Esophageal Obstruction Average Cost

From 367 quotes ranging from $1,200 - 6,000

Average Cost

$2,500

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What is Esophageal Obstruction?

An esophagus, the tube-like hose that transmits food from a dog's mouth to its diaphragm muscle to its stomach, completes this process in approximately five seconds. Unfortunately, that rapid time span makes it just as easy for foreign objects (balls, bones, paper, rocks and tissue) to get lodged as well, leading to vomiting or regurgitation.

There's no doubt about it, dogs eat weird and unusual things, sometimes with frequency. When a dog ingests something large, too large to pass through the throat (esophagus), there's a chance that the esophagus can become blocked. This will result in serious swelling and blockage, you will notice signs of pain right away, and should act with urgency to seek proper medical attention.

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Symptoms of Esophageal Obstruction in Dogs

Before an animal vomits something up or out, there are other symptoms pet owners can be aware of, including:

  • Abdominal contractions (looks like dry heaving)
  • Anorexia
  • Depression
  • Drooling
  • Fever
  • Lip licking
  • Pacing
  • Pawing at its face
  • Salivation

Regurgitation and vomiting will be the most obvious signs though. However, pet owners should not assume that it will happen as soon as they eat. While it can happen within a few minutes, regurgitation or vomiting could be hours or days later.

Types

Three common areas, which are more narrow than other areas, where foreign objects get stuck in the esophagus include:

  • Base of the heart
  • Diaphragm
  • Lower neck near chest cavity

While liquid foods may have a fighting chance of passing through, chunky foods will not get far as long as the object is firmly lodged in these areas.

Causes of Esophageal Obstruction in Dogs

Unlike other illnesses, esophageal obstruction in dogs is due to swallowing foreign objects. If the item cannot get to the stomach and come out through the bowels, it is usually stuck somewhere in the esophagus, leading to regurgitation or vomiting.

Sharp objects are even more dangerous because they can lead to punctures or affect the esophageal muscle walls for regular eating.

Pneumonia can become risky if the muscle walls are closed.

Diagnosis of Esophageal Obstruction in Dogs

A veterinarian may inquire about the color of the bile to determine the pH level.

  • pH of 5 or less is a sign of gastric acid and vomiting
  • ph of 6 or higher is a sign of regurgitation

While a pet owner may commonly mistake vomiting for regurgitation, the appearance of bile after food has been in a dilated esophagus may have the same fluid appearance, specifically if it has had time to set in water or saliva.

If the dog vomits or regurgitates while in the examination room, that bile will be examined as well. Plain thoracic radiographs or fluoroscopy procedures may also be used to determine whether the dog is vomiting or regurgitating.

If the vomiting is due to gastrointestinal diseases, a blood count and serum chemistry profile will be used to examine the abdomen. If the situation is more serious, an endoscopy or surgery may be needed.

Treatment of Esophageal Obstruction in Dogs

Under anesthesia*, the surgeon's goal will be to remove any and all foreign objects from the esophagus. It can be removed either through the mouth or pushed out through the stomach using an endoscope and forceps.

If neither exit route works, then surgery is the alternative. The chest cavity and esophagus will be surgically opened to remove the foreign objects.

  • Midline incision - Foreign objects in the bottom of the neck
  • Right side of chest incision - Foreign objects in the base of the heart
  • Left or right side of chest incision - Foreign objects in front of the diaphragm

Outside of these three incisions, some medical professionals may choose to surgically open the abdomen near the midline area to pull the foreign object into the stomach area.

*Although rare, it is a mild possibility that death may occur from anesthesia. Monitoring devices used for blood pressure, electrocardiogram (EKG), expiratory carbon dioxide levels, inspiratory or pulse oximetry) a surgeon should immediately be alerted of any complications while the surgery is being completed.

Recovery of Esophageal Obstruction in Dogs

In the best case scenario, the foreign object will be removed, and the dog will usually heal within a few days. However, if the item cannot be pulled out or pushed out, there is the possibility of infections during surgery. This is why antibiotics are mandatory during surgery and a certain amount of days later. If an infection happens anyway, it will usually show up within two to five days.

Signs of infection include:

  • Esophagitis (inflammation that may damage esophagus tissues)
  • Fever
  • Foul odor near surgical wounds
  • Heartburn
  • Lethargy
  • Pain near surgical wounds (outside of mild sensitivity)
  • Pus near surgical wounds
  • Regurgitation
  • Swelling near surgical wounds

Seroma formation, or fluid accumulation, may require draining if problems occur but it can usually resolve on its own.

For additional regurgitation after surgery, a catheter will be used to widen (i.e., dilate) the esophagus to make sure no additional foreign objects are inside and to check on the healing process.

Swelling should diminish within a few days if there are no additional complications.

