"Monty" - Springer Spaniel in Road Traffic Accident
Once in a while a patient comes along with such horrific injuries that I am left shaking my head in disbelief as to how they have survived. Monty, a 2 year old Springer Spaniel, was one such dog who was involved in a road traffic accident. This resulted in a dislocated right hip, a shattered left shin bone and severe soft tissue injuries to his right ankle causing marked instability. Each one of these injuries is difficult and costly enough on its own but to have all three to consider is a major headache for myself, my colleagues and his owner.
Fortunately for us and Monty, his owners were extremely understanding that no guarantees could be given at the onset despite the estimated expense and duration of treatment. Ultimately, Monty had to heal these injuries himself, all we were trying to do was to create an environment where that healing could occur.
Firstly, the hip was replaced then surgically secured, secondly the shin bone was stabilised with pins and a fixator. Finally, after stabilising the hock/ankle joint with yet another fixator the soft tissue wounds had to be cleaned and debriefed on a regular basis.
Throughout the entire healing process Monty was a pleasure to treat and a firm favourite with all my colleagues. On-going monitoring, repeated x-rays, countless dressings and mounting costs underline the need for understanding and compliant owners. If Monty was every worried he certainly never showed it and seeing him now you would never guess his recent traumatic past!
BVMS, Cert SAO, MRCVS