Vets’ warning about dangers of discarded face masks

Vets are warning about the perils of carelessly dumped face masks after another dog needed urgent veterinary treatment after eating a whole mask. Three-year-old cockapoo Patch is thought to have wolfed down a discarded mask while out on a walk.

Patch was referred to Abington Park, in Northampton, one of the My Family Vets network of vet clinics, which is part of IVC Evidensia.

My Family Vets said its vets have reported a rise of face mask ingestion cases in recent months at clinics up and down the country following masks being carelessly discarded in parks, on the street and in open spaces.

A number of vets have reported cases of dogs ingesting discarded face masks or other PPE such as plastic gloves in the past few months, prompting vets and animal charities to issue warnings.

Vet Riccardo Minnelli, from Abington Park Vets, said owners need to be extra careful and seek immediate care to avoid serious complications.

Vets are also using this incident to remind the public that vets are very much open during lockdown and you should seek help if your pet needs it.

Patch’s owner didn’t even realise he had got the face mask at first.

Mr Minnelli said: “We were told it was a sock, but when we took a radiograph to check the position, we could see there was a piece of metal.

“The metal was where you could adjust it around the nose. It was really unexpected, and we had no idea how long it had been in the stomach.”

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