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Matilda, need emergency surgery after swallowing COVID masks

Matilda, need emergency surgery after swallowing COVID masks

not a isolated case

OTTAWA, ONTARIO ~~~~~  January 20, 2023  (LSNews)  Throughout my Coronavirus Chronicles I have written much about the destructive and just plain stupid ‘public health’ policies that were imposed on us during the pandemic, some of which may linger for years, unfortunately. 

There was government panic and over reach in imposing draconian lockdowns, despite the growing knowledge and evidence of the harms they caused, while doing little to stop the spread of the virus. Instead of listening to the voices of reason from many other health professionals, economists, and community leaders, who called, and even begged, for ending the lockdowns, the branch COVIDians silenced, cancelled, and even arrested them for ‘speaking out.’ With the lockdowns also came needless school closures which inflicted immeasurable damage on the lives of children that will be felt for many years to come.

Then came the vaccines mandates, again useless and cruel. Governments forced many, on pain of job loss, and/or complete ostracization from society, to inject an untested vaccine into their bodies. Vaccines that we now know don’t work, and may be causing serious harm and even death to those who took the injections. 

Then the most ridiculous, irrational, senseless and useless pieces of COVID theatre yet—mask mandates. Politicians like Trudeau and his band of merry Liberals donned them to signal their virtue, proving that they were doing ‘the right thing’ to protect themselves and more importantly others. Anyone who refused to mask up was seen as a potential threat and COVID denier, spreading germs to hapless others. The rules around the on again, off again, donning and doffing of masks only magnified the insane theatre around the mandates. You had to be a complete moron if you couldn’t see the lunacy in all of this, yet no one said anything, because there were Nazi-like enforcers who insisted you follow the rules despite their inconsistency and almost certain knowledge that masks did nothing to protect anyone from the virus anyhow.

But there is more to this mandated mask malfeasance. Other casualties of which most may not be aware. Despite the fact that masks wer never mandated for outdoors, many gulligle people still oped to wear them, no doubt, their fears well stoked public health officials, governments and of course, their well paid public relations team–the legacy media. Many fearful parents also insisted their kids wear masks even as they walked to and from school (when schools were re-opened from time to time).

So it isn’t much wonder you see discarded or lost masks littering parks, streets, parking lots, school yards, playgrounds, walking paths, everywhere. Lying in the dirt, the grass or the snow, and nobody willing to pick them up and dispose of them, because, well, you know, COVID germs... It seems this is human condition, when something new comes along, it begins to litter our streets, sidewalks and pathways everywhere, and such is the case with COVID masks and gloves for that matter. They are the new plastic straws or disposable water bottles.

Why do I mention masks? Because my dog, Matilda, swallowed a couple of these masks and it almost killed her. Throughout the course of the pandemic Matilda took a great liking to COVID masks. Why I do not know, because, well… she could never tell me. She had ‘eaten’ a few along the way, but thankfully regurgitated them, without too much fanfare shortly thereafter. However, if a dog doesn’t manage to vomit them up, masks pose a greater danger, than say socks or mitts, which a lot of dogs also like to ‘eat’. This is because masks often contain metal, or plastic for the nose piece and staples to attach the strings, which can pierce the stomach or intestinal lining. They can also create a complete blockage or lead to the material becoming so taut that it saws through the intestine, causing life-threatening perforations.The elastics also present other dangers of becoming twisted and entangled in the intestines.

Last week, we noticed Matilda was becoming increasingly restless and agitated after unsuccessfully trying to do her business. She was vomiting repeatedly, had small bouts of diarrhea and refused to eat or drink anything. After two days of such behaviour, we rushed her off to an emergency animal hospital in Ottawa for a thorough examination. The X-rays and ultrasounds detected an object blocking her small intestine, although they weren’t sure what it was. What they were sure of was that if they didn’t perform emergency surgery to remove, it would kill her, or we could euthanize her to end her suffering. 

Needless to say, we opted for the surgery, which we were told was not risk free for a number of reasons. First, as the object was lodged in the intestine this involved a delicate removal procedure, at best, with a high possibility of post op infection. The stress of the obstruction had brought on dehydration, tachycardia, (very rapid heartbeat), and low blood pressure, all of which increased the risk of the success of the surgery, or her surviving it at all. After two nail biting hours we got the good news, they were able to successfully remove the object–which was two cloth COVID masks that had entangled themselves together into a ball. The better news was that the surgeon was able to ‘push’ them back into her stomach as they had only begun their journey through her small intestine. Making an incision in her stomach, rather than her intestine to remove them, presented much reduced risk and offered a better prognosis from both the risk of infection and the healing perspective.

