Pica in Dogs: What to Do When Your Dog Eats Foreign Objects

Pica means the craving and ingestion of non-food items by your dog. Those items could be almost anything—batteries, fabric, coins, dirt, rocks, and socks, for example! Obviously, this condition can prove very dangerous. Learn more here from a Westminster, MD vet.

Why Does Pica Occur?

A cause isn’t found in every case of pica. When it is, though, it’s generally thought of as either medical or behavioral. Medical pica means that a nutritional deficiency, diabetes, thyroid problem, or some other medical issue is causing your dog to ingest foreign bodies. In a behavioral case, an issue like anxiety is the root cause.

How is it Treated?

A medical case of pica must be dealt with by treating the underlying medical issue. In behavioral cases, it’s not so cut and dry—you might have to remove stressors at home, or hire a professional dog behaviorist, for example, to get to the root of the problem.

What Do I Do if My Dog Eats a Foreign Object?

If you know or suspect that your dog has eaten a foreign object, rush them to the vet’s office. Better safe than sorry!

Call your vets Westminster, MD to learn more about pica.

Your Cat’s Hairball Basics

If you own a cat, it’s a safe bet that you deal with the occasional hairball. It’s a part of life for most of our feline friends! How much do you know about your cat’s hairballs, though? Are they dangerous? Find out more here from a Westminster, MD vet.

Why Do Hairballs Form?

When your cat licks herself for grooming, the tongue picks up a lot of loose fur, which your cat swallows. Most of this ingested hair moves through the digestive system and gets expelled in your cat’s fecal matter, but some of it remains in the gut. That hair clumps together in the form of a hairball, which will eventually be regurgitated.

Are Hairballs Safe?

Yes, the occasional hairball is perfectly normal and safe. If your cat is coughing up hairballs frequently, though, see the vet; something could be causing her to shed too much. Also, any cat who is vomiting frequently should be examined by a vet promptly.

How Can I Lessen Hairball Production?

Feed your cat a great diet to minimize shedding, and brush her regularly to remove loose fur. Your feline friend will thank you!

Learn more about hairballs by calling your veterinarian Westminster, MD.