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Dog with suspected brain tumour had needle in neck

A CT scan showing the needle lodged in the dog's neck (left) and Toby (right). Credit: PA

A dog feared to have a brain tumour has made a full recovery after he turned out to have a 7cm metal needle lodged in his neck.

Yorkshire terrier Toby’s owners took their pet to the vet after noticing he was suffering from neck pain, struggling to walk and showing signs of seizures.

The vet in Nairn, Scotland, suspected the 13-year-old dog might have a brain tumour and took X-rays of Toby’s head.

However, the X-rays revealed he actually had a 7cm metal sewing needle with thread attached lodged in his neck, piercing his spinal cord and dangerously close to his brain.

A needle with thread attached was found lodged in Toby’s neck. Credit: PA

Toby was referred to the specialist surgical clinic at the University of Edinburgh’s Hospital for Small Animals, where vets performed a CT scan to evaluate any major damage to Toby’s spinal cord.

During surgery they used specialist X-ray equipment to view the needle in real time, an approach which allowed the surgeons to carefully remove the object without the need for an invasive operation.

Toby has recovered well since the needle was removed in August 2018 and is now back walking and running normally.

An X-ray by vets revealed there was a 7cm metal sewing needle lodged dangerously close to his brain. Credit: PA

His owner, Alexander Jamieson, from Beauly near Inverness, said: "We feel that without the help of the experts in Edinburgh, Toby would not be here today.

"The care and attention he got was out of this world and we are delighted to see him back to his old self."

It is not known how the needle ended up in Toby’s neck but vets suspect that he could have eaten it or laid his head on it.

It is thought Toby may have eaten the needle or laid his head on it. Credit: PA

Samantha Woods, senior lecturer, and Jessica McCarthy, senior clinical training scholar in small animal surgery at the Hospital for Small Animals, are delighted with Toby’s recovery.

Ms Woods said: "We are really pleased to see Toby back to full health, thanks to the combined efforts of his vets and our specialist teams here in Edinburgh."

Toby has made a full recovery after his ordeal. Credit: PA