Veterinarians see some crazy things come through their office doors. But perhaps the most entertaining - at least in cases where the animals come out just fine - show up on x-rays. Owners bring their pets in because they're acting weird or not eating, and then you find out that Fluffy swallowed an alien. Whoops.
The magazine Veterinary Practice News holds a contest each year for the best, craziest radiograph photos. Here are a few of our favorites from among this year's contenders.
1. Take Me To Your Leader
Above, a 5-month-old male kitten swallowed a toy alien. "Due to the 'thumbs' of the toy, it could not be moved retrograde and the intestine had to be incised to facilitate removal. The cat recovered uneventfully and did well post-op."
2. The Whole Flock
Can you tell what's ailing the dog "Woof" in the x-ray below?
You can vaguely make out the shape of a rubber duckie around the center-left of the photo. "Watching her son in the tub, [the client] saw her dog Woof come in, nose around in the water, and gulp down the duckie," reports Veterinary Practice News.
But as is perhaps clear if you keep studying the x-ray, there wasn't just one bird in the dog's innards. Vets pulled out an entire ARMADA of duckies: five of them! "We surgically removed the flock along with a toy truck tire and a piece of another toy, and Woof did very well."
3. Dirty Laundry
Here's another challenge. What's floating around inside this dog, a 3-year-old male Great Dane?
During exploratory surgery, a vet pulled out a whopping forty-three and a half socks from inside this poor dog. "The patient was discharged home one day after surgery." I wonder what ever happened to that missing half sock?
4. Spare Any Change?
A two year old female pug named Stella was brought in by her owner after vomiting 40 times overnight. During an exploratory abdominal surgery, vets yanked out one quarter and 104 pennies. "This patient recovered fine, but the $1.29 did not go toward her bill."
5. Radiograph Still Life?
Perhaps our favorite comes from an unusual critter. A woman brought in her granddaughter's bearded dragon (named Dragon, obviously). The little girl was worried that her reptilian companion seemed to be avoiding food. The vets managed to convince the woman to do an X-ray ("After all, it's not a dog...but our granddaughter does love it so"), and the lizard had indeed swallowed something foreign. Can you tell what it is?
The little girl recognized it immediately. "That's where Barbie's banana went!" she said. Dragon, it seems, spends quite a bit of time inside Barbie's Dream House.