Esophageal Obstruction Questions and Advice from Veterinary Professionals

kj
Pomchi
2 Years
Serious condition
0 found helpful
Serious condition

Has Symptoms

Fast heart beat
Panting
Breathing Difficulty
Collapse
Tired
Choke
Fast Breathing

so my boyfriend decided to give my dog a little piece of meat as a treat after dinner tonight. i made him take it back and cut it up so he could eat it. the pieces obviously were still not small enough, and my dog doesn't like to chew food. he scarfed the pieces down and after the last one, he was clearly choking. we were seeing if we could get it out and he fell over. in a panic my boyfriend instantly reacted and tried giving him the heimlich. he was walking around then, trying to cough it up. in the process his poop/pee fell out of him. he coughed up something which i tried to help out so he wouldn't swallow it back down. only wiped away mostly foamy stuff.
he's been laying on the bed now. i'm sure he's scared, confused and exhausted. his chest is rising/falling fast, so i'm assuming that means fast breathing? his heart beats sounded kinda weird....two normal, then four real fast? he put his ears up and looked when we said his name, and even just made a little bark still when a car pulled in -- so still alert but maybe just wiped?
don't know if there's anything i should do and if i need to take him to the vet in the morning... i'm worried sick -___- funds are tight right now, or i'd take him to the ER vet in a different town.

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
1098 Recommendations
KJ may have a piece of the meat stuck in his esophagus, or he may have had some trauma from the pressure on his chest. Without being able to see him, I don't have any way to comment on what you might do to help. If you can take him to the emergency veterinarian, that would be best, but if taking him to your veterinarian in the morning is the option, you can watch him closely tonight to make sure that he is breathing okay.

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Rosie
Yorkie/Westie
11 Years
Serious condition
0 found helpful
Serious condition

Has Symptoms

Producing white foam
Bloated after eating
Full apetite
Sick immediately after eating

Medication Used

Zantac
3 doses of antibiotics

The vet has diagnosed my dog with pancreatitis. She has been suffering from it for 5 days now, having not much more than water because soon as any food is eaten her stomach bloats and she regurgitates that along with white foam. The bloating is obviously air because it bares not relation to the amount of food and foam that comes out before it goes down. She is desperate to eat and currently has her usual energy when not suffering. She wakes every morning with backwards sneezing a sure sign that she needs to be sick (without food), but she can sleep for hours during the day without problem.

Do you think the correct diagnosis has been made?

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations
Without examining Rosie and seeing blood test results I cannot say for certain whether or not she has pancreatitis but the symptoms are suggestive of this condition when coupled with confirmatory blood tests. I’ve put a few links below on the subject of pancreatitis for you to look through to see if what you read correlates with Rosie’s symptoms, but I would recommend a blood test if not done already and you’re having doubts. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM https://wagwalking.com/condition/pancreatitis http://veterinarymedicine.dvm360.com/it-pancreatitis www.idexx.com/en/veterinary/snap-tests/snap-cpl-test/

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cody
Shepherd
2 Months
Serious condition
0 found helpful
Serious condition

Has Symptoms

Breathing Difficulties

my puppy was choking today. he stopped breathing and collapsed even after i did chest compressions. he choked while eating. thought he was dead. a neighbor grabbed a hose and flushed water into him and he came to after the food came up..now he is very lethargic and breathing very heavily like he is forcing air out. when he was choking he had light foamy blood coming out of his mouth..he is alive now but very uncomfortable and cant lay still for more than five minutes and this happened 6 hours ago..still breathing very heavily

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
1098 Recommendations
Cody should see a veterinarian right away. Without being able to examine him, I do not know what damage was done by the trauma that he went through, but he should be examined to determine what treatment he may need. I hope that he is okay.

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Andy
Shih Tzu
6 Years
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

Vomiting

My shih tzu Andy swallowed a small piece of a rawhide bone. He was in pain whimpering and couldn't walk. About a minute or 2 after he swallowed it, he threw up. I don't think the bone was in it.. is he Okay? Do I need to take him to the vet? He drank water after throwing up and ate about 10-15 minutes later.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations
You should keep a close eye on Andy for the time being as he may have just had a hard time getting it down, if he is alright for the time being monitor him; if he shows any sign of discomfort you should visit your Veterinarian for an examination. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Misty
Mixed
4 Months
Mild condition
0 found helpful
Mild condition

Has Symptoms

Breaths Faster At Rest

I took my puppy to the vet and they couldn’t figure out what was wrong. Her breathing is very short and Varys between hard breathing and light breathing. This morning she was drooling a lot. It’s almost like she is chocking on something

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
1098 Recommendations
Thank you for your email. Unfortunately, without seeing Misty, I don't know what might be going on with her. The next step for her might be x-rays to determine if she has any abnormalities in her throat. Your veterinarian would be the best person to ask about the next step, as they have examined her and know more what might be going on. I hope that everything is okay with her.

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Winston
Dachshund
10 Months
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

Vomiting

I adopted Winston about 3 months ago and he vomits regularly. I have taken him to the vet numerous times and have done many tests, and the only thing we have come up with is that it is some kind of allergy. He is now on a hydrolyzed protein diet, but I am still not seeing much of a change. Although there has been a slight change because he does not puke everyday now, but when he does its multiple times in a day, and it is anywhere and everywhere. It has recently been brought to my attention that it could be a Esophageal Obstruction because there is absolutely no pattern whatsoever in Winston's puking. Looking for information to see if its worth spending more money on getting an x-ray done at the vet or if I become more stricter on his diet and continue it for a longer length of time.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations
The main question here is whether Winston is vomiting or regurgitating, I would certainly recommend having an x-ray done to look for signs of megaesophagus, esophageal stricture, aortic arches or other anomalies which may lead to vomiting/regurgitation. I feel an x-ray would rule out some conditions and would either confirm or rule out some serious conditions. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Sully
Aussie-doodle
12 Weeks
Mild condition
0 found helpful
Mild condition

Has Symptoms

Shallow Rapid Breathing

Sully swallowed a large piece of foam sometime today without me noticing. A few hours ago he started acting strange and threw up the foam with nothing else. I think it may have been stuck in his throat somewhere and I’m not sure if he swallowed another piece with it but his breathing has seemed off. He’s breathing short rapid breaths around 70 breaths per minute. Is it possible his throat could just be irritated? Or do I need to see a vet immediately?

