Emergency vets come to the rescue of Doberman Maui

A puppy named after a stone-stealing Disney character needed life-saving surgery – after nicking a stone himself and swallowing it whole.

In an amazing case of life imitating art four-month-old Doberman Maui managed to dislodge a stone from his owner’s fireplace – then gulped it down, where it got stuck in his intestine.

Maui gets his name from a character in the hit 2016 Disney film Moana who steals a sacred stone which then becomes a princess’s heart.

The bizarre real-life coincidence left his owner, Paula Meanwell, and staff at Vets Now’s pet emergency clinic in Hull stunned – and left playful Maui needing a major operation.

Image of Maui the Doberman looking at the camera for Vets Now article on puppy eating rocks
Four-month-old Maui ate a stone from his owners' fireplace which got stuck in his intestine ©Vets Now

An X-ray showed a two-inch stone in the intestine and senior vet Susana Jauregui had to carry out what’s called an enterotomy to remove it.

Four-month-old Maui had been suffering chronic nausea but still wanted to eat and drink normally and Paula couldn’t understand why.

She said: “Maui’s a brilliant dog – always playing, full of fun and in at everything.

“About a week before he got ill we noticed he was getting fixated with the stones around our fireplace. He was using his mouth to prise them free, pick them up and then carry them across the floor where he dropped them.

“So my husband and I started removing them so he couldn’t do it anymore but he obviously decided to swallow one when we weren’t looking.

“The staff at Vets Now were great and had the stone zipped up in a plastic bag when we went to collect Maui in case we wanted it back!”

Image of the stone Maiu had eaten for Vets Now article on puppy eating rocks
The team at Vets Now in Hull were able to remove the stone from Maui's intestine ©Vets Now

Paula added: “We have an older dog called Moana because we like the Disney film so much – so it seemed natural to call this one Maui.

“But I never dreamed he’d live up to the role so much! It was all quite a drama and he came home with a big lampshade collar round his neck to stop him trying to lick the stitches.

“But he recovered fairly quickly from it all and it wasn’t long before he was back to his bouncy normal self.”

Senior vet Susana, who led the team looking after Maui, said: “You never expect to have a Disney character and storyline playing out on your shift.

“But we’re prepared for all emergencies – including stones lodged in the intestine – and we were just pleased we could help.

“Maui was such a lovable little dog and this could have become very serious if his owners hadn’t acted as quickly as they did.”

  1. Maui the stone-stealing Doberman

    Maui is named after a stone-stealing Disney character

    Image of Maui the Doberman lying on the floor for Vets Now article on puppy eating rocks
  2. Maui the stone-stealing Doberman

    He became fascinated with stones in his owners’ fireplace and gulped one down

    Image of Maui the Doberman and sister Moana for Vets Now article on puppy eating rocks
  3. Maui the stone-stealing Doberman

    His owners rushed him to Vets Now in Hull where the team were able to remove the stone from his intestine

    Image of Maiu the Doberman's scar after his operation for Vets Now article on puppy eating rocks
  4. Maui the stone-stealing Doberman

    When he was well enough, he went home wearing a lampshade collar

    Image of Maui the Doberman wearing a lampshade collar for Vets Now article on puppy eating rocks
  5. Maui the stone-stealing Doberman

    Thankfully, he was soon on the mend and back to his playful self

    Image of Maiu the Doberman with his owner at home for Vets Now article on puppy eating rocks

The Vets Now clinic in Hull – where Maui received treatment – is one of more than 60 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 always have a vet and vet nurse on site.

Vets Now also offer an online video consultation service to make professional veterinary advice more easily available.

While the service is not suitable for life-threatening emergencies, our experienced vets are available to discuss any worries or concerns pet owners might have.

If a pet needs an in-person follow-up appointment at any vet practice, Vets Now will refund the online consultation fee, so owners never pay twice.