Owning a dog means getting surprises once in a while. While some of these may be pleasant, not all are. Ingestion of foreign objects is a common mishap which may be accidental or the dog may intentionally do without realizing the danger they are putting themselves into. I recently came home to find that my dog ate a sock. The shock on me! This led me into investigating more about what to do when your dog eats a sock. This post is a guide on what to do and expect in the event that you are hit by this unpleasant surprise.
Reasons Why Your Dog Ate Sock
Even with a well-mannered dog, there are those times they will be caught in the wrong. This doesn’t in any way mean they have behavioral problems unless the situation occurs more often than it should. Dogs will once in a while consume things they are not meant to such as socks. This usually happens because of various reasons including:
To Seek Attention: This is more so if they realize that eating these things gains them attention from their owner. Avoid the behavior by not rewarding the dog with attention as doing so will reinforce it.
Boredom: This is mostly the reason you will find a dog eating a sock. In so doing, the dog will be playing around with the sock and accidentally swallow it.
Pica: This is a condition in which dogs eat non-food items. When a dog has this condition, they will ingest things that would be considered as non-food items. The behavior could stem from a digestive disorder, behavioral problems among other medical conditions. Your dog may eat grass, tampons, and rocks among other non-food items.
Resource Guarding: Yet another reason why a dog may eat a sock is to guard their resources. In such circumstances, the dog attaches some value to the sock and will discourage people and other dogs from coming close to their valuable sock. If they suspect that someone or another pet wants to take it away from them and that growling and guarding it with their head lowered does not help, they may swallow it.
Dog Swallowed Sock Symptoms
When a dog swallows a sock, it might take a while before you realize it. The most obvious indicator will be when they are playing with a pair and you notice one of them is missing. The resulting effects after a dog ate sock incidence are varied. How much effect it has on your pooch depends on the material making up the sock as well as the size of the dog.
If your dog is fortunate enough, the peristaltic movement of ingested material will help your dog pass it out without much problem. At times though things might not turn out smooth and as the sock goes through the digestive system some problems may arise. These will be evidenced by symptoms such as
- Loss of appetite
Keep monitoring the dog once they have swallowed the sock and in case you notice these symptoms call your vet.
Dog Ate a Sock, What Should I Do?
Just like most dog owners, after my dog ate a sock my most immediate question was “what should I do?” Immediately you realize a dog ate a sock, the first thing you should do is analyze the situation and estimate how long this happened. If it happened less than two hours on, try and induce vomiting and see if it gets puked. If the time passed has been more than two hours, do not induce vomiting. Instead, see your veterinarian so they can advise you on the same.
If the dog that has swallowed the sock is a large dog such as adult Great Danes or Labradors, it is mostly advice to just observe the dog and wait for it to pass the sock. However, if the dog doesn’t seem to eat or can’t keep the food down once they eat, it is advisable to rush to the vet. These usually indicate intestinal blockage and are a sign that the movement of the sock down the system has been blocked. Other complications could also arise including swelling and inflammation in the intestines.
In case the dog that ate a sock is a puppy or small breed, it will be hard for them to pass it out. Professional treatment is therefore recommended. Take the puppy to the veterinarian.
The ultimate decision on what happens after a dog ate a sock is yours. The many choices there mostly have consequences and may result in unforeseen events. The best decision is made with direction from your veterinarian.
How to Make a Dog Throw up a Sock
After a dog ate a sock, induce vomiting as may be advised by your veterinarian. This option is only viable if not much time has passed since the sock was swallowed. There is a wide array of options on how to induce vomiting safely in dogs. Hydrogen peroxide can be given orally to facilitate throwing up. This is to be given in 1-milliliter portions of 3% hydrogen peroxide for every pound of dog weight. Once the first dose is administered and the dog has not vomited after 15 minutes, give another dose. If this does not work visit your vet.
After you have given this to your dog, watch it closely to confirm if the sock gets thrown up. Also, monitor them to ensure the sock does not get stuck on its way out. In case this happens and the dog experiences pain and inappetence, see your vet.
Dog Ate Sock – How Long to Pass it?
Where the dog ate a sock and more time than is recommended to induce vomiting has passed, the other option is to wait for it to pass it. Note, though, that this is only applicable in large dogs. You may have your vet take x-rays so you can know the alignment of the sock in regards to the digestive system and in order to analyze the likelihood of it being passed out.
How long it takes for the affected dog to pass the sock depend on individual dogs. This could be as short as 48 hours to a number of days. As long as your dog is eating, active and does not appear sick or exhibit symptoms such as vomiting and lethargy, he should be okay.
This is conducted as a last resort and is the most invasive of all available methods. It is recommended in situations where the passing of the sock is slim. This requires some monitoring and x-rays may be necessary to show where the sock is stuck. An endoscopy may be conducted and where this is not applicable, a surgery will be done. Proper aftercare will be necessary for fast healing. Follow instructions issued by the surgeon to the letter to facilitate quick recovery.
My Dog Ate a Sock Will He Be Okay
As long as you take good care of your dog after it has swallowed a sock, everything should be okay. Ensure that you persistently monitor their behavior until the sock is out of their system. Did your dog eat a sock and can’t poop, has diarrhea or is vomiting without induction or passing the sock? This is most probably indicative of a problem. Seek your veterinarian’s attention immediately to ensure the wellbeing of your pooch.
While manageable most of the times, this is not something you want to deal with often. After my dog ate a sock for the first time, I learned to keep the same away from him. The laundry basket is also kept out of reach. You may want to try this too to avoid a repeat of the same. Additionally, making socks less appealing through reprimand whenever they pick them could help. To help them release stored up energy and kill boredom, ensure there are enough toys and ample of play time.
- Pethelpful.com: Why Does My Dog Eat Socks and What Can I Do About It?
- Dogsaholic.com: Why Dog Ate a Sock: Helping your Dog Get Over This Little Mistake
- Goldenretrieverforum.com: My Golden Ate a Sock