Horror as springer spaniel impales himself on 2ft stick
A springer spaniel was left impaled on a two-foot stick in a freak accident during a game of fetch.
The dog, named Ollie by owners John, 61, and Jan Hall, 63, was chasing after the stick when it landed with its point in the ground.
The couple believe he ran into it and it got lodged in his throat, snapping in half and skewering him up to his shoulder blades.
They heard the eight-year-old pooch shriek and raced over to see part of the branch wedging his mouth open.
Mrs Hall tried to scoop the stick out of Ollie's mouth but quickly realised the severity of his injuries and immediately called the vets.
The couple, who regularly walk Ollie on their three acres of woodland, rushed him to the Old Hall Veterinary Centre in Appleby, Cumbria, where he underwent a two-hour operation to remove the the 12-inch stick from under his tongue.
The stick left a gaping hole in the dog's throat but didn't puncture any organs or major blood vessels.
He had a drain in his chest following the operation and was given painkillers and antibiotics to prevent infection setting in.
Ollie was sent home after an overnight stay at the vets and has nearly recovered from the incident three months on.
Mrs Hall, from Appleby, Cumbria, said since the stick went through muscles and tendons he’s still a little sore.
She is now urging dog owners not to throw sticks for their dogs and instead use balls.
Sharing Ollie's ordeal on their Facebook page, Old Hall Veterinary Centre, wrote: 'Whilst throwing sticks for your dog can appear like a great form of play, the dangers are all too well known by veterinary surgeons.
'Sticks can get impaled into a dog's throat, and whilst this may just cause minor wounds, some dogs will suffer life-threatening injuries such as lacerations of the vital structures within the neck as well as multi-resistant bacterial infections.'