DYLAN - nearly Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door!

by Sian Cornthwaite.


One Tuesday, in late November, I came downstairs in the morning to be greeted by a little pile of dog sick!

This is not that unusual in our house I am afraid as Dylan has a penchant for munching on the odd sock. We never see him steal them but often find the remains in the garden!

This time was different though as he gradually got more and more lethargic as the day progressed and his eyes got redder and redder.

I thought I should contact the vet and was going to leave it until the morning but my daughters insisted I phone them that afternoon. So at 5 o’clock we rushed him to our local vet’s.

Knowing he had eaten something he was X- rayed but nothing showed up (only solid matter shows up, apparently), apart from gas accumulated in his intestines.

The vet realised this meant that there was something stuck in his digestive system and operated well into the night - eventually discovering a pair of tights. One end of which was lodged in the stomach and the other end continuing to travel through the intestines.

The vet said that had we left it until the morning he would not have survived.

The risk of Peritonitis in a case like this is high and we were warned that the next twelve hours after the operation, and the following few days, were critical.

He was transferred (by doggie ambulance!) to another local vet, as he needed twenty-four hour care.

The next few days were touch and go.

We couldn’t believe that a healthy three year old Basset Hound could be destroyed by a pair of tights. But, we were extremely worried.

He spent another six days at the vet’s and, luckily, with each passing day he gradually got stronger until he was allowed home on the 3rd December - my birthday, and what a present it was having him home!

The vet said that tights are one of the worst things a dog can eat as once they start to swallow them they can’t vomit them back up again and can only continue to swallow them.

We have no idea how he got hold of them, he isn’t allowed upstairs (where there are teenagers’ bedrooms with all sorts of tempting things on the floor!) so can only assume that they either fell out of the washing basket when I wasn’t looking, or were stolen from it.

Our vet’s bill was ₤5,000.

So, the other moral of this story is make sure your pets are insured!

We were, in fact, we had taken out the policy with a new company only seventeen days before he ate the tights and the policy didn’t come in to effect for the first fourteen days.

How close was that!

The postscript to this tale is that I was contacted by our vets to say that the local paper had approached them for news stories about people’s pets and would it be o.k. if they told them all about Dylan. We said of course and were duly interviewed and photographed by the Sevenoaks Chronicle.

The article appeared last week under the headline “The gusset hound as Dylan swallows tights” the article then progressed “A Basset Hound found himself in a ‘tight’ spot...”

You can just imagine the fun they had in the office coming up with those can’t you!

Words & photo Sian Cornthwaite©2013

One Tuesday, in late November, I came downstairs in the morning to be greeted by a little pile of dog sick!

This is not that unusual in our house I am afraid as Dylan has a penchant for munching on the odd sock. We never see him steal them but often find the remains in the garden!

This time was different though as he gradually got more and more lethargic as the day progressed and his eyes got redder and redder.

I thought I should contact the vet and was going to leave it until the morning but my daughters insisted I phone them that afternoon. So at 5 o’clock we rushed him to our local vet’s.

Knowing he had eaten something he was X- rayed but nothing showed up (only solid matter shows up, apparently), apart from gas accumulated in his intestines.

The vet realised this meant that there was something stuck in his digestive system and operated well into the night - eventually discovering a pair of tights. One end of which was lodged in the stomach and the other end continuing to travel through the intestines.

The vet said that had we left it until the morning he would not have survived.

The risk of Peritonitis in a case like this is high and we were warned that the next twelve hours after the operation, and the following few days, were critical.

He was transferred (by doggie ambulance!) to another local vet, as he needed twenty-four hour care.

The next few days were touch and go.

We couldn’t believe that a healthy three year old Basset Hound could be destroyed by a pair of tights. But, we were extremely worried.

He spent another six days at the vet’s and, luckily, with each passing day he gradually got stronger until he was allowed home on the 3rd December - my birthday, and what a present it was having him home!

The vet said that tights are one of the worst things a dog can eat as once they start to swallow them they can’t vomit them back up again and can only continue to swallow them.

We have no idea how he got hold of them, he isn’t allowed upstairs (where there are teenagers’ bedrooms with all sorts of tempting things on the floor!) so can only assume that they either fell out of the washing basket when I wasn’t looking, or were stolen from it.

Our vet’s bill was ₤5,000.

So, the other moral of this story is make sure your pets are insured!

We were, in fact, we had taken out the policy with a new company only seventeen days before he ate the tights and the policy didn’t come in to effect for the first fourteen days.

How close was that!

The postscript to this tale is that I was contacted by our vets to say that the local paper had approached them for news stories about people’s pets and would it be o.k. if they told them all about Dylan. We said of course and were duly interviewed and photographed by the Sevenoaks Chronicle.

The article appeared last week under the headline “The gusset hound as Dylan swallows tights” the article then progressed “A Basset Hound found himself in a ‘tight’ spot...”

You can just imagine the fun they had in the office coming up with those can’t you!

Words & photo Sian Cornthwaite©2013

One Tuesday, in late November, I came downstairs in the morning to be greeted by a little pile of dog sick!

This is not that unusual in our house I am afraid as Dylan has a penchant for munching on the odd sock. We never see him steal them but often find the remains in the garden!

This time was different though as he gradually got more and more lethargic as the day progressed and his eyes got redder and redder.

I thought I should contact the vet and was going to leave it until the morning but my daughters insisted I phone them that afternoon. So at 5 o’clock we rushed him to our local vet’s.

Knowing he had eaten something he was X- rayed but nothing showed up (only solid matter shows up, apparently), apart from gas accumulated in his intestines.

The vet realised this meant that there was something stuck in his digestive system and operated well into the night - eventually discovering a pair of tights. One end of which was lodged in the stomach and the other end continuing to travel through the intestines.

The vet said that had we left it until the morning he would not have survived.

The risk of Peritonitis in a case like this is high and we were warned that the next twelve hours after the operation, and the following few days, were critical.

He was transferred (by doggie ambulance!) to another local vet, as he needed twenty-four hour care.

The next few days were touch and go.

We couldn’t believe that a healthy three year old Basset Hound could be destroyed by a pair of tights. But, we were extremely worried.

He spent another six days at the vet’s and, luckily, with each passing day he gradually got stronger until he was allowed home on the 3rd December - my birthday, and what a present it was having him home!

The vet said that tights are one of the worst things a dog can eat as once they start to swallow them they can’t vomit them back up again and can only continue to swallow them.

We have no idea how he got hold of them, he isn’t allowed upstairs (where there are teenagers’ bedrooms with all sorts of tempting things on the floor!) so can only assume that they either fell out of the washing basket when I wasn’t looking, or were stolen from it.

Our vet’s bill was ₤5,000.

So, the other moral of this story is make sure your pets are insured!

We were, in fact, we had taken out the policy with a new company only seventeen days before he ate the tights and the policy didn’t come in to effect for the first fourteen days.

How close was that!

The postscript to this tale is that I was contacted by our vets to say that the local paper had approached them for news stories about people’s pets and would it be o.k. if they told them all about Dylan. We said of course and were duly interviewed and photographed by the Sevenoaks Chronicle.

The article appeared last week under the headline “The gusset hound as Dylan swallows tights” the article then progressed “A Basset Hound found himself in a ‘tight’ spot...”

You can just imagine the fun they had in the office coming up with those can’t you!

Words & photo Sian Cornthwaite©2013

Cover of the Basset Hound Owners Club newsletter Lowdown

first published in LOWDOWN

editor Tony Roberts