This is an amazing story, about an incredible little Pembroke Welsh Corgi, a dog with more than nine lives!
This is Thomas.
He is a ForPaws Rescue dog, currently in foster care in Kansas. He is about four years old and the sweetest little guy you’d every want to meet!
Thomas came from the local Humane Society shelter in Kansas, where his foster mom went to pick him up in February of this year. When she got him home she quickly found that he was one of the nicest corgis we’ve ever seen in rescue – just a doll!
But someone hadn’t treated Thomas very well. He’d been kept in a crate for up to sixteen hours each day and had reportedly been urinating in the kennel. He had terrible urine burns and a bad secondary skin infection all over his belly and under his front legs. Someone had neglected him terribly!
He was so dirty that it took multiple baths to get him clean.
He was really good about being handled and emerged looking like a “new man,” albeit, one that was carrying around a few extra pounds! An adult male corgi should weigh 25-28 pounds typically. This one weighed 42 pounds upon arrival! Time for a diet as part of his rehab plan.
In addition to being on antibiotics and an antifungal medication for his skin issues, Thomas was also found to have food sensitivities. After some experimentation, a diet was identified that seems to work for him. Needless to say, he started to feel a whole lot better.
He proved to be quite the social little fellow, getting along well with the other dogs in his foster family, as well as a nearby neighbor who just fell in love with him. She was kind enough to foster him for a time when it became apparent that he was going to need to stay in foster care for a longer-than-usual recovery period.
It soon became obvious that the reason that he had such a terrible rash on his stomach was that Thomas was incontinent. When tests showed only minor urinary infection we tried medication. Ultimately, after numerous different medications failed to cure the problem we took the next step. A series of x-rays, with a contrast dye to show the functioning of the kidneys, ureter, bladder and urethra was performed. Here are two of the x-rays! You will never guess what we found!
(Click on photos to enlarge.)
Holy kibbles ‘n bits…that little white arrow-like object, it is a BB from a pellet gun! That’s right – this poor dog had a BB lodged in him! We were absolutely astonished!
But even after finding this, it wasn’t clear that the BB was the cause of the problem. The local vet said it was time for further diagnostics and that Thomas should really go to a teaching veterinary hospital where he could get specialized diagnostics and care. Ouch…$$$
At this point we were really concerned. We had one of the nicest dogs ever. He’d been in foster care for six months and everyone who met him had fallen in love with him. The idea that we might not be able to afford the care he needed was pretty devastating.
Enter, CorgiAid, Inc!
CorgiAid, Inc. has long been a terrific supporter of ForPaws dogs with special medical needs. This was no exception. They didn’t hesitate to award Thomas a grant to cover his medical expenses and we are beyond grateful to them!
And so…the story continues:
So off we go… Into the car for the ride to KSU.
Here we are!
Of course Thomas was a perfect gentleman in the waiting room.
He makes it look easy! There are times when not being able to understand every thing being planned for you is a good thing. In this case, it was decided that a fluoroscopy would be performed first.
His team of doctors was ready to go to work!
Thomas was also assigned his very own veterinary student, whose job is to monitor him throughout his visit. Can you tell he likes her?
So – today was the big day! The fluoroscopy showed that urine was leaking into his prostate gland so the doctors decided they’d go in surgically to repair it. While they were in there they found a cyst and a hole in his urethra that allowed urine to leak into the prostate. They removed the cyst and closed the hole. The doctor said he’d never seen anything like it before!
Next they went looking for the pellet. This proved to be the most difficult part of the surgery. Ultimately they had to do an ultrasound to find it. But they were able to remove it and didn’t see any holes in the urethra underneath the pellet.
They also found a small mass from Thomas’ abdomen and a mass from his thyroid gland that had been discovered earlier in the diagnostic process. This was incredibly fortunate. Had this whole issue not caused us to pursue the diagnostics, this mass wouldn’t have been found until it had grown much larger and potentially spread to other areas. The doctors think that both masses are benign, but lab tests will be performed to be sure.
All of this happened this morning – after four hours in surgery, our little trooper is resting comfortably. He is in ICU with his dedicated student vet by his side. (Thank you – thank you – thank you to her, and all of the wonderful medical team!)
Thomas will be in ICU for two more days where they will continue to provide care and monitor him closely. This was HUGE surgery. Thomas will remain in the hospital for five to seven more days! We’ve asked his student vet to take some more photos and will post them as we get them.
In the meantime, please join us in thanking the medical staff, CorgiAid, Inc. and most of all Thomas’ two dedicated and loving foster moms who have done so much for him and taken so much of their time to ensure that he got what he needed. Without all of these incredible people, he wouldn’t have made it.
Please send healing thoughts to Thomas while he’s at Kansas State University College of Veterinary Medicine in Manhattan, Kansas. He’s a pretty smart guy and if you tell him you’re thinking good thoughts for him, he’ll probably hear you! He did graduate from obedience class, after all!
We will post updates on the blog! Stay tuned!
We love you Thomas! Be well, heal quickly so you can go on to a new and wonderful life!
Filed under: adoption, Corgis, forpaws, Rescue | 15 Comments »