7 Signs Your Dog is Choking in Highland and Westville, IN

As a pet owner, it’s important for you to stay informed of potential risks and hazards in the life of your furry family members. Unfortunately, one of the more common risks you should keep in mind for your dog is choking. Many pets are prone to eating or swallowing items they shouldn’t, which can sometimes lead to choking in certain situations.

In this article, we’ll show you some of the signs you should look out for when you think your dog might be choking. If you do think this is the case, don’t wait—contact our emergency vets in Highland and Westville, IN right away.

Dog choking in Highland and Westville, IN

Mild Symptoms of Choking in Dogs

Some mild symptoms of choking in dogs include:

Hacking and Coughing

The first noticeable symptom of choking in dogs is coughing or hacking, just like it is in humans. Many times, if a dog isn’t too badly choked, she will be able to cough up whatever is lodged in her throat without much trouble. She may pace while she is coughing, especially if she is frightened or feels distressed about the blockage of her airways. If she coughs up the item, she will likely stop pacing and go back to her usual behavior fairly quickly.

Spitting Up or Vomiting

If your dog spits up when she’s choking, this is a good thing; it usually means she has coughed up whatever was stuck in her throat, or that she is about to do so. Vomiting may also cause the item to become dislodged and be thrown up with the vomit. Check the vomit or spit-up closely to see if the item has been expelled from your dog’s throat.

If it hasn’t but she is still spitting up or vomiting, this may quickly become a more serious problem.

Moderate Symptoms of Dog Choking

Some moderate symptoms of dog choking are:

Rubbing at the Face

When your dog is choking, she is aware that something is wrong with her mouth or throat. Because of this, she may become more prone to rubbing at her face or snout in an attempt to remove the offending item. This likely won’t help very much, but it is a common symptom that means your dog is in distress and is having trouble getting rid of something that is stuck in her throat.


Wheezing goes along with coughing and hacking, but it is a more serious symptom that means your dog isn’t getting the right kind of breath. If you can hear her breathing or if you see her sides moving quickly in an extended effort to breathe, this may mean she has something stuck in her throat that needs to be removed immediately.

Inability to Breathe Deeply

If your dog is not able to take a deep breath, there may be something blocking her airways. You may see her struggling to breathe, or you may notice that she is only capable of taking short, shallow breaths instead.

What’s important here is to note whether or not your dog is breathing at all; if she is not, then this is an emergency and she needs to be taken to the emergency vet in Highland and Westville immediately.

Severe Symptoms of Choking in Dogs

Below are some severe symptoms of choking in dogs:

Loss of Consciousness

When your dog is unable to breathe, she will quickly lose consciousness and collapse. If this happens, you don’t have much time at all to react. You will need to take her to the emergency vet immediately, and if you can see the item stuck in her throat, you’ll need to reach in and attempt to dislodge it yourself with your fingers. If you can’t see the item, do not do this.

White or Blue Gums

Gums that are white or blue are not getting enough oxygen, and this is a sure sign that your dog is choking and the situation has become serious. If you see your dog’s gums changing color, take her to the emergency veterinarian in Highland and Westville right away.

Your dog may collapse along with this symptom, or she may remain conscious; either way, she needs to be seen by a vet to remove the blockage from her airways before it does long-term damage.

What to Do If You Think Your Dog is Choking in Highland and Westville, IN

If you notice any of these symptoms in your dog, contact the nearest emergency animal hospital in Highland or Westville, IN. You will be able to tell if your dog is in distress, and if she is, be sure to bring her in without hesitation. The sooner you respond to the situation and get your dog medical attention, the more likely she will be to recover.

At Emergency Veterinary Care Centers, our team of compassionate emergency vets are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week so we can always help your pet when they need us most. Choking can be very serious in dogs, and can be a scary situation to go through for both you and your pet. We understand how important your dog is to you, and their wellbeing is just as important to us.

If your dog is choking, don’t hesitate to bring your pet in to us or contact us for any additional help or advice. We’re here for you and your pet, no matter the time of day.

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