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"Kizzy"- Labrador with Gastric Foreign Body
Photo: Kizzy

James Herriot summed up many of the difficulties of our profession some years ago when he coined the phrase "If Only They Could Talk". This is particularly relevant when an owner enters the consulting room with the immortal phrase "I have no idea what's wrong I just know she's not quite right!"

That is exactly how Kizzy was presented to me some weeks ago by her owners. A clinical examination of her proved fruitless with no detectable abnormalities found. She had been eating and exercising without too much difficulty but appeared to be experiencing some discomfort. Her blood profiles were all completely normal and apart from intermittent indigestion (not considered abnormal for a Labrador!!) there was very little to find.

Whilst "Kizzy" appeared to improve after each visit it wasn't long before she reappeared with the same history..........."not quite right!"

Despite there being no tenderness nor abnormal findings on abdominal palpation we decided to radiograph Kizzy to see whether this might provide additional useful information. It was apparent that there was a bizarre shadow on the x-ray suggestive of a pathological lesion in the stomach. It was decided to perform an exploratory operation to investigate.

Remarkably, I removed a pair of tights............. not just tights........ but a pair of M and S tights, wrapped around a baby dinosaur !!

Gastric foreign bodies are notorious amongst veterinary circles as being difficult to diagnose. The "objects" may be present for weeks or even months, as in this case, without giving rise to any obvious clinical problems. Needless to say the cause of Kizzy's "indigestion" was able to be remedied once discovered and she is now back to normal!

Now if only Kizzy’s owner had told me that she couldn't find her underwear!


I removed ...... a baby dinosaur !!


x-ray x-ray
X-ray with Kizzy on her back
X-ray from the side

Terry Dunne BVMS, Cert SAO, MRCVS

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