The miraculous story of Rango (and a tale of caution for certain pet toys)

May 1, 2024

  • We at Tuggs know as well as our customers just how much our furry friends love their toys. They come in all shapes and sizes and our pets just love them. However, whilst toys can provide lots of fun, it's important to be careful and keep a close watch as they do carry a risk. Even if a dog toy is non-toxic, it causes a risk if a dog swallows it – which can result in injuries and leave you with hefty vet bills.

  • A vet issued an urgent warning after a five-month-old puppy ate an entire dog toy, which left him in grave condition. Rango, a beautiful red Labrador, had been enjoying a rope toy that had been left to him by a visitor. However, being only a few months old, ingested the toy. As a result, he underwent surgery to have 70% of his small intestine removed. Dr Sheldon Steinmetz (BVMS, MRCVS, BS, MAg. PA) said: "Rango had tragically been the victim of an unattended rope toy which he, as a young pup, decided to eat.

  • "This is one of the most devastating things that a dog can swallow; once the strand of rope gets into the small intestine it is almost impossible for it to pass naturally." Dr Steinmetz gave Rango a 15% chance of survival due to how sick he was and the damage that had been done. 

  • The young puppy was really struggling to eat after the surgery, and a suitable alternative was needed, that would be more digestible for Rango. His breeder made the decision to start feeding him insect-based dog food from Tuggs, which had seen promising results in a trial. The conclusion was that puppies being fed an insect-based protein diet had better body condition than those being fed a raw diet. Katie McCaul (BSc DipNat VN ANutR), our expert nutritionist at Tuggs, has urged pet owners to provide their dogs with safe toys. She said: "Dogs have a natural instinct to chew, and it's not uncommon for them to chew or even swallow toys that catch their attention." The expert explains that this can be "deadly", so if it happens owners should monitor them for signs of gastrointestinal distress, such as vomiting, diarrhoea, or loss of appetite. If owners see any concerning symptoms, to contact the vet immediately. Katie added: "If you notice any concerning symptoms, you should contact your veterinarian immediately."

  • Fortunately, red-lab Rango began to slowly recover by eating more food day by day, aided by Tuggs' recipes which gave him all the nutrients he needed. The pup has now been adopted by a family and has returned to enjoying life to the fullest. However, his journey serves as a reminder of the importance of keeping a close eye on our pets and providing them with safe toys and appropriate nutrition.


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