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
1098 Recommendations
Thank you for your email. Unfortunately, without seeing Sully, I can't determine the cause for the rapid breathing, or if it is worrisome. He may be nauseous from the foam ingestion/vomiting episode, or he may have breathed some of the particles into his lungs. Since he is so young, and you don't think that he looks normal, it might be a good idea to take him in to your veterinarian, to have him examined. It is always better to be safe than sorry when dogs eat strange things. I hope that he is okay.

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Olly
Springer Spaniel Sheepdog
5 Years
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

Listless

My 5 year old spaniel seems to have something stuck in his throat, I can't see anything, but think it's a small chew, he is not eating or drinking, but I have gave him water through a bottle, he is totally miserable, but not sure if I should take him to the emergency vet now, or first thing in the morning, and is their anything I can do to help him, he doesn't seem in any pain and I can't feel anything in his throat

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations
It can be difficult or impossible to see or feel something in the throat if there is an obstruction, examination with a laryngoscope or endoscope may be required; if Olly is in distress, you should visit the Emergency Veterinarian immediately but if Olly is calm you should keep an eye on him until morning. I would try to avoid giving food or water as the motion of swallowing may be painful; visit your Veterinarian in the morning to see what is causing these symptoms. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Trooper
American Eskimo Dog
10 Years
Fair condition
0 found helpful
Fair condition

My 10 year old American Eskimo dog is a food scarfer. He does not chew and even with a slow eating bowl can accomplish the task of eating very quickly. He gets dry food mixed with canned wet. The wet food we gave him this morning was slow cooked whole chicken wings...if you take a fork to the bone it is easily broken. He has eaten it many times. Today was different. He gobbled, and started coughing after his meal. Almost sounds like a honk. I have been giving him warm chicken broth and he will get wet food for dinner(not that chicken wing kind!). He has an appetite, is drinking water, is bathrooming normally. I assume it is a scratch, but of course it it Sunday and I cannot call vet. Advice please

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations
Without examining Trooper I cannot say whether or not he has an esophageal obstruction or not, but if he is eating wet food and drinking broth it is likely that a bolus of food was difficult to pass down to the stomach which may have caused compression on the trachea leading to a honking cough. If Trooper is now alright, you should keep a close eye on him and give him only wet food in the meantime; I would however recommend you visit your Veterinarian on Monday morning to be on the safe side. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Opie
Shorkie Tzu
1 Year
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

Drooling
Lethargy
Licking
Coughing

My pup started coughing and lightly drooling today out of the blue. He is also licking his lips and nose pretty frequently, which is not completely out of the ordinary and I’m probably over reacting because I’m concerned. However, I’m worried he might have something stuck in his throat. He ate his food tonight which was completely solid and he peed and pooped afterward. It’s midnight and I can’t stop worrying that something is wrong.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations
There are a few different possible conditions which may be affecting Opie which may include a foreign object, acid reflux, dental disorders among other conditions. You should keep an eye on him and if he is eating, drinking, defecating and urinating without a problem and isn’t showing pain or distress you should keep an eye on him and visit your Veterinarian in the morning when they open to give him a once over to be on the safe side. If he is in pain or distress, you should visit an Emergency Veterinarian immediately. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Brewster
Mastiff
14 Years
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

As above

My dog had a esophageal obstruction which was removed by endoscopy 3 days ago. The problem is now that no food is able to get to the stomach and he is vomiting it up. The obstruction was near the heart area. Why can't the food go into he stomach? He also has aspiration pneumonia due to the obstruction. He remains at the vet at this time. We do not get any encouragement for his recovery. What can we do next?

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
1098 Recommendations
Eugene, thank you for contacting us about Brewster - I'm sorry that he is having problems. The best thing that you can do for him right now is keep him at his veterinary clinic for care, which you are doing. Esophageal foreign bodies can cause significant trauma to the esophagus, and can cause strictures that prevent food from moving through freely. He is probably on anti-inflammatory medication to try and keep that from happening. As he also has aspiration pneumonia, he needs to be on IV fluids and antibiotics, as well as supportive care to help keep his lungs functioning. As far as his prognosis for recovery, I can't comment on that as I have not examined him, but your veterinarian can give you a better idea on that. I hope that he recovers and does well.

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Neko
Siberian Husky
5 Years
Fair condition
0 found helpful
Fair condition

My husky was acting like something in his throat today. Has not vomited at all.

Eating and drinking are normal. Breathing seems normal. His tone (husky talk) has deepened a bit in the last few days, and today it looked like has was having a little harder time swallowing. He was still able to swallow and eat though.

I opened his mouth and didn’t see anything in the back of his mouth/upper throat. Is it possible for dogs to get a sore throat from stress? (We moved a few weeks ago and he has 2 other dogs in the house now, I know it’s been stressful).

