My Dog Ate A Sock But Is Acting Normal – What To Do?

As a pet owner, you’re probably all too aware of the idea that dogs love to eat things, especially socks left around the house. My Senzu loves to snag the socks left around by our kids or their friend on play dates. While most of the time they just want to play, your dog swallowing a sock can definitely be a cause for concern.

If your dog swallowed a sock but is acting fine, chances are they just might be OK! It is common for dogs to chew or swallow non-food items, and most of the time, it won’t cause any harm.

However, if your pet begins to show signs of illness, it may be a good idea to take a trip to the vet. There is a chance that the sock could have caused a blockage, where it is stuck in their stomach. This can be harmful to your pet and cause further complications.

Luckily, there are some telltale signs for ensuring that your dog is healthy and unharmed after swallowing a sock and what to do if they are acting fine.

Can a dog eat a sock and be ok?

Every dog is different, and your dog’s response to swallowing a non-food item will likely be as unique as they are. It is possible that your dog may not experience any effects of swallowing a non-food item, and it will be expelled shortly following the incident.

It is also important to note that while they may be acting normal moments after the event, they may not stay that way. Non-food items like socks take a while to move through the digestive tract. In fact, non-food items can take even longer to move through your pet’s digestive tract, as they cannot easily be broken down.

How long does a dog take to pass a sock?

Some vets suggest that it can even take up to a few weeks for a sock to move through the digestive tract.

Although your dog is acting normal now, it may show more serious signs hours or even days later. With that being said, it is crucial to monitor your pet in the hours and days after the incident in case they begin acting abnormally.

Most dogs frequently chew on non-food items without causing harm; therefore, if your pet does not show any signs of illness, there may not be a problem. Typically, larger dogs have minimal issues with swallowing items like socks, as they have larger internal organs, and it is easier to pass through. If you have a very small dog, obstructions can cause a higher risk, and swallowing non-food items is more dangerous for your pet.

What To Do If Your Dog Swallows a Sock

If you notice that your dog vomits immediately and you find the full contents of the sock, they shouldn’t experience any residual symptoms. Many dogs frequently swallow non-food items and immediately vomit them up. However, If your dog is vomiting, but you don’t find any sock remnants, this could be an area for concern, as the sock could be causing a blockage.

If they continue to eat and go to the bathroom normally after vomiting up the sock, there shouldn’t be any lasting problems. However, if they do not vomit up the sock, you should keep an eye on their bowel movements as the sock will likely be passed that way.

How can I help my dog pass a sock?

For most dogs, it should only take 2-3 days, but for some, it may take up to a week or even longer. Sometimes larger items such as clothing may take longer to pass through the digestive tract. This is also unique according to individual dog and breed, so you should consult your Vet for their specific recommendations.

After monitoring your dog’s stools for the recommended period, if no contents of the sock have been expelled, you should take a trip to the Vet. At any point during this process, if your dog begins to show signs of illness, you should take them to the Vet immediately. As the sock moves through the digestive tract, it may begin to cause problems that did not present initially. Signs of illness may indicate more serious issues like a blockage or obstruction that require urgent veterinary care.

Signs Of Blockages Caused By Dog Eating Sock

There are several signs you can look for while monitoring your pet for illness after swallowing a sock. These signs of an illness can indicate that the swallowed item is having trouble moving through the digestive tract. Here are some symptoms that dogs can experience after eating a non-food item that can indicate an intestinal obstruction.

  • Vomiting (frequent vomiting should cause increased concern)
  • Weakness
  • Diarrhea
  • Loss of Appetite
  • Dehydration
  • Bloating
  • Abdominal Pain
  • Hunching Over or Whining

If you notice your pet exhibiting any of these signs or symptoms, you should consult your Vet immediately for diagnosis and treatment of potential obstruction. If left untreated, this can be life-threatening to your pet. Most obstructions do not resolve on their own without treatment. 

How The Vet Can Help

Once you determine it is time to consult or visit the Vet, they can provide treatment to diagnose and resolve the problem being caused by the sock. They will likely conduct X-rays to get a good image of where the sock is in your dog’s stomach. If they cannot get a good picture from X-rays, there are other options for diagnosis that can be utilized.

Once the problem has been diagnosed, they can determine what the best treatment option is. If the sock is still in the stomach, the Vet can use an endoscope to retrieve it or provide an enema. However, if the sock has made its way to the intestines and is causing an obstruction, the Vet will need to perform surgery to resolve the blockage.

In Summary

In a nutshell, dogs are known for frequently swallowing non-food items. Most of these do not cause problems, but larger items such as clothing may cause more issues for your pet. Although your dog may seem to be acting fine immediately after swallowing a sock, it is important to monitor them over time, as further complications may occur.

As the sock begins to make its way through your pet’s digestive system, it may start to show signs of illness which can indicate that an obstruction has occurred. It is crucial to know the signs and symptoms to look for to keep your pet safe and healthy after swallowing a sock.


  • Brad

    Hi I'm Brad, the founder of Having been a vet of 6 years I work alongside our team to provide valuable insight into your dog's health. I have a frenchie myself named Senzu who is my pride and joy!