A much-loved Spaniel with heart failure now has ‘limitless energy’ thanks to the surgery skills of vets in Somerset.

Two-year-old Koda was close to death when he was rushed to Linnaeus-owned Cave Veterinary Specialists near Wellington for emergency surgery.

At first his owners Neil and Sarah Hampton-Rumbold from Lyme Regis, Dorset, thought their beloved Koda had simply overdone it on a long walk as he was breathing hard and could not settle.

However, Koda was precariously close to losing his life as he was actually suffering from a severe heart condition – constrictive pericarditis and secondary right-sided heart failure.

His life-saving treatment at Cave was led by Anna Nutt, European veterinary specialist in small animal surgery.

Neil said: “Anna explained all the risks. It was heart surgery, so we were worried. 

“However, we were also confident in Anna’s ability as she had explained everything, and even drew a diagram for us on what they were planning to do. 

“I struggled with my emotions when we left Koda but everyone was sympathetic and supportive. 

“When we went back to pick up Koda after the operation, some of the staff wanted to give him a cuddle to say goodbye. We were treated very well.”

Anna said: “There was suspicion of constrictive pericarditis due to septic pericardial effusion. This had led to secondary right-sided heart failure, which was confirmed during a scan of Koda’s heart. 

“With this condition, an infection of the sac around the heart (the pericardium) causes the formation of scar tissue, which prevents the heart from being able to pump properly.

“Surgery was performed, which involved removal of the constricting band of pericardium which had adhered to his heart, and flushing out the infected fluid. It was a delicate surgery because the risk of damaging the coronary artery and causing catastrophic bleeding was high. 

“Koda made an excellent recovery from surgery. It’s now great to hear from his owners that he’s enjoying life again.”

Neil added: “Koda is back to being as loveable as any Springer Spaniel can be. He is always ready to go for a walk, dive into rivers and any body of water he can find. He also loves chasing through hedges and bushes.

“He has limitless energy but will then sneak up onto the sofa to cuddle up.”

Cave, located just minutes from Junction 26 on the M5, and offers specialist-led services in anaesthesia, cardiology, dentistry and oral surgery, dermatology, internal medicine, neurology and neurosurgery, oncology, orthopaedic surgery and soft tissue surgery. 

For more information on Cave Veterinary Specialists, visit cave-vet-specialists.co.uk.