Now the days are getting warmer and the nights are getting longer, people are spending more time outdoors with their pets. If you throw sticks for your dog or your dog manages to find their own stick to play with, they could be in real danger.

‘Stick injuries’ are a common presenting complaint at veterinary practices at this time of year and can cause all sorts of damage including broken teeth, lacerations of the tongue and back of the mouth and damage deep inside the mouth and neck where there is a lot of important nerves and blood vessels.

Worse still, if you don’t know your pet has been injured at the time, weeks later painful abscesses can develop at the site of the injury which may mean a prolonged course of medication, or even repeated surgery, for your pet. The best way to avoid any problems is to NEVER THROW STICKS, use balls or toys to amuse them instead! If your dog picks up a stick while you’re out on a walk, take it from them gently and reward them with a treat, do not play tug of war with them as this could result in the stick splintering in their mouth. If you think your pet has been injured by a stick while out a walk, please seek immediate veterinary attention.

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