Ask Dr Claire

My dog ate a plastic bag? Should I be concerned?

Any foreign object has the potential to be dangerous when eaten. Obviously it depends on the size of the plastic bag in comparison to your dog, so for eg. a small ripped plastic might pass through in a Golden retriever for example, but not in say a Maltese.

While some objects go straight in one end and out the other, there’s also a chance of them getting stuck in the intestines and forming a blockage along the way. This is called an obstruction of the gut and is really serious (can be life-threatening) if left untreated.

Common symptoms of an obstruction include:

  • Vomiting,
  • Reduced or no appetite,
  • Weakness,
  • Diarrhoea, and
  • Weight loss.

If you notice any of the above or are concerned re the size of the plastic bag, please head straight to your local vet for a hands-on assessment. Abdominal imaging (such as radiography and ultrasound) is often used to assess where the object is and whether it’s passing through.

If you want some specific help or feedback please book a consultation with a vet now so they can get a better picture of what’s going on, and best advise.
If you’d like to chat in person, you can get a vet on a live video call or start a chat to discuss in more detail now.
We’re on stand-by to help!Chat soon,
Dr Claire

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