Oopsies! My dog ate my homework!

Oopsies! My dog ate my homework!

Dogs love to eat just about anything that they can get their paws on. When your dog gets into something that they are not supposed to it is very important that you don't panic! Pet Express Animal Hospital is here to help with any of your pet's needs. Take a look at our helpful guide to help you decide how to proceed in the event your dog eats something potentially harmful or toxic. If you are thinking about feeding your pet human foods or may have already by accident, you can also check our Dishes You Shouldn't Feed your Dog article for a more comprehensive food list.

Warning Signs 
If your dog seems to be vomiting for no reason or is showing to have tenderness in his or her abdomen, your pet might be telling you that they ate something that is making them sick. Changes in your dog's appetite or bathroom routine can also indicate that maybe he or she has a foreign body in their stomach. Your dog also might show signs of acting depressed. Your beloved pet might not have the same high energy levels he or she typically does or might show some lack of interest in hobbies your pet enjoys like playing or going for walks. If your dog is unable to control these symptoms, it is time to call the nearest vet. Your local veterinarian will be able to take it from there and be the best source for helping your pet pass a foreign object or foreign body. A vet can examine your dog through an x-ray or physical exam to determine your dog's health status and from there proceed with a treatment option. If your dog has actually swallowed a foreign body, it is important that treatment is taken as quickly as possible. Monitoring your pet closely is crucial to ensure that they stay as healthy as possible.

Treatment Outlook 
While taking your pet to the emergency vet can be a nerve-wracking experience, Pet Express Animal Hospital has a large team of skilled and experienced veterinary staff that all share the goal of delivering quality care to your pet. 

Some objects may not be able to be removed on their own or pass naturally with your dog's next bowel movement. If that's the case, a noninvasive surgery by your veterinarian or an endoscopy might need to be performed. An endoscopy is low-risk because your dog doesn't have to deal with the recovery time of an invasive operation. A long tube travels down your dog's throat while he or she is under anesthesia and helps to remove the object that they should not have swallowed. The only recovery time required is the time it takes your dog to recover from the anesthesia process. 

Avoiding a Disaster 
How can you avoid your pet getting into something that they are not supposed to in the first place? Keep a close eye on your dog and make sure that they do not have access to potentially hazardous materials. Investing in a locking system on your trash can is one strategy of helping make sure that your dog doesn't find anything potentially harmful in the garbage. 

If you are away from home for long periods of time such as at work or at school, it also might be helpful to invest in a kennel or crate. Crating your dog can help make sure they won't get into any harmful substances while you are away and can help an anxious dog feel more relaxed at home. Talk to your vet to see if kennel training or crate training might be a solution for your dog. 

Finally, if all else fails and an incident does actually occur, seek immediate veterinary attention. Knowing your dog and knowing the signs and symptoms of your dog ingesting a harmful object can help save yours from a catastrophic scenario. 

If your dog ingests something potentially dangerous or toxic, it is important to not panic. Taking immediate action by visiting your local veterinarian or our skillful team at Pet Express Animal Hospital can ensure the safety and well-being of your pet. We are proudly here to help Monday - Sunday 7 am to 11 pm at our office location. If you are unsure if your dog needs immediate medical attention, one of our staff members would also be happy to assist you over the phone to help you decide the best treatment options for your pet and determine if they can stay at home or might require a higher level of care.