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Louis’ story

“In a split second Louis had been able to get a liquid laundry tablet and was in such a dangerous situation; it really all happened in the blink of an eye. The days felt incredibly long hoping that he was starting to show signs of recovery…” – Louis’ carer

Having ingested a laundry tablet at home, Louis began to vomit and drool. Attempts to reverse the damage had not worked at his daytime family practice, and Louis continued to deteriorate: he was vomiting, regurgitating, had diarrhoea and began to experience severe respiratory challenges. At this point, Louis was referred to our Emergency + Critical Care team and admitted to our Dog Intensive Care Unit (ICU).

Louis in our Dog ICU

“Louis was at The Ralph for several days and we received regular updates and support which made it a little bit easier during such a traumatic time. Luckily Louis is a friendly pup and isn’t yet scared of going to the vets or meeting new people so he built his fan club up pretty quickly.”

Depending on a dog’s size and the amount consumed, detergent ingestion can very much be a life-threatening situation. With Louis being so young and having consumed the entire contents of the laundry tablet, he was struggling to breathe, and there was a high chance he had aspirated (inhaled into his lungs) vomit or some of the detergent. Diagnostic imaging (a bedside ultrasound and chest X-rays) confirmed the former to be true.

Louis was monitored 24/7 in the ICU and treated with intravenous fluids, anti-sickness medication, antibiotics, and oxygen therapy to stabilise him. His condition initially worsened and there was concern that Louis might require mechanical ventilation (advanced life support providing invasive oxygenation), but much to his care team’s delight, he started to show signs of improvement after two days in the hospital.

Louis feeling a little better!

“It was an incredibly frightening time whilst Louis was ill, not knowing if he would be strong enough to make it through, particularly as he is such a young pup. We have learnt the hard way how dangerous regular household items can be and how quickly an accident can happen, we hope that by sharing our story others can avoid this. We are so grateful to all the team at The Ralph for the care and support Louis – and us – have been shown and we are eternally grateful. However, in the nicest possible way, we hope we won’t be back!” – Louis’ carer

Here is the special moment little Louis was reunited with his carers…


Louis continues to be monitored at home, but we are delighted to hear he is back to his cheeky self!

Louis at home!

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Take care,

Team Ralph

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