Archive for the ‘Case Studies’ Category
Some of the pictures below are graphic in nature.
`This is an African Clawed Frog, also known as Xenopus Tropicalis.
This photo was taken by our technician, Kristen Arban, when she went to the Smithsonian National Zoo in April.
Earlier this year, we saw a domesticated African Clawed Frog with what is called “baggy pants disease”.
This is a generalized edema or fluid compartmentalized under the skin. It can be caused by infection, chronic kidney disease and poor environmental conditions and diet.
This fluid was drained with a catheter and the appropriate treatment given. This frog seemed to respond well to treatment. We also recommended improving the diet with earth worms, shrimp, and small fish.
This is Sid the turtle
Sid was brought to us by a client last fall who saw him on the side of the road. When she picked him up, his leg was dangling so she knew he needed medical care and brought him to us.
As you can see from the photo above, the leg is definitely broken. Dr. Yacowitz felt that the leg could not be splinted, but that through time and confinement it would heal. The problem we had now though is that we were heading into the winter, which is when a turtle would typically hibernate. What to do?
Enter our technician Mark!
Mark is one of our technicians who knows a thing or two about reptiles, and he agreed to foster Sid for the winter time while his leg healed.
Box turtles have a 2 acre range and should be released in the same area in which they were found. Releasing them elsewhere will greatly reduce their chance of survival. Luckily, we have a few clients who live close to where Sid was found, and one of them agreed to release him in their yard.
Last month we said good bye to Sid, because his leg healed nicely and he was healthy enough to be released. We were sad to see him go, but we’re glad he did well this past winter. We hope he has a long and happy life out in the wild!
Hello everyone! My name is Charlie Brown. I am a 3 year old Domestic Short Haired cat. Although I am super sweet, I’m a bit of a trouble maker.
My mom brought me to Little Silver Animal Hospital because I was vomiting, lethargic, and not eating. After carefully examining me and taking some x-rays, the doctors suspected that I may have eaten something I shouldn’t have. I was put on I.V. fluids and scheduled for exploratory surgery the following morning.
Turns out, the doctors were right! Dr. Stacey Kilcullen performed surgery on me, and found this in my intestines.
After surgery I had to stay at Little Silver Animal Hospital for a few days- since Dr. Kilcullen had to go into my intestinal tract, she wanted to make sure I had a smooth recovery. I was very sad to be away from my family, I missed them so much! When my mom showed up to visit, I was so happy that I could hardly contain myself- I immediately started head butting her, purring, and gave her a bunch of kisses. I was delighted when it was time for me to finally go home!
This story is a perfect example of why cat owners need to be very careful about what they leave out for their kitties to play with. When it comes to things like string, thread, ribbons, shoe laces, etc, anything is fair game for a kitty. Dangling toys are some of their favorite things to play with. It’s very cute to watch a kitty play with some string dangling overhead, but only under supervision- never leave these objects with your kitty unattended. You do not want your cat to have to go through a surgery like Charlie Brown did!
This is Pumpkin.
He was found by the Hanaway family as a stray, and they were kind enough to bring him into their home. They had seen something hanging beneath him, but only after they were able to gain his trust and bring him into their home, were they able to bring him to us. Only then were we able to identify the large lump as a huge abdominal hernia.
A hernia is an opening in the body cavity usually caused by trauma or birth defect. This one contained small intestines and abdominal fat and was 2/3 the width of a man’s hand.
After freshening the edges to allow better closure, Dr. Yacowitz used two types of suture material to close up the hernia. Doing this will create more of an inflammatory response, which causes tissue reaction and helps create a stronger seal. Usually you want to have wound closure with minimal scar formation, but in this case Dr. Yacowitz wanted the opposite.
Although Pumpkin is very shy, we suspect he will make an affectionate, and very appreciative pet for his new family.
This is Mr. Ryan and Molly.
“She means the world to me,” he said, and we are sure Molly feels the same toward Mr. Ryan.
