Dogs go with the attitude of ‘If I see it, I eat it.’ And no matter how much you look after them, they will still find something they shouldn’t eat.
Everyone loves popsicle sticks, be it humans or dogs. And our furry friend sometimes eats all of that, and yes, with the whole stick.
And when this happens, pet owners are distressed and start panicking about what will happen to the dog.
In this article, we will learn whether dogs should eat popsicle sticks, the effect on dogs’ health, and what you should do if your dog eats a popsicle stick.
Let us begin the read by knowing what a popsicle stick is.
What is a Popsicle Stick?
A popsicle stick is a kind of ice cream stick. It is a piece of wood 4 to 5 inches long with rounded ends. The sticks hold your favorite ice cream, flavored fruit ice, and, more generally, made of birchwood.
It is not meant to be eaten but is for licking and sucking the ice and flavors from it.
Is it Safe For My Dog to Eat a Popsicle Stick?
No, straight away, a big no. The most used word by dog owners to their dogs is ‘spit it out’ and sometimes their eating of foreign substances can result in some serious health issues.
One such incident is eating a popsicle stick. Popsicle stick is generally nontoxic but can still cause trouble. As popsicle sticks are made of wood, high chances are they won’t be fully digested.
Depending on the dog’s size and how many popsicle sticks they have eaten or chewed on, it can be dangerous.
Dogs chew stuff first rather than just swallowing it hence, they most likely spit it out when they feel uncomfortable.
If you have a small dog, its mouth, throat, and digestive tract are also small, which can not handle the popsicle stick, and they’ll probably choke.
Whereas if you have a big dog, it means a big mouth, throat, and digestive tract they will likely be able to digest it.
You have to check their vomit and stools for 48 hours to determine whether they have fully digested it. In severe cases, you need to call your vet for further guidance.
If the popsicle isn’t digested and the wood of the stick remains in the body, it can lead to other below-mentioned major problems.
1. Poisonous Wood
Popsicle sticks are not usually toxic, but some woods can be poisonous for your doggo. For example, applewood is said to be poisonous as it has some amount of cyanide in it.
Although a large amount of those toxic ingredients can be harmful, it is better to get your dog a vet’s attention to figure out the extent of damage it can do.
And it will be almost impossible to know which kind of wood they have eaten and keep looking out for any abnormal signs your dog displays.
It is important to get your dog diagnosed if the condition worsens after consuming popsicle sticks.
2. Sharp Piercing Sticks
Dogs chew a lot and almost everything. A risk with dogs eating popsicle stick is, if they do not chew the stick properly, it can damage their internal organs.
Keep an eye on the vomiting or the feces, and if there are any signs of blood, contact your veterinarian immediately and seek medical help.
My Dog Ate a Popsicle Stick – What Should I Do?
Dog eating a popsicle stick is a tricky situation no one wants to be in, and if your doggo ate a popsicle stick and you are unable to figure out what should be done, contact your veterinarian.
Explain the scenario and ask for guidelines and strictly adhere to them.
In most cases, the veterinarian will advise you to observe the dog’s condition and the stools or vomits for at least two days or monitor for any abnormalities or discomfort.
A veterinarian may recommend you to look for the below symptoms in your dog after a popsicle stick ingestion.
- Blood in Vomiting
- Diarrhea or the strong, pungent smell of stool
- Blood in feces and stools
- Lethargic and weakness
- Refusal to eat or lack of appetite
- Abdominal pain & swelling
If you find your dog displaying any of the above-mentioned symptoms, take them to a veterinarian immediately.
How to Stop My Dog From Trying to Eat a Popsicle Stick?
Prevention has always been better than cure, if you stop them from eating a popsicle stick in the first place, a lot of trouble could be avoided.
Although, few steps can be taken to prevent them from eating a popsicle stick.
1. Good Training
If you provide your pup a good training, you can prevent any such issues from happening because if they see a popsicle stick, they will undoubtedly go for a grab.
Focus on the word pup as it is extremely important to train them when they are in their pup hood, or else if the habit of eating anything stays with them, it will cause a problem.
2. Provide a Healthy Diet
It is essential to provide them with a healthy diet, a nutritional and balanced diet will give them energy and immunity to fight any disease if something happens to them because of foul eating.
3. They Need Attention
Sometimes, they are seeking attention, and for that, they start eating anything in front of them. So give them ample time and play with them to keep them mentally stimulated.
4. Keep Forbidden Stuff Away
The simplest thing to avoid eating anything toxic or inedible is to keep them away from your dog’s reach.
Keep in mind the gymnastic and kung fu action your canine cutie can perform if they want to reach something they have eyes on, especially food.
Some substances take around 10 to 24 hours to extract; others may take longer.
Dog’s stomach can not fully digest or break down a popsicle stick, and if it gets stuck inside a dog’s body, it can be very dangerous.
No, it is better not to give your dog popsicle sticks because if they eat it, and the stick goes into the body, it can cause injuries and can be very fatal.
If a dog eats a whole popsicle stick without much chewing and it goes into their system, it can cause a problem.
This article explains in detail what should be done if your dog has eaten a popsicle stick and what potential symptoms you should look for.
Always talk to the vet if you observe any above-mentioned symptoms on your dog, and keep the popsicle away from them with the help of the steps mentioned above.
Take care and happy petting.[wpdatatable id=68 responsive= stack responsive_breakpoint=”phone”/]
Dr. Lillian is a D.V.M. passionate about promoting awareness of dogs. She shares her expertise through her blogs on canineweekly.com and provides animal care services, including internal medicine, dermatology, and emergency care. Dr. Lillian is committed to contributing to animal welfare.