Miley is a sweet, 9-year-old, blood hound. She came to the Animal Hospital of Statesville because her owners thought her abdomen was painful. She had eaten some shrimp and pork roast the night before. She seemed ok until the next morning. She had started whining and crying and was very restless. On initial exam, she had a distended abdomen that was very uncomfortable on palpation and she had weak pulses. Radiographs were taken which confirmed a gas-filled stomach and evidence of volvulus (rotation). Gastric dilation and volvulus (GDV) is an emergency condition that requires immediate surgery to correct and will be fatal without treatment. This surgery can be very involved and patients are at risk for developing life threatening cardiac arrhythmias and sepsis (systemic bacterial infection or toxins). They require close monitoring throughout surgery and post-operative. During surgery, the stomach was rotated back to the correct position and then a gastropexy (tacking of the stomach to the body wall) was performed to prevent future volvulus. Normally, a pet’s stomach rotates clockwise, 180 degrees. Miley’s stomach rotated 360 degrees! Miley was kept in the hospital on fluids and pain management after surgery. We don’t always know why GDV occurs but there are some predisposing factors which include: breed/anatomy (large breed and deep chested breeds are higher risk), activity after eating a large meal, stress, and aerophagia (swallowing air). She made a full recovery and we are happy to report she is still doing well. Her remarkable recovery earned her designation as AHS’s canine Pet of the Month!
Piper is a sweet young cat. Piper’s owner found her as a stray kitty in an outdoor drain pipe. On presentation, Piper had an old fracture of the lower part of the tail. Piper had no feeling in that part of her tail. The tail had damage to the skin and Piper had begun to chew and mutilate it. Amputation of the tail to the point of healthy tissue was recommended. The owner consented. The procedure went well. Piper recovered uneventfully. Piper was vaccinated and is thriving in her new home. Her happy ending earned her the title of AHS’s feline Pet of the Month!