We had seen Molly for a routine visit, and although her exam was essentially normal, Mr. Ryan mentioned that lately her appetite seemed off. Blood tests revealed pancreatic enzymes over ten times normal level and evidence of inflammation and infection. From that day on Molly quickly went downhill. She became progressively weaker, had episodes of repeat vomiting, and complete lack of appetite in less then forty-eight hours. An ultrasound revealed severe duondenitis, which is inflammation of the first part of the intestines. This is an unusual finding in that this degree of inflammation is not usually seen in such a small area. Supportive care, IV fluids, antibiotics, antiemetics (which are used to control vomiting) and pain medications did not help.
A second ultrasound done less than 24 hours later showed a “mass effect” in that same area of the intestine, and Molly was rushed to surgery. The operation revealed a large, irregular mass in the proximal (forward most) wall of the intestines close to the points where the duct systems for the liver and pancreas empty into the intestines.At this point, we were very suspicious of cancer.
Molly showed a slow but progressive improvement in the two weeks following the surgery. A biopsy revealed a blood clot in the wall of the intestine, which was probably the consequence of the severe inflammation in the pancreas. Luckily, there was no cancer.
Molly and Mr. Ryan are now doing fine and are happy to be together again. Not all lumps are tumors, not all old dogs are doomed and not all dogs and people are this lucky – we are so happy this story has a happy ending!
I read an interesting article about a 20 year study two vets from Georgia put together from 20 years of data what they discovered is what we have always felt certain breed are more likely to die of specific diseases that are breed related. These numbers were statistically significant. Here are the facts that they put together and the breeds they involve.
Large dogs just don’t have shorter life spans than smaller dogs they are more likely to die of musculoskeletal and gastrointestinal disease and cancer.
Smaller breeds live longer but are more prone to die of metabolic disease. (Diabetes, cushing’s)
Toy breeds like Chihuahuas are known to have high rates of heart disease. Fox Terriers trailed chihuahuas by 3%.
Golden Retrievers and Boxers have a high rate of cancer about (48% of deaths) A lesser known breed Bouvier des Flandres also had high frequency of cancer related deaths.
Gastrointestinal disease were listed as the cause of death in Great Danes, Akita’s, Gordon Setters, Shar peis, Weimaraners.
Newfoundlands, Maltese, Chihuahuas, Doberman, Fox Terriers succumbed most frequently to heart disease.
Neurological disease was the most like cause of death in Dachshunds, Miniature Dachshunds, Dutch Pugs, Miniature Pincher’s and Boston Terriers.
Musculoskeletal was top cause of death in Saint Bernard’s, Great Pyrenees, Irish Wolfhound, Great Dane and Greyhound.
Urogenital disease (urinary system problems) while not top cause of death was seen in Scottish Terriers, Airedales Terriers, Dalmatian, Norwegian Elkhounds, Standard Schnauzers.
Respiratory Disease were highly seen in Bulldogs, Borzoi, Yorkshire Terriers, Afghan Hounds, Treeing Walker Coon hounds.
Highest incidence of death due to congenital disease was seen in Newfoundlands, Bulldogs, Yorkshire Terriers, Akita, and Maltese.
This is not to say that all pure breed dogs will die of one disease or another but it is an insight to a pattern that is seen over the last 20 years. One thing to note is that some of these breeds are some of the most poplar seen and if your heart is set on one of them it might be a good idea to invest in pet insurance especially at a young age, that way you can make decisions for your pets welfare based on factors that don’t involve cost.
Max is a happy energetic 15 year old Silky Terrier who never gets in trouble that is until now. A few months ago Max’s stomach started to give him problems. He would have episodes of drooling, vomiting , not eating well and loose stools. He had gone on emergency to another hospital and had blood work and X-Rays which did not reveal much. After trying anti-nausea pills and antibiotics. He started to feel better but it seemed as if the effects were only temporary. This continued for about a month. It was finally decided that we should pursue an abdominal ultrasound. The internist determined that Max had a foreign body in his small intestines that was causing his problem. When I spoke to the owner about the situation, she was baffled because Max was not a chewer. He had never had issues with chewing or swallowing things he shouldn’t….until now. It is not an easy decision to take a 15 year old dog to surgery. You see Max had a stroke about a year ago he was doing better now. The other problem was Max’s signs had persisted for so long was it possible that he had a foreign body for 2-3 months or did he eat the foreign body because of another disease and we are finding it now. After much deliberation we took him to surgery. Max recovered without incidence and we found a half of a rubber ball in his small intestines that appeared to be causing a partial obstruction. From the look of things this was not recent.