His activity level and behaviour is same as normal currently.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations
It is possible that Neko has picked up an infection which may clear up on its own or may require treatment; it is also possible that other causes like a mass in the throat or thyroid problems may be causing this change in his bark. If Neko is eating, drinking and is active I would just keep a close eye on him but if there is no improvement over the weekend I would recommend popping into your Veterinarian for an examination. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Kona
Labrador Retriever
9 Months
Mild condition
1 found helpful
Mild condition

Our 9 moth old Lab was left home alone for 4 hours with a cow hoof. It was a large one that was about half it's original size. I feel foolish for leaving him alone with it, but didn't anticipate that he may demolish the whole thing. He was acting normal when we came home, and in the morning his stool was normal as was his energy. Then, he immediately regurgitated his breakfast. Thinking he maybe just ate too fast, being a lab and doing this often, we just passed it off as nothing to worry about. We fed him new kibble and then a couple hours later took him on a 3 hour rigorous hike in the mountains. He was energetic and had a great time showing no signs of issues or discomfort. That night, he ate his dinner and passed out from exhaustion but later woke up at 4AM and regurgitated again. I use this term as I'm unsure if he is regurgitating or vomiting. It seems his food was still undigested but being a lab, he quickly ate what he had just thrown up and has managed to keep that and his breakfast down today and has had another good stool. Should I be concerned that he has a blockage in his esophagus ?

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations
If there is an obstruction, it doesn’t look like it is slowing him down (I don’t think I could do a three hour hike in the mountains); an obstruction is a possibility and even if the food reaches his stomach, it still may not digest. Given the symptoms I think it would be wise to take him in to be on the safe side even though he is not showing any signs of pain and seems to be passing faeces without any incident. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

Thank you! We have decided to watch him for the next 24 hours form this morning. So far he hasn't vomited since the middle of the night, and again faeces are very good. If vomiting stops, would it be an indicator that he is ok?

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Woody
Chihuahua
7 Years
Serious condition
0 found helpful
Serious condition

Has Symptoms

Fatigue
Heart racing
Vomiting
Gagging

7 year old chihuahua, was fine all day, but when I got home, was very lethargic, is gagging but not vomiting, he’s keeping his head and neck extended, and is breathing shorter and faster breaths. His heart rate is elevated, and his temp is low. His respiration rate is also elevated due to the short abnormal breathing. He’s acting like there might be something stuck in his throat, but I’ve shoved my finger as far down as I could and feel nothing. He is clearly in distress, and I’ve now been up for 24 hours monitoring him, and syringe feeding him drops of water. Please advise what your next step would be, other than taking him to the vet, as that’s not an option right now. Thank you!

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations
Woody seems to be in a lot of distress, whilst going to a Veterinarian isn’t an option for you it is the next step as the underlying cause of the breathing difficulty needs to be determined in order to offer a course of treatment. Foreign objects, pulmonary edema, abdominal fluid, infections, pneumothorax among many other conditions; without knowing the specific cause all I can recommend is offering supportive care to keep him hydrated. I am not sure what other advice you would expect apart from visiting your Veterinarian, but if cost is an issue consult with some charity clinics or non-profits in your area. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM www.aaha.org/pet_owner/lifestyle/cant-afford-critical-veterinary-care-many-nonprofits-can-help!.aspx

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Saban
Shar Pei
7 Months
Mild condition
2 found helpful
Mild condition

Has Symptoms

hard Swallowing
choking

my puppy got ahold of a charger, I got it from him after it was chewed up like little pieces. I put him in bed with me he found my hair and was chewing on it moments before and we was laying there for like 5 minutes then all of a sudden.He started swallowing hard, I felt the outside of his throat and it was like a bit hard and bigger then normal so I got him up and make him some water he wouldn't drink his breathing was light, like could hear it through nose but couldn't see it or really feel through stomach. still swallow hard i opened his mouth and put my fingers down there he gagged then i did it again and i went farther down this time because everything was still the same i felt something like covering the throat so i just pushed it he swallowed hard a couple more times after that and i just kept putting my hand down his throat then after like the fourth time he stopped gagging when i put my fingers down he throats went to normal and he finally got some water and is fine after like 5 minutes of me panicking putting my finger down his throat, it being so sudden i didn't think to look down the throat or anything but I'm worried about what I should do now? Or what causes this? was he choking? This is my first puppy so i'm not really sure on most things

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations

He may have been choking or he may have had a hair in his throat which can cause similar retching and gulping; if there was a foreign object which passed down to his stomach, it may cause more problems further down the tract. You need to bear in mind that there isn’t an open door from the mouth down the throat to the stomach, cartilage and the tongue can stop fingers from passing so when you felt something, it may have been just the epiglottis. Keep an eye on Saban, if you notice pain or discomfort it would be best to visit your Veterinarian. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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June
Lab rat terrier
9 Months
Fair condition
0 found helpful
Fair condition

Has Symptoms

Gagging
Eating grass

My dog ate a little bug and now seems like she is trying to regurgitate it but cannot. She is stickkng her tongue out a lot and her throat is making this odd movementz

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations
Whilst it is possible to have foreign bodies in the esophagus, more likely if a bug was consumed it may have caused some irritation on the way down to the stomach. Many times it is a case of allowing the irritation to disappear which may take a few days; if June is in distress you should visit your Veterinarian for an examination and to see if there is an obstruction or not. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Hudson
german shepherd rottie mix
4 Years
Fair condition
0 found helpful
Fair condition

