Ted, a 1-year old Border Collie, gave his dad Ethan quite the scare when the stick he was playfully chasing, became stuck in Ted’s throat causing swelling, breathing difficulties, bleeding and distress for both Ethan and Ted.
Ted was taken to an emergency clinic in Newcastle, where the team stabilised Ted and gave him a blood transfusion as he was now bleeding to death.
There was concern that the foreign body was still present, due to the swelling around Ted’s face, which wasn’t improving so Ted was swiftly referred to SASH Tuggerah for further investigation.
A CT scan showed that the stick was lodged in Ted’s throat and was severing his carotid artery. Ted went straight to surgery with Specialist Surgeon, Dr Steve Fearnside and Surgical Intern, Dr. Ingrid Trommelmans. The surgery team were able to successfully remove the stick, and importantly put a stop the active bleeding by closing the hole in his carotid artery.
Ted spent some time in hospital recovering with our experienced team of vets and nurses closely monitoring him 24/7. Thankfully Ted’s outcome, whilst a long and scary journey, was a great success and he slowly regained his strength with the help of our team and returned to being an energised and playful border collie.
Sticks might seem like an easy alternative to a ball or chew toy, but the risk is far greater than a bit of fun as they can very easily become lodged internally, and in Ted’s case can be life threatening. Sticks can cause infections in the mouth and gums and if they’re ingested they can cause havoc to the throat, intestines and internal organs such as the stomach and bowel.
Always opt for the safer choice which is an appropriately sized chew toy, made with durable, clean and pet safe materials!