Molly rushed to Vets Now after licking congealed palm oil during walk with owner

A dog needed emergency veterinary treatment after chewing on a mound of congealed palm oil washed up on a beach.

Martin Beecroft had to rush black Labrador German Shepherd cross, Molly, to Vets Now in Liverpool following the incident.

Although not toxic, palm oil is dangerous to dogs. Over the past few years it has been found on beaches up and down the country.

 

Palm oil on the Sefton coast, between Ainsdale and Birkdale in Merseyside. Copyright Sefton Coast Landscape Partnership
Palm oil on the Sefton coast, between Ainsdale and Birkdale in Merseyside. Copyright Sefton Coast Landscape Partnership

Martin has since discovered the “rancid smelling” fatty substance which seven-year-old Molly swallowed, came from the Maltese ship Kimya. It capsized 26 years ago, killing 10 of its crew. Storms are believed to have dislodged palm oil from the shipwreck’s cargo.

Martin was unaware of the risk when walking Molly with his wife, Sue, and their friends on Formby beach.

“Molly found this thing on the beach and started chewing on it,” said Martin, who lives in Northwich, Cheshire. “My first thought was that it was a dead seal that had washed up. It was blowing a gale and my voice wasn’t carrying so I ran over to pull her off and realised she’d taken a good few mouthfuls of it.”

Oblivious to the dangers of palm oil, Martin and his friends continued their walk only for the Labrador to find another lump.

Martin said: “Molly started chewing on another bit and it was then a chap passing by grabbed her and started pulling her off it

“When we got over there he said there had been warnings about palm oil locally and told us how dangerous it was for dogs. We looked it up on the internet and realised that it was very dangerous stuff.

“We rang our own vet in Warrington but they said ‘you haven’t got time to get to us, just get to the nearest vets you can find’. It was then we got the number for Vets Now in Liverpool and got there as quickly as we could.”

At the Vets Now clinic in Huyton, which provides emergency care for pets in Merseyside, the staff were able to treat Molly quickly as Martin had rung ahead to warn them. Thankfully, she made a quick recovery.

Vet Amy Jones, the Vets Now vet who treated Molly, said: “Molly had a lucky escape as palm oil can cause all kinds of problems for dogs including vomiting and diarrhoea leading to severe dehydration.

“More serious cases where dogs have eaten larger amounts have seen them suffer from raised liver enzymes and severe gastrointestinal upset. We support Mr Beecroft’s efforts to warn other dog owners about the risks of palm oil.”

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Image of Molly who needed emergency veterinary treatment after chewing on a mound of congealed palm oil washed up on a beach
Molly needed emergency veterinary treatment after chewing on a mound of congealed palm oil washed up on a beach

The Vets Now clinic in Liverpool — where Molly received treatment — was recently rated as “outstanding” in the delivery of emergency and critical care by the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons.

It’s one of 58 Vets Now clinics and pet emergency hospitals across the UK that are open through the night, seven-days-a-week, and day and night on weekends and bank holidays, to treat any pet emergencies that may occur.

All of Vets Now’s premises have a vet and vet nurse on site at all times.