Massachusetts Pug Swallows Two Squeakies, Vets Warn To Be Careful With Squeaky Toys

This is a timely warning as we buy those holiday toys! Thanks to The Metro West Daily News for this article! Dog in squeaky situation...

Joy  |  Dec 14th 2006


This is a timely warning as we buy those holiday toys!

Thanks to The Metro West Daily News for this article!

Dog in squeaky situation after devouring chew toys
By John Hilliard/Daily News Staff

A little pug was able to squeak by some trouble after gulping down bits of two chew toys – and her owner said fellow pet lovers should take a lesson from her experience.

“I went into it blindly,” said Stephanie Kudriashova, whose 2-year-old pug Bella scarfed down two plastic squeakers ripped out of the chew toys. “I assumed they were safe because they were made for dogs.”

Last month, Kudriashova gave her dog the new toys, but Bella quickly tore one open and pulled out the plastic squeaker.
Though Kudriashova threw away the mangled parts, Bella opened another toy and gulped down a second squeaker.
After the impromptu meal, Bella, a spunky 18-pound pug, became sick. Kudriashova took the dog to the Veterinary Emergency & Specialty Center in Waltham.

“If it’s going to happen, it’s going to happen to her,” said Kudriashova.

An endoscopy was performed on Bella, who was under anesthesia, by Dr. Bari Speilman. Speilman took action after X-rays and other examinations did not clarify Bella’s health problem. When Speilman looked inside the dog’s throat with the three-foot long, lighted scope, she found the clear, lollipop-shaped plastic part inside Bella’s stomach. It was hard to remove at first – and Speilman discovered why – a second toy squeaker was also lodged in Bella’s stomach.

“It’s the first squeaky dog,” joked Speilman, a veterinarian with 20 years experience.
Speilman said dogs can swallow rocks, bits of clothing and other objects but she never saw a case like Bella’s before. “For squeaky toys, this is the first time,” she said.

No surgery was needed and the dog recovered in days but the squeaker incident has left its mark.
“They know Bella. My whole family calls her Jaws,” said Kudriashova.

Kudriashova praised the Waltham veterinarians and has tossed out all 20 of her pet’s chew toys. Kudriashova and her husband, who also have two cats, have participated in pet owner education sessions and said owners need to make sure pets do not put themselves in danger.

She said people can learn more about caring for their pets from their local animal hospital.

The holiday season is a busier time for pets who chow down on random objects, she said Speilman has pulled objects from pets about five times in the last few weeks. Normally, she sees these cases about twice a month.

Speilman said owners should be careful choosing a chew toy, and not use one that can be torn apart by a pet.“There’s no such thing as a safe chewable toy,” said Speilman.

The center recommends tinsel and ribbon be kept away from pets, plus household plants like poinsettias and American holly are left out of reach. Some foods that are OK for humans can pose a health danger to pets, including chocolate, coffee, grapes, onions and uncooked dough.