Dog Vomiting Stones: 6 Proven Culprits & Viable Measures

It’s quite common to witness a dog vomiting. However, one particular situation that can be alarming is the dog vomiting stones.

That sounds weird! But sometimes, your furry friends may accidentally ingest stones while playing or chewing on rocks, and if they cannot pass them.

Such risky things can become lodged in their digestive system.

This can trigger grave health complications and may even require surgery. As a pet owner, it’s crucial to know the signs of stone ingestion and what steps to take if this is the case. Keep the ball rolling!

Dog Vomiting Stones: What Is The Trigger?

dog vomiting stones
Dog Vomiting Stones

Why do they eat then vomit stones

Regarding the causes of the dog vomiting gallstones, there are 6 potential reasons, including nutrition deficiency, anemia, boredom, attention, abuse or starvation, and gastrointestinal issues.

Lack Of Nutrition

Once you notice that a dog vomit looks like stones, perhaps it gets dietary deficiencies.

This issue compels dogs to consume inedible substances like rocks, fabrics, plastic, wood, and other unusual objects.

That can be a reason for white rubbery chunks in vomit dog, even with blood clots, for instance.

This condition is concerning since it can also result in other potentially fatal circumstances, including choking, poisoning, and significant digestive problems if a dog gets its paws on things like medications or batteries.

Anemia (low RBC)

One of the primary reasons for pica or vomiting of gallstones is anemia, often originating from the dog’s low iron, destroyed or insufficient RBC in blood, or blood loss.

Anema exists in 2 types: regenerative and non-regenerative. With the non-regenerative type, the bone marrow does not respond to the elevated demand for RBC.

Meanwhile, regenerative anemia occurs when the bone marrow replaces RBC, but it is also lost for many reasons, such as intestinal bleeding or destruction.


Dogs are intelligent, inquisitive beings that use their keen sense of scent to explore the environment. But, on occasion, their noses can lead them astray or even get them into trouble.

While the animal gets bored, it will attempt to taste or perhaps eat the thing out of curiosity if it smells food on it.

This behavior is dangerous since it might tempt the pet to ingest hazardous materials habitually.

Due to this, most pets who visit vet offices for intestinal complete obstruction have many pebbles in their bodies.

Gastrointestinal Issues

Stomach tumors, hookworms, an imbalanced diet, and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) are a few of the digestive issues causing a dog to eat rocks.

Any digestive issue the pet has may trick it to think it is famished and drive it to eat whatever it can find, including stones.


Compared to other pets, dogs crave more attention from their owners. As such, some breeds can get separation anxiety, strain, and frustration if they are frequently ignored or do not receive enough socialization.

The pet will develop pica and begin ingesting odd materials like dirt, rock, and plastic if they go too long without being cared for properly.

Abuse Or Starvation

If the dog had ever been maltreated, hungry, or homeless before you adopted it, this behavior might have developed out of a need to survive.

You might find that unusual, but it might have attempted to eat stones once it got famished, and the dog threw up a rock after that.

Even with plenty of food in his stomach, changing a habit like this can be tough.

What Damage Can Rocks Do In A Dog’s Stomach?

dog threw up a rock
Damage Can Rocks Do In A Dog’s Stomach

Get Sick And Pain Due To Abnormal Objects

When everything is functioning normally, food moves from your pet’s esophagus to his stomach, where it stays for around 12 hours before moving through the pyloric sphincter and into its intestine.

But it’s not always that simple when the pet is ingesting or extruding a rock or another foreign object rather than food.

The animal may occasionally vomit if the rock or object is tiny; this could happen once or twice per week. The larger the stone type is, the more frequently it tends to vomit.

Too big objects pass through dog’s intestinal or another portion of the digestive system can make the dog sick and painful.

Potential Dangers

Continuous vomiting may have a massive impact on the body, leading to dehydration, weakness, fatal disease, motion sickness, gastric ulcers, or chronic diseases.

Gall bladder, weight loss, bladder infections, fungal infections, bacterial infections, liver failure, kidney disease, and even death are other possible consequences.

A foreign item can trigger stomach ulceration if left untreated, boosting the risk of sepsis, a bloodstream infection, and the potentially fatal ailment peritonitis, the abdominal lining’s inflammation.

If the rock presses down on the stomach for an extended period, it may impair blood flow to the organ’s tissue, resulting in the tissue dying.

Toxic enzymes are released into the bloodstream as tissue decomposes, ending up with shock and peritonitis.

Get Stuck In The Stomach And Can’t Poop Properly

Also, your pet’s esophagus may extend to accommodate food bits and items larger than its stomach outlet.

Its stomach crushes and partly digests food, but it cannot do so with non-food materials like rocks, a part of a blanket, and other foreign objects that can get stuck in its stomach’s outflow.

