Vets have saved a dog who had an operation to remove a 10-inch long stick it had swallowed.
The nine-year old Corgi, Barney, is believed to have swallowed the branch as he played in his owner’s garden in Hartlebury, near Worcester.
At first the cause of the lump protruding from Barney’s side was a mystery to the team at Severn Veterinary Centre in Worcester, with biopsy tests and an x-ray not revealing the thin stick.
It was thanks to a brand-new CT scanning equipment at the practice’s Berkeley House site that the stick was spotted, perhaps up to one month after Barney swallowed the branch.
Owners Brian and Pat Davies initially took the Corgi to the vet surgery after he seemed tired and not his usual stuff. His appetite remained the same, so they were shocked to eventually find he had swallowed the stick.
Brian said: “We couldn’t believe it; Barney had been off colour so we took him to the vets but they couldn’t find anything out of the ordinary. As days went by a small lump started to protrude from his side. As it then started to grow a little more, we feared it may be a sign of cancer, so we took him back to the vets.
“We agreed for a CT scan to be taken and it was then that the stick was found. This came as a huge shock as we presumed he would have been off his food with something so significant in his stomach. Our garden contains lots of shrubs and plants, so we reckon he wolfed down the stick when scurrying around. It’s remarkable it didn’t cause more harm.”
The CT scanner is part of a £650,00 transformation at Severn Veterinary Centre’s Berkeley House practice.
Heidi Whieldon, veterinary surgeon at Severn Vets, said: “The stick didn’t show a regular x-ray and blood and tissue tests weren’t showing anything unusual. The new CT scanner technology we have at Berkeley House allowed us to discover the cause of Barney’s discomfort with the stick having pierced through his stomach and abdomen and was causing the swelling and a hard lump on his skin.
“We operated to remove the stick and after a short period of recovery he was back to his normal self. The introduction of a CT scanner at the practice is great for us and pet owners as it enables more clinical investigation and enhanced diagnostic abilities, particularly for our orthopaedic work, soft tissue cases and referral work.”
The investment at Berkeley House n Berkeley Way also includes two additional consulting rooms and two extra dedicated operating theatres. The remodelled practice has an extended waiting room, improved isolation facilities for pets, cat treatment room, and air conditioning throughout the clinical areas of the practice.
The practice also provides on-site 24-hour emergency care through Vets Now.