How to Make a Dog Throw Up

Hydrogen peroxide will make your dog vomit.


It’s 2 a.m. and your dog ate a sock. Is there anything you can give your dog to make him throw up after swallowing that foreign object? Yes. Hydrogen peroxide (3%) is commonly used by dog owners to make their dogs vomit.

Recommended doses of how much peroxide it takes to make a dog throw up vary, but the standard is 1 teaspoon (5 ml) for 10 lbs of body weight. It helps to walk your dog around for a few minutes to sort of “stir” the peroxide around his stomach. Most dogs will vomit within about 10 minutes.

Making your dog vomit should not be taken lightly. Hydrogen peroxide is an irritant to your dog’s stomach lining. Do not give more than 2 doses with a maximum of 3 tablespoons for a large dog.

Should You Make Your Dog Vomit?

Before making your dog vomit, consider some things. First, do you truly need to make your dog vomit? And, second, is it safe to make your dog vomit?

Making your dog vomit after eating a sock might work, depending upon the size of the dog and the size of the sock itself. A better choice is to call your veterinarian first—or an emergency clinic—and get their advice.

If your dog eats chocolate, making your dog throw up may not be necessary. What to do if your dog eats chocolate depends on the type of chocolate the dog ate, how much he ate, and how big your dog is. Sometimes, you may just need to keep an eye on him and watch for symptoms like vomiting, diarrhea, increased thirst, panting, restlessness, excessive urination, and racing heart rate. In severe cases,  you may see muscle tremors, seizures, and heart failure.

There are many good “chocolate calculators” that can give you an idea if the candy your dog ate is likely to be toxic. This will vary with the size of your dog and the type of chocolate. Overall, milk chocolate is safer than dark chocolate because milk chocolate has a lower amount of theobromine (the main alkaloid in the cacao bean), which is toxic dogs. Chocolate also contains caffeine, which is toxic to dogs as well. They cause similar symptoms, but the effects of theobromine last longer.

When to Not Induce Vomiting in Your Dog

Some substances do more damage if you make your dog throw them up, such as caustic items like drain cleaner or sharp items like broken glass. Some dogs have problems that make them susceptible to serious problems like aspiration pneumonia if they vomit. That includes brachycephalic breeds and dogs with laryngeal paralysis or megaesophagus.

Keep a fresh, unopened bottle of hydrogen peroxide 3% in your pet first-aid kit, but before using it put in a quick call to your veterinarian or one of the pet poison centers. The Pet Poison Helpline at 855-764-7661 or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at 888-426-4435 both charge a fee (which is covered by some pet insurances), but they are worth the cost for expert advice. Both centers are open 24/7, just for emergencies like a 2 a.m. sock snack.