LUCKY LUCIE: Yaroomba’s Sheryl Wright walks Lucie. The pup nearly died after eating a toadfish.
LUCKY LUCIE: Yaroomba’s Sheryl Wright walks Lucie. The pup nearly died after eating a toadfish. John Mccutcheon

Pet owners warned as deadly toadfish wash up on the beach

AN EARLY morning walk along beautiful beach took a nasty turn for one Yaroomba resident and her canine companion, prompting a festive season warning to others.

Sheryl Wright was walking her dog Lucie at Yaroomba beach on Sunday at about 5am, a morning highlighted by an unusually large amount of dead fish washed up on shore, including scores of dead toadfish.

"It was the first time I'd seen that amount of fish," Ms Wright said. "There was probably over 100 just on that stretch of beach at Yaroomba."

Not thinking much of it however, Ms Wright, Lucie, and her other dog, continued on their morning journey.

The trio returned home without incident, however, less than an hour later, Lucie fell violently ill, becoming distressed and vomiting.

Ms Wright inspected her stricken pal, and realised Lucie had managed to eat a piece of toadfish that had washed up on the beach, sparking a rushed visit to the vet, who hooked Lucie up to an IV drip to get her through the day alive.

"She's (Lucie) not allowed to go back to the beach this morning, she's banned for a little bit," Ms Wright laughed. "She had a bit of a rough night but she's okay again this morning."

Ms Wright said it was an unfortunate but timely reminder to pet owners to keep a vigilant eye on what their dogs were sniffing about when at the beach, but more importantly, to fishermen to ensure they disposed of unwanted catches properly.

"It's a reminder for owners just to see what they're (dogs) doing because you don't really look at everything they're into (on the beach)," Ms Wright said.

"Nobody wants to lose a pet and these mishaps may be easily avoided."

Luckily for Ms Wright and Lucie, the IV drip proved sufficient to get her through, but more severe cases of poisoning from toadfish can result in breathing difficulties and leave vets forced to place dogs on a ventilator, a costly exercise for unlucky owners.


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