Ask Dr Claire

My Lab has swallowed a 10 cent piece, will it be a problem?

Any foreign object has the potential to be dangerous when eaten. Obviously it depends on the size of the object in comparison to your dog, so a 10c piece might be okay to be passed by a full grown Labrador, but not for example a Chihuahua.

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, please head straight to your local vet for a hands-on assessment. Depending on what and when something was swallowed it may be best for your vet to cause your dog to vomit it up, prior to it getting stuck. Abdominal imaging (such as radiography and ultrasound) is often used to assess where the object is and whether it’s passing through.

If you’d like to chat in person, you can book a live video call or start a chat to discuss in more detail, as soon as possible.

We’re here to help!

Chat soon,

Dr Claire


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