Support the bone that appears to be broken and take the English Bulldog immediately to the veterinarian. X-rays are usually necessary. What do you have about the house to use for a temporary splint? How about rolled-up newspapers, or a small, thin foam rubber pillow, or a wooden spatula or a ruler? Use your imagination and fasten the splint with adhesive tape, masking tape, or strips of old sheets, and take the dog to the veterinarian.
Reach into the dog’s mouth and try to pull out whatever may be choking her. Pull her tongue out to clear an airway. If whatever caused her to choke has been removed, she will probably be all right. If she continues to try to vomit, then she must go to the veterinarian.
How long has the diarrhea lasted? If it’s just a one-time problem that does not recur in a day or two, you need not be alarmed. But if the stools are frequent for twenty-four hours or more, or contain blood, mucus, or undigested food, let the veterinarian make the diagnosis and prescribe the treatment. As time goes on, you will learn when to push the panic button and when to wait a little while.
If the English Bulldog has injured her eye or has something in the eye, wash it out with eyewash or warm tap water. Cover the eye if your dog is pawing or scratching at it. Prompt diagnosis and treatment by your veterinarian may prevent corneal damage.
Bulldogs cannot tolerate heat. If your dog stops walking or playing and plops down on the ground, is panting heavily, feels hot to the touch, and looks very stressed, bathe her feet and underside with cool water or put her in a tub of cool (not cold) water. If this is not possible, place small bags filled with ice under her front legs, in the groin, and on her head. Wrap her in towels that have been soaked in cool water. If possible, turn a fan on her. Keep her quiet.
Do not give the dog ice chips or water unless she takes them willingly. As long as her gum color remains good (nice and pink; not pale pink or white) and her breathing is regular, she probably is not in grave danger. But this is your veterinarian’s decision to make, so give the vet a call.
In every home there are cleaning fluids, fingernail polish, bleach, and other poi-sons. Few Bulldogs would eat or drink these things, but no English Bulldog should have access to them. Store household necessities, fertilizers, insect sprays, and so on in secure cupboards and on high shelves.
Keep the poison control telephone number, your veterinarian’s number, and the number of the nearest emergency vet clinic by your telephone. Call these experts for their advice. There are too many chemicals and too many complicated formulas for the average person to know what action to take in an emergency. Sometimes the animal should be made to vomit, sometimes she should have a gastric lavage (washing out of the stomach), and some-times this action would be fatal. Only the professionals can evaluate the situation.
If your English Bulldog vomits just once, nothing needs to be done. However, if vomiting is persistent, or contains blood, mucus, or large amounts of undigested food, the veterinarian should be called. Your veterinarian will ask several questions, including, Did the dog get into the garbage, chew up a toy, or swallow a foreign substance? Does she have a fever? Take a good look at what your dog has vomited up so that you can answer those questions.
ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center
The ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center has a staff of licensed veterinarians and board-certified toxicologists avail-able 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. The number to call is (888) 426-4435. You will be charged a consultation fee of $60 per case, charged to most major credit cards. There is no charge for follow-up calls in critical cases. At your request, they will also contact your veterinarian. Specific treatment and information can be provided via fax.
Keep the poison control number in large, legible print with your other emergency telephone numbers. When you call, be prepared to give your name, address, and phone number; what your dog has gotten into (the amount and how long ago); your dog’s breed, age, sex, and weight; and what signs and symptoms the dog is showing. You can log onto www.aspca.org and click on “Animal Poison Control Center” for more information, including a list of toxic and nontoxic plants.