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Seven-week-old puppy dies after swallowing a teething chew toy from Amazon – as product is pulled from site amid fears more dogs could choke


A couple was left devastated after a seven-week-old puppy died from using a teething toy bought on Amazon.

The puppy, called Miss Red Collar, was rushed to the vets to have the toy removed from her stomach.

Two other puppies also required operations but they thankfully survived.

Owners Steven Pooley, 58, and partner Gulin Milne, 52, said they feel ‘dreadful’ following the death.

Mr Pooley said: ‘It’s absolutely dreadful. I’m utterly devastated.

Miss Red Collar (pictured) being examined by the vet

Miss Red Collar (pictured) being examined by the vet

Two of the puppies pictured with cones following surgery to remove the plastic

Two of the puppies pictured with cones following surgery to remove the plastic

The couple's dogs Nala and Bryn had ten pups. They had become attached to the dogs

The couple’s dogs Nala and Bryn had ten pups. They had become attached to the dogs

Pictured, the chew toys that were given to the dogs. The pink heart and green bone was swallowed by the puppies

Pictured, the chew toys that were given to the dogs. The pink heart and green bone was swallowed by the puppies

Part of a chew toy removed from one of the dogs

Part of a chew toy removed from one of the dogs

Parts of the green bones and the pink heart that were removed from the dogs

Parts of the green bones and the pink heart that were removed from the dogs

Shockingly, similar chew toys are still available for sale. Pictured, a part of the chew toy

Shockingly, similar chew toys are still available for sale. Pictured, a part of the chew toy

‘We had been raising these puppies for nearly eight weeks, in our home and all around us. We became very attached to them.

‘We’ve loved and nurtured them through every moment of each day. This is absolutely horrible.

‘I just want to warn others so they don’t buy them and put their pets at risk.

‘It’s the green bone and the pink heart that broke apart.

‘The toys weren’t chew-proof at all. The puppies bit them into pieces and ingested them.

‘There were no bits lying around so we just thought the toys were lost.

‘They don’t know if she was in shock or she was just too weakened by the whole episode to survive the operation.’ 

Although the listing for the chew toys has been removed from Amazon, it allegedly took 10 days.

According to Ms Milne, the same seller is selling the same toys but in different bundles on different listings.

Mr Pooley claimed: ‘I’ve looked online and seen at least two or three dozen others selling this toy, using exactly the same pictures and same product but different names.

‘It’s appalling. I can’t believe they haven’t stopped selling them. I think that horrifies me most of all.’

Writing on Facebook, Ms Milne said: ‘We have now seen what the vet found during surgery, and it was parts of a teething puppy chew toy purchased from Amazon.

‘To say we are both incandescent with rage at this point is an understatement. 

‘There are other similar toys from other sellers still available on the website.’

Another listing on Amazon selling the same kind of chew toys

Another listing on Amazon selling the same kind of chew toys

Nala pictured with her puppy litter. Sadly Miss Red Collar was rushed to the vets

Nala pictured with her puppy litter. Sadly Miss Red Collar was rushed to the vets

The couple are not breeders and said they got the puppy litter due to an accidental pregnancy

The couple are not breeders and said they got the puppy litter due to an accidental pregnancy

Mr Pooley and Ms Milne, from Bala, Wales, had helped their Alaskan malamutes Nala, two, and Bryn, six, raise ten pups.

The couple own holiday cottages and are not breeders. They got their puppies because of an accidental pregnancy.

The litter was around seven weeks old when they gave the dogs a pack of chew toys on February 10 but by the evening two chews were missing.

Mr Pooley noticed that Miss Red Collar had not eaten lunch or dinner on February 11.

She was sick six times in the evening and the last time she vomited, it smelled of faeces, Mr Pooley said.

After Googling he suspected she had a blockage in her gut and rushed her to the emergency vet.

Although they removed all four lumps of rubber from her intestine and rehydrated her, the dog died while in recovery from the op.

A second pup, Mr Grey Collar, got sick and had an operation on February 16 and a third, Mr Brown Collar, went under the knife on February 18.

Gulin Milne, 52, pictured with her beloved puppies

Gulin Milne, 52, pictured with her beloved puppies

Steven Pooley, 58, pictured with the puppies and one of the parents

Steven Pooley, 58, pictured with the puppies and one of the parents

Although the puppies can fetch up to £1,000, the couple said they don't care about the money

Although the puppies can fetch up to £1,000, the couple said they don’t care about the money

Both survived, and all the other puppies had to be checked over.

The couple have to pay around £4,000 for the surgery and checking of the other dogs.

Although the puppies can fetch up to £1,000 each, Mr Pooley said they didn’t raise them for financial gain.

He said: ‘It’s not about the money at all. We’re so fond of them. I’m just so horrified that these toys broke apart like that.

‘It wasn’t until the vet sent the specimen pot that we realised what had caused the blockage. We’d been wracked with guilt wondering what we’d left lying around.

Ms Milne said it took up to 10 days for the original listing of the chew toy to be removed

Ms Milne said it took up to 10 days for the original listing of the chew toy to be removed

Mr Pooley phoned and emailed Amazon who said they were sorry for the loss and would be investigating the incident

Mr Pooley phoned and emailed Amazon who said they were sorry for the loss and would be investigating the incident

The puppies pictured outside in a pen with one of their parents

The puppies pictured outside in a pen with one of their parents 

‘We never imagined the puppy teething toys could cause this harm. I could hardly believe it.

‘We’d already found a home for this puppy and we had to phone and tell them. It was absolutely heartbreaking.’

Mr Pooley phoned and emailed Amazon who said they were sorry for the loss and would be investigating the incident.

He said: ‘I just want pet owners to be aware. We’re physically and mentally exhausted.

‘This is not just because of what we’re going through but because of our real fear that other owners and pups will be going through the same trauma and potentially death.

‘We feel we should be compensated for this, but we don’t want to profit from it so we plan to donate any compensation to charity we know called Sally’s Helpful Paws.’

An Amazon spokesperson said: ‘Customer safety is a top priority and we require all products offered in our store to comply with applicable laws, regulations and Amazon policies.

‘We ensure our selection meets industry-accepted standards, and we develop innovative tools to prevent unsafe products from being listed.

‘The product in question has been removed while we investigate.’

MailOnline has contacted Amazon for further comment.



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