What Santa Shouldn't Put in Fido's Stocking:
Rope Toys Can Kill Your Dog
By Mary Watterson, Fort Collins Dog Walker, Pet Sitter & Trail Guide
Rope toys have become very popular of late. Go to any pet store, and you'll see a variety of shapes, sizes and styles to choose from. They are even touted by many vets as great "natural flossing" tools for your dogs. While that may be the case, we're hoping that this year Santa's Workshop doesn't make any.
We all know that dog's have a tendency, just like kids, to put things in their mouths. Dogs will chew and swallow just about anything, given the opportunity. We also know that it's unwise to let your dog chew on string, fishing line, yarn, tinsel, etc. But we nevertheless allow them to chew on rope toys or even play tug-of-war with them. Why is that? Is it because we trust that whatever is brought to the marketplace is safe? Is it safe because vets have recommended it?
Clearly we have every reason to trust our vet. But what if some veterinarians are misinformed? What if a potential danger simply hasn't occurred to them? Well, there's one dog lover in San Antonio who will be much more careful next time around. 'Next time around' because her dog recently suffered an agonizing death after playing with a rope toy. And now she wants them pulled off the market.
Lea Robinson lost her one-year-old, pug-beagle mix "Perry" after two unsuccessful surgeries to fix severe internal injuries. You can read her story here. According to Jaie Avila of WAOI, Robinson said: "she bought a rope toy for Perry and within minutes he tore it apart." Robinson then disposed of the ruined toy and only later discovered Perry had ingested a large amount of string. According to Robinson, the toy got tangled up in Perry's intestines and acted like "a saw."
Unfortunately, Robinson's dog is not the only dog who has died after playing with rope toys. The Internet is strewn with similar tragedies related to this seemingly innocuous toys.
Mina Youssef, a vet at Becker Animal Hospital, (unrelated to Perry's death) commented on similar incidences saying: “It is very common to see that. What it does, it can cause a lot of damage and it can cause a blockage in the intestine which basically makes the intestine twist like an accordion.”
And what makes it worse, is it is not easily detectible. According to Avila: "not only can string or strands of rope cause severe internal damage to a dog, they don't show up on x-rays. Often an ultra-sound must be performed, which can make the problem difficult and costly to detect."
As with all toys we give our dogs, we have to continue doing everything in our power to make sure they are safe and harmless for them to play with. Please help spread the news that rope toys can be very dangerous.
In the meantime, please be sure to keep your pets away from all your Christmas decorations. Turning your back, even for a minute can be disastrous! From all your friends at Poochy Doos, LLC, we wish everyone a very merry (and safe) Christmas and New Year!