LOGAN — A Cache County Sheriff’s K-9 died Wednesday of complications resulting from ingesting foxtail weeds, authorities said.
Storm, who was 2 years old and became part of the sheriff’s office’s K-9 team in 2017, died during surgery to remove infected areas caused by the weeds, according to a statement by Cache County Sheriff Chad Jensen.
Jensen said in a statement Friday that Storm, a Malinois, and his handler were at a public event Tuesday night, showcasing skills. The next morning, the handler noticed Storm was behaving differently.
The handler took Storm to a veterinarian who determined the K-9 had fluid in his chest and around his lungs.
Storm was transferred to another veterinarian in Salt Lake County, who found the dog had either ingested or inhaled foxtail weeds. The weeds are problematic because the heads of the seeds have barbs on them that the body cannot break down, which can lead to infections, Jensen explained.
Jensen said the veterinarian performed surgery on Storm to remove the weeds and infections, but Storm died during the operation. Both veterinarians noted that the handler caught the problem early and thought the dog would recover, Jensen said. Storm’s death was unexpected.
“We want to thank both Cache Meadow Veterinarian Clinic and Dr. Ravi Seshadri from the Advance Care Clinic in Salt Lake City for their expertise, care, and compassion for Storm, our deputy and our office,” Jensen said in the statement.
Storm is the second Cache County sheriff’s K-9 that has died since last year. In July 2017, Endy died after being left in a hot patrol car. Deputy Jason Whittier was charged with one count of aggravated cruelty to an animal, a class B misdemeanor, in the case. He pleaded guilty in October, according to court records.