Davey's time on this earth was all too brief, but even a short life can teach great lessons. Davey was a tiny yellow pup, only four pounds and barely 6 weeks old when he was referred to LABMED. Davey was slowly dying from intussusception, a condition where the intestines fold back in on themselves. His breeder did not want to pay for surgery to correct the problem and took Davey home to die. A worker at the veterinary hospital where Davey was taken was determined to save this pup. She contacted LABMED and then persuaded the breeder to release ownership. LABMED quickly voted to fund the needed surgery and Davey was treated immediately.
Davey came through the surgery and within just a few days was playing with other dogs and enjoying life to the fullest in a loving foster home. A happy ending, however, was not to be. Davey suddenly sickened and his foster mom rushed him back to the veterinarian. While there, Davey vomited a spider--a brown recluse. He continued to weaken and soon Davey's brief life came to an end.
Davey's tragedy could not have been prevented; puppies—and even older dogs—will play with spiders and insects, sometimes putting them in their mouths and swallowing them. Most times, this causes no great consequence, but sometimes, as with Davey, the results are tragic.
As the members of LABMED's Board discussed how to memorialize Davey, we felt the best way might be to provide sources of information on what spiders, insects, common yard and garden plants, and other household products can be harmful or even fatal to pets. We've provided a list of links to sites containing this information and urge you to visit them and learn what you can do to protect your pet—or what you should do if your pets are bitten, stung, or have ingested potentially poisonous material.
If even one pet is saved by this information, Davey's short life will have served a higher purpose.
The following web sites contain information on poisonous insects, animals, plants, and man-made products. Some offer antidotes. While you may find this information useful, we urge you to always contact your veterinarian first in cases of bites, stings, or suspected poisoning.
General information on the brown recluse spider:
Animals and insects:
All poisons, antidote information, general safety tips:
National Animal Poison Control Center:Return to LABMED