Case of the month

Meet Sam

This is the story of Sam, a young heading dog who was hit by a car, while wandering lost in downtown Levin. It was late in the evening so the people who found him drove him all the way to the Massey University Pet Emergency Centre (MUPEC), where he was diagnosed with two broken legs and a partially collapsed lung.


MUPEC stabilised Sam by splinting his fractured legs and using a needle and syringe to remove the air from around his collapsed lung, in order to re-inflate it. The word was spread that he was in hospital at Massey, but after seven days, still no owner had come forward. Thanks to Vicki, a 5th year vet student with ties to Retired Working Dog Adoption NZ, Sam was signed over and he was booked in for surgery at Totally Vets Feilding.

The fracture in his tibia was nicely reduced and healing well in the splint, so a cast was applied, without the need for surgery. The fracture of his foreleg however was unstable and the muscles of the forelimb had contracted causing a large overlap of the bone fragments: he needed surgery to realign the fragments and secure them with a plate and screws.

SamDespite having two broken legs on the same side, Sam was the smiliest, happiest boy imaginable: after his surgery, his foster mum Vicki had a fight on her hands to persuade him to rest!

Sam has now gone to a caring home where his new mum is training to be a vet herself.

Many thanks to MUPEC for their amazing efforts in their care of Sam.


We are a proud supporter of Retired Working Dogs Adoption NZ, which helps to rehome working dogs that can no longer work due to age or injury. If you would like to donate to help support the cause, please visit the website, or the donation box in the Feilding clinic.

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