Forbidden Snacks

Dogs will be dogs, and that means they often eat objects which are either not food, or forbidden food which is toxic to them. Cats are little better, often chewing on string or plastic and occasionally eating such objects for their own reasons.

Toxic foods or non-food objects can cause a myriad of problems for our beloved pets, ranging from poisoning to intestinal obstruction. Prevention is greatly preferred to cure, so what do you do in those precious minutes after you’ve discovered your pet has eaten something it shouldn’t have?

If your pet has very recently consumed a ‘Forbidden Snack’, within the last 20 minutes, presenting it to your closest vet clinic or emergency clinic may allow us to induce vomiting and retrieve it, depending on what was eaten. Not all objects and poisons are safe to induce vomiting, and some will instead require more intensive treatment or a gastric lavage (stomach pump). This is particularly true for fast acting neurological toxins like snail bait.

If you are not sure when your pet has eaten the ‘Forbidden Snack’, then please call the clinic for advice. We may advise you to either come in to us, or go to emergency, depending on what was eaten.

For some objects that have been consumed, An Xray may be indicated to see whether the object is passing on its own, or whether surgery or an endoscope is required to retrieve it before causing serious illness.

If in doubt it is always better to seek qualified veterinary advice quickly than to wait for symptoms to develop.