Has Symptoms

Persistent swallowing
Vomiting

Last evening my daughter dropped a pea pod while shelling peas. She insists her friend's mom said that pea shells are good for dogs and that they fed them to their dogs while she was over there. She then accidentally dropped a shell before I could say don't do it and Hudson immediately snapped it up.
But all evening he was having bouts of persistent swallowing and vomiting a small amount -just clear/foamy water.
This morning he was attempting to eat grass outside, ate a bit, drank a fair amount. But I'm concerned. Especially when now I google pea shells and find they are dangerous!
Will eating more dislodge it? He hasn't thrown up any food or water this morning. Yet. (He's currently eating the rest of his food - dry kibble type). Generally he seems ok but he looks worried.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations

As far as I am aware, pea pods are not toxic to dogs but they can be difficult to chew and to digest; they pass easily through some dogs whilst others may have some trouble. Most likely, Hudson’s stomach is not impressed with the pea pod and is getting overactive causing the vomiting of clear foamy water. I would try to help Hudson pass the pea pod by giving something like mineral oil to help the passage through his system, there is little to be concerned with if he has kept his appetite. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

He just finished his entire meal and is now quite active and no persistent gulping. Seems himself. At the moment. Could the food have safely dislodge the pea shell?

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Sam
Pittbull mix
4 Months
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

Gagging
Dry Heaving
Drowsiness
Panting drinking water and pacing
Panting/Abnoraml Breathing

Medication Used

Antibiotics

what can I do to make my 4 month old pitbull mix to stop dry heaving and vomiting. he is also throwing up foreign objects like: Wood from the vanity, press on finger nails and etc. please help me save sam.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations

If Sam is eating everything, it would be best to punish him for misbehaviour and to place him in a cage when he is not supervised (also don’t leave any items out). The dry heaving may be attributable to foreign objects and Sam’s attempt to bring them up pass them; a visit to your Veterinarian would be valuable and if you haven’t, speak with your Veterinarian about vaccination. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Spike The Lab
Labrador Retriever
9 Years
Mild condition
1 found helpful
Mild condition

Has Symptoms

Lethargy,

My 9 year old Lab ate a steak bone and I think he may have a piece in his throat. 99% of the time I let him chew it for a few minutes then take it way from him This time all that I could get was the big end and the long slim end was gone. That was last night. Today he wasn't acting himself. He eats and poops just fine as of this morning and I can't "see"anything in his throat nor does he act like there's anything there. He is 9 years old and in very good shape. I've had him since he was 9 weeks old so I and am very in tune with his behaviors.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations

If the bone wasn’t cooked, I wouldn’t be too concerned as dogs are naturally supposed to gnaw on bone; if the bone was cooked (never give cooked bones to dogs), it may be difficult to pass and it may puncture a section of his gastrointestinal tract leading to severe complications like pneumothorax, peritonitis and death. Most dogs will pass bones without incident (cooked or raw), but on occasion there can be problems. It is a good sign that Spike is still eating and his moments are OK; he may just be having trouble passing the bone. If he starts to exhibit pain, fever or any other symptom visit your Veterinarian immediately; also a visit to your Veterinarian for an x-ray would give you piece of mind. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

Full Recovery
Treatment Cost: $106.00
Took Spike to Vet thinking something was enlarged (possibly a bone shard) in his throat. X-Ray was taken and everything looked fine. $106 dollars later he still has a slight hoarseness to his bark but it has improved greatly.

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Sassy
Beagle
12 Years
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

Coughing and Gagging When Eating

My dog has been coughing and gagging only when she eats and doesn’t seem interested in eating much. They did blood work and everything was ok but now want to do xrays and possibly an endoscopy. Should I do the xrays or go straight to the endoscopy? I don't have a lot of money to do all this.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations

In a case of oesophageal obstruction an x-ray would be generally more valuable since it would be able to give an overview of Sassy’s whole front end and would indicate extraluminal obstructions (something on the outside of the oesophagus pushing on it) if present as well as giving a snap shot of her heart, lungs and spine (just for good measure). It is possible that she has something in the pharynx which is being irritated and causing a gag reflex whilst eating and drinking, a simple tongue depressor and a light may all be that is required; if no joy I would recommend x-ray over endoscope. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

No Recovery
Treatment Cost: $400.00
Well we went ahead and did the x rays and found Sassy doesn't have anything stuck in her throat but she has a heart murmur with a slightly enlarged heart that is starting to press on her trachea. This is most likely what's causing the coughing when she eats but so far no other symptoms. We've started her on heart meds and an anti-inflammatory. Hopefully she'll still be with us awhile longer.

I have a 21 year old chawahawah, all testing came back good. Shes been gaging and coughing and even throws up like something is stuck. What can i do?

