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The 12 Days of Christmas: Pet Hazards Series (Day 4 - Batteries)

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DAY 4: Batteries

Christmas and batteries just seem to go hand-in-hand, don't they? Among other things, they're in (or necessary for) many toys, digital cameras, watches, remote controls, and even those (annoying?) singing greeting cards. Heck, Santa even sometimes gives packs of batteries as stocking stuffers! Unfortunately though, batteries can pose a very significant danger to dogs – a danger that is likely more serious than you even know. Especially if they swallow certain types of batteries!

Now you might not think that your dog would eat a battery, but given the frequency with which these types of cases are seen in pet emergency rooms and general practices around the country, it appears as though, for some reason, quite a few dogs just seem to love chewing on and swallowing these things! And with the commotion of the Christmas wrapping and unwrapping festivities, there's often plenty of opportunities for them to get their mischievous little mouths on a battery (or two).


Above items found on Amazon

All Batteries Are NOT Created EqualLithium-batteries-pet-hazard

While the AA, AAA, C, D, 9-volt and other "traditional" battery types can result in injuries such as oral burns and/or digestive upset or obstruction – which are very serious in their own right – it's the disc or "button"-type batteries that can pose an additional serious danger when swallowed –esophageal burns and perforations. These are the batteries that you really have to pay close attention to and keep out of your dog's (or even your cat's or your kid's) mouth. Learn more about button and other battery ingestion in dogs, including what to do and not to do if your dog swallows a battery, as well as view a timelapse video showing how button batteries can quickly burn a hole in the esophagus! 

Don't Spend Your Christmas in the Animal ER

To avoid winding up at the Animal ER with a battery-charged dog this holiday (or anytime time of year), consider the following steps...

  • Don't leave remote controls, of any type, lying around where your pets can easily get them.
  • Be aware that batteries are common stocking stuffers, be sure to hang your stockings high and keep your pets well away from them (for a variety of reasons).
  • If they're old enough, be sure to talk with your children about the dangers of battery ingestion in pets and the importance of them putting their toys away after they are done playing with them. (If your kids aren't old enough to understand this discussion, then you also likely need to be careful about their potential to ingest batteries themselves - this is one of those emergencies that isn't restricted to pets.
  • To prevent dropped batteries from rolling under the couch or desk where they are likely to remain 'lost' until they turn up in your pet's stomach, always remove and change batteries over a bowl or sink.
  • Appropriately and securely store your spare batteries in a drawer or toolbox.

Here's to a wonderful, joyous, and safe holiday season. Don't let a chewed battery and the necessary ensuing trip to the ER cause your pet pain, deplete your bank account, or otherwise ruin your festivities.

Batteries are Day 4.
Just to be safe check out all the other "naughty" days in the 12 Days of Christmas Pet Hazards series.


Please note: Unless otherwise stated, products, services, and/or companies mentioned, or links to same, are for illustration purposes only and their inclusion does not constitute an endorsement from Preventive Vet. Additionally, we are NOT compensated if you choose to buy what we feature.

Topics: Cat Health, Dog Safety, Dog Health, Cat Safety, pet safety tips, pet safety, Vomiting, Pet safety and houseguests, Pet emergency, Batteries, Lithium Battery

Photo Credit: Preventive Vet

Please do not ask emergency or other specific medical questions about your pets in the blog comments. As an online informational resource, Preventive Vet is unable to and does not provide specific medical advice or counseling. A thorough physical exam, patient history, and an established veterinary-patient-client relationship is required to provide specific medical advice. If you are worried that your pet is having an emergency or if you have specific medical questions related to your pet’s current or chronic medical conditions, please contact or visit your veterinarian, an animal-specific poison control hotline, or your local emergency veterinary care center.

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