AFTER her dog was nearly killed in the Lake District by a discarded fish hook, a woman has urged anglers to be more careful.

Dylan, an eight-year-old Labradoodle, swallowed the three-barbed hook on the shores of Grasmere, and needed emergency surgery to save his life.

Owner Helen Soutar, of Bolton-le-Sands, said: “I feel strongly that we need to speak out and appeal to anglers to please be more careful.

“I am certainly not saying that all anglers are careless, but clearly a minority are not being fastidious enough when packing up at the end of their day’s fishing.”

The incident occurred along the western edge of the lake. Mrs Soutar let Dylan off the lead for a paddle. However, moments later, she was informed by a runner passing close-by that the dog was eating a fishing line with a hook and dead fish attached.

A call was put in to Oakhill Vets, Windermere, where emergency surgery was arranged.

Mrs Soutar managed to flag down two tourists from London, who kindly agreed to drive the dog to the vets.

X-rays revealed the three-barbed hook and fishing line was lodged in Dylan’s oesophagus.

Vet Matthew Stables later called to say he had got the hook and line out and flushed through the remains of the fish, but there remained the possibility of infection.

Dylan’s stitches were removed this week and he is making a good recovery.

According to Mr Stables, Oakhill Vets has treated dogs who have either eaten or become attached to hooks left at Rydal Water, Coniston and Grasmere in the last year.

He said: “Treble hooks baited with dead fish, that are often used for pike fishing, can cause considerable damage and can be extremely challenging to remove.

“A common place that they can become lodged is in the oesophagus in a location within the chest directly above the heart.

“This is one of the least accessible areas of the body to get to surgically and can certainly be a life threatening situation for a dog.

“Owners may not notice that a dog has eaten a hook until the dog becomes ill some days later and by that point it is possible that permanent damage can have occurred which may not be treatable.

“Sadly, water-birds that ingest hooks will usually die because it is only when they become terminally ill some days or weeks later that it is possible to notice that there is a problem and catch them.

“I am pleased to see that Dylan seems to be making a good recovery but would urge all anglers to be very careful not to leave any items of fishing tackle behind when they leave.”