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Ozzy
Pittbull mix
14 Weeks
Mild condition
-1 found helpful
Mild condition

Has Symptoms

not drinking
gagging
Sleeping all the time
Not Eating

What does it mean when a 14 week old puppy is gagging like he wants to throw up but doesnt? He just gags and doesnt want to eat or drink anything. He chews on everything.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations

There are many causes for lethargy, loss of appetite, gagging and not drinking, these include foreign bodies (especially in dogs that chew many things), gastroenteritis, tumours (a bit young), congenital abnormalities or systemic disease (usually would see fever). With all the possible causes, a visit to your Veterinarian would be needed to get a diagnosis and treatment; also get him vaccinated if you haven’t already. If Ozzy likes to chew on everything, limiting his access to chewable items along with training to curb his chewing would be beneficial long term to nip it in the bud whilst he is a puppy. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

Full Recovery
Treatment Cost: $19.00
Well he has parvo and worms. So we took him to the vet on Friday November 11 and that's when we found out what was wrong. They gave him the fluid shit and then gave us his medication primor 240 mgs and they said he has a 75% chance of making it. So on Sunday November 13 he was not acting like he wanted to do anything So we took him to the vet on Monday November 14 and they gave him another fluid shit 100mg and they said that he is doing a lot better and to keep giving him his antibiotics and his Pedialyte. We give him his Pedialyte every 30 minutes to an hour. He keeps the Pedialyte down but he wasn't keeping water down. Now he is eating a little bit of cat food and milk mixed and drinking water a little bit. They said he should be better by Friday or this weekend and they also said if he gets worse to bring him in and they would give him another shot. As of today he has been doing good eating and drinking Pedialyte like he is suppose to but he threw up a little bit.

Thanks for that Dr.

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Levi
Australian Shepherd
4 Months
Moderate condition
2 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

Poor Appetite
Lethargy
Vomiting
Drowsiness

Friday Levi ate breakfast and and lunch (Pedigree brand puppy dry food) but about 3 in the afternoon he started vomiting. Now he will not eat anything or drink anything. He chews on a lot of things and outside and we have lots of woods by our house so there is no telling what he could have gotten ahold of.
Normally he runs with the kids and follows all of us around a lot and is very active but about 3pm Friday he has done nothing but sleep after the throwing up. He will wake up here and there when we come pet him but falls back to sleep very quickly.
I know he chewed on our fig tree leaves and deer bones, and there was a sponge that he tore up Wednesday night which is probably of more concern.

He is not Drooling much at all, and today (Saturday morning) he has not thrown up again but also will still not eat or drink.
His temp is only 101.5 which if I remember it is normally 102.5
he has peed today but not pooped since yesterday morning.
he is breathing fine and still responding and can walk around but doesn't want to.

Deer bones don't really splinter and when he does break anything off it is very tiny bits, I can't help to wonder if maybe he managed to get a bigger piece.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations

It sounds like Levi may have consumed a number of different objects. The vomiting may have been caused by the bones, fig leaves or wood (if consumed); if the fig leaves irritated his stomach it may have caused him to vomit leading him to have a loss of appetite and be lethargic. There is a chance that there is an obstruction in some portion of the gastrointestinal tract; this will also cause vomiting, loss of appetite and lethargy (due to pain or discomfort). A visit to your Veterinarian for Levi to get him examined and possibly x-rayed to determine if there is an obstruction. Large wood splinters can be dangerous if they are lodged in the thoracic portion of the oesophagus, they may perforate the oesophagus causing pneumothorax. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Yogi
Boston Terrier
6 yrs
Mild condition
1 found helpful
Mild condition

Has Symptoms

Gagging

If a dog is gagging only, is it likely that the dog has something stuck in his throat when no other signs that I have read about exist? Are ex rays necessary?

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations

Thank you for your question. Gagging usually is caused by a foreign object in the upper oesophagus, irritation to the pharynx or may be related to the respiratory tract. If the gagging persists, a visit to your Veterinarian would be required for a physical examination and possibly x-rays if nothing is identified by palpation. It is possible that the gagging will stop after some time (it isn’t unusual for dogs to gag once in a while, a hair in the pharynx is enough) or it may be due to a condition that requires Veterinary attention. If the gagging persists for more than six hours, I would visit your Veterinarian; obviously if during that time other clinical sign appear or Yogi gets worse, an earlier visit would be necessary. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Bentley
Labrador Retriever
1 Year
Serious condition
0 found helpful
Serious condition

Has Symptoms

Vomiting
Gagging

Bentley was lately exhbiting bilous vomiting at night, so we made sure to keep a full bowl of food with him at night. This fixed the problem for a week but then yesterday he began making gagging sounds and seemed like something was stuck in his throat. We could not see anything, but he made a couple loud honking sounds. We pushed his stomach(heimlich) and he coughed up a little food. Not a full gut wretching vomit, just a cough up. The loud honking was fixed but he is still intermittently gagging like he is trying to cough up something and small bit of digested food comes up. He is still playful and rambunctious. He is eating and drinking ok,but eating slower than normal.
Also 2 days ago(before this started) we were out for a run and his harness may have been too tight_ while running gagged momentarily and loosened his harness
. maybe that bruised his esophagus?...

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations

The oesophagus is behind the trachea, so I don’t think the harness caused damage to it; there are various causes for these symptoms including acid reflux, laryngeal problems, foreign bodies, tumours, abscesses among other causes. Check the back of Bentley’s mouth to check for any problems which may be inducing gagging or vomiting including masses etc… If you cannot see anything, it would be best to speak with your Veterinarian to help determine the underlying cause. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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ALe
Golden Retriever
11 Years
Serious condition
0 found helpful
Serious condition

