How many of you throw sticks for your dog whilst out on a walk?
Everyone has done it but does everyone know why it should be avoided? What may seem like a harmless bit of fun in the park actually has the potential to cause fairly serious injuries in dogs. It is an all to common thing seen by the vets and stick injuries are on the increase!
Sticks are often sharp and dirty, carrying a lot of bacteria and the main problems tend to arise when dogs run at high speed onto a falling stick, resulting in all sorts of complications including damage to the tongue and lips, mouth (soft palate), eyes, legs or more serious penetrating deep injuries to the soft tissues of the neck and chest, requiring very complicated surgery and in most cases referral to a specialist.
It has been reported that Retrievers, Labradors and collies are the worst affected with thousands of dogs admitted to vets surgeries every year.
Most of the injuries are puncture wounds sustained from running onto a stick that is rammed into the ground.
Playing fetch is a great game but make sure next time you are out with your dog try throwing a ball, frisbee or even the new kong rubber safestick!