Matamata Veterinary Services | Latest News

Latest News

Patient : Murphy

February 27, 2023

Murphy is a 7-month-old Labrador who was playing chicken with the ute and got clipped by a wheel. He was brought into MVS and on examination was full of energy with nothing abnormal detected. He presented again 4 days later with heavy breathing.

When Murphy walked through the door, his energy levels were so high (picture whole body wagging and wanting a pat from everyone) that it was very difficult to see that he was struggling to breathe. When we observed him from a distance (getting too close lead to excitement “pat me” “love me” Labrador behaviour) the heavy breathing was confirmed.  Murphy was then sedated and taken straight into radiology for chest x rays.

On X-ray, it was evident that something was very wrong. The line where his diaphragm should have been (the thin muscle that divides the abdominal contents from the heart and lungs) was absent and it appeared that his stomach was in his chest.

We assumed at the time that he had a diaphragmatic hernia which was likely caused by the trauma from being clipped by the ute earlier in the week.  Murphy’s owners were keen to proceed with surgery.

Murphy was prepped for surgery and when his abdomen was opened, it was clear the diaphragm had indeed ruptured. His stomach, liver and a portion of his small intestine were in his chest.   Dr. Alex and Dr. Kylie got to work quickly to repair the diaphragm and remove the abdominal contents from his chest.  This allowed Murphy to breathe a lot easier!!!!

We are very pleased to share that Murphy has made a full recovery and everyone is hoping he won’t ever play chicken with the farm vehicle again.

We thank Murphy’s family for allowing us to share this story.