Maisy The St Bernard ‘Bears All’ For Vets

Maisy the St Bernard came to Paragon Veterinary Referrals, in Wakefield. There were fears eight-year-old Maisy had cancer when a CT scan showed a mass on her spleen, along with an unusually full stomach – an issue which was initially put down to her food not being digested properly.

Maisy’s owner Jane Dickinson, from Roberttown, near Dewsbury, was fearing the worst when her beloved pet went under the knife.

But when vet surgeon Nick Blackburn carried out an operation to remove Maisy’s spleen, he found the stomach was still enlarged and, on further examination, he found an array of soft toys in her stomach.

Nick, who has worked at Paragon since the £5 million veterinary centre opened its doors in February, said: “It’s fair to say this was not something we were expecting to find!  We all know certain dogs enjoy chewing things they shouldn’t but managing to devour four full teddy bears is quite a feat.

Some of the toys taken out of Maisy’s stomach

“I know Jane was worried about Maisy as she is quite old for a St Bernard, so we were naturally delighted the operation was such a success and we were able to return a happy, healthy dog to the Dickinsons.”

Maisy’s predicament certainly caused a stir in the Dickinson household as Jane and her husband James had never previously seen their pet show a fondness for chewing or eating toys.

Jane said: “When Maisy went in I did think ‘is she coming out?’ but she is loving life now – it’s like she’s got her youth back.

The CT scan showing the mass in Maisy’s spleen and her full stomach

“The toys weren’t even hers! She will steal the chihuahuas’ toys and play with them but I’ve never seen her trying to chew them. Her eating habits had been completely normal.

“I didn’t even recognise one of the toys – my brother also keeps chihuahuas and it turns out it belonged to his dog.”

Maisy has since made a full recovery from her operation and a histology report has shown no signs of cancer. The loveable gentle giant is enjoying life back at home with Jane, James and the family chihuahuas, Mabel and Guinness.  

Jane said: “Now it’s like she’s got a new lease of life. She is a good age for a St Bernard and has lived longer than any of the others we have had.  She’s a one-off!”

Maisy on a walk