Vets Remove Small Stuffed Toy from Hope’s Body

With PermissionVeterinarians who performed an endoscopy on Hope today discovered and removed a small stuffed toy animal from her body. A few days ago, an ultrasound of Hope’s organs revealed an unidentified foreign object in her intestines, which turned out to be the small stuffed toy.

“Hope did really well through the procedure,” Laura Burban, director of the Dan Cosgrove Animal Shelter,” reported in today’s update.

Burban was delighted with the result because the dog is too frail for surgery. An endoscopy is a nonsurgical procedure used to examine an animal’s or a person’s digestive tract. Using an endoscope, a flexible tube with a light and camera attached to it, a vet can view pictures of a dog’s digestive tract on a color TV monitor. The procedure also allows vets to remove the obstruction, if possible.

“Once again a big shout out to the vets that worked tirelessly and extremely carefully to remove this stuffed animal by doing this endoscopy,” Burban said. “It was no easy task and they eliminated us having to put Hope through a surgery,” a surgery she might not have survived.

Hope, a black pit bull-lab mix, is believed to be between 5 and 7 years old. She was found by a driver on Route 1 near Branhaven Plaza last week. The driver saw the dog walking and falling down. She stopped, put the dog in her car, and took her across town to the Dan Cosgrove Animal Shelter at 749 E. Main St.

The dog, whom shelter staff later named Hope, was emaciated and near death and could not stand up or walk. She was about 30 pounds when found. She is receiving 24-hour veterinary care. “Her temperature has now returned to normal,” Burban said.

Hope for Hope

“The veterinarians are Hopeful that Hope will be able to hold down food and water more easily,” Burban said. “She was unfortunately sick again this morning and we still will need to watch Hope very carefully over the coming weeks so that her body is not overwhelmed with food and water, but we are feeling more positive now. We also need to focus on her blood levels going into normal range over the next few weeks so we will keep praying that happens too,” Burban added. 

“All in all today was a good day! We are happy with the outcome and we will follow up with more news tomorrow as we learn more.” Burban said.

The veterinarians are also completing some biopsies. “We should have those results back within a week or so,” Burban said.

Burban said in her post that Hope’s support system includes folks from Australia, the UK, Hawaii, California, Georgia, Massachusetts and Chicago. And, of course, Connecticut. Her fans post on Facebook. Burban asked if people would supply their town, state or even country from which they write.

“People have been asking where all the messages are coming from…so we would like to be able to say,” she said.

“All of us at the shelter are so touched by all of you who have kept in contact and reached out about Hope. All of you have really been the shining light in such a sad story and we are so grateful for all of your support and your continuing care for Hope’s recovery. It really is amazing.  Thank all of you for having such amazing hearts!”

We know people are still asking how they can donate. Donations can be made at and then click on donate. Or you can mail payments to Dan Cosgrove Animal Shelter, 749 E. Main St., Branford, CT 06405.


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