Date Published: April 8, 2017, Updated: April 11, 2019 at 7:00 am, Author: Alice
Back when I was first discovering how much dogs loved bully sticks, my dog swallowed a bully stick while I wasn’t looking. He did chew on half of it and turned it into mush, but the second I turned away, he gobbled the entire thing. While my boy did not look like he was choking, was still concerned because only half of the bully stick was softened, the rest is still solid. I was scared that he might not be able to digest or pass it through stool. I thought about dropping everything that I was doing and rushing the dog to the vet.
Fortunately in my case, the bully stick that I bought at the time was from Bully Stick Shoppe, and the products they sell are digestible even when swallowed solid by a dog. Of course, not every pet or situation is the same and I admit that I was just lucky that my pup didn’t choke on the large dried pizzle. Dogs are mostly safe and the sticks are generally digestible compared to rawhide or manufactured bone, but being digestible is irrelevant if the issue is that the dog was unable to swallow the pizzle. Most dogs will have no trouble, but can puppies have bully sticks without any risk?
The answer is yes, but keep in mind that puppies by nature are very prone to many dangers due to being young and because they have yet to develop many crucial survival skills. Many puppies have required surgery after ingesting toys, bones, and other objects that are too large for them to pass. A bully stick is just like any other item in the sense that you want to watch what they do with it.
Fortunately, a brand new bull pizzle is much too large to fit inside a puppy’s mouth and will not be a choking hazard. What you want to watch out for are situations similar to what happened with my dog, where half of the treat was already softened by him and made possible to gobble in one go.
So what do you do if the situation happened to you? For starters, you have to make sure that the dog has indeed swallowed the stick and it’s not stuck in its throat. You’ll be able to know if the pet is choking easily – if it is, you should know that Heimlich maneuvers work on puppy as well.
If the puppy has passed out, you can even dislodge the block by pulling on its tongue (but try to avoid getting accidentally bitten in the process.) If possible, rush your dog to a vet. Or at least be proactive, contact your vet and ask to be taught some first aid techniques for your dog.
If you’re not unlucky, the puppy managed to swallow the bully sticks, but this does not mean you’re in the clear. It may be easy for a dog that swallowed bully stick to pass through via defecation, but a puppy might not be able to chew the stick into small enough pieces to make passing easy, which means it could get stuck.
If you think this may be the case, you need to do the a little bit of work and make sure if your dog needs to visit the vet. Hunker down and do the following…
A dog that is having problems getting rid of a swallowed object will have noticeable changes to its appetite, drinking, and bowel movements. Monitor your dog and pay special attention to:
There’s no need to wonder whether they are safe or do bully sticks digest well in the stomach of a puppy (top 5 facts about bully sticks <- BTW). The above examples may seem scary but they could happen with anything from toys, other types of food, and other chew products. In fact, bully sticks are actually safer because they get soft when moistened enough. They will be easily broken down when swallowed by a puppy (as opposed to rawhide and manufactured bone, or plastic toys that cannot be broken down by a dog’s digestive system.)
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