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A pet owner ended up on life support after her dog accidentally headbutted her while playing.
Erin Stevenson was overlooking her 'over excited' Staffordshire bull terrier Skyy while playing in the garden back in January when the pet, all of a sudden, decided to race towards her, headbutting her right in the chin.
The 41-year-old began suffering from neck pain and within three days, her neck was completely swollen.
Unable to swallow, Speech therapist Stevenson went to the hospital and a CT scan revealed that two of her molars had been cracked by the impact.
Doctors were concerned that her airways might close after she developed an infection, which caused extreme amounts of swelling.
Shortly afterwards, medics put Erin to sleep on life support with a breathing tube for a week as they drained the infection out of her neck.
Four months on from the incident, Erin says the 'nightmare' isn't over as she is still not able to open her mouth up fully.
Erin, from Chicago, Illionois, US, said: "Skyy's done plenty in her day but nothing quite like this. She's trouble and she keeps us all on our toes. She loves being around people.
"She just doesn't know how to control her excitement. She runs and jumps and gets herself into all sorts of trouble. I wouldn't change her.
"She was running around doing zoomies back and forth in the yard. She came towards me and I didn't think anything of it so I leant forward and she jumped and headbutted me straight under the jaw."
Erin explained: "It hurt but I didn't think much of it, I just thought it was from the impact. Two days later, my throat started to hurt. I thought it was strep throat. I was planning on going to see a doctor but I woke up at around 3am and I couldn't swallow.
"I woke my husband and said I was going to the emergency room to get antibiotics for strep throat.
"There was significant swelling on one side of my face. I had a CT scan, antibiotics and steroids. They didn't know what it was. They thought maybe it was a haematoma or a broken jaw.
"They were worried that if the swelling didn't go down then my airways would close. I was put to sleep and a tube inserted to breathe for me."
Erin added: "I text my husband saying he might want to go down to the hospital and I might not be awake when he got there. I told him to tell my family I love them. It was worse for him than for me.
"I was incubated and put on life support. Unbeknown to me, Skyy had cracked two of my molars and I'd developed an abscess which had caused the swelling.
"Doctors removed two of my teeth and put a drain in my neck to drain out the infection. They left me on life support to make sure there were no secondary infections but I did develop a second one which was drained and finally resolved the problem.
"Skyy had no idea the trouble she'd caused but my husband did say she knew something was going on.
"The one lingering injury I have is that now I can only open my mouth to a certain point which is a bit of a nightmare."
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