A Sticky Situation
People traditionally throw sticks for their dogs but many are unaware of how dangerous this can be. Serious injuries can occur when dogs run onto a stick that is rammed into the ground. The stick is then forced down the throat cutting under the tongue or even tearing the gullet further back. Thousands of dogs are injured like this every year. Injuries can be serious and sometimes life threatening. Often splinters of wood are left embedded and go unnoticed until the dog becomes unwell. We often see dogs as emergencies suffering injuries caused by sticks. We frequently use CT scans to help identify splinters that have become embedded in dogs’ mouths. This maximises the chance of removing all foreign material. If your dog enjoys playing with sticks, there are safer stick shaped alternatives for stick loving dogs such as the Kong Safestick.
For those that are not squeamish, you may wish to read the articles written by Eastcott Referral's Specialist Vet Tim Charlesworth regarding throwing sticks for dogs