Peanut's nasty brush with a grass seed
Peanut turned up at the clinic with a very sore and swollen back foot. He had been out walking a few days before in the dry long grass and as such we suspected that the most likely cause of the abscess was a grass seed.
When grasses seed and dry out the awns become sharp and spear-like. Unfortunately when they get stuck in our pets fur or between the toes, they poke into the skin and inch their way through so they sit underneath the skin and cause a nasty infection or abscess. The arrow like shape of the grass seeds also causes another huge problem, these grass seeds can travel a long way under the skin and be very difficult to find, grass seeds which go in the feet have been know to travel up to the shoulder or even in to internal body cavities.
Luckily for Peanut, his grass seed was found quite easily - under a general anaesthetic, the abscess was lanced then explored with special "alligator forceps", the wound was left open to drain and after a short course of antibiotics he should be well on the way to recovery.
During late Spring and early Summer if your pets go for walks in the dry grass it is very important to check between thier toes and remove any seeds if you see them, for long haired dogs a spring time clip makes identifying and removal of grass seeds much easier.