The dog esophagus is where our dog food digestion journey continues. The the food has now been swallowed thanks to the saliva producing glands. We only stay for a short while at this next stop as the food spends only a few seconds here and not much happens to it.
Your dog's esophagus is a short muscular tube. Its function is mainly to transport the food from the mouth to the stomach. Food spends very little time in the dog esophagus; a few seconds only.
Transport is aided by gravitation but luckily not dependent on this (as food still gets from A to B when you or your dog lay down). Peristaltic waves push the food forward to the stomach. This happens all by itself or involuntary. To aid this transport the esophageal cells produce mucus so the food is lubricated.
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It's a one way street, though exceptions to the rule exist. Directions are reversed in your dog's esophagus in some cases. Then, in a reflex, the cardiac sphincter opens and the stomach contents are pushed up through the dog esophagus back to the mouth. Then… the journey ends unexpectedly early but sometimes it's better that way. Not all roads should be traveled by everything, and when your dog has eaten something that's not beneficial to his health, it better leaves his body in a very quick way.
Your dog vomits when something is irritating his stomach lining. This can be due to irritating chemicals, non-digestible toys or overproduction of acidic stomach fluids. Now do you remember from "Dog Digestion Journey Part 1" that I told you that production of saliva increases when you're dog is smelling a delicious dish? This is not the only event that happens in his furry body as also the production of stomach acids starts in the anticipation of food or a snack.
Prolonging the time between food anticipation and actually enjoying it, can increase your dog's stress level. Don't wave the food in front of his nose requiring him to do a hundred tricks before getting it.
Suppose your dog vomits befóre he has had his meal. Then ask yourself how long in time before getting the meal, your dog is anticipating it. Investigate your own routines. When your dog can deduct from your behavior that it's nearly dinner time, his digestive system is getting ready for action. Saliva and stomach acid production take of. This, in combination with a sensitive stomach, can result in vomiting when the time between anticipation and food intake gets too long.
If you suspect this is the case with your tail wagger, then experiment with new rituals. Give your dog his breakfast and diner at a different moment. For example, when you are used to feeding your dog right after you enjoyed your meal, then surprise him by giving it to him before.
In this case the vomiting is not because of something (an object, a chemical or your dog's own stomach acid) is irritating the stomach lining. In the case of motion sickness the dog brain is stimulating the vomiting.
Suppose the dog food has made it through the dog esophagus to the stomach and nothing has caused your dog to vomit (which usually is the case, otherwise your pooch really should see a vet) then the journey continues to the dog stomach.
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For a complete survival guide on stress-free dog care, including detailed information on when your dog needs to see the vet, how to respond to pet emergencies, dog first aid and all common health problems, check out Ultimate Guide to Dog Health.
This is a quality handbook on dog health care, and teaches you how to take a proactive and prepared approach to knowledgeable dog ownership.