Fish Hooks and Dogs
It is coming into the summer season so more people will be out and about fishing or enjoying the beach. But this can pose a risk to our furry friends. Fishhooks and lines can be found lying around the beach or wharf areas (especially at low tides) and the hooks can become embedded in your dog’s paw, mouth, oesophagus, or stomach.
Most fishhooks can be removed under short sedation or general anaesthetic with a short course of pain relief and antibiotics if needed. However, if a fishhook has potentially been swallowed the risk of complications is higher. A radiograph can be taken to confirm the position and size of the hooks and from there a treatment plan can be made; either conservative or surgical. Fishhooks can also carry bacteria especially if rusty.
If you see a hook embedded in your dog, the best course of action is to keep your dog calm and contact your Vet for treatment. We do not recommend attempting to remove this by yourself, as you can cause severe damage (to both you and your dog).
If your dog has swallowed a fishhook, or eaten a fish with a hook attached the head will dissolve in the stomach, however, the barbs of the fishhook will damage the intestinal lining as it is being passed or get caught along the way. Almost all dogs will have the hook removed by endoscopy or surgery. Contact your Vet immediately for a treatment plan