Going to the vet is nothing new to me. I recently visited my local vet for a fibula fracture and that’s where my journey begins. My local vet took x-rays to determine the extent of my fracture and saw something strange going on.
The x-rays showed some sort of intra-abdominal mass. My vet discussed this with mommy and referred us to Valley Farm Animal Hospital. As you can imagine I was really nervous after hearing the news.
As we were on our way to the car, mommy took out her phone and made an appointment for me at Valley Farm Animal Hospital. My heart was beating in my chest and I started panting as I realised this was something serious otherwise mommy would not have made an appointment so quickly.
Mommy helped me into the car and secured me with my safety belt clip. Mommy started the car and I immediately realised we were not going home yet. With every turn of the steering wheel I got more nervous. When mommy stopped the car, my heart nearly leaped out of my chest. Mommy picked me up and carried me into a large building.
We were greeted by a friendly lady behind the reception desk. She asked if we had an appointment and mommy explained that we were referred. The lady told mommy she had already received my medical file from our local vet and that one of her vets would be with us shortly. Mommy completed the paperwork and we proceeded to the waiting area.
We had a brief sit before a gentleman introduced himself as our vet and showed us to his consult room. Dr gently placed me on the consult table and started with his examination. He explained to mommy as he went along that he could feel the intra-abdominal mass and that surgery was advisable. My heartbeat slowly started returning to normal as the vet explained to mommy what they were going to do step-by-step.
Mommy said her goodbyes and handed me over to the vet. The vet spoke to me in a gentle tone while taking me to the hospital area. We walked to a secluded section where the glass doors have no handles. I saw the vet wave his hand in front of a sensor and voila, the door magically opened in front of us. I wondered if they could wave a hand over my abdomen and magically it would open up?
As we entered a second gentleman joined us. He introduced himself as the anaesthetist. He told me, seeing that I skipped breakfast this morning, my surgery was scheduled for today. The anaesthetist explained to me that he was going to give me something to make me sleepy. As he gently held my paw, he injected a clear substance into the IV. My eyelids slowly started getting heavier until I could no longer keep them open.
While in dreamland I was totally unaware of what the surgeon was doing or more importantly of what she found when they opened me up.
When I woke up after surgery, I felt a bit groggy and my eyelids felt heavy. Although I was not fully awake yet, I had a tremendous feeling of relief. As if a huge weight had been lifted off my shoulders. Little did I know, that a huge weight had been lifted off my internal organs.
The surgeon came past and checked on me post-surgery. She explained that she did what they call a splenectomy (removal of the spleen). This was done as I had an enormous splenic mass. The mass measured a whopping 20 cm x 20 cm’s. No wonder I felt like a huge weight had been lifted off my shoulders.
I immediately asked if they could bring me a mirror as I wanted to see what I looked like after the removal of such a large mass. My heart skipped a beat when I saw my new hourglass figure. Watch out Mr South Africa, there is a new contender for the title.
My heart was content as I cuddled up in my warm bed and drifted off to sleep. I spent another 24 hrs in hospital before being discharge. I was so excited to see mommy. I listened to all the discharge instructions and heard Dr say that with my splenectomy I had to religiously take my tick (& flea) treatment. The reason being that without a spleen I could not afford to get Billary (Tick bite fever) as the spleen helps the body fight off infection. (Spleen function: It helps fight infections and filters unneeded material, such as old or damaged blood cells, from your blood.)
Tick (& flea) treatment was going to play an important role in ensuring that I say a happy chappy.