Dry heaving is a common condition in dogs. It is also called retching. Dry heaving can be described as a vomit-like feeling, followed by a loud to medium voice from the mouth, but nothing comes out. Sometimes dry heaving leads to vomiting but not always.

It is possible to treat dry heaving at home. A simple change in habits and simple ingredients from the kitchen can help to treat a dog’s dry heaving.

It is crucial to treat dog dry heaving to avoid any emergency. The best treatment for the dog’s dry heaving is a behavior change. Slow feeding, resting after the meal, and a fixed eating schedule is the best treatment for dry heaving. Some herbs and kitchen ingredients could be very potent to treat dry heaving like ginger, basil, calendula flowers, milk thistle, valerian root, and chamomile.

Home remedies are 100% effective treatment for dry heaving. The above-mentioned herbs can be used in various ways to prevent and treat a dog’s dry heaving. To know how to effectively use different ingredients to treat a dog’s dry heaving, read the article till full length.

Why is Dry Heaving dangerous for dogs?

Dry heaving and vomiting are the names of a similar situation. But in dry heaving, dogs don’t regurgitate. Instead, dogs make a wrenching sound, and it feels like they are trying to push something out of their oral cavity.

Dogs’ dry heaving is an alarming situation if it starts to occur regularly. It can lead to inflammation and soreness of the oral cavity. So it is crucial to treat the dog’s dry heaving.

Before seeing the treatment, it is necessary to know the cause of the disease. So we can treat the ailment effectively.

Common Cause of a dog’s Dry Heaving

There are five most common causes of the dog’s dry heaving.

Foreign bodies in the airways

As a pet parent, you would have known that dogs have a nature to eat random things. Dogs are scavengers. They try to eat things that they are not supposed to eat, like plastic objects and any other substance that they can chew. These substances cause choking in dogs. Choke is a condition in dogs that blocks the passage of breathing in dogs.

In the initial stage of choke, the dog tries to expel the choked substance, this attempt to vomit causes heaving in dogs. Choking is one of the most common causes of dry heaving. Your dog could have a mind to severe heaving. This type of dry heaving needs instant attention.


There are many types of infections that cause dry heaving. Parasitic infection is one of the most common causes. Parasitic infection is common in dogs. Dogs commonly become infected with the roundworm after licking it from the soil. These tiny parasites make their way to dogs’ lungs and air passageways. They start growth and reproduction there.

Dogs usually don’t show signs of parasitic infection until they become acute. Heavy infestation of the lung and air passageway with the roundworms also causes dry heaving in dogs.

Tapeworm causes lung infection in dogs and also causes persistent coughing in dogs. The heavy cough leads to dry heaving.

Heartworms are one of the potential causes among parasites that cause dry heaving in dogs. Heartworm infection needs immediate attention and treatment. Otherwise, it can lead to severe dry heaving and ultimately death.

All the other infections of the dog’s oral cavity can also lead to dry heaving. Fortunately, it is possible to treat all the infections of the oral cavity at home.

Disease or illness

There are several diseases of the respiratory tract that cause dry heaving in dogs, like canine distemper. Canine distemper is a common disease of dogs. In canine distemper, dogs show the sign of a heavy cough, fever, and nasal discharge. In canine distemper, dogs frequently show the symptoms of dry heaving.

Bordetella is a specific term used to define kennel cough, it causes dry cough in dogs that leads to heaving.

Bronchitis in dogs also causes dry heaving. Bronchitis is the inflammation of the bronchi. There could be many reasons for bronchitis, e.g. injury due to foreign body and infection.

A blocked air passageway

The blocked air passageway is one of the potential causes of heaving in dogs. As described above, dogs could have a blocked air passageway due to foreign or non-foreign objects.

The non-foreign causes include the tumor and the cyst of the respiratory system. Tonsillitis and pharyngitis are the inflammation of the tonsils and pharynx. This inflammation causes swelling of the lymph nodes.

All these conditions block the passage and cause a dog’s gag reflex. The reflex ultimately causes heaving. This type of heaving could be mild to severe, depending upon the cause.


Blot is a disease that defines the condition of GDV (gastric dilations and volvulus). GDV is mild in humans but could be life-threatening in dogs. In GDV, the stomach rapidly fills itself with the gas and then cuts its blood supply.

During this condition, dogs try to expel the unnecessary gas, and during this attempt, heaving occurs.

This type of heaving is also life-threatening. It is crucial to treat this type of heaving immediately. Otherwise, you will lose your four-footed friend. But the good news is that the heaves due to blot are treatable at home. You can treat them with a little attention and care.

The above-mentioned five causes, commonly cause heaving in the dogs. There could be many other reasons. But they are few and far between.

The differential diagnosis of heaving is very crucial. Many people misunderstood dry heaving as dry cough. To diagnose heaving; it is necessary to know the signs and symptoms of dry heaving. So, let’s see, what are the most common sign of dry heaving in dogs?

Common Signs of Heaving in dogs

Dry heaving is misunderstood by dry cough. The condition of dry cough is entirely different from heaving. The dry cough of the dog is similar to humans. While in heaving dog forcefully attempts to spit something out of his mouth but in vain.

