Desert Bloom Veterinary Care Center
Read Scrapper's story
Scrapper is a loved and well adored 3-year-old cat. His owner originally brought him in to be seen due to vomiting and having a decreased appetite. Upon presentation, it was apparent that Scrapper was very ill. Our doctor immediately ordered in-house bloodwork, full body radiographs, and STAT radiograph interpretations, which to our surprise, had no immediate explanation for his symptoms. It wasn’t until an ultrasound was performed by a specialist that we found Scrapper was suffering from a sinister disease called Idiopathic Hepatic Lipidosis. He and his owners endured 2 months of tests and treatments to bring him back to health. This included but was not limited to a feeding tube placement, multiple days of hospitalization with fluid therapy, and close monitoring by his parents and the staff. Through mutual trust, beautiful cooperation, and tender love and care from his human family and our staff, Scrapper has made a full recovery. We are proud to say he has become a guest of honor at our hospital.
It is very important to note that cats cannot go more than 2 days without eating. Usually, a cat with hepatic lipidosis has recently gone through a period of anorexia (little or no eating) for three to four consecutive days. The chances of hepatic lipidosis occurring are greater if the cat was overweight or obese before the anorexia began. These cats are often middle-aged and have lost at least 25% of their body weight. In greater than 90% of cats, there is an underlying disease that has caused the inappetence. These may include inflammatory bowel disease, other types of liver disease, cancer, pancreatitis, anxiety, respiratory disease and diabetes mellitus.
Read Nora's story
We have grown to absolutely adore Nora, our 6-year-old Golden Retriever patient, and her human family. 💕
Nora’s story started when she originally came to us to have a cancerous mass removed from one of her ears. That surgery was successful, but before she was fully healed from the surgery, Nora fell very ill from a disease that was completely unrelated.
Following surgery, Nora was unable to keep any food down, lost a significant amount of weight, and just was not her normal, rambunctious self. As to be expected, her owners were very concerned. Her symptoms were not an indicator of complications from surgery, so our doctor knew we were looking into something a bit more complicated. Immediately diagnostic imaging with a barium study was performed. Results from the test indicated that Nora had an obstruction in her esophagus. Ultimately, Nora needed another surgery. The same day, Nora underwent an exploratory surgery. She did, in fact have foreign material stuck in her esophagus, but it was not exactly what the doctor expected to see. Nora finally had a diagnosis… Megasophegus.
It required trust, patience, and determination from Nora’s family for us to be able to diagnose her medical condition. We can now gladly report Nora is doing great and on her way to a full recovery. 🐾
Megaesophagus is not a single disease. Instead, it is considered a combination disorder in which the esophagus (the tube that carries food and liquid between the mouth and stomach) dilates (gets larger) and loses motility (its ability to move food into the stomach). When esophageal motility is decreased or absent, food and liquid accumulate in the esophagus and have difficulty getting into the stomach.
When the esophagus is functioning normally, food in the mouth stimulates nerves that send signals to the swallowing center in the brainstem, which in turn stimulates the swallow reflex. There are several key locations along the various nerve pathways at which a malfunction can cause megaesophagus. Regurgitation is the most common sign of megaesophagus.
Meet Sophie Rook
Read Sophie's story
Sophie came to our hospital presenting as an unaltered female with symptoms of lethargy and discharge from her lady parts. Immediately, we knew Sophie potentially was in danger, and so we had her come in to be seen right away. After confirmation from in-house lab work and radiographs, we were sure Sophie was suffering from Pyometra.
Pyometra is a very serious infection of the uterus. It’s caused by the uterus filling with pus and, if left untreated, it can lead to kidney failure, toxemia, dehydration and, in some cases, death. Usually, the only cure once the pet has developed Pyometra is emergency surgery to remove their uterus. We are glad Sophie’s owners trusted us with her care, and we are happy to announce that after surgical intervention, Sophie is back to her normal self.
(We highly recommend all females be spayed within 6-12 months of age. We are aware, and thoroughly understand, that cases like this normally result from a lack of education on the importance of spaying our pets. This is why we wanted to take this opportunity to shed some light on what Pyometra is.)
Read Rascal's story
Rascal, a 12-year-old Pitbull mix, came in due to abdominal bloating and being lethargic. After emergency diagnostics the doctor discovered an internal hemorrhage due to a ruptured mass on the spleen. Although he was given a 50/50 chance of survival, his owner entrusted him in our care, and we performed an emergency surgery on him.
After removing the entire Spleen, with the mass attached, Rascal needed close monitoring, hospitalization, and TLC from our staff and his human family to nurse him back to health.
His owners and the staff at Desert Bloom are happy to announce Rascal has made a full recovery ❤️🩹!
Signs associated with splenic masses can be subtle and include weakness or may be more obvious e.g. collapse and sudden death if the mass ruptures and bleeds internally. Mucous membranes, such as the gums, may be pale and heart and respiratory rates can be increased. Other signs can include
- abdominal distension
- weight loss
- fainting or weakness