It's not uncommon for dogs to swallow socks if they get the chance. If your dog has done this, then you may not be sure what to do. You know that some dogs deal with swallowed socks naturally. Some vomit them back up; others pass them out at the other end once the sock has passed through the digestive system.
However, this doesn't happen with every swallowed sock. How can you tell when your dog needs some extra help and how can you get rid of the sock?
Signs Your Dog May Need Extra Help
The chances of a dog vomiting or excreting out a swallowed sock often depends on the size of the dog and the size of the sock. If the sock is small enough in relation to the size of your dog, nature has a better chance of taking its course.
So, if you have a Great Dane that eats a child's sock, then there's probably more chance that the sock will come up and out without causing problems. However, if you have a Chihuahua that swallows an adult sock, then the sock may be too big to move through the dog's digestive system without causing some damage.
Your dog may also have symptoms that all isn't well. For example, if it starts to vomit regularly after eating the sock, seems generally unwell or has a pain in its stomach area, then the sock may be stuck somewhere, and your dog may need medical help to get it out.
How to Decide What to Do
If your dog has swallowed a sock, then it's a good idea to call your vet. Even if you don't think the sock is causing any problems, it's good to have a second opinion.
Your vet may simply tell you to keep an eye on your pet and to let nature take its course. They will tell you what warning signs to look out for during this period. Or, your vet may tell you how to make your dog vomit to try and get the sock out.
If your vet thinks that the sock may cause a problem, say by getting stuck in the stomach or intestines, then they will tell you to bring your dog in to be checked over. In some cases, your vet can use a special scope to go down your dog's throat to locate and pull out the sock. In other cases, it may need vet surgery to fully remove the sock. Your veterinarian will explain what will be done in the surgery and will tell you how to take care of your dog once the surgery has passed and your dog no longer has a sock problem.