Why Does My English Bulldog Vomit? Understanding the Reasons and Solutions

If you’re a proud English Bulldog owner, then you probably know this fact already – at some point, your beloved Bulldog will experience bouts of vomiting. Whether it’s yellow foam, white foam, undigested food, clear liquid, mucus, bile, or other strange substances, seeing your Bulldog throw up can be concerning. While it may be as simple as eating too quickly, recurrent vomiting may indicate a more serious health issue. As a fellow dog owner with extensive experience in dealing with vomit (yes, lucky me!), I want to share my knowledge on why your English Bulldog vomits and what different types of vomit may signify. Remember, I’m not a vet, but consulting with one if you’re worried is always a good idea. Now, let’s dig into the reasons behind your English Bulldog’s vomiting episodes!

Why Your English Bulldog is Vomiting and Puking

There are various types of vomit and regurgitation that can affect English Bulldogs. To provide you with valuable insights, I consulted with my vet and gathered information from professional forums. Let’s unravel what these episodes of vomiting could mean and what steps you should take.

Why Does My English Bulldog Throw Up White Foam?

The reasons behind your English Bulldog consistently throwing up white foam can vary greatly. In most cases, it’s not a cause for concern, but seeking professional advice can provide peace of mind. The first step is to examine what your English Bulldog has vomited. Sometimes, it might not actually be vomit but rather your Bulldog clearing their airways. English Bulldogs have brachycephalic features, which can lead to airway blockages, resulting in the need to regurgitate saliva.

sick bulldog

It’s important to understand that vomiting and regurgitating are two different things, but for simplicity’s sake, I’ll refer to both as throwing up. Now, let’s explore the possible causes of white foam vomit.

1. Indigestion and Stomach Upset

Your English Bulldog may be throwing up white foam due to an upset stomach. The most common cause is gastroenteritis, where the stomach is empty, leading to vomiting of white foam. This condition is also known as bilious vomiting syndrome. The produced bile can appear white or even yellow and might have an unpleasant odor.

2. Throwing up Something They Ate

English Bulldogs have a knack for putting anything and everything in their mouths, especially during their teething phase. It’s possible that your Bulldog has eaten something that doesn’t agree with their stomach, such as grass. If your Bulldog hasn’t eaten in a while, they may not have any food to vomit, so the foreign objects they ingested may come back up as white foam or slime.

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3. Kennel Cough

One common reason for English Bulldogs throwing up white foam is kennel cough. It’s not actual vomiting but a reaction to the coughing caused by the infection. Kennel cough usually occurs when your English Bulldog has been in contact with other dogs, often in kennels. While it’s an upper respiratory infection, it can be treated by a vet in about a week to 10 days.

4. Bloat

Bloat, formally known as gastric dilatation-volvulus, is a severe and life-threatening condition that can cause English Bulldogs to vomit white foam and slime. It occurs when the stomach twists after expanding. This twisting puts pressure on the internal organs, potentially obstructing the flow of blood to the Bulldog’s heart, which can be fatal. Bloat is more common in elderly dogs.

To reduce the chances of bloat and white foam vomit, ensure that your English Bulldog avoids strenuous exercise after eating. Some vets even recommend waiting for a good 30 minutes after a meal before engaging in light walks.

5. Pancreatitis

Pancreatitis is another serious condition that can lead to your English Bulldog throwing up white foam. It involves inflammation of the pancreas, an organ responsible for digesting food. If you observe your Bulldog hunching their back, showing signs of abdominal pain, experiencing diarrhea, decreased appetite, or lethargy, pancreatitis may be the cause. A vet should diagnose this condition, and early treatment can improve your Bulldog’s quality of life.

6. Kidney Disease

Kidney disease is a serious possibility associated with white foam vomit. Other symptoms may include increased urination, house-soiling, and early stages of kidney failure. White foam vomit can serve as an early indicator of kidney disease. However, with prompt treatment, English Bulldogs can still enjoy a good quality of life with a reduced risk of complications.

7. Parvovirus

Parvovirus is a viral infection that English Bulldogs can contract through exposure to other dogs, often from feces. It typically manifests within a week of contracting the virus, showcasing symptoms such as white foam vomiting and blood in the stool. Proper vaccination should protect your English Bulldog from parvovirus, making it an unlikely cause for responsible dog owners.

8. Rabies

While rare in countries such as the UK and United States, rabies is a potential reason for white slimy foam. Rabid dogs will exhibit foaming at the mouth due to the virus. However, this occurrence is highly unlikely and often prevented through vaccination.

Why Does My English Bulldog Throw Up Yellow Foam?

When your English Bulldog throws up yellow foam, it can often be linked to the reasons mentioned for white foam vomit. Nonetheless, yellow foam vomit may also indicate the presence of yellow bile and liquid. Here are some potential causes of yellow foam vomit:

  • Bilious Vomiting (High Probability): This term refers to stomach upset and is a common occurrence.
  • Bowel Problems: An irritation of the GI tract can bring about yellow foam vomiting.
  • Pancreatic Problems: Inflammation of the pancreas is another possible cause.
  • Intestinal Blockage: When the Bulldog’s meal cannot reach the stomach, they might vomit yellow foam.
  • Stomach Ulcers: Yellow foam vomit might be accompanied by weight loss, fever, and abdominal pain, indicating the presence of stomach ulcers.
  • Liver Problems: Digestion issues can occur if the Bulldog’s liver is unable to process food normally.

Why Does My English Bulldog Throw Up Brown Liquid?

Brown vomit often has a distinct dog poop smell. In some cases, it may even be actual dog poop that the puppies, including English Bulldogs, tend to eat. The reasons behind this behavior can vary and include seeking out nutrients, experiencing hunger, attracting attention, or combating boredom and stress (e.g., after returning from boarding kennels). However, brown vomit might not always be dog feces. It can also result from internal bleeding, blocked intestines, gum disease, or tumors causing bleeding.

