This story for pet owners is going to be a very sobering conversation and some of the content in this piece is going to be hard to read.

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We've got a bit of a warning for dog owners in New Jersey...and worldwide.

unsplash ruby schmank
unsplash ruby schmank

According to, a 9-year-old dog named Chester lost his life after getting into a fight with a porcupine.

"I could hear him crying in the backyard and her yelling and screaming," said owner Brenda DeGennaro according to

The dog is being described as ferocious by his owner and therefore, it is assumed Chester repeatedly went at the porcupine and that is why this was one of the worst cases vets have ever seen.

"He was trying to get them off his face. He was covered from head to toe, all down his back, and he was just trying to get them off, crying," DeGennaro said.

The vet pulled a large amount of quills from the dog's face, stomach and legs while some also were internal.
unsplash dusan-veverkolog
unsplash dusan-veverkolog
This part is heartbreaking:

"The vet said she actually had his heart in her hand and was picking out the quills," DeGennaro said according to

After undergoing surgery, Chester did well for a few days. Then he digressed and ultimately died.

After this incident, a warning has come from the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection and is one that should be taken seriously.

Porcupines are clearly more dangerous than we had anticipated, or at least than I had anticipated.

unsplash nicolas-savignat
unsplash nicolas-savignat

Yes, there are porcupines in New Jersey. Once it gets dark, keep your dogs leashed or confined because porcupines are more likely to come out at nighttime.

According to, if your dog does have a porcupine encounter, get them to a veterinarian with high capacity x-ray equipment immediately.

This equipment will be used to detect where all of the quills - both externally and internally - are in your dog and your vet will remove them immediately.

"I just didn't know how deadly they could be, I didn't even know that we have them in this area," Miranda DeGennaro said according to Abc7NY. "I would hate for anyone to go through this, because it's just awful. Traumatizing."

If you are up for it, see video of Chester HERE.

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