A treasured pet puppy who helped a little girl speak for the first time almost came a cropper, after swallowing a huge glove while out on his walk.
Rolo, a 17-month-old Labrador, is owned by little Maisie Chapman, seven, who attends Furze Down School in Winslow.
Maisie was born with dyspraxia, and problems with her muscles which make it difficult for her to communicate.
Mum Michelle bought Maisie the puppy in an effort to build her confidence and the pair hit it off instantly.
Michelle, from Windsor Park, Buckingham, said: “Within a week she had said his name and she just dotes on him, she sits and babbles with him.
“The first week after we got him she came downstairs and started to say his name, having Rolo has really boosted her confidence and makes her feel that there is something that is just for her.”
But disaster stuck last month when Rolo started to show signs of being unwell.
He was off his food and being sick, unable to even hold down and drink of water.
Michelle said: “He went downhill and wasn’t eating at all. He’s only a puppy and we knew something wasn’t right.”
The family raced Rolo to Vets4Pets in Buckingham, where principle vet Maggie Doherty performed diagnostic investigations.
An x-ray and ultrasound scan showed that Rolo had swallowed something soft which had become lodged in his intestine.
She had to act quickly, and took Rolo into surgery performing a life-saving laparotomy.
And to the vet and the family’s surprise, the cause of the blockage was a large woollen glove.
But despite the mystery over where the glove came from, Rolo is now happily back at home with Michelle, Maisie and her brothers Cole, 11 and Sam four after a two night stay at the surgery.
Michelle said: “Maisie was so worried while Rolo was in the vets, but thankfully he is now getting back to his normal self. He has a special diet which will help his intestine to recover, but he is getting better every day.
“We didn’t recognise the glove, and I couldn’t believe it when the vet said what it was, we think he must have picked it up when he was off the lead on his walk.
“But Vets4Pets were absolutely fantastic, and took care of everything, including dealing with the insurance company. It is so important to get your pet insured, if we hadn’t the treatment would have cost us around £2,000.”
Rolo’s case was so unusual and inspiring that Vets4Pets made the puppy their national Pet of The Month.
A spokesman for the practice said: “Rolo is such an interesting case from both the perspective of the skills of our surgical team, and the very important part that Rolo plays in his family life.
“The Chapman family were delighted that Rolo’s life was saved and Vets4Pets Buckingham were honoured to have been there for the family every step of the way.”