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Dogs + Surgical Conditions

  • Pancreatitis in Dogs

    El páncreas es un órgano vital que se localiza en la parte derecha del abdomen y tiene dos funciones esenciales:

  • The ductus arteriosus is an arterial shunt between the aorta and the pulmonary artery. Patent ductus arteriosus is a heart defect that occurs when the ductus arteriosus fails to close down at birth. If the ductus arteriosus fails to close properly after birth, the difference in pressure between the pulmonary artery and the aorta means that the blood will take the path of least resistance and flow from the aorta through the patent ductus arteriosus into the pulmonary artery, needlessly recirculating this oxygenated blood back to the lungs. The larger the PDA is, the more blood will be shunted through it, causing more significant signs. A PDA will usually be diagnosed when your veterinarian hears a continuous heart murmur during a routine physical examination of your puppy. The goal of treatment for a forward flowing PDA is to stop the blood flowing through the shunt. Your veterinarian will refer you to a veterinary cardiovascular surgeon, who will determine the optimal treatment for your dog. Provided that the condition is treated before heart failure develops, the success rate associated with surgical closure is very high and the prognosis for a normal life after surgery is excellent.+

  • Penetrating wounds can look minor on the surface but may cause severe injury below the skin. A thorough assessment requires sedation or anesthesia and surgery may be required to address the extent of the injury. This handout outlines first aid steps a pet owner can take while transporting their injured pet to the veterinary hospital.

  • A Penrose drain is a latex tube placed into a wound with one or two ends exiting the skin to passively remove unwanted fluid, usually from abscesses or open wounds. This handout provides post-operative wound care instructions for dogs sent home with a Penrose drain.

  • Perianal fistula, also known as anal furunculosis is a serious medical condition that most commonly affects German Shepherd dogs. Perianal fistulas are characterized by chronic, purulent, smelly, ulcerating, sinus tracts in the anal region and surrounding skin. More recent studies indicate that the condition is more likely caused by an autoimmune disease. Medical management with immune-modulating drugs is now the preferred therapy. In severe cases, surgery is required to debride or remove as much infected tissue as possible.

  • A perineal hernia is a protrusion of tissue through the muscle of the perineum. Potential causes, clinical signs, and treatment are explained. The prognosis ranges from good to poor, depending on the ability to perform surgery and the pet's response to surgery. Perineal hernias have the potential to be life-threatening.

  • The definition of a pneumothorax is an accumulation of air outside the lungs, but inside the chest wall. The air outside the lung prevents the lungs from inflating normally, and can lead to lung collapse. There are several variations of pneumothorax.

  • Porcupines are the third largest rodent and live in many rural areas in North America. They are not aggressive, but they happily defend themselves, their offspring, and their dens if needed. Porcupine quills can puncture the skin and move through muscle, ultimately penetrating into body cavities and internal organs. Do not cut quills; cutting the shaft makes the quill splinter more easily which ultimately makes it harder to remove. Do not attempt to remove quills yourself. Seek immediate veterinary care if your dog is quilled. Sedation or anesthesia is required to remove quills safely. The best defense against porcupine quills is prevention. Avoid allowing the dogs to roam at dusk or after dark.

  • A portosystemic shunt causes a bypass of blood from the gastrointestinal tract directly into the systemic circulation, avoiding the normal detoxifying process that happens in the liver and reducing nutrient input into the liver. Liver shunts can be congenital defects (failure of closure of the ductus venosus or inappropriate vascular development) or acquired (development of extra vessels caused by portal vein hypertension). Clinical signs include failure to thrive (runt), head pressing or other neurological signs especially after high protein meals, delay in anesthetic recovery, increased urination, and vomiting or diarrhea. CBC and biochemistry can be altered in a dog with a portosystemic shunt (e.g., microcytic anemia, low BUN, glucose, elevated ALT) and urinalysis can show abnormal crystals and possibly infection. Bile acids will be elevated. CT, ultrasound, or other more advanced imaging will confirm and locate the shunt. Initial treatment includes a change to a low protein diet, lactulose to absorb ammonia and other toxins, and antibiotics to change the bacterial population of the intestines. Some dogs do well with medical management; however, many need surgical treatment to gradually close off the shunt. Surgery is very successful and dogs return to normal in 2-4 months.

  • Special care must be taken when your dog comes home after an operation to ensure the incision area stays clean and dry and heals properly. Some signs are cause for concern, and if observed, call your veterinarian right away.