About this Special Case
Multiple fractures lead to an amputation for this sweet Pitty mix.
Every now and then we see a case that just devastates and inspires us all at the same time. Bert is one of those. He is such a strong willed and gentle soul. He has suffered unimaginable trauma yet still desires the affection of human hands and the love of mankind. Here is Bert's story.
Notes from our Veterinary Team
Part 1: The diagnosis
Bert came in to us with a history of possibly being hit by a car (but this is a guess, we will never really know). He had obvious but very chronic (meaning – happened a long time ago) issues with his hind limbs but otherwise, you’d never know the trauma this poor guy must have endured. He has the gentlest eyes, the happiest wagging tail and just the sweetest personality. On initial exam, it was readily apparent that his right hind leg had been injured and healed (without treatment) as it was permanently stuck in an extended position at the knee and he was not bearing weight on it, neither of his hips had an appropriate range of motion, and both hind limbs had pretty dramatic atrophy of the muscles which suggested he hasn’t been using them much for some time. A rectal exam revealed he also had pelvic fractures. Suprisingly, he never once growled or indicated he was feeling painful during his exam. After all the things we found amiss on his physical, it was time to take him to a local vet clinic for x-rays. The x-rays confirmed that he had suffered major trauma to his hind end some time ago – it showed us that his right leg was broken in two places (at the lower half of his femur, and at the hip), his left leg was broken at the hip and his pelvis was broken in two places. We knew there were going to be abnormalities but we were very surprised about the extent of his injuries because of how happy and seemingly comfortable he was. Next came the more difficult decisions – how to best provide comfort and quality of life to Bert, knowing that at minimum he’s going to spend several weeks in the shelter environment. go through (possibly more than one) major orthopedic surgery and the recovery they require..
Part 2: The Plan
Through the process of admitting, examining and diagnosing his issues, Bert has remained a very sweet, happy and outgoing boy making it clear we needed to give him a chance at a more comfortable life. The decision was made to start with amputation of his right hind leg. We were able to perform this surgery in our facility, and provide him an excellent level of post-op care. He is recovering well and adjusting quickly to being a tripod.
What’s next for Bert?
We are carefully monitoring his comfort and mobility and weighing the decision of pursuing further surgery for his remaining hind limb, and risking him losing what use he does have, or using medication, physiotherapy and assistive devices (if needed) to maintain his quality of life as is.
Bert will be under our care for the foreseeable future. Eventually a foster home/adopter will be sought that best suits him. He will need a home without stairs and an understanding that he will have issues in the future that could be expensive to treat. No matter what happens we are on Bert's side and will make sure that he has the best possible chance for a life worth living.
For Bert's Video click on this link: