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Rescue dog with rare eating disorder from eating toys seeking a loving new owner

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Four-year-old crossbreed Ruby has been known to eat toys and bedding resulting in several vet visits. The young pup has undergone two operations to remove foreign objects from her intestines, meaning she must be supervised when given bedding and toys.

Ruby also has cropped ears, an illegal procedure in the UK, leaving staff at Gonsal Farm Animal Centre, in Shropshire, concerned potential owners would be put off from adopting her.

Staff worker Emily Daffern, who is currently taking care of Ruby, said: “When Ruby first came into our care she was the sweetest girl and, despite having ears that had been cruelly cropped in her past, she luckily had no health or behavioural problems, aside from some skin sensitivities.

“Unfortunately her first adoption did not go well although the adoptive family seemed a good match, it ended up being a very stressful environment for her and she returned to our care.

“As soon as she came back to us she wasn’t the fun, bubbly girl we’d known before. We were all heartbroken that, somehow, it had gone so wrong.

“She’s had to go onto a behaviour modification plan to help her learn to trust people again and has also developed pica; a strange disorder in which she eats non-edible items.”

Ruby’s eating habits continue to leave staff baffled why the dog consumes non-edible objects, making it even tougher to find the perfect forever home.

Emily said: “Ruby has had medical and behavioural assessments to try to establish this as well as medications to help manage it but none have given us a conclusive diagnosis as to why she does this.

“Sadly, we expect it’s a learned coping mechanism that she developed when she was stressed in her previous home.”

The rescue is looking for an owner who is patient, can provide lots of exercise and lives in a calm, adult-only home, with a secure garden space to take on Ruby.

Potential owners should also ideally be home most of the time to supervise the canine with items around the house.

Emily added: “She’ll need a special home with an owner who understands this condition and can help to manage it. We hope that, eventually, when she’s less stressed she will gradually stop doing it.”

“Ruby walks nicely on the lead and mixes well with other dogs but can sometimes be boisterous so will need an owner who can help learn how to interact appropriately when meeting doggy friends.

Emily added: “She’s an absolute sweetheart and is such a gem who deserves a special home where she can come out of her shell and truly shine.

“We’d initially like to find her a foster family as we help her settle in with a view to permanent adoption should everything go well – so ideally we’d be looking for someone who lives within an hour of the centre.”

If you or someone you know would be interested in adopting Ruby, visit her Find A Pet profile or contact Gonsal Farm on 0300 123 0753 or [email protected].

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