Pit Bull Survives Eating Gopher Poison in Beef

By George Kiriyama
|  Sunday, Feb 16, 2014  |  Updated 5:53 PM PDT
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A Cupertino woman considers it a miracle that her 3-year-old pit bull, Hammy, is still right by her side. George Kiriyama reports.

A Cupertino woman considers it a miracle that her 3-year-old pit bull, Hammy, is still right by her side. George Kiriyama reports.

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A Cupertino woman considers it a miracle that her 3-year-old pit bull, Hammy, is still right by her side.

Last month, Hammy was rushed to a 24-hour emergency animal clinic in Campbell after she ate what turned out to be tainted food.

Emily Aldrich, Hammy's owner, said the incident occurred when she let the dog outside to go to the bathroom. She later found Hammy munching on something from a bag of food.

The food was strips of beef laced with Strychnine pellets in a Ziplock bag. Strychnine is a common type of gopher poison.

Minutes after Hammy ate the poisoned food she started going into seizures. Aldrich believes someone came into her backyard and deliberately tried to kill her dog.

"Oh my God! Why would someone do that?" she said. "You know. It was just questioning like why, how and just no understanding."

Aldrich rushed Hammy to an animal clinic where doctors pumped the dog's stomach and flushed out the poison. But minutes later, Hammy had another seizure that forced her heart to stop.

"I literally watched her die right in front of me and I felt so powerless," Aldrich said.

Aldrich said Hammy was dead for 12 agonizing minutes. But doctors wouldn't give up and managed to revive her.

"I couldn't believe it," Aldrich said. "I think my own heart stopped at that point because I was just in such shock."

Now three weeks later, Hammy is walking around and slowly getting back to her old self.

"The fact that she's still here with me is the biggest blessing that I could ever have," Aldrich said. "I never thought I would be so attached to a dog. She's my best friend."

Aldrich's family and friends have come together to raise money to help pay for Hammy's medical bills. To contribute, click here.

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