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Posted By: Greg - Vet

Vets Diary - Charlie is July's Pet of the Month

One of my favourite places to be is surrounded by my animals and I can think of nothing much better than an evening spent with my three dogs, Maddie Charlie and Eddie and my horses. But on this particular evening our lovely fun time ended with a nasty accident.

Charlie was in his own world playing with a ball and didn't notice the rake we were using to clean the paddock. When he went to jump after the ball, he landed on the rake and his face made contact with the sharp end of the tool. Through sheer bad luck, a metal spike had ended up puncturing his left eyeball.

Trying to remain calm we called the emergency service and arranged to meet Greg at the surgery. I’ve been the receptionist on the small animal side of the vets for eleven  years now and I knew that what had happened was serious and was more than likely going to be a life changing event for Charlie. He’d lost a lot of the clear fluid from his eyeball (known as aqueous humour) and his eye was also bleeding this, coupled with the dirt from the rake, meant that there was a very low probability of saving the eye

Charlie was very stoical considering the amount of pain that he was in and we remained calm and quiet for him. After discussion with Greg we all came to the same conclusion that best outcome was going to be achieved by removing the damaged eye, his post-op care would be relatively short lived and straight forward, and it would be an instant relief of the pain for him.

In my job every day I deal with owners who are leaving their much loved pets with us for and operation. Many owners are friends that I have known for a long time or people that have become friends. Leaving my dog wasn’t an easy experience and I had an uneasy few hours at home until I could collect him later that evening.

I know that losing an eye doesn't have to be disfiguring – prostheses are available for cosmetic purposes to sit in the empty eye socket but a lot of the time these aren't entirely necessary as the animal’s looks end up barely any different; if anything the wound can look like a permanent wink, that can make their character even more unique. Often once the hair regrows (after clipping the area for surgery), one eyed dogs are hard to recognise as they manage just as well as their two eyed counterparts. Charlie is a fit and active dog who came through his surgery well and I was able to take him home the same evening.

After his operation I discovered that I was exactly the same as many other owners, I spent a sleepless night on the sofa watching Charlie’s every move and barely left his side for the next day. He also got to spend a couple of nights in my bedroom, much to the disgust of the rest of his pack, but all the special treatment has paid off and he’s now looking just as gorgeous as he ever was and looking forward to strutting his stuff in the most handsome dog classes at the local dog shows this summer.  And I’m hoping not to have a client’s eye view of the place that I love and work for quite some time.

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