so choose unsweetened versions. If you have access to freshly made unsweetened yogurt or kefir (a fermented milk drink), these are even better options than bananas or applesauce on their own.
Preventing Chihuahua Stomach Issues
Chihuahuas are adorable and affectionate canines. They have a reputation for being fierce and stubborn, but when properly treated, they can be quite pleasant and even cuddly. However, many people are unaware that Chihuahuas are prone to acquiring health problems due to their small stature (and often fragile bones). The following suggestions can assist you in preventing your Chihuahua from acquiring gastrointestinal problems:
🟪 Proper diet
A healthy diet is essential for your Chihuahua to avoid gastrointestinal problems. While your Chihuahua can eat almost whatever you eat, he requires high-quality food that is high in protein, calcium, and fiber. Too much fat or sugar might create stomach issues, so try to avoid those substances if possible. Furthermore, do not feed your Chihuahua human food. Even if it is vegetarian or organic, it will not help him avoid stomach issues if the meal is not designed for dogs!
🟪 Regular exercise
Exercise is essential for immune function and well-being. It can aid with weight management and obesity prevention, as well as joint issues in elderly dogs. Exercise also gives cognitive stimulation, which is especially necessary for Chihuahuas, who are more playful than other dog breeds.
The amount of exercise required depends on the breed, but one to two short walks each day should be enough. If you have other pets who need to be exercised at home, that’s even better! You do not have to walk them all at once. Alternatively, you could walk your Chihuahua first thing in the morning or after work while everyone else goes out later in the day or on weekends (or vice versa).
🟪 Clean water
It is necessary to offer a clean source of water for your Chihuahua, as bacteria-contaminated water can cause diarrhea. A bowl or flask will suffice, but make sure to wipe it out on a regular basis. If you use a bowl, make sure the water level does not fall too low, limiting your Chihuahua’s access to fresh water.
You should also think about getting your Chi a drinking fountain. These are slightly more expensive and unnecessary for little dogs like the Chihuahua, but they may be worth considering if you have multiple pets that need to be hydrated!
🟪 Preventative medicine
The most vital point you can do to defend your Chihuahua from stomach issues is to ensure it is in good health. Your veterinarian will be able to provide you with any immunizations it requires, including rabies and bordetella shots. If there are no known issues with its heartworm status, ask your vet if it’s time for annual heartworm prevention therapy. Also, make sure your Chihuahua is up to date on heartworm prevention from fleas and ticks.
When To Seek Veterinary Care For Chihuahua Stomach Issues
Seek veterinarian assistance immediately if your Chihuahua exhibits signs of severe abdominal pain, such as whimpering or whining when touched or attempting to walk or move. This could indicate a dangerous ailment that necessitates quick medical attention.
Your veterinarian will be able to establish the source of your Chihuahua’s gastrointestinal issues and propose the best course of action. Medication, a particular diet, or other therapy may be used. It is critical to follow your veterinarian’s suggestions as quickly as possible to make your Chihuahua feel better.
To conclude, it is critical to monitor your chihuahua’s nutrition and behavior in order to avoid stomach discomfort. If your chihuahua develops stomach upset, visit your veterinarian and follow their treatment instructions. This may entail switching to a portion of bland food, taking medication, or making dietary and activity adjustments for your chihuahua.
Your chihuahua should recover fast and be back to their normal selves with sufficient care and attention. Always put your chihuahua’s health and well-being first, and don’t be afraid to seek professional help if you have any concerns.
Here at ILoveChihuahua, we share our personal experiences as owners of this feisty breed. We talk about recommended methods, dog supplies picks, and advice on common Chihuahua problems. Our goal is to promote responsible dog ownership, so there would be fewer Chihuahuas in shelters.