As autumn approaches, dog owners are cautioned to keep their pets away from conkers which are highly poisonous if chewed and eaten. They are also very dangerous if swallowed whole by dogs as they may cause a serious blockages.
Last year, leading animal charity The Blue Cross treated seriously ill dogs who had eaten and swallowed conkers after playing with them.
In October 2010 a three-year-old Staffordshire bull terrier called ‘Lucky’ was rushed to The Blue Cross animal hospital in Victoria, London.
The charity treats pet whose owners are on a low income and can’t afford to see a private vet. Lucky soon began being very sick, would not eat or drink and his anxious owner had no idea what was wrong.
Vets discovered that Lucky had a conker blocking his intestines and a quantity of chewed up conkers in his stomach which had poisoned him. Lucky needed emergency surgery to ensure all traces of the conkers were removed and was monitored by vets for several days for to make sure the poisoning wasn’t fatal.
Conkers Danger For Dogs
Earlier that day Lucky had been playing with a group of youngsters in South London. They had no idea that encouraging Lucky to play with, chew and catch conkers could be so dangerous to him.
Alison Thomas, Blue Cross senior vet at the Victoria animal hospital said: “Lucky suffered a terrible ordeal and his game of conker catch could have even been fatal. Many dog owners are totally unaware that conkers are highly toxic to their pets and they must prevent dogs from eating or playing with them.”
If you think your dog may have eaten, or been in contact with conkers, it is vital to contact your vet as soon as possible.
Blue Cross animal hospitals treat thousands of sick and injured pets every year, funded entirely by generosity of the public. To find out more or to make a donation visit www.bluecross.org.uk.