The Pet Tree House - Where Pets Are Family Too : February 2012 The Pet Tree House - Where Pets Are Family Too : February 2012

Monday, February 20, 2012

Dead Puppy Brought Back to Life

In Cleveland, Ohio, A one-month old puppy, trapped in a sewage drain pipe rescue was caught by FOX 8 cameras and is still being treated at Gateway Animal Clinic.

It’s hard to believe that just 24 hours ago, the dog was dead, but brought back to life, according to Veterinarian Bob Litkovitz. He says he’s now eating and drinking on his own but on a long road to recovery.  The Rottweiler/German shepherd mix is still in the midst of the biggest battle of his young life after being trapped in the pipe, in the basement of a home on East 110th Street, for two days, with no food or water.

Doctors at Gateway say he was extremely hypothermic when brought there Wednesday, and they say that most likely saved his life.  Litkovitz says, “He was not breathing. But his body was cold enough, he didn’t suffer any brain damage apparently from it, so he was able to come back. Took about three hours to warm him to a point where he even had a registered temperature.”

The drama unfolded Wednesday afternoon. The Lewis family says the litter of puppies, born on January 16, had been huddling in the basement of the home when one of them wandered off. They say someone removed the cover from a sewage drain, and the puppy fell through the hole. Johnny Lewis says he initially called police and fire for help, but they didn’t have the proper equipment.

It was FOX 8 who called the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District for help, and they quickly sprang into action. They used cameras to determine the pup’s exact location underground, then dug him out to safety.

Right now, the puppy is on fluids and antibiotics to ward off any infection.  The family has relinquished ownership of the dog, who has yet to be named, to Gateway.  Right now, two people from the sewer district are interested in adopting him. He is expected to be released from the hospital on Saturday.


Thursday, February 2, 2012

Elephant Fitted with Giant Contact to Repair Injured Eye

What happens when one of the world’s largest animals hurts its eye? She gets a giant contact lens, of course.

A vet at Amsterdam’s Artis Zoo fitted elephant Win Thida with the protective lens last week in an hour-long procedure, the first of its kind in Europe, the zoo said. The animal’s cornea was likely damaged by a branch while roughhousing with her mates, and each time she blinked, it further irritated the wound. The contact was fitted to help her right eye – eight times the size of a human’s – heal without complications.

Animal ophthalmologist Anne-Marie Verbruggen leans into Win Thida's stall at Amsterdam's Artis Zoo during an hour-long procedure to fit a contact in her right eye.

So how exactly does one perform eye surgery on an elephant? Win Thida, who weighs in at just above 4 tons, was lightly sedated, given an eye anesthetic and enclosed in her stall to prevent her from moving too much during the procedure.

A specialist eye vet, who regularly fits horses with contacts, performed the surgery from a ladder while leaning into the stall. Win Thida couldn’t be put to sleep as elephants can’t lie down for long periods without developing breathing trouble.

Animal ophthalmologist Anne-Marie Verbruggen inserts a contact lens into Win Thida's eye to help her damaged cornea heal.

The vets expect that the super-size contact will fall out of the 44-year-old elephant’s eye after several weeks, although if it doesn’t, there will be another trip up the ladder for the doc who performed the surgery. After spending nearly a month squeezing her eye shut in pain, she was “instantly better” after the procedure, the zoo said.

Zookeepers first noticed Win Thida’s injury on December 26. When creams and painkillers did little to help, vets decided to insert the lens. FOLLOW US!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Heidi's Law Hopes to Create Animal Abuse Registry

A seven month old puppy named Heidi was playing on her farm in Frederick County, Maryland, when someone shot her four times, once in the head.

Now, a bill to establish a state registry of people convicted of animal abuse or neglect carries her name, Heidi’s law.

Lynette Kauffman still struggles to talk about her puppy without crying, but she does believe something good could come from her death if Heidi's law is passed.

“I really look at this bill as a legacy of hope where Heidi will live on and help prevent this from happening to someone else's animal,” Kauffman said.

State Senator Ron Young of Frederick drafted Heidi's law so the public could keep track of anyone convicted of abusing or neglecting an animal in Maryland. Their picture and address would be posted on the registry for 10 years.

“I'm not trying to brand someone for life, just to put the warning flag up and keep pets away from them,” he said.

“Humane societies and pet stores and such could check the registry and not allow an abuser to have another pet,” Young said.

If passed, Maryland would become the first state in the country to have an animal abuse registry.