NEW YORK CITY - A 13-year-old pooch has lived to wag his tail after veterinarians performed emergency surgery to remove more than 100 pennies from his stomach.
According to Tim, Jack's owner, the rambunctious 13-year-old Jack Russell terrier knocked over a box of pennies while trying to nose into a bag of bagel crumbs.
"He'll eat about anything, you know, if he can get to food," Tim said. "The pennies were between him and the bagel crumbs, so he ate the pennies."
One delicious crumb and penny after another went down the hatch. but some started to come back up and eventually Jack found himself at Bluepearl Veterinarian Manhattan for emergency treatment.
When the doctors took an X-ray of Jack, they saw this big white spot indicating metal. You can even see the outlines of the coins. They knew they were dealing with more than just a few. Doctor Amy Zalcman says they used a scope, which contains a fiber-optic camera, and saw exactly what you see here inside Jack's stomach, a small fortune in pennies. There was danger of blockage, and since pennies minted after 1982 are made of zinc -a toxic reaction.
"It can cause trauma to the kidneys, liver. More importantly and most commonly, you will actually see anemia associated with that," Dr. Zalcman said.
They attached a tiny, retrieval device to the scope and removed the pennies four and five together, pulling out coins for two hours.
"Rarely do you see 111 pennies in one animal," Dr. Zalcman said. "Why would they eat that much?"
Jack is now a $1.11 or 111 pennies poorer, but is expected to return to mint condition.
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