Pepper Makes a Knock Out Recovery


by Helen Stephens Helen Stephens
This is Pepper a 1 year old Jack Russell terrier. Pepper was involved in a disagreement with a horse last Saturday morning.
She was kicked in the head by the irritable equine and was rushed into Hunters Lodge Vets in Ewhurst in a collapsed state. The owners thought Pepper had died as she was so limp and lifeless. Fortunately Grant Smith, the vet, could see she was still breathing and had a very weak pulse. He gave her emergency treatment to stabilise the shock and admitted Pepper for further life saving care and monitoring. Miraculously she didn’t have any damage to her skull or jaw. Pepper remained in a coma until that evening but was able to breathe by herself. By Sunday evening she had begun to come round a little more but was left blind and unable to sit up or stand. She was given further treatment for brain swelling and fluids to keep her organs from failing. Grant and Charlie the nurse looked after her all weekend. On Monday morning Pepper was slightly more responsive but was still blind and unable to walk. She could stand for a few moments but needed lots of help. Her front limbs were very stiff and her back legs unable to support her weight. On Tuesday morning vet Helen Stephens was sure Pepper’s sight was returning as she was able to blink when a hand was waved in front of her face. She was unable to keep food down and we suspected her oesophagus was not working properly due to the damage to her brain. By Wednesday she had come on leaps and bounds. She could now definitely see and she was able to walk a few steps. She was still unable to keep food down for long so we thought we would have to place a feeding tube into her stomach to by-pass her damaged oesophagus. On Thursday Pepper was a different dog. We had to hold her back from jumping out of her kennel. She was able to walk and sniff around the garden without any help. She was also able to eat and keep her food down. Pepper went home that evening and we expect her to make a full recovery. Hooray! This was a very interesting case as her condition at first seemed so dire. Yet the tough little terrier was determined to hang in there and make a startlingly quick recovery that took us all by surprise.

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