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Why is my dog licking the floor and then throwing up?

Why is my dog licking the floor and then throwing up?

Dogs can exhibit strange behaviors, like licking the floor. If your dog is licking the floor and then throwing up, it can be a cause for concern. Floors are dirty, and you want to keep your pup from introducing anything harmful into his digestive system. What are the reasons for this type of behavior? Let’s find out a few reasons behind your dog’s need to lick the floor.

Why Is My Dog Licking The Floor and Then Throwing Up?


Dogs will also often eat grass and then vomit soon afterward and it has been hypothesized that they do it on purpose to deal with sickness due to a different reason. It could be the case that your dog has been licking the floor for that same reason. This would be more likely if your dog does not always throw up after licking the floor, it only happens occasionally and if your dog seems to do it more when showing other signs of sickness.


Some dogs lick the floor because they are anxious or bored. The dog will lick the floor in some situations because of a medical issue, such as liver failure or Cushing’s disease. 

Digestion issues

When your dog licks the floor and then throws up, it can be worrying for you. Sometimes, the licking has caused a digestion issue in your dog’s stomach. After licking the floor, she will throw up. 

Food or drink

A likely reason why your dog licks the floor is that your dog likes the taste due to food or drink that was previously dropped there. This would be more likely if your dog tends to lick the area of the floor near to where people tend to eat.


For whatever reason your dog licks the floor, it is likely that the sickness is occurring because your dog is licking germs that are causing your dog to be sick.

Floors are not sanitary. Even when you clean them, cleaning chemicals can leave behind residue. Any of these substances can upset your dog’s tummy when ingested. By accident, your pup might have eaten something that did not agree with him. Remember that a dog’s stomach is very sensitive. Anything can cause your pup to throw up.  

Why Is My Dog Licking the Floor After Throwing Up?

There are occasions when the dog will lick the floor because she feels like throwing up. The sensation of nausea makes your dog want to do something that feels good. For a dog, licking can be comforting. As a result of that, the vomiting was not related to anything on the floor, but rather, the dog was already sick. 

Some dogs need to lick in order to comfort themselves. An anxious dog might feel like throwing up and need to turn to a source of comfort, like licking the floor. When a child feels unwell, they often need a favorite blanket or toy. Your dog acts in a similar way. Instead of a toy, your pup wants to lick the floor. 

Many dog owners have to deal with floor licking. These issues can happen at any age, and it is not unique to one specific breed. Don’t ever ignore these problems. Make sure to take action and speak to your veterinarian. Your vet has all of the equipment to check your dog’s organs and determine the source of the problem. 

In the best case, you just have a dog who has a bad habit of floor licking. Fortunately, there are ways to deter this behavior. Toys and bones can hold your dog’s attention and stop licking. 

Why Is My Dog Licking the Floor Suddenly?

When your dog starts to act strangely, it might be time to bring her to the vet for a check-up. While licking the floor doesn’t seem like a big deal, it can often be a sign of a medical condition. 

In some situations, you might have spilled something on the floor. With that, the dog is just licking whatever is on the floor. The dog might think he is getting a treat, especially if the spill is from a food item or beverage. 

Often, dogs do get bored. All of that licking should be a sign of boredom. You should think about your dog’s exercise routine. Do you spend enough time with your pup to tire him out? 

Dogs need daily walks or playtime. Make sure the puppy has plenty of toys that can keep them occupied.  If there are no opportunities to release that pent-up energy, you need to find ways to expel any energy. When a dog is bored, he can obsessively lick items, including the floor. 

Anxiety is a big concern for some dogs, especially rescue pooches. If your dog suddenly starts to lick the floor, it could be a coping mechanism for her to burn off any nervous energy. 

Take a look at what makes her anxious. When you can identify stress triggers, you can start to find solutions. You might need to speak to a dog trainer so that your dog will become less stressed and stay away from the floors. 

In a few cases, dogs will want to eat or lick them when they are malnourished. Instead of eating her food, your pup might want to lick the floor, even though there are not any nutrients from it. With that, you might need to consult with your veterinarian. Write down a list of your dog’s food ingredients. Your vet will be able to tell whether your dog is getting the proper nutrients or needs some supplements in her diet. A simple change in your canine’s diet can end that annoying floor licking.

Unfortunately, health problems can be the source of licking the floor. Three in four dogs that lick the floor have gastrointestinal diseases. Your dog might feel sick or have an obstruction in the digestive system. In addition to that, mouth pain and dental disease can result in floor licking. 

As you can tell, it is essential to bring your dog to the veterinarian if you see a sudden change in behavior, such as floor licking. Some innocent behavioral changes can lead to life-threatening illnesses. 

Why Is My Dog Licking the Floor and Dry Heaving?

After your dog has licked the floor, you might hear a gag or dry heave. In some cases, dogs will cough or try to clear their throats. There might have been a substance on the floor that has irritated your dog’s throat. 

Along with that, your dog could feel the urge to vomit. In that case, you will hear that unmistakable noise of a dry heave. Dogs gag for the same reason as humans. Often, heaving is due to an inflammation in the larynx. In a healthy dog, the larynx opens and allows air to enter the lung. That larynx will close to stop water or food from entering the lungs. Unfortunately, inflammation can affect the larynx. As a result, the dog will dry heave or gag. While there is no reason to be concerned, you should contact your vet if your dog is constantly dry heaving. 

What To Do About My Dog Licking the Floor and Throwing Up?

Now that you know the reasons behind why your dog licks the floor and throws up, there are some ways to stop that behavior. After you have spoken to your vet and the dog has received a clean bill of health, you might want to think about other ways to change your dog’s licking habits. 

Think about using chewing bones. These bones come in a variety of options and flavors. The bones can help to curve some of that obsessive behavior. Instead of licking the floor, now your dog can chew (or lick) the bone. In addition to that, the chew bones allow your dog to have something healthy to lick. It is also a great way to take your dog’s mind off the floor and towards the bone. Chewing bones helps keep them entertained while directing attention away from the floor. 

Always supervise your dog when he is chewing the bone. You might be tempted to give your dog a bone as you leave the house, but too many accidents can happen. The dog could get the bone stuck in his throat or break a tooth. In the case of an emergency, you want to be there if anything happens to go wrong. 

Another alternative to dog bones is a treat. Once again, these treats can help draw your dog’s attention from the floor and towards the treat. In a way, you want to refocus your dog. A treat is a great way to reinforce good behavior. 

Your dog will associate treats with not licking the floor. Use these treats as a way to train your dog. After a while, your dog will understand that floor licking is not proper behavior, and she will look forward to those treats. If you don’t try to modify your dog’s behavior, she will continue to lick the floor. That behavior will not be easy to stop. When you use quality dog treats, you will see how your puppy’s behavior will change over time. 

If your dog is licking the floor due to anxiety, focus on techniques that will calm the dog. All of that anxiety can cause your dog to lick things as part of a nervous reaction. Your pup looks for ways to calm herself down on a subconscious level. 

Like most behavioral issues, you will have to work with your dog. Pay attention to your dog’s behavior and take some action. Think about trying new activities with your dog, such as going for a swim, visiting a local dog park, or taking a long walk. All of these options are an excellent way for your dog to expel nervous energy, relax, and enjoy the moment. After a time, you will start to see a change in your puppy’s behavior. 

While licking the floor might not seem like a big problem, you don’t want to ignore these issues. Over time, the problems will start to worsen. Your dog will not stop on his own. Instead, it can lead to other problems, including health and physical issues.