The dog ate my homework. Yes on the laptop. HONEST!

What to do when man’s best friend gets the munchies, or should we say the data crunchies!

We love our pets and there’s nothing cuter than seeing an adorable puppy chewing and wrestling with something, until you realise that ‘something’ isn’t his favourite chew toy but your mobile phone, USB or some other electronic device.

Dog owners know the damage that their cuddly canine’s teeth can do when we forget to clear up after ourselves and subsequently leave our furry friend unattended. Shoes, cushions, curtains, magazines, paperwork, bags, table legs… are all favourites for puppy fangs.

Whilst most of said items are easy to replace or repair, what happens when your pooch bites your ‘bytes’ and sinks his teeth into a gadget/device that stores data?

Our homes are now filled with tech… USBs, mobile phones, digital cameras/camcorders, tablet computers, laptops, computers, games consoles… the list goes on.

In an ideal world

Experts would advise that all such devices be safely stored in a media cabinet, or put up high somewhere, out of harms reach. But meanwhile back in the real world, stuff does get left out and accidents do happen.

So when the unthinkable does occur and you find your beloved fur-baby chewing on your USB, what do you do?


Don’t panic!

Having retrieved the device from your pet, given him/her a suitable telling off and obviously checked that they haven’t injured themselves, the important thing is to put your wounded device safely away somewhere, and seek professional help – do not, I repeat DO NOT attempt to turn it on. Doing so could cause irreparable damage and result in complete data loss.

If you’re super organised, you will regularly back up all your valuable data, whether it be to the cloud or onto a portable hard drive, in which case you’ll know that all your favourite photos, important documents, etc can be retrieved at any time. The only thing you’re left to worry about is getting the actual device repaired or replaced, inconvenient and an unwanted expense but not the end of the world.

Help is at hand

If you’re thinking ‘back up?’, ‘what’s a back up?’ or ‘oh heck it’s been ages since I did one of them?’, then you’ll want to get in touch with a reputable data recovery company as soon as possible.

Data recovery services such as Data Resus (from Cardwave) can help recover data from all the main causes of data loss, including:

  • Hardware failure.
  • Human error.
  • Power-related problems.
  • Flood/water damage.
  • Fire/heat/smoke damage.
  • Vandalism and sabotage.

We offer a DIY downloadable software recovery option (including a free online evaluation) and a ‘no recovery, no fee’ send in service for more complicated or damaged devices which need recovery.

Find out more at

All creatures great and small

Note, dogs aren’t solely to blame for potential data disasters. Pouncing kittens are very cute, until they knock a glass of water all over your laptop. Our feline friends also love to slink along shelves, so be sure to think twice about your ‘up high’ safe place for your camera – the shelf above the fish tank? I think not!

On the subject of fish and tanks (of water!), watch out for kamikaze tiddlers making a break for it, and best avoid positioning fish bowls places where they could be knocked or tipped by pets (or people).