The Dog Ate What?! – How Dogs Have and Will Eat Strange Inedibles

Dogs are not known for having a discriminating palette and only insisting on eating the finest foods on Earth. Dogs are reckless and can put themselves in danger, as dogs will eat almost anything once. If they survive to regret it, there are some snack choices that are very common and peculiar to canines. Dogs can even mistake inedible things for food. What does into a dog’s mouth eventually has to come out but dogs sometimes forget about that and overestimate certain inedibles ability to go out the end opposite they ingested it with. The most common situation vets encounter if accidental consumption of things a dog thought was food. Dogs often swallow chopsticks, skewers, and utensils on which bits of food or cooking smells remain on and are left accessible. A dog’s unnatural eating habits can be harmful to their health so it helps to know what common non-food items your dog might eat, why they even eat them and what you can to do about it.


Hair Ties

Hair ties are a dog’s favorite inedible treat. Smaller dogs especially enjoy a hair tie as an unhealthy snack. A dog will go for a hair tie because to a dog they are fun to play with and also smell like their owner. Your dog might be able to pass a hair tie or two through his digestive tract and have it wind up in his stool uneventfully, but if he eats several, it can be unpleasant. The elastic and rubber hair ties can get stuck in his gut and will result in vomiting, decreased appetite and painful abdomen. Vets have documented cases of dogs with upwards of 50 hair ties in their stomach. Keep hair ties in closed drawers or sealed trinket dishes so a dog cannot enjoy them.



Dogs chew on your shoes out of boredom, not as an act of passive-aggression. If your dog chews up a pair of shoes and gets a large chunk of indigestible material in his stomach, he will have vomiting and diarrhea. Your vet might treat symptoms with anti-nausea medication and fluids while the material passes naturally after an X-Ray determines the size of the shoe piece in their GI tract. But in some cases, surgery or endoscopy is needed to remove it. Protect your shoes and your dog by keeping footwear in closets. Keep him busy with more appropriate chew toys.


Cheese (and Cheese Board Accessories)

Despite not being good for their digestion but a great way to sneak a dog any medicine, in 2012, vets discovered and documented a case in which a Bull Mastiff not only enjoyed an entire cheese board filled with brie that had been left unattended but also are the small cheese knife for soft cheeses that was on the board and had to have the cheese knife surgically removed. Never leave food or utensils unattended as a hungry dog can move fast and help themselves to the plate and the utensils on it.


Dirty Q-tips

Earwax contains lipids (fats) and proteins that can taste delicious to your dog. An obstruction resulting from these small grooming tools is unlikely, but they can cause gastro-intestinal irritation that results in vomiting, diarrhea, and a decreased appetite. Earwax ruins a dog’s appetite. Veterinary treatment is necessary only in extreme cases. Using lidded garbage cans head this common dog DIY treat from being found.



Dogs are attracted by the smell of blood on used tampons as carnivores. Some dogs simply like to play with unused tampons. The biggest problem with a tampon eating dog is not just the ick factor; it’s that absorbent tampons expand once ingested and risk getting stuck in the digestive tract and requiring surgery or endoscopy to remove. Call your vet if you ever catch your dog in the act, and always dispose of tampons properly and if possible use flushable ones or dispose of in pet-proof garbage cans.



Separation anxiety can make a dog eat things of no real interest normally. In 2015, a lonely dog ate three full wristwatches and needed an emergency so he could continue to keep licking and avoid having ticking. If you have a dog with separation anxiety, be sure anything he could eat or swallow is inaccessible, or consider crating him when you are not home. Anxiety treatment for dogs is available and can help your dogs mental state, so he doesn’t decide to eat watches, rings, and bracelets to feel closer to his absent owners.



Whether it’s the scent of human hands on the coins or the visual shine of metal, there still not a good reason why dogs eat coins, but they do it enough vets have the policy to deal with it. The physical irritation of their presence in the stomach or intestines can cause vomiting and diarrhea, and ulcers are possible. Newer pennies minted after 1982 can cause zinc toxicity, which can lead to anemia. Coins must be removed by endoscopy or surgery, and if the dog is anemic, he might need a blood transfusion and further treatment. If your dog is greedy and that money hungry make sure no loose change is around and pick up coins, you drop immediately, so a dog doesn’t mistake it for a doggie treat dropped from a pocket.



Some types of this gardening staple surprising contain chocolate, an ingredient that is toxic to dogs. Dogs that eat mulch that contains chocolate need medical treatment for not only chocolate toxicity but also a treatment for any obstructions caused by the stick pieces or chunks of wood that cannot pass through their gastrointestinal tract. Keep your dog away from mulch/



As stated previously, dogs sometimes eat utensils. While vets often induce vomiting or monitor a dog until he or she passes many types of foreign objects that is not an option in these cases for cooking or dining utensils. A chopstick or skewer could do more damage on the way up and out, so the only option is using surgery or endoscopy to remove the eaten fork, knife, spoon or whatnot. Keep utensils out of canine reach to prevent this scenario.


Cat Feces

Cat stool contains partially digested food, which can smell delicious to your dog that has questionable at best taste. It is harmless other than repulsing you and giving your dog bad breath that smells like…what he ate. Ingesting small amounts of cat litter can upset your dog’s stomach a bit, but veterinary treatment care is not normally


Preventing the Pain and Expense

Veterinary treatment can be simple or complex depending on what your dog has accidentally chosen to eat and how far it’s gotten into his digestive system. You get a dog in discomfort and an unplanned for a large vet bill. By being a responsible and watchful pet parent, you can prevent your dog from eating anything other than his kibble and dog biscuits and not have to eat ramen for a few months because the dog ate your coin collection, cheese knives, sneakers, a half box of new tampons or something else that makes you lose your appetite.



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