Crazy things Pets Eat (and Associated Health Hazards)
Animals can do some crazy things, but when it comes to eating things they shouldn’t, dogs top the list. Where cats will get into things like string and tinsel, dogs tend to be much less discriminating with the things they ingest. Chances are, if it looks good to them, they will eat it, so it’s always a good idea to keep an eye out for things around your house that could possibly end up in your dog’s stomach – even if you think it might be unlikely!
Veterinary Practice News runs a contest each year where veterinarians send in x-ray images of the most bizarre things they encounter. Winners in 2015 included a Doberman with 26 golf balls in it’s stomach, a Labrador puppy who ate the end of a fishing pole, and a Lab that ingested a door hinge. Other entries included hair ties, plastic children’s toys, kitchen utensils, socks, stuffed animals and more.
If your pet is vomiting bile and seems lethargic, is drooling excessively, suffering from weight loss, dehydration, experiences diarrhea for an extended period of time, or if he/she indicates signs of pain, call your vet. In many cases, when an obstruction is caught in time, foreign objects can be removed and your pet can experience a full recovery.
If you suspect that your pet has eaten a foreign object, you should not wait to see if it will pass through on its own and do not try to induce vomiting without veterinary supervision. Typically, an x-ray is required to determine the correct method of treatment for extraction – sometimes through non invasive procedures, other times requiring surgery. If there is a chance that the item ingested contains toxins, the situation could warrant immediate attention.
If you have a pet that likes to eat things that aren’t food items, the best thing you can do is take the time to ‘dog-proof’ your home. Be diligent about making sure that items are out of reach of your pet or behind closed doors. Preventative measures for your home and keen supervision of your pet are the most cost effective solutions for this issue.
If you ever have questions or concerns about your pet’s health, feel free to give our team a call at Longview Animal Hospital at (903)758-2082 or reach out to us by email at longviewanimalhospital@