Has Symptoms

Coughing and gagging
Lethargic
Sleepy
Vomiting
Not Eating
Vomiting

My 11 year old goldem retriever is very healthy, but suddenly two weeks ago he started with a terrible cough sounding as if he had something stuck in his throat. He likes to bite on plastics. The dr gave him prednisolon to treat inflamation and amoxil to treat infection for 10 days and he didn't he got any better. I took him to the vet and they took him xrays and found a big white ball in the lower trachea and white parts in the lungs where it was suppose to be black, because thats were oxygen should be. He gave him this time a diuretic to see if it was just liquid and some medicine so he would eat. After i gave him the lasix (diuretic) he started having breathing from 40 per minute before the med and changed to 80 per minute. All this totally sleeping. With the med for the nausea and to give him more hunger he vomited 2 times a lot and gag constantly as if he was to keep vomiting all night. I stopped
All meds and after a few hours his respiration went back to 40. I am giving him pepcid that is helping him to gag less and vomit let, but he is like sleeping a lot, barely eats and gags like if he was about to vomit. The dr doesn't know if liquid, inflamation or a mass. I believe prednisolone is for inflamation, so if it was that the med wouldve helped, the diuretic is to eliminate excess liquid so if it qas that he wouldve gone better. I believe he probably has something stuck in his trachea or maybe a mass, but how to know? The dr just make xrays not mri. I dont know what else to do. What could it be?

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations

There are various possible causes for the symptoms you are seeing and the white areas you’re seeing on the x-ray which include tumours, infection (abscesses), inflammation and other anomalies; from x-ray along it may not be possible to determine what the masses are, but bronchoscopy may prove useful in providing a diagnosis and allowing your Veterinarian to take a biopsy sample if a mass is visible. Exploratory surgery is quite risky, but that too may allow for a biopsy to be taken to assist in making a diagnosis. I cannot tell you for sure what is there, but further investigation is needed either with bronchoscopy or exploratory surgery (if Ale is healthy enough for anaesthesia). Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Snowy
West Highland White Terrier
11 Years
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

Regurgitating
Wretching,

My Westie swallowed a piece of steak that seemed to get caught in her esophagus...wrenching and bringing up foam,,,calmed down after about an hour but still not herself with an occasional wretch.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations

If something gets stuck in the oesophagus, it may cause distress even after the obstruction has been moved; if Snowy is calm now, I would keep an eye on her and check how she will eat and drink later. If there was any bone with the steak, I would be more concerned; if Snowy doesn’t improve or doesn’t eat or drink take her into her Veterinarian. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

Thank You!!

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Bella
French Bulldog
10 Months
Fair condition
0 found helpful
Fair condition

Has Symptoms

Coughing

My dog is 10 months old. Her mood is normal; happy and high energy. But she has been coughing really badly. It sounds like a wheezing. Its like she has to throw something up, but it won't come out, and it almost sounds like her throat is super dry. It's 9pm, our vet isn't open, and I can call first thing in the morning, but will she be okay through the night?

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations

A bad wheezy cough may be caused by something as simple as a hair irritating the throat, a foreign body or infection (among other causes). Just keep an eye on Bella and if you notice her struggling to breathe and becomes weak or in severe discomfort visit an Emergency Veterinarian. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Sinatra
American Staffordshire Terrier
11 Months
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

hard coughing
mild loss of appetite
Panting

My dog is eating and drinking fine but suddenly stopped eating as much. he has pooped 3 times today and i didnt notice anything in his stool. he was making a weird, hard cough, and panting and breathing rapidly while laying down after he drank some water. i dont know if has something in his throat or what, but he has not vomited or gagged any

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations

It is possible that Sinatra has a hair in his throat or has a little bit of irritation which is making eating uncomfortable. There are many other possible causes, but these would need to be ruled out by your Veterinarian like infection, airway disorders, dental problems etc… Give Sinatra a day or so and if there is no improvement or you notice the symptoms getting worse (especially laboured breathing), visit your Veterinarian; if you have any immediate concerns, visit your Veterinarian or an Emergency Veterinarian immediately. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Wizard
Yellow Lab
2 Years
Mild condition
0 found helpful
Mild condition

Has Symptoms

Vomiting

I have a 2 year old yellow lab who has vomited 6x in the past 3 days. however, he is eating and pooping fine, and his energy level is great. He may have swallowed part of a deer antler, as that is the only thing he has been alone with. He tends to vomit 6-8 hours after eating, so food isn't the issue. Vomit is mostly bile.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations

Vomiting bile occurs when the stomach is empty which means that the vomiting may be due to acid irritating the stomach; if there was a foreign body you would normally see vomiting within a few minutes or immediately. Try feeding Wizard smaller portions on a more regular basis (if possible) so that his stomach doesn’t have a chance to get empty. Pepcid or other similar medications may help to reduce the level of acid in the stomach, but before trying medication try to feed smaller more regular portions and if that is unsuccessful visit your Veterinarian. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Gunner
Blue Heeler
1.5 years
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

Gagging, Excessive drooling

I have a 1-1/2 y.o. blue heeler that dove onto a stick and it got shoved down the back of his throat and broke. He was choking, but managed to gag the piece up within a few seconds. The end of the stick was bloody and he immediately became lethargic and wouldn't eat, drink, or even get up to go outside for 4 hours. I took him to the emergency vet that night and they said they couldn't feel or hear any sub-cu air. He got pain meds, an anti inflammatory, an antibiotic, and a med to coat his throat. After a few days he perked up a little. He plays with the ball but becomes tired very quickly, when barking or playing he gags and still he constantly has thick, clear drool coming from the left side of his mouth where the stick was lodged. It has been about 2 weeks now and still the same. He is a heeler that is very active and rambunctious. He literally will run for 3 hours and not be tired, But he just is not himself. Is this drooling and gagging part of the healing process of a throat injury? Or is there probably part of the stick still stuck? I was told an xray with contrast is the best bet to finding a lodged stick this late after the incident.

