Pets and Vets: Relatively new veterinary technique saves cat from kidney failure


'Oki' is now back home with her owners-two UC-Davis veterinarians.

Oki, an 8-year-old Burmese cat, wasn't acting like herself. She was normally very social and liked to perch on the shoulders of her owners—both University of California-Davis veterinarians. She began having difficulty passing urine so they brought her to the UC-Davis Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital's Small Animal Emergency and Critical Care Service. Oki was diagnosed with kidney failure and an obstruction in her right ureter from a birth defect.

Oki spent four days in the intensive care unit while being treated with medications. Although she was able to return home, her ureteral obstruction remained. Seven months later, Oki's condition worsened. She returned to the ICU. After a week, her condition stabilized with medications, but the emergency specialists knew that the obstruction was causing kidney failure and something more needed to be done.

Apparently, one of Oki’s favorite spots is atop the shoulders of one of her owners, UC-Davis’ Karl Jandrey, DVM, MAS, assistant professor of clinical surgical and radiological sciences. (PHOTO COURTESY OF UC-DAVIS)

It was decided that Oki should undergo surgery with the Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital's Soft Tissue Surgery Service to have the obstruction relieved. Due to the type of obstruction, a technique known as a "subcutaneous ureteral bypass" was chosen. The procedure creates a new "ureter" out of specialized tubing that connects the kidney to the bladder, resulting in the bypassing of the native ureter.

Oki's condition has steadily improved since the procedure. Her blood work is now normal, and she is feeling like herself again. With the success of Oki's case, the doctors at UC-Davis feel that although this is a relatively new technique, there is tremendous promise for the use of this treatment in cats with ureter issues.

State ROUNDUP: A look at the world of animal health


The University of California-Davis School of Veterinary Medicine has added a new residency program in veterinary reproductive medicine for companion animals. The two-year Theriogenology Residency Program will provide specialty training in all aspects of veterinary reproductive medicine and surgery, as well as all features of clinical practice related to male and female reproduction, obstetrics and neonatology in companion animals. The UC-Davis residency is funded by a gift from the American Kennel Club (AKC) and the Theriogenology Foundation.

"This will be one of the first theriogenology residencies in the nation with a companion animal focus," says David Wilson, BVMS, MS, director of the school's Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital. "The AKC and the Theriogenology Foundation are making a significant financial commitment to train people to address real societal needs." The AKC believes ancestry can best predict a dog's health, temperament and working skills.

The initial financial commitment of $100,000 from the AKC and Theriogenology Foundation will support one resident during the two-year program. Additional donations will follow at University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine and Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine to fund similar residencies.


Veterinarians at Colorado State University (CSU) have launched a clinical study in big dogs weighing more than 80 pounds to learn about stomach function in large-breed dogs that have undergone laparoscopic gastropexy.

Gastric dilatation volvulus, when the stomach flips and expands, is both potentially fatal and fairly common in large-breed dogs, says Eric Monnet, DVM, PhD, DACVS, DECVS, a veterinarian in the Soft Tissue Surgery Service at CSU's James L. Voss Veterinary Teaching Hospital. Laparoscopic gastropexy is a minimally invasive surgery in which the stomach is attached to the abdominal wall to prevent dangerous bloating. The study's focus is learning what happens in the canine gastrointestinal tract after surgery.

According to a release by CSU, the dogs screened and enrolled in the clinical trial will receive a special diet for five weeks; stomach function will be evaluated. Then a laparoscopic gastropexy will be performed. Stomach function will be evaluated again five weeks after the surgery, while the dog is on the same diet.

To assess this activity, veterinarians will use a SmartPill in each participating dog. These high-tech ingestible capsules send information to computer monitors, allowing real-time measurement of factors including pressure, pH and temperature in the gastrointestinal tract.

These data will allow veterinarians to understand how the digestive system works as food moves through the stomach and intestines in dogs that have undergone gastropexy. Dogs enrolled in the study will eat a standardized diet for 10 weeks; during that time, each patient will undergo screenings, laparoscopic gastropexy and gastrointestinal evaluation with the SmartPill.

For more information, contact Monnet, Kristin Coleman, DVM, or Geri Baker at (970) 297-5000.


Just before the first of the year, Woof Gang Bakery opened its first full-service veterinary clinic within its newest store in Boca Raton, Fla. Woof Gang Bakery, Grooming and Vet Clinic Boca Raton is the 41st store in the franchise. The store is open seven days a week; the clinic, six.

The full-service veterinary clinic provides comprehensive pet healthcare, including exams, vaccinations, microchipping, surgery and radiology. The clinic has a pharmacy, prescription diets and nutritional and behavioral counseling. Complete veterinary services are available for dogs, cats, birds, reptiles, ferrets, rabbits and other exotics.

Florida native Barry Wander, DVM, owns the new franchise. Wander attended the University of Florida where he earned his bachelor's degree in animal science and a master's degree in animal nutrition. In 1987, he opened Wander Animal Hospital and has practiced veterinary medicine for 27 years with a special interest in dermatological diseases, along with pediatric and geriatric medicine.


Purdue University's College of Veterinary Medicine, with a $2.7 million gift from Centaur Gaming and a partnership with Shelbyville, Ind., and Shelby County, will build the Centaur Regional Equine Diagnostic and Surgical Center. "The $10 million center will house the most technologically advanced medical equipment to support diagnosis and treatment of equine patients, provide educational opportunities for veterinary students, and also enhance and expand our equine sports medicine research capacity," Willie M. Reed, dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine, says in a release.

The new center will be located just a few miles from the Indiana Grand Racing and Casino's track in Shelbyville as part of the Purdue Equine Sports Medicine program based on the West Lafayette campus. It will offer advanced diagnostic imaging, shockwave therapy, endoscopy and specialized equine surgery in a one-story, 18,000-square-foot center.


Jermaine Cortez Dauson, 38, and Diana Hernandez, 32, were both charged with practicing veterinary medicine without a license in Edinburg, Texas. Local law enforcement, assisted by the Texas Board of Veterinarians, uncovered the illegal veterinary practice at Pampered Pooches Pet Grooming Salon. The couple is said to have performed surgeries, prescribed medicine and given injections to pets.


State Representative Ronda Rudd Menlove recently introduced an amendment to the Utah Agricultural Code that provides for the appointment of the state veterinarian and establishes the responsibilities for that position. The amendment states that the state veterinarian may not engage in the private practice of veterinary medicine while holding the state post.

Local citizens have spoken out against current state veterinarian Bruce King, DVM, who they say has practiced for profit while being employed by the state of Utah. Some believe this is an inherent conflict of interest and creates an unfair advantage for private practitioners who compete against a state-employed veterinarian.


Mexican beer brand Dos Equis' "Most Interesting Man in the World" Jonathan Goldsmith, a resident of Machester, Vt., has become a spokesman for Orvis to ultimately raise money for the Morris Animal Foundation. A dog lover, Goldsmith, 75, appears in online commercials with his dog Willy to encourage viewers to participate in the Orvis Cover Dog Contest. The Manchester-based company is known for its outdoor apparel and fly-fishing gear but also has a dog-gear catalog. Each vote for the cover dog contest costs $1 with all proceeds going to the Morris Animal Foundation. The contest runs through the end of March.

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