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Why Does My English Bulldog Throw Up Clear Liquid?

Clear and foamy slime or foam without any undigested food can be indicative of several medical conditions. If there is no food in the clear liquid, it is unlikely that your English Bulldog’s diet is to blame. According to Dr. Jeff Werber, a Los Angeles-based vet, clear liquid vomit might indicate issues beyond the reaction to food. It could stem from kidney, liver, or pancreatic problems, severe gastritis, or even esophageal reflux, similar to heartburn. However, don’t panic if your English Bulldog vomits clear liquid. In many cases, excessive drooling can be mistaken for vomiting, especially if no food is present.

Why Does My English Bulldog Throw Up Green Liquid?

When it comes to green bile and vomit, it is usually not as serious as other colors. Dogs often eat grass or weeds, and the organic matter stains the vomit green. However, if you notice that your English Bulldog consumes a significant amount of plant material, discourage the behavior. Green vomit can also indicate the reflux of bile from the gall bladder, and the freshness of the color might suggest an internal blockage.

Why Does My English Bulldog Throw Up Pink or Red Foam?

Pink foam vomit in English Bulldogs can be due to a stomach bug. Intense vomiting can rupture small blood vessels in their stomachs, resulting in a pink tint in the vomit and mucus. On another note, pink foam vomit might indicate the presence of stomach ulcers. If you observe any signs of pink vomit, it may indicate blood in the vomit and should prompt a visit to the vet for further investigation. Small ulcers or stomach lining damage can be treated effectively with medication.

Other Reasons Why Your English Bulldog Might Vomit

Apart from the serious causes of English Bulldog vomiting discussed earlier, there are additional scenarios in which your Bulldog may vomit. Let’s take a look at some of these instances where your English Bulldog might throw up vomit and the respective reasons behind them:

After Exercise or on Walks

Just like us, if we ate a large meal and went for a 10-mile run immediately after, it’s no surprise that we’d end up vomiting. The same applies to English Bulldogs. Overeating followed by vigorous exercise can lead to regurgitation of their food. It’s advisable to wait for at least two hours after a meal before taking your Bulldog for a walk. Some vets even suggest waiting for 30 minutes after exercise to allow your Bulldog to cool down before feeding them.

After Drinking Water

Vomiting after drinking water can have various causes for your English Bulldog. It could result from drinking water too quickly, stimulating the gag reflex. In some cases, what appears to be water vomit may actually be a mixture of gastric juices, saliva, and water. The latter scenario might occur if your Bulldog hasn’t eaten in a while, is suffering from a digestive blockage, or other underlying conditions mentioned previously. If you find that drinking water consistently leads to vomiting, contact your vet for further evaluation.

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In the Morning or Late at Night

If your English Bulldog vomits in the morning or late at night, their eating habits could be the primary cause. When a dog goes without eating for an extended period, the introduction of food into their stomach can irritate bile reflux. Morning sickness can also occur during pregnancy or indicate conditions such as colitis, inflammatory bowel disease, pancreatitis, or reflux gastritis.

After Overeating or Eating Too Fast

Greedy English Bulldogs that eat too quickly often end up vomiting and regurgitating their food. Eating too fast doesn’t give them time to chew large food pieces properly, and it can result in swallowing excessive amounts of air, which can then be expelled via vomiting.

During Car Rides

Similar to humans, dogs can experience motion sickness during car rides. However, if your English Bulldog vomits in the car, it might also be due to stress and anxiety. To help them overcome this, gradually introduce your Bulldog to shorter car journeys, allowing them to acclimate slowly.

Stress, Excessive Excitement, or Anxiety

English Bulldogs often display high levels of excitement, especially during mealtimes. Their competitive pack mentality drives them to gobble up their food quickly to prevent other dogs from getting a taste. Eating too fast can result in vomiting, a phenomenon observed in humans as well. Additionally, Bulldogs can vomit when excited outside of mealtimes due to stress and anxiety. Their stomach muscles tense up, leading to vomiting.

When Should You Call the Vet?

After discussing the various reasons for English Bulldog vomiting, it’s essential to remember not to panic. In most cases, the presence of slime and bile indicates a temporary upset stomach or an episode of eating something disagreeable. However, when in doubt, call your vet, especially if you can’t identify any undigested food in the vomit. Here are a few signs that should prompt you to reach out to your vet:

  • Your English Bulldog experiences persistent vomiting lasting more than 24 hours.
  • Your English Bulldog shows signs of pain, lethargy, or distress.
  • Your English Bulldog has blood in their stool.
  • Your English Bulldog exhibits projectile vomiting.

Is It Vomiting or Regurgitation?

Earlier, I mentioned that vomiting and regurgitation are different processes with distinct causes. Vomiting involves the expulsion of food from the stomach, coated with bile. Signs of vomiting in English Bulldogs include retching, hunching, lip-licking, and drooling. Vomit usually appears as a mix of digested food and yellow bile. On the other hand, regurgitation involves the expulsion of undigested food, covered in saliva, mucus, and slime, from the esophagus or pharynx, before reaching the stomach.

Conclusion

I hope this guide has shed light on why your English Bulldog may be vomiting and throwing up their food. In most cases, vomiting is temporary and not indicative of a severe health problem. However, it’s advisable to consult your vet to err on the side of caution. This is especially important if you’re concerned about your English Bulldog puppy frequently vomiting, as young pups require extra attention. Remember, your vet is the best person to provide accurate guidance. If you’re interested in learning more about Bulldogs, check out the wealth of valuable resources available on Doggysaurus.

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