An individual dog can vomit 20 times daily in response to a golf-ball-sized item. Also, it will be entirely unable to hold anything down and will vomit whatever it consumes if its stomach exit is totally blocked.

Moreover, intestinal blockage adversely affects a dog’s bowel movement since it inhibits the passage of anything, as stated.

Thus if a few days have gone since the obstruction formed, the animal could suffer constipation or could not poop at all.

In this case, develop a proper treatment plan for the pet in cooperation with your veterinarian.

What Should I Do If My Dog Is Eating Rocks?

Visit your vet right away whenever you get a rock chewer at home. To check whether the dog has a medical issue or nutritional deficiency, your vet can do a physical exam.

He can suggest a special diet, medications, or guidance once the behavior stems from a physical illness and go for the suitable treatment for dogs eating rocks.

Still, you have to resolve behavioral difficulties if there are no potential medical factors. Consider enrolling the pet in obedience courses.

If it’s pica, it will need to undergo specific training under the supervision of qualified behaviorists.

How To Train My Dog Not To Consume Rocks Anymore?

Go For Obedience Training

Obedience training may go a long way in preventing them from possibly deadly conditions.

The fundamental instructions “stop,” “stay,” “drop,” and “leave it” are a few that every dog should be able to follow.

Notably, a dog can quickly become acclimated to these commands when they are still puppies.

Also, you can train the pet independently with some persistence and work. Yet, like crate training for dogs, this process seems challenging to any pet owner.

When the pet misbehaves, command it and observe whether it follows. If they obey, show your pleasure by praising or giving it goodies.

Gradually, whenever your dog places a rock or other potentially harmful object in its mouth, it will immediately drop it according to your demand.

Do not yell at or give the dog harsh commands. If it gets frightened while already holding a rock in its mouth, it is more likely to ingest it than toss it to the ground.

Remove All Rocks & Stones In The Yard

Eliminating all the rocks in your yard or limiting your pet’s access to them is the easiest method to stop it from eating a rock.

This applies to every ornamental stone and little pebble in the home and yard. If that isn’t possible, cover them with some protective netting so the animal can’t eat them.

Give The Pet More Toys And Activities

Dogs may chew stones out of boredom, as stated. Hence, it’s crucial to keep them entertained and active all day long.

Provide it with chew toys and interactive puzzles so they can stay cognitively stimulated and relieve their stress.

Notably, for individuals with separation anxiety, ensure it has company when you’re not home.

Toys are one option, but in the long run, it’s best to have a dog sitter or get a different animal for the pet to play with.

Pet owners are also advised to look for potential stresses in their pet’s environment, such as children who might not be playing well or due to other pets, and so on.

Is There Any More Prevention Of Dogs Eating Rocks?

dog vomit looks like stones
Other Ways Prevention Of Dogs Eating Rocks

Yes. Besides training the dog, you should also implement more methods. 

Don’t give your dog food other than what your vet has prescribed, including table scraps.

Feeding it a nutritious, balanced food containing animal proteins like beef or chicken and routine vet visits will aid in avoiding anemia and digestive tract issues.

Seeing the veterinarian at least once a year can help locate many disorders before they worsen.

Treating behavioral issues that seem like compulsive disorders such us obsessive disorder, eating disorder, and poor habits may be trickier.

Spend more time with the pet and watch what it does to determine if it’s eating rocks.

Does it simply seem dull or hungry, or might a deeper issue be brought on by malnutrition or abuse?

Whatever happens, you must immediately stop the habit by removing all the stones and other hazardous objects from the yard where access is available.

Until these health concerns are handled entirely, keep an eye on him when he is outdoors. You also need to consult an expert in animal behavior or enroll in an obedience course.


What Dog Breeds Are Prone To Pica?

Pica, a disorder that stimulates dogs to consume things that aren’t healthy, is prevalent among puppies and several dog breeds, notably labradors and dachshunds.

How Long Can A Dog Survive With Intestinal Blockage?

An animal with a total intestinal obstruction will pass away in 3–4 days.

Yet, a dog with a partially clogged digestive system may continue to function for up to 3 weeks before dying, depending on how severe the blockage is.

Take-home Messages!

Dogs are our loyal companions; we want nothing but the best for them. So with a dog vomiting stones, it can be a daunting experience for any pet owner.

Throwing up stones in canines is uncommon, but this can happen to any dog. The underlying causes can vary from breed to breed, age, and even their diet.

We’ve just rounded up the causes, symptoms, and treatment options of this health condition you can do to help your furry friend. Hopefully, this article is handy for you guys!

Many may be concerned about their dog’s health and well-being, keep sharing the post with them!


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Hi I am Mitchell. Dog Growth is a blog about dog caring and training where I share my experiences to my community. Hope you enjoy it!

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