In pictures Max post surgery, a picture of the surgical site , the foreign body a piece of a rubber ball
This is a story that has a happy ending. In an area that most of would not want to get caught in a after dark this 4 months old puppy was found shivering and suffering from a broken leg. The area he was found in is a known area for dog fights. He was taken by Newark police to the human society after he was assessed it was deemed that he should be brought to our facility where he could receive proper medical care. The puppy had suffered a compound fracture in his femur. He was going to need surgery to put the fracture back in place and he was going to need a surgeon to do so. We called Dr Thatcher a traveling board certified surgeon and he was able to come in and in a few short hours he was able to put a pin a plate and several screws in his leg. He is now a few days post surgery and recovering nicely. The best part to this story is that the police officer who found him wants to adopt him. It is because of generous donations from our clients and others that has helped fund this and many other surgeries in aid of the many pets at the humane society that need medical attention. If you have any interest in helping the humane society is always looking for volunteers. We are also holding a fundraiser so that we can continue to help these wonderful pets. Come out for a day of baseball and fun and the Lakewood Blueclaws game on May 14th at 4 p.m. Tickets can be purchased through Little Silver Animal Hospital. If you would like to bring your dog you can pay a little extra at the gate. All money raised will go to aid the Little Silver Animal Hospital Foundation For Animals, a tax exempt fund that was established to help fund the medical care for the sick animals at the humane society.
Photos from Left to Right:
Lisa with Briggs right before going to his new home, Dr Thatcher doing surgery, Post-op radiograph of fracture, Peter doing Laser post surgery to decrease pain and increase healing
Is a disease seen in older cats with the median age of about 12 where nodules on the thyroid gland cause an overproduction of thyroid hormone. With these increased hormone level will cause an increase in the body’s metabolism which in most cases will cause the pet to eat more and loose weight. Other symptoms which may be seen are vomiting, diarrhea, drinking more and hyperactivity. In a small % of cats we may see appetite loss.
Routine blood test to check thyroid levels
3 options 1)I131 this is considered the gold standard (ie ideal) cats receive a one time treatment of radiation which destroy the surround abnormal thyroid tissue. Advantages of this procedure is no oral medication is needed and one time treatment in most cases. Disadvantages: owner and pet are separated for several days, cost (about 1500), in less 2% of cases a second treatment is needed, not a good option for cats with kidney disease.
2)Oral medication (methiamizole)- block production of thyroid gland. Advantages: medication is relatively inexpensive, can be stopped if adverse affects, side effects uncommon, no hospitalization required. Disadvantages:must be given to be effective often twice daily, approximately 15% have adverse effects, facial itchiness, and bone marrow changes may be seen in a small amount of cases. Pre-existing kidney insufficiency can be masked in hyperthyroidism. This is because the heart disease and high blood pressure that goes with hyperthyroidism actually increases blood flow through the kidneys making the kidneys more efficient (virtually the only positive aspect of having hyperthyroidism). Once treatment is instituted for hyperthyroidism, the kidney disease is unmasked or made worse when kidney blood flow returns to normal. Sometimes it is necessary to choose between treating the kidneys and treating the thyroid, so monitoring kidney function along with thyroid levels is particularly important during methimazole therapy.
3)Surgery:removing thyroid gland. Advantages:treatment is permanent, no specialty facility required. Disadvantages: costly, performing general anesthesia on geriatric patient , a second surgery may be necessary, takes 1-3 months for thyroid levels to level out.
Generally favorable if treatment is chosen. With out treatment the patient will continue to loose weight and effectively starve itself. Cats with pre-existing kidney disease are often the hardest to manage and finding a happy medium is hard to achieve.
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