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Exmouth woman's anxious wait after dog swallows £18k engagement ring diamond

By Exeter Express and Echo  |  Posted: January 07, 2014

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A woman whose dog swallowed her £18,000 engagement ring got it back after sifting through his poo - for three days.

Angie Collins, 51, left the pricey sparkler on a table when she went to bed and woke up to find the ring there - but the stone missing.

Her German Shepherd called Jack - a trainee police dog - had gnawed the gold band and swallowed the centre jewel.

Shocked Angie took the 18-month-old hound to a vet who said there was a slim chance she would see the rock again.

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But the civil servant then spent hours painstakingly sifting through his poo and was relieved when he passed the treasured gem three days later - on Christmas Day.

Mother-of-three Angie, of Exmouth, Devon, said: "I'd taken off my rings to put some hand cream on and I just happened to leave them out that night.

"The next morning Jack was just lying on his back. The sun was reflecting off the jewellery and I think it must have been winking at him.

"He's an inquisitive dog so I guessed that he'd taken a look. The ring was totally mangled so it seemed pretty obvious he'd spat it out and eaten the diamond."

Jack is one of dozens of canines Angie has raised to serve as dogs for Devon and Cornwall Police.

Angie inherited the ring from her late mum Ann in the 1990s who bought it partly to wear but also as a long-term investment.

The heirloom's value was estimated at about £18,000 but Angie, who wears it as substitute for her own engagement ring, has never got round to having it insured.

Angie, married to builder Graham, 60, said: "My first thought was for Jack's health but I was obviously gutted about the ring.

"The vet said there was no point X-raying it because the diamond is made of carbon.

"He said it could get trapped for good in a pocket in the dog's tummy but there was a chance he could poo it out in the next 72 hours or so.

"As a dog walker you always keep your pet's poop in a bag so I took it home and sprayed it with the hose pipe and sieved it every single day - four times a day at least.

"On Christmas Day I had three poops to deal with and it was in the third poop.

"I had almost given up, so it was the last shot. There it was, glinting in the sun."

Jack was unharmed by his ordeal and is now just four weeks from being assigned a police handler.

The sparkler he scoffed was one of five rings Angie left out, including her gold wedding band, but none are worth anywhere near as much.

The grandmother-of-one, who has been looking after police dogs for the past 18 years, said: "It's got tremendous sentimental value so I'm delighted to have it back.

"It's absolutely mangled at the moment but I'm going to get it reset and insured as soon as possible.

"I've had dozens of police dogs but I've never had one who likes to snack on jewellery."

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