Chew Toys can kill

I’m not a fear based type person and I normally shy away from titles like that but I wanted to send a very strong signal.  I lost my girl to a chew toy.  3 year old Ginger was a healthy, vibrant, intelligent Lab who, like all Labs do, loved to chew on things.  We mistakenly bought her one of those heavy rope chew toys so she could play tug-o-war with the other dogs.  She’d had them before.  All of our dogs had.  We never had a problem.

One night, sitting on the couch watching TV, Ginger in her customary position (sitting next to me, taller than I am while sitting) she looked over at me and got that smile on her face…the universal “I’m about to puke” doggy smile and sure enough, vomited all over me.

She felt bad that night, I could tell so I took her to the emergency vet.  X-rays showed some constriction in her guts but nothing really visible as to what was causing it.  We stayed there that night and took her to our normal vet the next day. Dr. “G” is quite familiar with all of our pets and she recognized the problem with Ginger right away.  She recommended immediate surgery and also said it would be a delicate situation so recommended the top-rated pet care place in the Atlanta area.  We took Ginger there that day, she had the emergency surgery and the folks there confirmed that they removed several lengths of ropey chew toy material that had bound up in her guts.  They said the prognosis was fair but that Ginger would require close supervision for at least a couple of days.  We got to visit with her – she was druggy and sleepy but we know that she knew it was us.  She was glad to see us and even in the midst of the pain and drugs she managed to do that tail wag thing she did.

My wife and I had been up for two days straight so elected to go home to get some sleep and return first thing in the morning.  We got a call about 3am and were told that Ginger had passed away in her sleep.  The damage the toy had done had been too great and the amount of repairs they had been able to do was not enough.  Zero blame to the vets…I know they did all they could.

So, my point, be very careful what kind of chew toys you buy for your four legged friends.  We now stay away from anything with rope or fiber that may “string out” when ripped.  We run a dog rescue and have dogs ranging from a small dachshund to very large pit bulls so there are a lot of toys around our place…all of them now hard rubber or other material.