Power Cable: One of the Most Dangerous Things Your Pet Could Ever Chew

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November 26, 2014 | 67,945 views

Story at-a-glance

  • Electrical injuries are dangerous, and the pets who most often suffer from them are young dogs and dogs that are chronic chewers.
  • If you find your dog convulsing or lying rigid on or near an electrical source like a power cable, there’s a good chance he is injured as a result of chewing on a power cable. This is how most of these types of injuries occur.
  • It’s very important not to touch a dog that is lying rigid after or during an electrical injury to prevent a fatal shock to yourself. Instead, the first thing you should do is turn off the electricity at its source if possible.
  • Preventing an electric shock injury involves moving power cables out of reach. Alternatively, you can cover them, as well as use extension leads to keep cables close to walls or out of sight behind furniture. If your dog is young or a habitual chewer, she should never be left unsupervised with live power cables or uncovered sockets.
  • For additional help, consider downloading the American Red Cross pet first aid app for your cell phone.

By Dr. Becker

Electrical injuries are very dangerous, and when it comes to dogs, are most often seen in youngsters and habitual chewers.

As terrifying as it is to think about, if your canine companion should suffer an electric shock injury, would you know what to do?

Most Dogs Suffer an Electric Shock by Doing This

If you find your dog either convulsing or lying rigid on or near an electrical source, he may be suffering an electric shock. If he’s near but not actually on a power cable, he might still be getting electrical current from a nearby source (a puddle of liquid or even a tree root).

The likely cause of the injury is that your dog chewed on the power cable, as this is the most common source of electric shock in dogs. Once in awhile, a male dog urinating on an exposed power line or electrical source may suffer a shock. Even more rare are lightning strikes, but the effects are similar.

The Right Way to Give Aid to a Dog with an Electric Shock Injury

It may seem counterintuitive, but it’s extremely important that you don’t touch your dog or come in contact with any fluids around him, especially if he’s lying rigid, as you could receive a fatal electric shock.

Instead, take these steps:

Preventing a Tragedy

Sources of electricity should be treated with caution, and keep in mind that your dog is a bit like an inquisitive toddler who must be protected from household hazards.

When possible, move power cables out of reach. Alternatively, you can cover them or spray them with a bitter-tasting compound to make them unappetizing for your pet. Use extension leads to keep cables close to walls or out of sight behind furniture.

If your dog is very young or an incurable chewer, never leave her alone in a room with live power cables or uncovered electrical sockets.

American Red Cross Pet First Aid App

If your pet has an emergency, it can be very difficult to stay calm and think about what you need to do first. The American Red Cross has a pet first aid app for iPhones and Android phones available at the Apple App Store, Google Play, or Amazon.com. Features include:1

[+]Sources and References [-]Sources and References

  • 1 RedCross.org