Suffolk

Rescued bull terrier Eric has 50 pellets in head

Eric the bull terrier Image copyright Beds for Bullies
Image caption Eric was rescued in Turkey where it is believed he was used for dog fighting

A rescue centre dog taken to a vet after developing a lump on its jaw was found to have about 50 pieces of lead shot embedded in its head.

Bull terrier Eric had been brought from Turkey by Liz Haslam, who runs the Beds For Bullies sanctuary in Suffolk.

"The vet took X-rays and said, 'I can't believe what I'm seeing'," she said.

It is too dangerous to remove the shot, but Eric, who is almost blind, is "bumbling along happily despite being peppered with shot", she said.

Eric was believed to have been used for dog fighting in Turkey.

He arrived at Mrs Haslam's centre in Barnham, about 18 months ago, after she raised £2,500 to bring him to the UK.

Image copyright Beds For Bullies
Image caption "We knew he'd had a bit of a tough time to start with," Mrs Haslam said of Eric

"We knew his eyesight was failing and he'd been shot in the face, but we were told there were only a few pieces of shrapnel left and there was nothing that could be done for his eyes."

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After a lump developed, vets thought Eric may have a tooth abscess.

The jaw swelling was being caused by part of another dog's tooth still embedded in Eric.

However, X-rays revealed "these rather traumatic results" showing the pellets in his head, Mrs Haslam said.

Vets said it would be too dangerous and painful to remove the shot, so Eric is destined to live out his days with Mrs Haslam and other ex-fighting dogs deemed unsuitable for rehoming because of their injuries.

"He's virtually blind but it doesn't seem to faze him whatsoever," she said.

Vet bills for Eric have reached £4,000 and Mrs Haslam said she was considering applying for charitable status for her centre.

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