WHILE PPE has been keeping people safe over the past year throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, for one local pooch it was almost fatal.

Rambo the Rottweiler was rushed to Vets4Pets 24/7 hospital, based at Pets at Home at Birstall Retail Park, after coughing up a latex glove.

After a quick check, Rambo had to be taken to hospital for what was expected to be a fairly routine endoscopy, but turned into a three hour operation.

By the end of the procedure, a total of 29 latex gloves had been removed from the dog’s stomach, which meant that including the one he had thrown up he had eaten 30 gloves in total.

After the procedure, veterinary surgeon Keith Leonard said the quick thinking of Rambo’s owner had saved his dog’s life.

Rambo’s owner, Darren Coyne, only noticed something was awry when Rambo was sick, bringing up a latex glove.

Mr Coyne, from Wakefield, kept a supply of the gloves in his car which he used in his job for Intercontinental Group, but it appeared Rambo had been slyly stealing them from the car and eating them when his owner’s back was turned.

Mr Coyne took his pet to Vets4Pets in Wakefield for a check up, before heading to Birstall for an endoscopy, which was when Rambo’s secret eating habit was uncovered.

Mr Leonard said: “When Rambo was referred to us, we didn’t think we’d be finding much; particularly as he literally bounced into the hospital seemingly without a care in the world.

“But the seemingly brief endoscopy turned into a three-hour operation as we removed 29 further PPE gloves from Rambo’s stomach, making it 30 in total that he had seemingly eaten.

“Each time we pulled a glove out, we went back to check it was the last one and found another one – it was something we’ve never seen or heard of before.

“While Rambo was outwardly in a healthy condition, it wouldn’t have taken much for his situation to have turned critical and his owner’s quick thinking to bring him in to the practice and then our hospital, effectively saved his life.”

Mr Coyne said Rambo must have got hold of the gloves during car trips to and from walks.

“I’ve been taking Rambo in the car with me for many journeys and he’s never paid much attention to anything in the car,”he said.

“I had a number of boxes of gloves and just assumed I’d used all of one box; which is why Rambo got away with eating and hiding them.

“When he was sick with one glove I instantly recognised it and searched the car for any evidence of him eating anything else.

“That was when I found the box hidden underneath his bed and the missing gloves.

“I rushed him to my vet practice and from there I was in their professional hands as they helped Rambo.

“When he went to Birstall for the endoscopy I thought they might find one or two other gloves, but was absolutely gobsmacked when Keith and his team eventually pulled the 29 gloves out.

“I can’t thank them enough for how they helped Rambo, particularly as he seemed to be his normal self and oblivious to the dangerous situation he was in.”

Less than 12 hours after the operation Rambo was home and is now fully recovered, and when he travels in the car is now kept away from anything he might be tempted to eat.

Mr Leonard said the incident was a warning to other pet owners to keep items their dog might eat well away from them.

He added: “Dogs are inquisitive animals and the huge increase in usage of PPE gloves thanks to the Covid-19 pandemic mean they’re more likely to come across these new and potentially fragrant items.

“While Rambo was lucky, other pets might not be, so we’d encourage all owners to make sure to keep items that dogs or other pets shouldn’t have, way out of reach.

“But, if something does happen, then following the steps Darren took will really help their pet’s predicament.”

Mr Coyne added: “He’s a lucky dog, the gloves are now stored away out of his reach and I’ve told him ‘hands off’ my equipment.”