A WARNING has been issued to dog owners after a ‘harmless looking’ bone nearly cost an elderly labrador its life.
Rescue pup Brumy was given a ham bone to enjoy along with fellow pups Shadow and Paddy.
James Pedley, who was looking after the dogs for a friend in Long Itchington. had bought the tasty-looking treats when he stopped by a convenience store.
The dogs had enjoyed the unbranded bones from the shop before and never had any problems.
But James was left horrifed after 15-year-old Brumy collapsed and started fitting and gasping for breath.
James, a chef from Coventry, said: “I didn’t know what was wrong with him and then realised the bone was missing.
“I think he was literally seconds from death. I had to put my hand down his throat and pull the bone out. I was worried about pushing it down further but I had no choice.
“He was fitting so much he was clamping down on my hand while I got the bone. I am covered in bites and bruises but it was such a relief to see him start breathing again. I thought I was going to lose him.”
James took the bones straight off the dogs and threw them in the bin although despite his near-death experience greedy Brumy – a rescue dog from Dogs Trust in Kenilworth – did try to retrieve his again.
James is now appealing to dog owners people to think twice before giving bones as a treat.
The 27-year-old said: “I will never be giving any of my dogs these bones again.
“They looked completely harmless, and they loved eating them, but the stark reality is that if I had not have acted when I did or had been out of the room then Brumy would have died.
“I would urge any dog owners not to give their pets these bones.”
James’ advice echoes that from veterinary charity the PDSA which says they do not recommend bones as treats.
Vets and nurses say they regularly see dogs with blockages caused by splinters or large pieces of bone being swallowed and becoming stuck.
Supermarket Tesco stopped selling natural bones for dogs after a number of fatalities, including the death of a two-year-old miniature schnauzer who fell ill after a ham bone became lodged in his stomach.