Bailey the Bullmastiff Puppy
At just 8 weeks old, Bailey, a playful Bullmastiff puppy, took it upon himself to steal a lamb rib bone from the kitchen. Tasting as good as it did, and with the enthusiasm of youth, he swallowed the whole thing!
Bones can be troublesome for dogs in a number of ways, but Bailey’s particular problem was that the rib was 16cm long and his entire body was only 30cm long – with one end of the bone in his stomach, the other end was still sitting stuck half way up his oesophagus! His owners were naturally very concerned that such a large foreign object had disappeared into such a small dog.
Although very bright and waggy, despite his new problem, there was no way Bailey was going to resolve this situation on his own. That bone was not going to digest, and it was not going to move through his system. And the likelihood of causing a perforation in the stomach or oesophagus meant that a potentially fatal outcome was not out of the question.
Bailey was thrilled to be admitted to the hospital and to meet all the nurses and the dogs in kennels. Shortly afterwards he was under anaesthetic, and we were eyeing-up the end of a bone through the endoscope. The bone was grabbed and carefully drawn back out through Bailey’s mouth. But just as we were celebrating a smooth foreign body retrieval and admiring the immenseness of the object Bailey had tried to swallow, disaster struck. Bailey’s heart stopped, as did his breathing.
Resuscitation started immediately – chest compressions, positive pressure ventilation and intravenous adrenaline were all used to keep Bailey going until his heart finally took control again. It felt like hours, but was only 7 minutes – a scary time for all of us, to see such a happy little puppy in so much trouble.
After his near death experience, he was a bit ropey for a few days but has now made a full recovery and is, once again, the happy waggy Bullmastiff that we know.