Ed and I were just returning from an hour-long hike around the campground at Tucson Mountain Park when we encountered a narrow wash thick with cacti and mesquite trees.
I would have gladly retraced our steps to take a less prickly route back – but ‘never-late-for-lunch-Ed’ persisted on taking the shortcut.
I was watching my footing carefully as we descended down the rocky bank and when I looked up I saw that Jasper’s nose was little covered in cactus nodules.
To my horror, he started lashing at them with his tongue. Those he reached, he gulped down.
I whipped off my t-shirt (yes, I was wearing a camisole) and tore the remaining nodules from his nose as fast as I could.
We got back to the RV and I immediately Googled “dog eats cactus” and other variations of the phrase. The results weren’t optimistic with ‘death’ being a prevalent word in the search results returned.
I then Googled the nearest vet and we rushed Jasper in to have him treated.
The vet put him under and told us that she not only removed needles from his hose and lips but from both sides of his tongue and the back of his throat.
The rest of that afternoon and all that night was pretty awful with Jasper groggy from the anesthetic and crying / whining almost continuously.
I don’t think I got a wink of sleep until about 5AM.
About an hour later, Jasper woke me up when he puked on my bed.
Since then, he’s been right as rain – AND staying clear of cacti. 🙂
Angie Newton says
Oh no poor Jasper (and mom too!). Hope he’s doing better now. I’m sure that was no fun!
That must have been so scary! Especially after you looked it up on Google. I’m so glad that Jasper is okay. What kind of dog is Jasper? I’m not really familiar with dog breeds. He looks like a chocolate lab, but he looks more fit and trim than I thought chocolate labs usually are.
I would bet money that Jasper will NEVER voluntarily go near cacti again. There are so many plants that can be dangerous to cats and dogs. My cats are indoors, but they would try and eat any plant that I tried to bring inside and so now all plants stay in the garden. I know that dogs like to eat grass, especially if they feel sick or if they are just craving greens. Maybe Jasper thought the cacti nodules were like grass strands.
Ooowww!!!!! I’m glad Jasper is okay. Even though he had cactus needles in his nose, mouth and throat, I bet Jasper loves his life. Sounds like you’re a great mom to him.
Aww…poor Jasper. A painful experience to go through for everyone.
This reminds me of 2 dogs I had who decided to corner a porcupine one morning. Their faces were full of quills and I took them out myself. Should have had a Vet do it I guess, but we survived it. Dogs who don’t know any better are so inquisitive about the worst things!