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What caused DS to vomit?

Poll Results: What made DS throw up?

This is a multiple choice poll
  • 15% (3)
    He had a delayed allergic/intolerant reaction to an unknown food.
  • 20% (4)
    He caught what the sick hostess (a ped!) had.
  • 0% (0)
    He reacted to a bug/germ from sharing the chip with the dog.
  • 65% (13)
    other (please elaborate in your post!)
20 Total Votes  
post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
We went to dinner at our friends' house last night. Arrived at 5:30; dinner at 6:30, left at 9pm. DS threw up at midnight. I am really interested to see what you all say, because DH and I do not agree on this!!

Here are the potentially relevant details:

1. DS has food allergies. The hosts served appetizers and a home-cooked meal from scratch, and I am fairly certain they were able to avoid his allergens. The menu was cleared in advance by me, and we discussed making subs for margarine, butter, etc. DS has never been known to react to cross-contamination. There was cheese and bread served as appetizers, but we don't keep these things out of our house, although DS did TOUCH the cheese. Sad that he didn't know brie to id it as cheese (if he knew it was cheese, he wouldn't have touched it).

1a. The menu consisted primarily of foods that DS has had before, especially the foods that he choose to eat. (corn chips, lentil soup, rice with raisins and carrots, lamb, coconut milk ice cream, spices)

2. The hostess wasn't feeling well that day and evening. Her husband cooked the dinner. She did spend time being close with DS, playing trains with him on the floor after dinner. I saw her lie down, as if she REALLY wasn't feeling well. Her nose was red through-out the evening, and she mentioned that her stomach wasn't feeling well. (So, I'm not sure if her illness was primarily respiratory or if it was a stomach bug.)

3. They had a dog which was very child-friendly. DS spent a lot of time with it, loving it up, etc. They shared a corn chip. DS was carrying the corn chip, dog jumped up to get it (and did touch it with her mouth), and DS promptly ate the chip. DS has not been known to be allergic to dogs, but we did give him Claritin before we went to their house, and his nose was a little stuffy when we left. DS has never had so much dog time before in his life. Never previously swapped saliva with a dog, as far as we know.

4. DS fell asleep on the way home and we put him promptly to bed when we got home. He had nothing to eat after he left their house.

5. He did not have a fever or otherwise appear to be feeling poorly. He said his stomach felt bad after he threw up, but he went back to sleep.

6. DS is breast fed, but he had not nursed since early that morning when he threw up at midnight. (So, it's not likely that he was reacting to something I ate or my reaction to something that I ate. And, just so you know, we eat the same diet, and I avoid his allergens.)

Updated to add:

He ate breakfast (hash browns & sausage), but refused lunch. Threw up again at 2pm. Felt fine afterward; no fever and no illness behavior. Ate a fine dinner.
post #2 of 15
I don't think there's any way to know until more time has passed. I think germs from the dog are highly unlikely. It could be food allergy, could be food poisoning from something earlier in the day, could be 24 hour stomach bug, probably not from the host.

My guess from your description on her symptoms is that she probably has a cold and the (sorry, gross) post nasal drip often causes a stomach ache from swallowing mucus.

If he's totally better now, then I'd guess food allergy or possibly food poisoning (6-24 hours to show up IIRC; last time we dealt with it I'm pretty sure it was sliced fruit from a salad bar).

If he's still sick, then food poisoning or stomach bug are more likely. There was Norwalk virus circulating last year around this time. I think it's seasonal--gastrointestinal and horrible for about 24 hours. Adults wanted to lie in warm dark rooms in silence for 24 hours and barely drank water for the first 4-8 hours. I believe the incubation is 24-48 hours.

If the host had a cold, then even if he caught it, he'd get a cold and might later vomit from post nasal drip, but not immediately.

Can't think of anything he'd catch from a dog who isn't sick with something himself. Even bacteria if he had a reaction to it, it would take some time I think.
post #3 of 15
I agree w/ the above. Could be food poisoning (or milder just bacteria that he couldn't tolerate from food that was out), or a stomach bug, but highly unlikely that he caught it only a couple hours before threw up.... so somewhere else early in the day or the day or two before...
post #4 of 15
I don't think it is related to allergies or sensitivities unless you have seen your child previously react with that type of vomiting from a small exposure to a food. Seems atypical.

I think maybe food poisoning or an illness that was already incubating before the dinner from an unrelated earlier exposure to a virus.

Not the dog unless the maybe dog was eating and smooching on some bad meat so still technically "food poisoning" but that's a stretch.

Not an illness contracted at dinner--too fast.
post #5 of 15
It was most likely a virus NOT caused by the hostess being sick. The time frame between his exposure to her & him getting sick was not long enough. He most likely got the virus from any number of other places. There are quite a few 24hour or less virus & virus' that cause throwing up but the child acting perfectly normal in between.
post #6 of 15
I voted virus from the hostess, but I agree that it cannot be from her (48-72 hours ago is where you would need to look). What I was voting for was "virus."

I have no idea why he threw up, really, but statistically the odds are a virus (most common cause of vomiting in childhood).
post #7 of 15
I voted other. Most likely a virus caught in the last few days. I think it takes longer to react to a virus than a few hours, but I suppose it is possible.

I can't imagine dog saliva causing puking, unless there is a severe allergy. And it sounds like you were careful about his diet.
post #8 of 15
I'd say as others... stomach virus caught from elsewhere or food poisoning.
post #9 of 15
I'm going to disagree and say it was the food. Not the dog, I don't think. It could be allergies or could just be something that didn't agree. I've thrown up on occasion (not often, I'm not much of a puker) from a meal that just didn't agree. I'm remembering one particular pizza. I don't think it was food poisoning, but it just didn't agree with me the second day when we had it for leftovers. I thinkn it was too much cheese for my system. I felt fine pretty soon afterwards. Everybody I've known who really had food poisoning was sick as a dog for days.

If he's not running a fever I think a virus is possible , but not as likely. IME, a virus that causes stomach upset is liable to cause fever in a child, but not always.

I think it's unlikely to have been the dog. I've seen plenty of shared germs between dogs and kids and that would be a pretty unusual reaction.
post #10 of 15
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by beanma View Post
I think it's unlikely to have been the dog. I've seen plenty of shared germs between dogs and kids and that would be a pretty unusual reaction.
Even if it's the FIRST time a child encountered bacteria from an animal? Like, their system wouldn't be able to handle it and would try to get rid of it?
post #11 of 15
I'm guessing some sort of food poisoning. Something mild, which is why no one else go sick. He's just susceptible because he's younger.
post #12 of 15
I agree with those who've said it was a random virus picked up elsewhere (earlier). I think it was probably totally unrelated to anything at the party.
post #13 of 15

Most likely a virus with vomiting multiple times and no other symptoms.  I hope he feels much better!

post #14 of 15

I'm gonna go out on a limb here and ask: What had the dog been eating?  Could it have had a tiny bit of dog food or bread or cheese or something in it's mouth?

post #15 of 15
Thread Starter 

Do had been eating only the chips, AFAIK. After dinner, one of the guests was feeding the dog cheese, and DS was (gently) admonished for it. (The host thought the 3-yr-old had been feeding the dog cheese, not the adult guest!)


DS was fine after throwing up just twice - the first time at midnight, and again the next afternoon.

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