Breakers Story Part II by Megan Davis, VA

Breaker is a 12 year old Golden Retriever. Not only is he unbearably handsome, he is one of the sweetest, loveable, gentle dogs that come into the North Hill Animal Hospital. Everyone here at the hospital just loves to see Breaker and give that big adorable face squishes and kisses every time he comes in.

Breaker’s last few visits into North Hill though, have not been that same happy-go-lucky Breaker Boy that normally comes through the door. What exactly was going on with the big guy was a little bit of a mystery for a while. Breaker first came into the hospital back in October 2013. He wasn’t acting himself; he’d been vomiting and not really interested in eating. We took some x-rays and drew some blood to send off to the lab. Everything turned up normal; no concerns showed up on his x-rays and his blood work was all within normal limits. Dr. Cini gave him an anti-nausea injection and sent home a prescription for an anti-acid to help with his upset stomach. Breaker brightened up and got better and was back to his cheerful self. But a few months later in March of 2014, he started to have another similar episode. It started vomiting, had diarrhea, was very lethargic and not interested in eating. We drew some more blood, collected some urine and got a fecal sample to send off to the lab. We repeated more x-rays to see if we could find exactly what was going on with him.

He had a large gas pocket in his colon, which concerned Dr. Cini that there might be a possible obstruction, but this would be very out of character for Breaker. Now in his older age he wasn’t known to get into and eat things he shouldn’t. We gave him some more antibiotics and some pain relief medication, as well as some medication to help clear up the diarrhea. Over the weekend we were closed and Breaker’s parents noticed things were not getting any better for their boy and decided to take him to the emergency hospital. The emergency hospital was unclear as to what was going on with him as well. He was sent home from the emergency hospital with more pain medication and injection of anti-nausea medication. First thing that Monday morning Mr. Breaker Man was back to see us. He had not improved and things seemed to have gotten worse for him. He was very lethargic, panting excessively and very restless. His heart rate was very fast and he couldn’t stand for an extensive amount of time. So it was time for Breaker to be admitted into the hospital.

We put him on intravenous fluids to re-hydrate him and gave him some more pain control. We repeated more x-rays to see if there were any changes, but nothing new was seen, except that he still had a gas pocket in his abdomen. Dr. Cini was suspicious that there still could be a possible obstruction but wanted to make sure. Dr.Cini decided that it was best to get an ultrasound done on Breaker to have a real close look to see what was going on inside and if there was an obstruction. After discussing that with Breaker’s owners, our travelling ultrasounographer was in that evening for an ultrasound. The results of the ultrasound showed that there was no obstruction or foreign body, but there was evidence of a kidney infection and possible pancreatitis. We continued Breaker on fluids overnight and by the next day Breaker was showing huge improvement and he was ready to go home that evening. He was sent home with antibiotics to treat his kidney infection and a special diet for his pancreatitis. He was also sent home with some pain medication to help with his arthritis and his parents added carpet runners so he could get around the house easier.

Breaker did come back to see us in April because he was having some difficulty getting up. Everyone here at the North Hill Animal Hospital was worried that he was possibly getting sick again. Being an older gentleman now, it was his arthritis acting up and causing him the difficulty getting up. We did a couple of laser treatments here at the North Hill Animal Hospital, and Breaker parents felt that they did help a bit with his arthritis. He is also starting physiotherapy at the 404 Veterinary Emergency and Referral Hospital to help manage his arthritis and keep him as comfortable as possible. Everyone at the North Hill Animal Hospital sends Breaker their best wishes… and of course face squishes and kisses too!