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Leaf piles, labs, and other dogs

Posted Thursday, October 8, 2015, at 3:50 PM

Fall is here! Such a beautiful time of colorful falling leaves and leaf piles. Labradors, kids, and many other dogs love to play in piles of leaves. There are hidden dangers lurking in piles of leaves such as sticks, twigs, and debris.

One of the most common injuries can be a wound to the cornea. This is the clear part of the eye that is in front of the colored part of the eye, the iris. Sticks and small twigs can cut and cause an abrasion and even poke a hole in this clear part of the eye. Just rustling through the leaves can cause small pieces of leaf debris to get in the eye. This can be very painful and cause your dog to rub and cause irritation to the eye. Your dog could suffer a very serious injury leading to loss of vision or even loss of the eye.

Dogs can sprain a foot or leg by jumping into the leaf pile. Running and turning and rolling in the leaves can cause undo stress on the joints and also cause muscle strain.

Large sticks can puncture the skin and sometimes go into the chest or abdomen. These can be a very serious injury and require immediate veterinary attention.

Pieces of glass or metal may be hidden in your leaf pile. These can cause nasty and deadly wounds by severing a major blood vessel, which can cause major hemorrhage. This also requires immediate veterinary attention.

Sometimes your dog may have a stick get in their foot causing a puncture wound that can get infected. Leaf pile injuries are not an everyday occurrence, but as an owner you should be aware that they could happen. Let your dog play in the leaves, but check the pile first for large sticks, twigs with ends poking out, and glass or other foreign objects. Have a Happy Autumn with your best friend frolicking in the leaves!

If you have questions about pet care contact Dr. Norette L. Underwood of the Trumann Animal Clinic and Best Friends Vet Mobile Service at catdoc56@gmail.com or 870-483-6275.

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