my lab/chow mix has vomited now about 3 times this week. It's a dark yellow bile-like substance. It's not during a certain time. But I can say that he had to go poop after he vomited today. I'm not sure what to do. Or if I should worry at all?
It probably IS bile - that's what the yellow color is. It looks that way when dogs vomit and they don't have any food in their stomachs. Any unexplained vomiting should be investigated, so take him to the vet. It might just be a bug, but it could be something more serious. Either way, your vet can give him meds to help with the nausea and vomiting. Is he eating and drinking OK?
Pet insurance doesn't do much for the average vet visit. What it IS good for is catastropic events. Case #1: Our first dog got acute pancreatitis after getting into some pork rib bones that I neglected to pull the fat off of. Three weeks inpatient with 24/7 nursing ending with euthanasia: $10,000.
Case #2: Eight year old dog running the fenceline with the dog on the other side, just like she always did. When she reaches the end and turns, she screams and falls down. Blew out her ACL (knee ligament). TPLO surgery: $5,000+
Case #3: Four year old goes out the dog door at night to chase critters on the fence. She jumps up 6 feet high and lands on a 3 foot bamboo plant stake - right up her anus. Surgery #1 to remove the stick which impaled 10" into her body: $1,000. Surgery #2 to fix the rectal tear, 24/7 nursing for 4 days, massive amounts of IV and oral antibiotics: $6,000. She's doing great now.
These are the kinds of situations that most pet policies are set up to handle. If you look for nose-to-tail coverage of every little thing, the premiums are pretty expensive. Oddly enough, I've found the SPCA policies to be the most expensive. You can get good catastrophic coverage for a young, healthy dog for about $35 or $40 a month. Either pay that, or put the amount of the premium in a separate savings account (so you won't be tempted to use it!) and only touch it for vet bills. After pricing several pet insurance plans, that seemed the wisest course for me. Savings accounts don't pay much in interest, but it's still better than flushing premiums down the toilet every month!
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