Our pup, Matilda, was still not out of the woods though, there were many other post op challenges she faced. The continued heart issue, which had yet to correct itself required medication and ongoing monitoring, and there was still the risk of infection, as well as developing aspiration pneumonia from her continuous vomiting leading up to the emergency surgery. After five days in the hospital under continuous critical care, but showing increasing improvement and a healthy appetite, we were able to take Matilda home. We have a pharmacy of post op medications to administer that include heart medication, antibiotics and anti-nausia medicines to help in her recovery processs in the coming weeks. Although some ten pounds lighter than before her ordeal, she appears on the way to recovery.

Now our Matilda is not the only dog this has happened to, as the vets at the hospital told us that this was not their first case of a dog swallowing a COVID mask they had seem. Albeit some were luckier, in that induced vomiting did the trick, or they were able to remove the mask by doing an endoscopy. While not much fun for the dog, it is far less riskier than surgery.

These are not isolated cases, In the United Kingdom a cocker spaniel in Bristol, England had to undergo emergency surgery to remove a COVID mask that was blocking his intestines. A border collie also had to have emergency treatment after trying to swallow a COVID mask.

COVID mask removed from a dog’s stomach

In Massachusettes emergency surgery had to be performed on King, a two-year old Labrador Retriever, after an abdominal ultrasound confirmed his gastrointestinal tract was blocked with a ‘linear foreign body obstruction’, that turned out to be masks. The linear objects they saw in the ultrasound—two squiggly lines—were the pieces of metal from inside the two COVID masks the dog had ‘eaten’. Fortunately King has recovered nicely. But King is not alone, a vet hosital in North Grafton, Massachusettes has seen at least 11 dogs that were believed to have eaten COVID masks. Not all dogs are as lucky King and Matilda. A family in the UK lost their 16-month old cocker spaniel after it ate a COVID mask and the wire from the mask perforated its intestine causing the puppy to develop sepsis. Despite the best efforts of the veterinarians the pup died of the infection.




COVID masks present dangers to other animals and wildlife, as birds and small animals can become entangled in the elastic straps, and other animals they may also accidently ingest them.

Most vets have advised dog owners, to be extra vigilent when walking their dogs to ensure they don’t end up ingesting a COVID mask, and to watch for signs of trouble that may indicate they have eaten one. That is all well and good, but given my position on the whole COVID theatre of masks, I have to ask, why is this even happening? Public health officials and politicans, despite their ridiculous posturing have known almost from the get-go that masks were virtually useless when it came to stopping the spread of COVID. So now we have masks entering oceans, polluting landfills, littering our parks and woodlands and endangering our pets and wildlife, for no good reason, other than COVID theatre. For those whose dogs did have such near lethal encounters with carelessly disgarded COVID masks, the costs of surgery and aftercare are astronomical. Are there any Canadian Emergency Response Benefts (CERB) programs to cover the cost of these unexpected of these pandemic reponses impacts or casaualties? Just one of the mounting number of COVID response casualities and collateral damage, that could have been avoided if common sense had prevailed over our governments’ panic and posturing of the COVID era.

#LSN_Health #LSN_PublicSafety #LSN_TBay  #LSN_SSM 

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I am a retired journalist who served with the Canadian Armed Forces and for the last 13 years of my working career was a Senior Emergency Planning Analyst with the RCMP. I am a wife, mother and dog, cat and intrepid explorer 
An Intrepid warrior exploring issues in today's strange new world.
Roxanne Halverson

The views expressed in this opinion article or photos are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by Lake Superior News / Lake Superior Media.

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  • Naloxone Kits require in Workplaces by June 1, 2023
    Naloxone Kits require in Workplaces by June 1, 2023

    Naloxone Kits require in Workplaces by June 1, 2023

    THUNDER BAY, ONTARIO ~~~~  December 26, 2022 (LSNews)   On December 14, 2022,  Monte McNaughton, Minister of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development. “That’s why our government is the first in North America to require naloxone kits be accessible in at-risk workplaces by June 1, 2023, to raise awareness for those struggling with addiction, reduce stigma and save lives.”

    In 2021, 2,819 people died from opioid-related causes in Ontario – the highest number on record and up from 366 in 2003. Naloxone is a life-saving medication that can temporarily reverse an opioid overdose, restore breathing within two to five minutes, and allow time for medical help to arrive.

    #LSN_Econ #LSN_Health  #NorthBay  #LSN_Sudbury  #LSN_SSM  #LSN_TBay 

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