Choking is a frequent emergency situation that you can encounter with your pet.
Most dogs can chew on almost everything, including bones, toys, sticks, and plastic (to name a few! ), which can get stuck in the mouth's palate or windpipe - knowing how to react to a choking dog could save your pet's life, as you might not have enough time to rush to the vet.
Are you aware of what to do if your dog chokes? It is critical that you seek veterinary assistance immediately, as the dog will suffocate.
Choking Symptoms • Panic / hysteria • Difficulty breathing • Pawing at the mouth • Choking/hacking noises • Blue lips or tongue • Unresponsive or unaware dog
What to do: • Remain vigilant - a choking animal can panic and bite.
• Remain calm; your fear will spread to your dog; talk in a firm, soothing tone.
• Open the dog's mouth with both hands - one on the upper jaw and the other on the lower.
• Grasping the dog's jaws, tuck the dog's lips between the teeth and your fingertips. If the dog bites down, pressure is applied to his own skin, which encourages him not to close his mouth.
• If you have a companion, use a torch to shine through the dog's mouth to see if there is something obstructing airflow.
• If you can see the object that is choking your dog, gently reach in and remove it. If you are unable to locate it visually, you are unlikely to extract it and can actually drive it deeper by attempting to locate it with your finger.
• Avoid using tweezers or pliers - if your dog jerks his head with a foreign object in his mouth, this can result in further damage such as puncturing the larynx, preventing your pet from breathing, or a mouth laceration that can bleed profusely.
• Tilt your pet forward by raising the back legs; this will help if your dog chokes on fluids.
• Continue searching your pet's mouth to determine if the item has been dislodged and whether you can extract it.
If the dog is either choking and there is nothing visible in its mouth, or if the dog has passed out, follow these instructions.
Invert the small dog carefully and apply pressure to the abdomen just below the rib cage.
Big Dog: Avoid attempting to pick up a large dog; you risk causing further harm as a result of the pet's size. Rather than that, execute the Heimlich manoeuvre:
If the dog is up, wrap your arms around its stomach, palms together. Form a fist and firmly press upward and upward, just below the rib cage. After that, turn the dog on his side.
• If the dog is lying down, hold it with one hand and squeeze the abdomen upwards and forwards with the other.
• Continue searching the dog's mouth to determine if the item has become dislodged and can be removed.
If the object remains lodged, you must reach down to locate it. At this point, there is no need to concern yourself with moving the object deeper down his throat. If you cannot clear your dog's airway, he will almost certainly die. Keep in mind that the object may be quite a distance from the throat, so you may need to search for it and hook it with your index finger.
After the coking incident has passed, take your dog to an emergency veterinarian. There may be lacerations to the lips, damage to the larynx, broken ribs, or fluid on the lungs as a result of vomiting.
How to Avoid Your Dog Choking
Almost any small object may cause choking, but the most common are gristle lumps, bones, chew toys, hard rubber balls, or swollen sticks caused by moisture.
The most effective way to avoid choking is to treat your dog like an infant. It is almost impossible to prevent them from discovering and placing objects in their mouths, so keep any potentially dangerous items out of reach and keep an eye on what they are chewing. Stop chew toys or sticks that are swollen with moisture and ensure that food is cut into small bits. When presented to dogs, hard rubber balls, rawhide, and T-bones are also known to cause choking.
However, if choking occurs, do everything possible to keep your dog from falling and losing consciousness.
How to Teach Your Dog to Accept a Mouth Inspection
If your puppy has not been taught to make and feel secure getting their mouth examined, you will have trouble assisting him in resolving the choking situation. If you have not yet taught your dog to tolerate this, you can immediately do so.
Although first aid cannot replace licenced veterinary care, it can save your pet's life. Never forget that every first aid given to your pet should be immediately followed by veterinary treatment.