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Dr. Kara
Dr. Kara, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 14851
Experience:  Over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian.
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If a dog gets a light bulb and not all the pieces are

Customer Question

If a dog gets a light bulb and not all the pieces are recovered is it safe to assume the dog ate the bulb and what will happen:?
Submitted: 12 months ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Kara replied 12 months ago.

Hello, my name is***** and I have over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian. I'm sorry to hear that your pup Oliver may have eaten some glass shards from a light bulb.

What kinda of light bulb was this? The newer energy saving CFL & LED bulbs do contain higher levels of metal coatings and components in them, and CFLs contain mercury so depending upon how much he ate that could be a concern, although it sounds like he didn't eat much. This would be more of a concern with repeated exposure or a dog that ate more than a little.

I do not recommend inducing vomiting in cases where dogs eat sharp objects like glass. The chances of tearing their esophagus or stomach as it contracts to force the glass out is much too high.

In this case we need to try and hope that we can get these shards to pass through his gastrointestinal tract safely.

To help I recommend starting with feeding him a vaseline sandwich. Take a slice of whole wheat bread, slather with vaseline as you would peanut butter on a slice of bread, cover with a second slice. Feed it to him bite sized piece by piece or he will make a huge vaseline mess. This adds fiber and hopefully makes the pieces slip rather than catch.

For the next few days, until the shards pass, he'll need to be fed a bland diet with lots of fiber added in small meals several times a day, 4 to 6 meals is ideal. We do this so the pieces are surrounded, the gut isn't irritated or scraped/punctured by just contracting on sharp glass.
You can either use the Hills i/d diet as a base or a homemade diet. You can make a homemade diet mix with 1/3 boiled, lean hamburger or boiled, white, skinless chicken, all fats and juices drained off of the meat, and 2/3 boiled, plain white rice. Add 4 tablespoons of canned pumpkin, (not pie filling, just pumpkin), to each meal for fiber whether you are feeding the i/d diet or homemade version.
You should watch his stools for the next several days.
Signs that things aren't going well, and he needs an immediate veterinary visit, are vomiting, a tense painful belly, lack of an appetite, a fever (more than 103.5F rectally), frank blood or black tarry stools, and lethargy.

If in doubt at all that things aren't going well it is always best to have her checked.

Once the pieces are passed (usually within 3-4 days) and he's feeling well then start mixing in his regular food, adding a little more regular and less bland at each meal. It should take a week to get him converted back to regular food.

Let me know if you have any questions.

Expert:  Dr. Kara replied 11 months ago.

Hello, I wanted to check in and see if you had any further questions after reading my response. If you do please feel free to respond with them. If not and you found my information helpful please remember to rate my response positively so I may receive credit for my work thank you, ***** *****