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Dog with fishing hook stuck in mouth

Dog rushed to vets after swallowing fish hook reading-time-icon 2 min read

Pet owners have been warned to stay vigilant after a dog was lucky to escape major surgery after she swallowed a fish hook whilst out walking.

Runa, a 1-year-old rescue dog originally from Romania, was rushed to Vale Vets Portishead, a My Family Vets practice, after the fishing hook became lodged in her mouth.

Runa’s owners are now warning other dog walkers to be wary when they are out, as they believe the hook could have been left there deliberately. The incident comes less than 12 months after a greyhound was treated for swallowing a fishing hook at the same vet's practice.

Angus, Runa’s owner, was out for his normal walk with Runa when he noticed that something wasn’t right. 

“We were just out on our regular walk by the marshlands where we live when Runa became really interested in something on a fence. I tried to get her to come away, but she was really interested in what she’d found.”

Rescue dog at the vets

“She started to eat it and so I ran over to her to try and get it off her, but she wouldn’t spit it out, so I tried to get it out of her mouth.”

Angus tried to remove the foreign object from Runa’s mouth, but she was quickly becoming more and more distressed. 

“When I started pulling it, I couldn’t tell what it was. At first, I thought it was a frog, but then Runa started yelping and she was panicking. She started convulsing and she was choking.”

“When I looked inside Runa’s mouth, I thought I could see a bone sticking up. She was really distressed, and I tried to pull it out but it wouldn’t budge. I stopped pulling but she was still choking, so I tried again and this time blood came flowing out.”

After realising how serious the injury was, Angus and his girlfriend immediately got in touch with the vet. 

“At that point I went completely white. My girlfriend tried to get the hook out but she couldn’t. So I called the vets and my girlfriend got the car.”

Olivia Lancaster, a Veterinary Surgeon at Vale Vets Portishead, treated Runa when she arrived.

“Runa was brought in as an emergency and when we examined her, we found a large fish hook embedded in the centre of her tongue. We couldn’t remove the hook whilst Runa was conscious, so she was anaesthetised and the hook was removed.”  

fish hook stuck in dogs mouth

After inspecting Runa whilst she was under anaesthetic, Olivia was able to assess the extent of the injury.

“Surprisingly there was minimal damage to her mouth, but Runa was given a course of pain relief and antibiotics to keep her comfortable and prevent infection.”

After she was given her pain relief medication, Runa was feeling much better.

“Runa recovered quickly from her anaesthetic and was walking about and wagging her tail within half an hour”.

Olivia raised her concerns about dogs swallowing sharp items when they are out on walks after seeing a recent increase in similar cases. 

“Fortunately, this is not a common occurrence, although it is becoming more frequent, mainly because there is often bait attached to discarded fish hooks, which dogs find enticing.” 

fish hook swallowed by dog

Runa was one of the luckier dogs, as sometimes the fish hooks can be swallowed and become lodged, requiring emergency surgery to remove.”  

Angus echoed Olivia’s concerns, and wants to make other dog owners aware of the dangers. 

“I’d like people to know that it's a danger and there could be someone out there deliberately looking to hurt dogs.” 

Thanks to Angus’s quick thinking and the team at Vale Vets Portishead, Runa was able to go home the same day. 

“Everyone at Vale Vets Portishead was brilliant. They met us at the door of the surgery and made the whole process easier.” 

Looking for a vet in Portishead? Vale Vets Portishead are part of My Family Vets – providing exceptional care for pets and outstanding service for their owners.

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