You have probably seen at least one video of a dog stealing a baby’s pacifier. A dog with a pacifier in its mouth is cute and makes us smile. But it can be dangerous.

This is the tale of Mortimer the 3-year old Bulldog. His family noticed that he was getting sick whenever it was time to eat. The vet prescribed a medicine to remedy the symptom. However, Mortimer did not get better.


He eventually stopped eating entirely. His owner, Emily Shanahan, took him to Angell Animal Medical Center in Boston, where they X-rayed him. The staff was surprised when the X-ray revealed 19 pacifiers in the dog’s stomach. The theory is Mortimer had been taking the pacifiers from Shanahan’s two children over the period of several months.

A medical scope was used to remove the pacifiers so surgery was not required. Mortimer made a full recovery and is back at home.

Mortimer was lucky. Dogs swallowing foriegn bodies is a worry for dog owners. The outcome is not always as positive as it was for Mortimer. If you see your dog swallow a foriegn object contact your vet right away. The longer the object is present the more problematic the outcome. A ruptured gut and the resulting peritonitis will make for a much poorer prognosis.

Clinical signs an owner may observe vary significantly and depend on degree of obstruction, location, duration and type of foreign body.

Commonly noted signs include:
loss of appetite
abdominal pain
diarrhea (+/= blood)
increased respiratory rate (due to pain)

The important thing to remember is to contact your vet right away if you suspect your dog may have ingested a foreign body.  Keep track of small objects that might attract your dog’s curiosity.

Mortimer’s story source:  kiiitv



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