There with you: Happy endings for two dogs in trouble during lockdown
PUBLISHED: 08:00 01 May 2020
A healthy litter of puppies delivered by caesarean section was one of two happy outcomes of an emergency vet team still saving lives during lockdown.
Dealing with life-threatening cases can be stressful under any circumstances but the skills of North Somerset vets Watkins & Tasker, who, like most other practices, are only open for emergencies and vital vaccinations during the Covid-19 pandemic, were put under added pressure when two dogs were in need of help recently.
The independent company, which has branches in Nailsea, Yatton and Portishead, were called when pregnant Cocker Spaniel Georgie collapsed in her owner’s garden. She was brought into the Portishead practice, where vet Matt Casey and veterinary nurses, Shell Salmon and Ellie Gooderham diagnosed a dangerously-low blood sugar level and she had gone into labour.
She was put onto intravenous fluids with her glucose levels supplemented, but when she became more alert the team realised she was struggling to have her babies naturally. A caesarean section performed while maintaining social distancing resulted in nine wriggling puppies who are now thriving.
Matt said: “As vets we love good news stories like this, and Georgie’s pregnancy was planned way before the world knew about Covid-19, but we advise caution if you are considering getting a new pet in these strange times. Ensure you have a long-term plan, not just a short-term one and have taken appropriate veterinary advice including what care your local practice is able to provide at the moment.”
A few days later Whippet Shadow was out with her owners enjoying an early morning walk, when she yelped in pain. Discovering a wound on her chest she was also rushed to the Portishead practice.
Following examination by on-call Vet Mario Amaral, it was apparent Shadow had managed to injure herself with a stick. Vet Lizzie Bennett and nurses Carol Avenell and Ella Wilmot took x-rays and operated to remove two large splinters of stick and repair the muscle and skin damage. After an overnight stay for pain relief, Shadow was able to head home and look forward to future accident-free walks with her owners.
Vets are working to industry guidelines to protect public health while ensuring pets are still looked after, prioritising emergency and urgent work and preventative health care. Many are working under even greater pressures and an online campaign by the British Veterinary Association is encouraging owners to be patient, kind and accept the decisions of the professionals.
For the latest information about what services are available visit www.watkins-tasker-vets.co.uk
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