Top 10 odd items eaten by dogs

The top 10 most unusual things found in dogs' stomachs.
The top 10 most unusual things found in dogs' stomachs.

Vets have put together a list of the top 10 most unusual things they have found in dogs’ stomachs.

A 21-inch riding crop and a carpet thread that was so long, it was hanging out of the dog's mouth at one end and its backside at the other, were among the odd items which had to be removed.

One of the most curious results of the Vets4Pets survey of its veterinary practices across the UK was dogs munching on underwear that belonged to someone other than the owner or their partner.

"Underwear and socks are not uncommon items that dogs can eat, but it's highly unusual to find out they don’t belong to the owner or their partner." said Dr Huw Stacey, director of clinical services at Vets4Pets.

"Of course dogs can often consume items left lying around the house, garden or outdoors, so it's important that owners are aware of what their pet is doing, in case of an emergency.

"Golf balls, ping pong balls and pebbles are commonly found, often requiring surgery to remove them, but the list we've compiled demonstrates that dogs can find a huge variety of items to eat, with or without their owner's knowledge."

One practice treated a dog that had chewed up a carpet and kept pulling at the thread. Eventually it had eaten so much that one end of the thread was hanging out of its mouth and the other end was coming out of its backside.

Christmas tinsel, needle and thread, the middle of an eaten corn on the cob and a rubber chicken have all been discovered.

The top 10 most unusual items are:

1 Underwear of owner's 'non-partner'

2 Riding crop

3 Carpet thread running from mouth to bottom

4 Needle and thread

5 Whole baked potato

6 Rubber chicken (whole)

7 Christmas tinsel

8 Corn on the cob middle

9 Baby's dummy teat

10 Barbie doll head (without hair)

Dr Stacey added: "In all the cases we've highlighted, the skill of the veterinary teams have ensured a happy ending, well certainly for the dog, but by highlighting these items we're hoping to make owners aware that their pets can eat almost anything.

"Like all pets, dogs have certain dietary requirements and it's important that receive a balanced healthy diet, which doesn't include items such as chocolate, chicken bones or grapes."

But the warning from vets extends beyond the more unusual items, with sticks causing one of the most common reason dogs to visit the vets.

Dr Stacey said: "Stick injuries are very common and can often cause significant harm to a dog and can sometimes be fatal.

"The most common injury occurs when it sticks into the ground, and when the dog runs towards it, they can impale themselves causing deep wounds to the mouth, throat, neck or chest.

"As well as these injuries caused, splinters and fragments can be left behind which can be difficult to find and remove, since they are hard to identify on an x-ray."