1. Check your dog’s mouth for the lodged object

If your dog cannot clear the object from his throat himself within a few seconds, immediately check your dog’s mouth. Always be extremely careful when attempting to remove anything from your pet’s mouth because you could push the object farther down your dog’s throat, tear at the throat tissue, damage a dog’s throat bones, or get bitten in the process.

  • Open your dog’s mouth. Put one hand on the upper jaw with your thumb on one side and your other fingers on the other side.
  • With your other hand, push gently down on the lower jaw, and keep your index finger free to sweep to the back of your dog’s mouth.
  • Look inside the mouth to see if you can see the obstruction and reach it with your fingers.
  • Do not grab something you simply feel. Dogs have small bones that support the tongue, so you can seriously injure them if you assume the bones are a foreign object.
  • If you do see the object, be very careful not to push the object further down your dog’s throat and do not attempt to extract it if it does not come out easily.

2. Move on to either tilting your dog or the Heimlich maneuver:

  • If you cannot see anything in the dog’s mouth
  • You cannot remove the object with your hands
  • If your dog has fallen unconscious.
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