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'Swamp People' Star -- Bad Heart Threatens Career

7/18/2011 3:25 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

The most beloved star of the hit reality show "Swamp People" is in danger of missing Season 3 after a serious heart condition almost took his life earlier this year ... TMZ has learned.


It's not Troy ... or Trapper Joe ... or the badass Guist Brothers -- it's Bruce Mitchell's faithful sidekick Tyler ... the lovable gator hunting dog.

TMZ spoke to a rep for Bruce -- the guy who rocks the overalls and the American flag bandana -- who tells us Tyler was having "heart troubles" back in January ... and had to be rushed to the vet for emergency medical care.

We're told things got so bad "the dog almost died."  
Luckily for Tyler, doctors were able to treat the illness ... and he's been resting at home and taking heart meds ever since.  
The rep tells us Bruce is unsure if Tyler will be able to join him on the boat next season ... saying Bruce is "hopeful...but still not sure."



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I spent this entire weekend watching the Swamp People marathon. Tyler is the sweetest thing and Bruce loves, loves, loves that dog. I cried when Tyler got lost overnight and Bruce searched for him for 24 hours not caring about fishing or anything but his best friend.

1160 days ago

Her Imperial and Royal Majesty    

I wonder if the swamp has an animal cruelty department, because we should report these people.

1160 days ago


Her Imperial and Royal Majesty 3 minutes ago
I wonder if the swamp has an animal cruelty department, because we should report these people.


For what? I've never watched more then a few minutes of the show. What have they done that you thing is so horrible?

1160 days ago


All you people who are being mean need to stop. We all do what we can with what we have. Even city people can't afford everything they need to take care of what they have.

1160 days ago


animal cruelty??only a retard would suggest such a thing.that dog is more than likely taken care of better than a lot of kids in this country.only a sleaseball would suggest that this dog isn't taken care of.

1160 days ago

Her Imperial and Royal Majesty    

@Puckett 15 minutes ago

They didn´t take care of their dog, as a number of posters have already pointed out. That´s animal cruelty.

You´re one of the swamp people, aren´t you?.....

1160 days ago


Tyler has enjoyed every minute of being on the boat out in the swamp. Some of the replies posted have been ignorant.
I hope Tyler gets back out on the boat enjoying the ride!

1160 days ago


this stuff is so stupid, they pay these people to kill these things, then in the same f'n state they have farms that raise more!

1160 days ago

who cares    

Janja they dont pay these guys to kill alligators. They are allegator hunters and pay a fee to hunt and kill the aillagtors to sell the skin and meat. The state does that to keep the gators from over populating and do not pay these guys. These hunters pay for a license and tags that they must tag gators with when they kill them

1160 days ago


FIRSTIES! Typos! You got fat fingers TMZ! Its Bruce not BRUVE GAWSH

1160 days ago


We're pulling for you Tyler! You are dearly loved! <3

1160 days ago


Wow, you people are snobs.
I guess you could GUESS that the dog has heart worms, but it did not say it in the article.
The folks on that show appear to be hardworking people. Maybe not college educated but they would certainly lend an hand to a person in need of help (as shown many times on the show), unlike the elitist liberals that live in NYC that I witness everyday.

1160 days ago


You realize that to treat heartworms, you're putting PESTICIDE directly into your dog's system? Would you ever consider doing that to your child? In a healthy dog, with good food and abundant exercise, heartworms are rarely a fatal problem, in spite of all the propaganda your vet has been fed -- who then regurgitates it to you, the tender-heated consumer. You're all buying into the pharmaceutical b.s. about heartworms. They've spent millions on posters, counter displays, etc... all so that you'll poison your dog with pesticides. Your dog will probably die of cancer rather than heart disease. Congratulations, you're a tool for the pharm industry. There is a very large percentage of dog owners who have educated themselves about heartworms and concluded it's best not to poison our dogs as a "preventative" measure. Next time you're at the vet's... notice the people who ask for a rabies vaccination for their dog but ask to skip the heartworm. It's more than you think.

1160 days ago


@ L
Back in the day, people didn't need prophylactics all that much
because STD wasn't everywhere. Dogs didn't need heart worm
pills because it was only in the semi- tropics that the worm could
be found, and a good preventative medicine, given orally, monthly,
was not available. Now heart worm is in every state, including
Alaska. If you love dogs as I do, you would go without food or
even beer for a week just to get heart worm pills for your dog. The
death of a dog due to negligence is inexcusable. Yet there are
many in this country who are still woefully ignorant. How they can
be on this thread without knowing how to google "heart worm" just
befuddles me.

1160 days ago


I would be devastated if Ron Jeremy's dog died.

1160 days ago
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