Dry heaving can also be called unproductive vomiting. Because in it, nothing comes out of the mouth of the dog. Other than this dogs often show lethargy and lack interest in physical activities and refuse to eat.

Some dogs show signs of severe pain after continuous heaving. You can check the pain reflex by slightly pressing the thorax area of the dog. If the dog showed the immediate reflex, it means the dog has severe pain due to continuous heaving.

If you think that the above-mentioned signs are similar to your dogs’ condition. Then worry not, because you can prevent and treat heaving at home. Let’s see some best home remedies for dogs’ dry heaving.

How to Preventing Dry Heaving?

Here are a few things you can follow to prevent dry heaving in dogs:

Control Inappropriate Eating

We have described above that choking is one of the most common causes of heaving in dogs. Dogs face the condition of choking when they ingest some inappropriate things.

Dogs usually get these unwanted subjects during the outdoor walk or from the dustbin. If you could remove these two causes, you can potentially remove the chance of choking. For this, you can use the covered buckets for the garbage, and you can control the outdoor walks with muzzles.

Slow Eating

The canines are very excited about the mealtime. Sometimes the rapid eating of the ready-made food causes blocking of the air passageway of the dogs. The condition is more common in young dogs. Sometimes due to love, we overfeed our pups which leads to dry heaving. To avoid this condition, you can invest in slow automatic feeders.

Avoid Physical Activities immediately after a Meal

Dogs that start physical activities immediately after eating commonly become the victim of heaving. It is due to the sudden influx of calories. The sudden influx causes excessive energy generation in dogs, and dogs want to get rid of them.

Sudden running can cause heaving conditions. So, to prevent this condition, it is recommended to calm your dogs for at least 20-30 minutes after each meal. It is also recommended to give food gradually to dogs, especially to starving ones. So, they can appropriately manage the calorie influx.

Avoid free feeding schedule

A free feeding schedule can also cause heaving in dogs because a free feeding schedule causes blot. A free feeding schedule for any species is a disaster anyway. So, follow the feeding schedule to avoid the condition of heaving.

How to Treat Dry Heaving with Home Remedies?

By following the above-described methods, you can significantly remove the chances of heaving in dogs. But if, unfortunately, your dog is heaving continuously, then worry not, and read the following home remedies to treat heaving and try the one that best suits you to avoid the heaving.


Fasting is one of the best ways to reduce heaving. Fasting gives time to dogs to rest their stomach and get rid of the annoying food. When you start giving food to your pup after fasting, try to offer small soft food.

The most common cause of heaving is an upset stomach. So, any remedy that can treat the upset stomach could be used to treat the heaving.



Ginger is one of the most crucial ingredients of the kitchen. And it is available around the world. Ginger has equal benefits for humans and dogs.

The most effective way to offer ginger roots to dogs is to make tea out of them. You can boil the ginger roots in the water to make tea.

If your dog is young, then offer ginger tea once a day. For the large dogs, offer two to three mugs of ginger tea per day for effective treatment.

Don’t ever offer hot ginger tea to the dog because it will worsen the condition. Allow it to cool, and then give it to your pup.


Basil is also an herb. Basil treats dry heaving effectively. Basil also effectively treats several infections of the oral cavity and GIT.

Basil leaves act instantly, and your dog starts to feel better in no time. You can mix some of the basil leaves in the dog food. You can also add yogurt and basil leaves. This remedy has the best results to treat heaving.

Calendula flowers

The beautiful yellow flowers of the calendula have excellent antiseptic properties. These flowers have acted against the fungi and bacteria and treat oral cavity infection of the dog effectively.

The flower also treats the upset stomach of dogs. It is all in one treatment to treat dry heaving in dogs. Usually, it is said to offer calendula flowers with food.

Milk thistle

Milk thistle is another powerful natural ingredient to treat dry heaving in dogs. The plant has excellent benefits for the upset stomach. People from all over the world prefer using this plant to treat various GIT issues of the dog. Dry heaving is one of them.

These were the home remedies that you can follow to treat heaving in dogs.

There is also occasional heaving in dogs. Occasional heaving is due to the environment. For example, High temperatures can cause heaving in dogs. If you feel that the environmental temperature is high and that’s why your dog is heaving, then consider giving a bath to your four-footed friend. You can do other measures according to your situation to lower the environmental temperature for your dog. This type of heaving is common in temperate areas.

All the home remedies we discussed in this article are best to treat both chronic and acute heaving. The best thing about home remedies is that they don’t cause any side effects. So, you can use them until your dog is fully healthy.

There are some causes of heaving that are not treatable at home, like tumors and cysts. To treat heaving caused by tumors, you need veterinary assistance.


Heaving usually occurs in dogs, and it is not difficult to treat and prevent it. The important thing is the differential diagnosis of heaving. If you successfully diagnosed dry heaving, you can treat it at home. We have described all the available best home remedies for dogs’ dry heaving. You can try the one that best suits you.

But, as it is said prevention is better than treatment. So, we will recommend you keep an eye on your dog and take preventive measures to avoid heaving.

The above-mentioned remedies will work perfectly to reduce heaving. If it doesn’t, and you notice the condition is becoming serious, contact your veterinarian as soon as possible.