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I have a Chihuahua that that swallowed a...

Resolved • Response time 5 minutes

18 Jun 2021

I have a Chihuahua that that swallowed a piece of gristle and fat from a piece of steak that has it's had a hard time going down he's breathing he could drink he could not drink water but I put some in a small syringe and put it down his throat it didn't come back out he's not gasping for air but he is having trouble it's just it's not comfortable for him I don't know what we should do so what's your
JA: I'll do all I can to help. How much does the Chihuahua weigh?
Customer: About 2 lb
JA: When was this? Has he thrown up since eating the steak?
Customer: No he has not thrown up since eating the steak this was about maybe an hour ago he's very bloated so I don't know what we should do there's no vet in town that is open at the moment
JA: And what's the Chihuahua's name and age?
Customer: His name is ***** ***** he's about 4 months
JA: Is there anything else the Vet should know before I connect you? Rest assured that they'll be able to help you.
Customer: His name is ***** ***** he's about 4 months old
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18 Jun 2021

Ask your own question
Dog Veterinarian's response
18 Jun 2021
BrandonG102
BrandonG102
Owner/Veterinarian

Good evening, I’m Dr. Gates and I’m happy to assist you this evening.

My job here is to assess whether or not you pet needs to be examined and diagnostic tests run or if we can manage things safely at home.

I will do my best to go through everything with you and give you my professional advice based on the history and clinical signs. The more information I have the better the job I can do to help get you some answers for your pet.

18 Jun 2021
Dog Veterinarian's response
18 Jun 2021
BrandonG102
BrandonG102
Owner/Veterinarian

I'm so sorry to hear that Steve is having issues.

18 Jun 2021
Dog Veterinarian's response
18 Jun 2021
BrandonG102
BrandonG102
Owner/Veterinarian

Choking is interference with breathing caused by foreign material in, or compression on, the trachea (windpipe). Thankfully, true choking is a very rare occurrence. Many pet owners will seek veterinary care because they believe their pet has something stuck in its throat, and this is rarely the case. It is far more likely that your pet has something mild and infectious such as tracheobronchitis (commonly called kennel cough) and is coughing rather than choking.

18 Jun 2021
Dog Veterinarian's response
18 Jun 2021
BrandonG102
BrandonG102
Owner/Veterinarian

Frequently, coughing is confused with choking. Both cause the pet to forcefully exhale. With choking, the pet has difficulty inhaling. When coughing, the pet can inhale almost normally. Be careful to distinguish the two: attempting to give first aid to a pet who is merely coughing can cause injury.

If you are in any doubt, have your pet evaluated by a veterinarian. To evaluate the throat, most pets will require sedation and some will require evaluation with a fiber-optic endoscope or X-rays to look for foreign material.

18 Jun 2021
Customer reply
18 Jun 2021
Ok do okay so what do you suggest that we do?
18 Jun 2021
Customer reply
18 Jun 2021
He's wanting to go behind the couch and hide but I'm afraid that I won't be able to find him or get to him quick enough if something bad or I don't hear him happens
18 Jun 2021
Dog Veterinarian's response
18 Jun 2021
BrandonG102
BrandonG102
Owner/Veterinarian

If he's currently conscious and doing well, stay calm and try to keep the pet calm. If the pet is overheated, cool them with cold water applied to their extremities (ears and feet) and belly, and transport them to the nearest veterinarian. Perform a finger sweep only if it will not excite the pet. Do not perform a finger sweep if you believe your pet will bite you.

18 Jun 2021
Dog Veterinarian's response
18 Jun 2021
BrandonG102
BrandonG102
Owner/Veterinarian

If he ever becomes unconscious, then open your pet's mouth and do a finger sweep by placing your finger along the inside of the mouth, sliding it down toward the center of the throat over the base of the tongue, and gently "sweeping" toward the center to remove any foreign material. Warning: there is a structure deep in the throat (the Adam's apple) that feels like a smooth bone. Do not attempt to pull it out!

Begin Rescue Breathing
Rescue breathing is described in the article on CPR. If air is not entering the lungs, slap the chest wall firmly or perform the Heimlich maneuver by putting the pet on his back, placing your hands over the abdomen near the bottom of his rib cage, and gently but firmly thrusting toward the spine. Perform a finger sweep and begin rescue breathing. Repeat until the foreign body is clear and the lungs can be inflated. Transport to the veterinarian.

18 Jun 2021
Dog Veterinarian's response
18 Jun 2021
BrandonG102
BrandonG102
Owner/Veterinarian

If he seems ok and is able to breathe normally, then you can monitor him. Otherwise, seek veterinary care at the local ER.

18 Jun 2021
Dog Veterinarian's response
18 Jun 2021
BrandonG102
BrandonG102
Owner/Veterinarian

Any choke case is prone to developing aspiration pneumonia anywhere from 3 days to a week or two later. Monitor closely for difficulty breathing, coughing, wheezing, lethargy, nasal discharge, etc.

18 Jun 2021
Customer reply
18 Jun 2021
He probably has to he seems like he's breathing normally he cries a little bit here and there he's laying in my lap he seems a little bit uncomfortable but that's it he's really bloated but there's no local veterinarian open in our area so if things go bad what do I do?
18 Jun 2021
Dog Veterinarian's response
18 Jun 2021
BrandonG102
BrandonG102
Owner/Veterinarian

Follow the instructions that I posted above if he gets worse and you can't seek care.

18 Jun 2021
Dog Veterinarian's response
18 Jun 2021
BrandonG102
BrandonG102
Owner/Veterinarian

He's also prone to gastrointestinal upset (vomiting/diarrhea) and pancreatitis with fatty food/table scraps. If he does start to vomit, then I would recommend fasting for 6 to 8 hours to allow his GI tract to heal and then starting a bland diet if he stops vomiting.

18 Jun 2021
Dog Veterinarian's response
18 Jun 2021
BrandonG102
BrandonG102
Owner/Veterinarian

You can read about pancreatitis here: https://veterinarypartner.vin.com/default.aspx?pid=19239&id=4952412

18 Jun 2021
Dog Veterinarian's response
18 Jun 2021
BrandonG102
BrandonG102
Owner/Veterinarian

You might also consider fasting him for 6 to 8 hours in case he did cause any inflammation or damage to his esophagus.

After 6 to 8 hours, if he is better you can try giving Pepcid AC (famotidine) or Prilosec (omeprazole).

The usual dosage of famotidine or omeprazole for dogs is 0.25 mg to 0.5 mg per pound of body weight given twice a day and is sold as over-the-counter medication.

Pills usually come in a strength of 10 mg, though they also come in amounts of 20 mg. You should continue treatment for 5 days.

18 Jun 2021
Customer reply
18 Jun 2021
He resting comfortably now with no noise or signs of stress. Thank you for your help. I will contact you again if things change. Thanks so much again.
18 Jun 2021
Dog Veterinarian's response
18 Jun 2021
BrandonG102
BrandonG102

You're welcome. I wish you both the best. You can provide updates and ask follow-up questions by picking up the chat in the window and I will answer when I am next online. Thank you for using Just Answer and have a wonderful evening!

Customer rating:
BrandonG102
BrandonG102
Owner/Veterinarian
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18 Jun 2021
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