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Keep your pets safe this summer – the hazards of a barbecue

We all enjoy good weather and along with that we usually enjoy a tasty BBQ or a few, either in small groups or large gatherings. However please keep an eye out for these pet hazards when having these summer events to make sure every member of the family has a good time.

Foreign bodies.

Foreign bodies are one of the pet hazards commonly seen in dogs after a barbecue, whether that is a bone that was left lying around, the skewer from a kebab stolen from the rubbish or a corn on the cob they quickly ate whilst no-one was watching. Signs of foreign body ingestion usually involve vomiting, being off food, lethargy, discomfort or straining to defecate. Often to remove the foreign body the dog will require abdominal surgery and a hospital stay. Make sure that everyone is keeping an eye on their leftovers and the pets to prevent this from happening.

pet hazards
Bone foreign body in the intestines


Another of the pet hazards to be aware of is pancreatitis; another common follow on from food that the dog or cat has acquired at the barbecue. Most commonly the problem is food that is high in fat like sausages or burgers. Pancreatitis is inflammation of the pancreas and often shows as similar signs to a foreign body with vomiting, lethargy, reduced appetite, drooling and abdominal discomfort. It can often be diagnosed with a blood test or imaging. Treatment usually involves a stay in hospital for fluid therapy and pain relief. Sometimes it can prove to be fatal. Long-term the animal will often be fed on a low fat, high-quality diet to reduce the risks of another bout of pancreatitis. To reduce the risks of this hazard ask everyone not to feed the pets any food from the barbecue.

Other problems.

Hot food, if stolen straight from the barbecue can cause burns in the mouth and the stomach leading to discomfort, ulceration, vomiting and decreased appetite. To avoid this it is best to establish boundaries and have one person watching over the food that is cooking to make sure that all is safe. Other general things to avoid any accidents is to keep the food in a location that is not easy for the pets to steal anything from and to keep any rubbish out of reach as well.

Hopefully with this information, both you and your pets can have a fun-filled summer without any unexpected veterinary visits.

If you think your pet has swallowed something they shouldn’t have, or if they are showing any of the above signs then give us a call on 01702 545558 or bring them straight into the practice. If you are in any doubt get in touch, it’s better to be safe than sorry.


Picture from Veterinaryradiology.net