Dogs love to carry and chew sticks. However, stick related injuries in dogs are common and very occasionally can be life threatening.
Twigs can get wedged in the roof of the mouth or between teeth causing discomfort and ulceration. Throwing sticks for your dog can result in them running at speed to catch the stick, one wrong move, and there is the potential for them to be injured. Common injuries include penetration of the mouth, throat, chest and tongue.
Why should I get my dog checked by a vet?
Throwing sticks for your dog can result in serious injury. As a dog runs to pick up a stick at speed injuries can occur if the stick enters the mouth end on.
We see a variety of injuries when this happens often there are tears under the tongue or in the throat and sometimes fragments of stick may be trapped in these pockets.
Sometimes these pieces of stick can migrate further into the body, down the neck or even as far as the chest.
Advanced imaging such as CT scans may be required if standard investigations such as x-rays or endoscopy fail to identify the piece of stick.
Depending on the severity of the injury, antibiotics and pain relief may be prescribed for minor injuries but exploratory surgery could be required in severe cases.
If your dog likes to chase sticks then alternatives such as the Kong safe stick can be used.