Why are chicken bones bad for dogs in the first place?
Unlike the large, hard bones many of us buy for our dogs to chew “chicken bones are very soft and often leave very sharp edges when broken,” Dr. Werber says. This is what makes them especially dangerous for dogs. If your dog ate a chicken bone, he “run[s] the risk of tearing the esophagus or tearing somewhere along the intestinal tract, ” Dr. Werber says. This is why it’s so important to make sure dogs don’t have access to chicken bones.
7 Things to Do if Your Dog Eats a Chicken Bone
Follow these 7 steps if your dog has eaten a chicken bone to help limit the potential health risks:
While it’s natural to panic when you think your dog is in danger, its important to remain calm. Raising your voice and making sudden movements can increase your dogs stress levels and worsen their condition.
If your dog hasnt completely swallowed the bone yet, calmly try to remove it from their grasp. A panicked removal motion can trigger a dog to be possessive of the bone, and they may try and swallow it quickly. Never try to forcibly take a chicken bone (or any object) away from your dog, especially those small enough to be choked on.
Another tip is to trade up with a higher-value item like steak that your dog will happily exchange the chicken bone for. This tip only works if the item is very high-value, so training to trade up will help avoid this and similar situations.
If your dog is not actively choking, call your veterinarian and explain the situation. They will be able to walk you through your next steps and give you a better sense of whether your dog is in any immediate danger.
In some scenarios, your dog may swallow the chicken bone and be perfectly fine. Your vet can help you recognize if this is the case, or if you need to seek further medical attention.
Make Sure Your Dog Isn’t Choking
The most immediate cause for concern would be if the chicken bone is lodged in your dogs airways. If your dog is choking, they may start retching or acting like theyre trying to cough something up. They may also pace back and forth, roll around on the ground, or paw at their mouth.
Unfortunately, if their airway is completely blocked, they wont be able to make any noise at all, so youll have to pay extra close attention to their body language. If your dog is choking, dont wait to call your vet. You need to take immediate action.
First, check inside your dogs mouth to see if you can remove whatever object is lodged in their throat. If youre not able to remove the object, your next option is to use the Heimlich maneuver, just like with a person. There are two different ways to perform this maneuver, depending on the size of your dog. There is an abdominal compression technique for medium to large-sized dogs and a chest thrust technique for small dogs. Both techniques are very simple.
What To Do If Your Dog Eats A Chicken Bone
Did your dog just eat chicken bones, and you aren’t sure what to do? Almost all dogs, at some point or another, have eaten something they’re not meant to, and chicken bones are often one of these things. This actually happens frequently and is not surprising. Chicken is one food that seems universally adored by our canine pals. Despite that, chicken bones can be extremely dangerous to dogs.
Cooked chicken can be part of a nutrient-dense nutrition plan for your pup. It works well with vegetables like zucchini, cooked sweet potatoes, or even bell peppers. Sometimes cooked chicken bones make their way into your dog’s meal by accident, and they can be very dangerous if that happens.
Some dog owners will try to self-treat, and this is a mistake. If your dog ingests chicken bones, you need to call the vet. There are several steps we recommend you take, which we discuss in detail below. So, let’s take a look at what you should do if your dog ate chicken bones.
When the dreaded does happen, it’s important to remain calm so you can do what needs to be done. Don’t discipline your dog immediately. You need to stay calm and not scare your pup. Below, we’ve given our step-by-step instructions for how you should handle this tricky situation.