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  • Author or Editor: Allyson A. Sterman x
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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association


OBJECTIVE To determine the likelihood and outcome of esophageal perforation secondary to an esophageal foreign body (EFB) in dogs.

DESIGN Retrospective observational study.

ANIMALS 125 dogs evaluated for EFB at 2 veterinary teaching hospitals from January 2005 through December 2013.

PROCEDURES Data were retrieved from the medical record of each dog regarding variables hypothesized to be associated with esophageal perforation, whether esophageal perforation was present, and survival to hospital discharge. Variables were examined for associations with various outcomes.

RESULTS Bones (55/125 [44%]) and fishhooks (37/125 [30%]) were the most common types of EFBs. Fifteen (12%) dogs had an esophageal perforation (10 with a fishhook EFB and 5 with a bone EFB). No association was identified between dog body weight and esophageal perforation. Esophageal perforation was more likely in dogs with a fishhook EFB (10/37 [27%]) versus other EFBs (5/88 [6%]; OR, 6.1; 95% confidence interval, 1.9 to 9.6). Median interval from fishhook or bone ingestion to initial evaluation was significantly longer for dogs with (12 and 96 hours, respectively) versus without (1 and 24 hours, respectively) perforation. Thirteen of 15 (87%) dogs with esophageal perforation survived to hospital discharge, including all 10 dogs with perforation secondary to fishhook ingestion. Eight survivors with esophageal perforation required no surgical intervention.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE Esophageal perforation was uncommon in the evaluated dogs with an EFB, and no surgical intervention was required for a large proportion of them. Fishhooks and delay between EFB ingestion and initial evaluation were risk factors for perforation.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association



To evaluate long-term outcomes and identify factors associated with death or the need for revision surgery in dogs with permanent tracheostomies (PTs).


Retrospective cohort study.


69 client-owned dogs that received a PT between January 2002 and June 2016 at 1 of 4 veterinary teaching hospitals.


Medical records were reviewed, and data extracted included signalment, history, clinical signs, radiographic and laryngeal examination findings, presence of esophageal abnormalities, date and reason for receiving a PT, postoperative complications, cause of death, and survival time. Dogs surviving < 2 weeks after receiving a PT were excluded.


Major complications occurred in 42 of 69 (61%) dogs, with aspiration pneumonia (13 [19%]), skinfold occlusion (13 [19%]), and stoma stenosis (12 [17%]) being most common. Revision surgery was performed in 24 of 69 (35%) dogs, most commonly because of stoma stenosis or skinfold occlusion (9/24 [38%] each). Brachycephalic dogs were more likely (OR, 3.5; 95% confidence interval, 1.2 to 10.2) to require revision surgery than were nonbrachycephalic dogs. The overall median survival time was 1,825 days, and dogs that received corticosteroids before receiving a PT, had tracheal collapse, or were older had shorter survival times.


Results of the present study indicated that creation of a PT was a viable treatment option for obstructive upper airway diseases in dogs and that long-term survival after receiving a PT was possible; however, a PT may not reduce the risk of aspiration pneumonia in dogs.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association