Dog hooked on trout flies

A German shepherd in the US has become so obsessed with bugs it has taken to eating trout fishing flies. 

According to a report on a German shepherd named Frieda recently swallowed more than a dozen fishing flies. “She has been eating bugs in the backyard all summer. She is almost manic about it,” said the dog’s owner, Deborah Carlson.

“She will go around and jump against the fence and grab bugs.” But that was far from Carlson’s mind when she came home one evening recently to feed the dog and drop off some supplies she’d picked up for a fishing trip before heading back to work.

When she returned four hours later, Carlson found Frieda had knocked her fishing supplies off the counter. As she cleaned up the mess she noticed a container of dry flies was empty.

“I had 16 brand-new flies. I had not had time to crimp the barbs yet so they were barbed,” she said. “I took a pencil and sifted through all the chewed-up paper on the floor and could not find any of the flies.”

Carlson said the dog regularly clocks up veterinary bills as it suffers from epilepsy and is on medication and has had other health problems. “I love her but I’m not operating,” she said to herself.

Carlson works at Washington State University and contacted a friend at the school’s College of Veterinary Medicine for advice. She was told she should bring the dog in for X-rays. The scans showed 15 flies had made it through the dog’s throat, stomach and intestines. The 16th fly was never found. (See X-ray below)

Frieda ended up passing all 15 flies without problem.

“It’s just amazing none got stuck in her stomach or throat, and these were barbed,” Carlson said. “It’s just one more thing to go in her little scrapbook.”

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The X-ray with fly hooks clearly visible two-thirds up near the centre.

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