The phone call came in around 8pm on a Thursday night to the emergency phone from one of our “frequent fliers”. Their big sweet dog had been vomiting and none of their interventions were working. Since this gentle giant was known to ingest things he shouldn’t, Dr. Karen advised his owners to bring him in to be assessed. Medications were administered and radiographs were taken very late that night. He was admitted overnight so he could be assessed again in the morning. When the staff arrived early Friday morning, there sat this big guy in his kennel with his e-collar and kennel mat shredded in piles around him. While he was moved off to radiology for follow-up x-rays, the staff got to work piecing together the puzzle.
You may wonder, why would we waste our time? Well, we needed to know if our patient had actually eaten any of the mat and if so, how much. If he had, the doctors would need to start looking at the x-rays for the newly ingested foreign body, as well as whatever he may have eaten to make him start vomiting in the first place. If there was a piece in his GI tract too large to pass, he would need to go to emergency surgery.
So you can imagine our relief when all of the pieces fit back into the puzzle. We didn’t have much hope that we’d be able to account for every piece but there it was: the entire mat back into its original form!!