Harris and his Weight Problem

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by Helen Stephens Helen Stephens

Meet Harris. He came in to see Helen a few weeks ago feeling very poorly indeed. Harris’ owner said she had always struggled to keep weight on him been but had he otherwise been well. For the last few days Harris had not been eating and the weight had simply dropped off him. He had also been sick quite a few times. His owner was worried he may have eaten a blue ball.

Harris was admitted for a blood test and radiographs were taken of his chest and abdomen. All looked normal. An ultrasound scan showed there was something unusual in his stomach. To find out what, he needed to have endoscopy. Endoscopy showed a brown foreign body in the base of his stomach. Much as we tried to remove the object with the scope it would not budge. We decided to operate and remove the object from his stomach. A piece of brown rubber was removed. It looked as though it had been there for some time, probably years. Harris’ owner was very relieved to see this was not the blue ball she was worried about and it was likely this has been there before she even owned Harris. Could this be the reason he had always struggled to keep his weight on? Or was there another reason for his low weight. Time would tell. That all happened six weeks ago and as you can see Harris is a different dog. He has gained 6kg in weight. He is much more lively and happier than he has ever been. It’s hard to believe a rubber ball can rattle around a dog's stomach undetected for such a long time, but that is exactly what had happened. Harris should now go on to live a normal happy life.

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