Darwin Animal Doctors

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Princessa

Santa Cruz, Galapagos

One Tuesday morning, just as the Doctors had stabilized an emergency hit-by-car case, the team were about to sit and catch their breath as the clinic gates burst open and in came an entire family carrying their dog. Dr. Daphne quickly noticed that one of the dog’s hind legs was broken, and came to the family’s assistance.

With the family in tears, explaining how Princessa had been hit by a car and had injured her leg, Dr. Daphne checked the dog over for any other issues. While the broken leg was a concern, after being hit by a car, a dog can have many other injuries which are less obvious – but more life threatening. As mother, father, grandparents, auntie and children continued to express concern over the leg, Dr. Daphne discovered that the dog was also slipping deeper into shock from the car accident and was breathing very rapidly. While the leg was not in a good position, it was not bleeding, and so stopping Princessa slipping further into shock was the first priority.

Dr. Daphne and Dr. Marijke rushed Princessa inside in order to stabilize her before dealing with the broken leg. The Doctors put Princessa on an IV line to give her some fluids and monitored her as she slowly recovered from the shock.

After some time Princessa was stable enough to start working on her leg. The Doctors needed to set Princessa’s leg into place by first re-positioning it, and then holding in the corrected position with a cast. The whole team would be needed for the procedure; Grady monitored the anesthetics while Dr. Daphne first wrapped the leg in a special wrapping and gauze. Then Dr Daphne and Sacha folded the very thin casting material to be thicker and thereby strong enough to support Princessa’s leg. Once the casting was ready, Dr. Daphne and Sacha began applying it. The team worked together brilliantly, as each team member supported the leg, moved or applied casting, and monitored poor Princessa. Once the casting was dried and cooled, the final touches were added, and Princessa came out with a beautiful pick cast.

  

As the time came for Princessa to be picked up, her whole worried family – mother, father, auntie, grandparents and children – arrived to pick their beloved dog up. The family waited and patiently listened as they were explained the pain medications that Princessa would need to be administered over the coming days. Princessa, who was already looking much better, then went home with her family looking pretty in pink.

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