Read more at: https://www.vetary.com/dog/condition/esophageal-obstruction

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations

The problems with sticks is that there can be splinters or other debris which can lodge in various parts of the throat leading to irritation and these symptoms; it is possible that the trauma of the stick hitting the back of throat has caused some long term damage. These types of cases are on a case by case basis and no two are the same; if a laryngoscope doesn’t help, endoscopy or x-ray would be the next step. I would expect more improvement over two weeks, but that area is very sensitive and there are many nerves and soft structures which may take time to heal. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Apollo
Shiloh Shepherd
9 Weeks
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

depression
Lethargic
Loss of Appetite

Hello, I have a 9 week old Shiloh Shepard. He's been with us for a week now and was always excited and energetic. All of a sudden he got really calm, sleeps alot, doesn't have an appetite, and seems very sad. He threw up once, as well.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations

It is possible that Apollo has picked up a tummy bug which would cause vomiting, lethargy and loss of appetite; other causes like foreign bodies or poisoning are possible. If the symptoms continue you should visit your Veterinarian, you can do this at a vaccination visit. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Powda
Chihuahua
4 Years
Mild condition
0 found helpful
Mild condition

Has Symptoms

Gagging

My chiauaua spelled wrong acts like something is in her throat. She is breathing and still eats. Her breaths sound raspy. She has gagged a few times and threw up very little once. Cannot see anything in her throat. Should I make a vet appointment?

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations

There are a few possible causes that may be causing the raspy, gagging reflex including foreign bodies, infections, chemical irritation, allergies, narrowing of the airways, tracheal collapse and laryngeal disorders. It would be best to have Powda examined by her Veterinarian to ensure that the cause isn’t anything too serious and whether there is some medical relief available. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Carter
Australian Cattle
2 Years
Mild condition
0 found helpful
Mild condition

Has Symptoms

Coughing
Throwing up
Swallowing
Panting drinking water and pacing
Dry Heaving
Gagging

My dog carter was eating a raw bone tonight and instantly started gagging and throwing up. There looks like there is no shards of bone, just marrow but he is having a very hard time swallowing and is extremely restless. He seems to be drinking water and eating okay. He's just swallowing a lot and dry heaving.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations

Keep an eye on Carter, he may have swallowed a large piece of rawhide which is taking its time or have irritated the throat or oesophagus. He should be alright after sometime, but if the problem persists, visit your Veterinarian for an examination. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Queen
Pittbull mix
3 Years
Fair condition
0 found helpful
Fair condition

Has Symptoms

Gagging

I have a blue nose pocket bully pitbull . She's been gagging on and off for the past 2 weeks. She still eats drinks & play around with the other dogs? Could there be something stuck?

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations

Queen may have something stuck in her throat around the pharynx inducing intermittent gagging. Swelling and other lumps and bumps may place external pressure on the respiratory tract which can induce gagging too. This would be something to visit your Veterinarian about. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Zues
pitbull
10 Years
Serious condition
0 found helpful
Serious condition

Has Symptoms

Throwing up, pooping and drooling

I came home from work and my pitbull had gotten in the trash. Im not sure what he ate but im assuming he has something caught in his throat. Hes threw up alot n pooped a lot. Hes breathing funny and drooling a lot.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations

If you suspect Zeus has consumed something in the trash, it is best to have him checked by his Veterinarian has he may have not only consumed something poisonous to dogs, but also a non-food item which may puncture his gastrointestinal tract. Do not try to induce vomiting since this may cause more complications, visit your Veterinarian immediately. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Rhino
2 Years
Mild condition
0 found helpful
Mild condition

Has Symptoms

Coughing

My dog rhino has been like wheezing and then gagging he has a smell coming from his mouth that smells like some kind of plant he ate out side he eats ok

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2514 Recommendations

If Rhino is still eating OK and isn’t vomiting food shortly after eating, the chances of an oesophageal obstruction are minimal; most likely, there is something irritating his respiratory tract which causes him to gag at times. The plant that he ate outside may contain some irritant and is affecting Rhino’s breathing. I would still recommend a visit to your Veterinarian to check for foreign bodies or other causes of the wheezing and gagging. When Rhino goes outside, try to prevent him reaching the plants and if necessary remove them from his environment. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

I have a 1-1/2 y.o. blue heeler that dove onto a stick and it got shoved down the back of his throat and broke. He was choking, but managed to gag the piece up within a few seconds. The end of the stick was bloody and he immediately became lethargic and wouldn't eat, drink, or even get up to go outside for 4 hours. I took him to the emergency vet that night and they said they couldn't feel or hear any sub-cu air. He got pain meds, an anti inflammatory, an antibiotic, and a med to coat his throat. After a few days he perked up a little. He plays with the ball but becomes tired very quickly, when barking or playing he gags and still he constantly has thick, clear drool coming from the left side of his mouth where the stick was lodged. It has been about 2 weeks now and still the same. He is a heeler that is very active and rambunctious. He literally will run for 3 hours and not be tired,
But he just is not himself. Is this drooling and gagging part of the healing process of a throat injury? Or is there probably part of the stick still stuck? I was told an xray with contrast is the best bet to finding a lodged stick this late after the incident.

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