Ricky lives up to his nickname "travesura" (mischief maker) on a daily basis. I currently take 400mg of Ibuprofen gel cap 3 times a day. I am supposed to take it with food. Last night I put a capsule on the dining table and then walked to the kitchen to get my plate of supper, about 15 feet away which is open to the dining area. As soon as I picked up my plate with the dining table behind me, Momi says, "What is that red thing Ricky has in his mouth?" I turned around and looked in horror!
Ricky had my capsule in his mouth!!!!!!!! I shouted
the "drop it" command and he dutifully did so immediately. I inspected the capsule and it was fully intact. I cannot figure out how he could jump on a dining chair and up on the table and find the capsule so quickly and so stealthily! But disaster averted!
Okay, here is my question for you medical professionals. What if Ricky had ingested 400mg of Ibuprofen? What would you do?
- Take him to the Vet and have his stomach pumped
- Give him a tablespoon of Hydrogen Peroxide and hope to make him vomit it
- Ignore it. A little Ibuprofen doesn't hurt a small dog.
- Something else?
I really wouldn't have known what to do and would have panicked had he swallowed it. This Havatroublemaker is valuable to us, but obviously we need to pay more attention to what he is up to!
Since we have also been through this with Kodi when he was an adolescent, here is what the vet hospital told me (and this is true whether it is a drug the dog has ingested or some other, possibly toxic substance):
Call the local vet or ER immediately. Have the bottle in your hand, if possible. They can determine if the dose of many common drugs is toxic or not, depending on the weight of your dog. If they DON'T know, they will refer you to animal poison control (or they will call for you) There is a charge for this call, but it's pretty reasonable... I think $40 or so?
Based on what the vet/ER or Poison control say, you will know your next steps. For some things, especially if the dog has JUST swallowed it, hydrogen peroxide to get them to vomit it up may be in order. But DON'T do this unless they tell you
. Somethings can do more harm on the way up. Otherwise, they will probably want your dog at the ER (or vets office, but MY dogs ONLY get in trouble when the vet's office is closed !
They may need to pump the dog's stomach with activated charcoal, and, depending on the amount and toxin ingested, the dog may need other supportive care afterwards.
Some tips for hydrogen peroxide... (ask me how I know
1. It MUST be an UNOPENED bottle, and it has to be more than 6 months old. Hydrogen peroxide is very unstable, and just reverts to water... the extra oxygen molecule flies away. If it's not fresh, it doesn't matter HOW much you pur down your dog, it won't make them vomit.
2. Don't try to force it directly into the dog. You and the dog and the kitchen will wear LOTS of it... very little will get in the dog. Put the recommended dose (the vet or Poison control will tell you how much) in a small amount of milk, and they will lap it right up out of a saucer. Don't worry about whether the milk agrees with your dog (unless they have a TRUE allergy, which is extremely rare)... it's not going to stay in the dog long anyway!
3. It's the bubbles formed by the hydrogen peroxide that make the dog vomit. For it to work, the hydrogen peroxide needs something to react with (food) and to be shaken up. If the dog doesn't omit on their own, try feeding them a piece of bread, then engage them in an active game... fetch, tug, whatever will get them moving. This usually does the trick.
4. If that fails, it's definitely off to the vet or ER... They can give the dog an injection which will make them vomit quite quickly.
Assuming the dog has vomited to offending substance, you've got to decided, with the help of the vet, whether you've gotten enough out of the dog. Can't help you there... it will depend on what it was, and how long the dog has had to digest it, and how quickly it falls apart when wet.
But the bottom line is, except for the "tips" about how to get the hydrogen peroxide to work best, I would not do ANY of this without being in touch with the vet at the same time. Particularly with our very small dogs.