May 2022’s Pet of the Month: Bentley the Black Labrador

By: Elinor

Hello everyone! This is the first time you’ll be hearing from me on the BSV social media but it certainly won’t be the last! My name is Elinor and I’m one of the vets at Bright Side. Having only started here in September 2020, I’ve honestly been overwhelmed by the number of lovely pets (and equally lovely owners!) I’ve met – myself and the rest of the Crew have decided it’s about time we start recognising some of them! So welcome to the first ‘Pet of the Month‘. Each month we will pick a pet who deserves some extra attention.. An extremely difficult task when we see so many every day!

This month we’d like to introduce you to Bentley…

Bentley is a gorgeous, 4 year old rescue labrador who spent some time with us in the last few weeks after a nasty accident with a stick. Like the fun-loving, playful boy he is when he was out walking he grabbed a stick and ran with it, much to his mum’s upset! Although Bentley and his other fur siblings went home and carried on as normal, Bentley’s mum knew straight away something wasn’t right and called us.

When we saw Bentley his mum reported he had been pawing at his mouth and wasn’t enjoying his food as much as normal. On examination, although there was nothing obvious in his mouth he was clearly sore and let us know he was hurting. We got him booked in straight away for an explore of his mouth under an anaesthetic for the next morning.

Very typically for the active and playful boy he is, Bentley was completely normal the next morning and had had no further pain in his mouth. His mum opted to keep a very close eye on him to see how he got on throughout the day…


At 6 o’clock that evening Bentley became poorly again and began to bleed from his mouth. His mum and dad brought him straight down to us to be examined that evening . It was clear on his arrival Bentley was not well and needed to be seen to straight away. Along with two of our fantastic nurses and the permission of his mum, we were able to heavily sedate Bentley enough that evening as an emergency to examine his mouth.

Warning! Gruesome Pics Below!

After some searching and an x-ray to check there was no damage to Bentley’s trachea (windpipe), we found a large shard of wood wedged in the back of Bentley’s throat in some of the soft tissues. The wood in question was around 6cm long and very tricky to see as almost all of it was lodged in the back of Bentley’s mouth. With some steady hands, a very good dog and some expert opening of the mouthy by our lovely nurse Nikki, we managed to retrieve the entire piece.

The picture below is from shortly after it was removed from Bentley’s mouth.

Whilst Bentley was busy dozing under his sedation, we made sure we could see no more evidence of any injuries and stemmed the blood with a special small dressing to plug the hole where the stick came from. He then had a good snooze whilst I rang his mum and told her what we had found.

Bentley went home that evening a few hours after he arrived minus the stick souvenir in his mouth (but his mum taking it home to show his dad what he had managed to do!).

We’re very grateful to his mum for letting us use his story to highlight stick injuries and what can happen if they decide to play with wood. Bentley was very lucky his mum and dad were so fast acting and thankfully it had lodged within a retrievable distance. Sometimes this isn’t always the case and owners may not always notice straight away something is amiss. Where possible, direct playtime to dog toys that do not splinter and are suitable for your dog’s breed and size. Of course, accidents can and do always happen so if you are concerned your dog may be going through something similar to Bentley, as always please do not hesitate to contact us.