Friday 2 December 2016

Clean bill of health for the Shih Tzu who swallowed a sponge

Published 28/07/2015 | 14:17

Jade Bird with her shih tzu Alfie, who underwent life-saving treatment after he swallowed a sponge (Gilbert Johnston/PDSA/PA)
Jade Bird with her shih tzu Alfie, who underwent life-saving treatment after he swallowed a sponge (Gilbert Johnston/PDSA/PA)

A Shih Tzu underwent life-saving treatment after he swallowed a kitchen sponge complete with scouring pad.

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Alfie was watching as owner Maria Bird cleaned the bathroom, and suddenly swooped to pinch a clean sponge from the packet, gulping it down in one.

The 20-month-old dog seemed fine following his unusual snack but his worried owner took him to be checked out as she knew it could cause serious harm.

Ms Bird, 53, from Jarrow, South Tyneside, said: "Alfie has always been a mischief-maker but I was astounded when he wolfed down the sponge in one go.

"He seemed absolutely fine but I knew he could be in deep trouble. I rushed him straight to PDSA where vets checked him over."

Vet nurse Caroline Watson was on duty at PDSA's Gateshead Pet Hospital when Alfie was brought in.

She said: "We gave Alfie an injection to make him sick and thankfully, the medicine worked its magic quickly.

"Thanks to the speedy actions of Maria, Alfie avoided a far worse fate, as when pets swallow foreign bodies, they can cause tears or fatal blockages in the digestive system.

"We were amazed that such a small dog managed to swallow a sponge of that size - it can't have been very pleasant going down or coming back up again."

Alfie returned home shortly after his ordeal and returned to his usual self.

Ms Bird said: "I am so grateful to PDSA for their fast action and help with Alfie.

"We are keeping a close eye on him to make sure he doesn't snaffle any other spongy treats again."

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