Wed, 13 Nov 2019
Warning: Some readers may find the images below upsetting
A dramatic race to save a dog’s life after it was impaled in a freak accident has ended successfully.
Angus, a German wire-haired pointer, was out for an afternoon walk with his owner in Enborne when he jumped into a ditch and was caught on a metal stake hidden in the undergrowth.
In a highly unusual move, vet Will Hodge and trainee veterinary nurse Lindsey Morris from Donnington Grove Veterinary Group raced to the scene, not knowing what they would find when they arrived, while staff back at the practice prepared for life-saving surgery.
Lucy Mapplebeck, a veterinary nurse at Donnington Grove, said: “It is very unusual for us to have to go out to the animal where it is injured. We do see serious conditions, but a complete freak accident like this is very unusual.
“The dog was in shock so needed a lot of fluids to get his blood pressure back up and we quickly realised the only way to save his life was to go ahead with surgery as we didn’t think he would have made the journey to a referral unit.
“He was in surgery for four hours and it was one of the most complicated surgeries I have ever seen.”
Despite his life-threatening condition x-rays back at the surgery showed that the stake had entered Angus’s chest near his armpit, through his diaphragm into his abdomen but amazingly missed all of his vital organs.
Angus arrived back at the vets at around 5pm and Mr Hodge was assisted by fellow vet Emma Pritchard and a team of nurses, from both the day and night shifts, during the complicated thoracotomy operation.
A chest drain was put in place to remove the air and fluid from the dog’s chest and he spent a number of days in intensive care and on very strong pain killers after the incident.
Angus spent a total eight days at the vets, being visited twice a day by his worried owners, before being allowed home. He is still having regular check-ups but is expected to make a full recover.
“It was a complete freak accident and we are really proud of the outcome,” Ms Mapplebeck added.