Choking Dog: What to Do

– My name is Emma Hammett. I’m the founder and CEO
of, and we do first aid training
to teach you how to help your pet in an emergency
before you can get to the vet, in those first vital seconds or minutes. Today, I’m going to talk about choking. If your dog is choking, it’s really important that
you’re able to help them quickly, and dogs can choke on
pretty much anything. They can wolf down their food. They can scavenge and
find all sorts of things that aren’t suitable for
them to eat like socks, and they can choke on the
ball, and they can choke on, as I said, pretty much anything. Rawhide is particularly nasty for them, so please avoid giving your dog rawhide, and also bones, cooked bones
can end up being very brittle and they can do damage if they get stuck. Okay, so if you suspect
your dog is choking, they may be pouring, they may be drooling. They will look distressed, pacing. Have a look very carefully. Your safety is the most important. So have a look in their
mouth, but make very sure that you are not in
danger of getting bitten. What you will need to
do, and if you’ve got someone else to help, that’s even better, is have a look in their
mouth and see if there is anything obvious that you can just remove. Obviously, protect your fingers, and don’t risk getting bitten. If there’s anything that you
can remove quickly and easy with your finger and thumb or with a pair of forceps or tweezers,
then get it out quickly. Don’t finger sweep or
poke your fingers down, because you’ll make things worse. So if there’s nothing obvious down there, then your next thing to do
is to try repositioning them to see if gravity can help
you get the obstruction out. If you have a smaller dog, then holding them upside down and shaking them slightly can end up getting the obstruction out, so that is a good thing to start doing. If you’ve got a large dog, then you would need to do
a wheelbarrow position. I don’t know if you can see. So you would hold them in a
sort of wheelbarrow position in order to try and get
the obstruction out. It’s harder with a big
dog, and they’re heavy, but you’re doing what you
can to save their lives. If holding them like that hasn’t worked, your second line of treatment is the Heimlich manoeuvre for dogs. So, the Heimlich manoeuvre
is the same as with humans where what you are doing with
a human is going under your ribcage, between your tummy
button and your rib cage and making a fist like that, with the thumb towards you. You’re putting that into that dip, and dogs have the same dip. You’re talking about
this sort of dip here, so this dip, just at this point, and you’re going to put
your fist in at that point, and you’re going to be
doing an upward thrust. So you’d be holding them downwards. You’d be putting your fist like that, and you would be doing an upward thrust to try and get the obstruction out. If I demonstrate with this larger dog here that has got a choking vest on, what I will hopefully
be able to demonstrate is that in doing the Heimlich manoeuvre, I will force the obstruction out, and hopefully, if this works, you should be able to see the
obstruction coming through. So what you would do is put
one hand around like that. The other hand goes on top,
and it’s a hard and fast upward movement, a J-shaped movement. In and up, like that. Up, like that. And the obstruction was out. So you would hold them upside down first, so actually, first of all,
you’re checking in the mouth. Then you’re holding them
upside down to reposition and see if you can get
the obstruction out, and failing that, you are then going to do five abdominal thrust or
Heimlich manoeuvres for them, and then back like that. Don’t waste any more time. If it’s not coming out, get
them to the vet quickly. So pop them in and get
them as fast as you can to your local vet, your closest vet, which may not be your usual vet. It’s whatever is closest. This is a medical emergency for your pet. Okay, if the pet loses consciousness, you might need to do CPR on them. We’ll cover CPR in a
separate Facebook Live video, but what you would be doing
is breathing into their nose. You would be giving them two breaths, 30 compressions, two breaths again. 120 beats per minute when
you’re pushing on their chest, but again, get to the vet
as quickly as you can. Do not delay anything in
getting them to the vet fast. So, hopefully that is helpful. If you have managed to
dislodge the obstruction but they are showing signs
of difficulty swallowing or anything, they should
always be checked out by a vet, particularly if you’ve done
a Heimlich manoeuvre on them, because you can end up
damaging their ribs a bit. So get them checked
out, and it may be that whatever was stuck in
the back of their throat, that it’s actually scratched
or damaged the back of their throat and that you might need
to give them some soft food for a couple of days,
and the vet might be able to prescribe some
painkillers for them as well. It can take a few days
for the back of the throat to heal up and feel that much better. I hope that’s been useful to you. So we are,
with practical first aid training, and
we have online courses. We have short courses and
longer courses for you to learn immediate and important first aid elements for your pet, and we also
have First Aid for Dogs available on Amazon and
in all good bookstores. So, please contact us,
[email protected], or just visit our website. Many thanks, and look
forward to seeing you on another Facebook Live.

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7 Responses

  1. Elizabeth says:

    thank you!

  2. Aaron Weisgerber says:

    Could I please have that dog that I saw first in the video because I want him and where did you get him?

  3. Aaron Weisgerber says:

    So can I possibly get that dog or could you get me one

  4. Amazingcute Cali says:

    Thank u so much u save my dog life

  5. Amir All says:

    What chew toy is safe for dogs? Is raw cow bones safe?

  6. Ffjjdndnd Khj says:


  7. Cinzia DuBois says:

    Thank you so much for this video. I am a new dog owner and a couple of months ago, I randomly researched 'what to do when my dog is chocking'. Today, what I learned from this video saved my little puppy's life.

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