Hero dog saves woman who was choking on her own tongue while asleep

Shelagh Shaw pictured with Scooby who raised the alarm when Shelagh was taken ill during the night. Also pictured is Shelagh's husband Ian with Jake
Shelagh Shaw pictured with Scooby who raised the alarm when Shelagh was taken ill during the night. Also pictured is Shelagh's husband Ian with Jake

A woman whose dog saved her life in the middle of the night after she was choking on her own tongue has hailed the pooch as “my little hero.”

Shelagh Shaw, 55, of William Thorpe Road, North Wingfield, was asleep upstairs in the early hours of the morning when she began to choke on her tongue.

Shelagh Shaw pictured with Scooby who raised the alarm when Shelagh was taken ill during the night.

Shelagh Shaw pictured with Scooby who raised the alarm when Shelagh was taken ill during the night.

Luckily, one of her two leonberger dogs, called Scooby, recognised something was wrong and came to her rescue.

Shelagh’s husband, Ian, 57, said: “I was fast asleep in the other room because it was hot and Scooby came and jabbed me in the side of the neck with its nose.

“I woke up and I could tell it was stressed and was telling me to get up.

“I ran into the other bedroom where Shelagh was and she was choking on her tongue so I dialled 999.”

Shelagh Shaw pictured with Scooby who raised the alarm when Shelagh was taken ill during the night.

Shelagh Shaw pictured with Scooby who raised the alarm when Shelagh was taken ill during the night.

Mr Shaw put his wife of 14 years on her side and put a freezing cold flannel on her face and opened all the windows and doors while waiting for paramedics after the incident in the early hours of Friday, May 26.

Eventually, after about 15 minutes, Mrs Shaw came round and grabbed her husband’s hand.

“If the dog had not woke me up she might not be here today,” Mr Shaw, a van driver for the NHS, told the Derbyshire Times.

“When I woke up Shelagh was making the most horrible noise I have heard in my life. It was a horrible gurgling noise. It was a frightening experience. I got a bit tearful.

“When she came round she did not know where she was.

“The dog is an absolute hero. Scooby is a great gentle giant.”

Mrs Shaw, who works at Barlborough Treatment Centre as a threatre administrator, spent 24 hours in hospital and underwent a number of tests including a CT scan and a chest X-ray.

Doctors told her it could have been a possible seizure. She is now back at home recovering.

“If it had not been for the dog who knows what could have happened,” Mrs Shaw said.

“All I can remember is going to bed.

“It is amazing what dogs can sense.

“Scooby is my little hero.”

As a special treat, six-year-old Scooby and fellow leonberger Jake, seven, were treated to a pepperoni pizza from Domino’s on Saturday night.

“They are a big breed of dog but they are so loving,” Mr Shaw added.

“They love everybody and they are so soft.”