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The Paper Shredder: A Horrific Moment for John and His Family

There are no words to describe the horror my wife experienced yesterday with our beautiful harrier – John Winston.  She was in our home office when John walked by the paper shredder under our desk, and his long brown ear was sucked into the shredder.  Susan immediately pulled the electrical cord but his ear was shredded and stuck in the machine.  In fact, the entire shredder seemed attached to his head.My wife then immediately called 911 and four Nassau County police officers and a fire emergency worker were there in minutes. I was an hour away from the house and helpless; but I was able to make contact with my neighbor, Dean, who was at work in the area and he rushed to the scene.

John couldn’t move. If he did move, it caused terrible pain and he was frightened to death.  For an hour and half the team worked on disassembling the shredder piece by piece. John patiently and quietly stood there – a trooper.  I soon learned that shredders are made never to be taken apart. With extreme care, they were able to remove the shredder from his badly damaged ear.  My wife who is a rock and who also has a great sense of humor was quickly getting used to the idea that John would be a rasta-dog.

We rushed to the animal hospital and the doctor told us that he would have to amputate two-thirds of his ear. We were in shock and left to go home.  Later, we received a visit from one of the police officers who was concerned for John.  We then received a call from the animal hospital that the damage to his ear was much more severe than originally thought.  His ear would have to be amputated or in a gutsy move, Dr. Gelfand would try to save his ear as John would have nothing to lose by his attempt. We will not know for the next few days if the surgery was successful.  John came home last evening heavily sedated. At this time, my wife, our rock, shared with me the story of OOGY and we will take it day by day.

It was a terrible accident.  I felt that I needed to “Google” paper shredders and dogs and to my dismay this is not an uncommon experience. We were lucky – some dogs have lost their lives and this is so sad.  Today it was John Winston. Tomorrow, who knows? I think of our first grandchild who is expected to arrive next month and I shudder to think what damage a paper shredder can do.

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