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Vet Performs Pioneering Head Surgery On Fish
by KindMeal.my, 18 September 2014
Vet Performs Pioneering Head Surgery On Fish

A Melbourne veterinarian has performed pioneering surgery on the beloved pet of a local resident. Dr. Tristan Rich, head of exotics and wildlife medicine at Lort Smith Animal Hospital, performed micro-surgery on scaled but treasured George the Goldfish last week.

A large tumour had grown on the head of the 80-gram fish, causing distress for the creature and his owner, and impacting on George's quality of life. Ten-year-old George found it difficult to breathe and swim, and was being bullied by the other in his tank. He was unable to eat properly, and the tumour was affecting his ability to see.

His owners had been monitoring the growth of the tumour which was sprouting from his head, and decided to bring him in to the Lort Smith Animal Hospital for a check up. When presented with the options of undergoing surgery or putting him to sleep, George's owners decided to take the expensive step of surgery. The surgery, costs close to $200, was quite an intricate process, Dr. Rich told Daily Mail Australia.

There were three buckets – one filled with water and strong anaesthetic, one filled with water, a mild dose of anaesthetic and oxygen, and the last with water and oxygen. The fish was sedated, with water trickling over his gills, 'to keep him asleep and alive' said Dr. Rich. The tumour was then delicately cut out, as the tumour was quite extensive and had spread all the way down into George's skull.

'We had to closely monitor his blood loss, as he's a tiny little thing and wouldn't stand losing much blood,' said Dr. Rich. 'We tried to seal him closed with sutures but they didn't take, so we had to use tissue glue to seal the cut, which is used in surgery on humans. Very little of our methods are fish-specific, or even animal specific. We use a lot of similar methods.'

Whilst uncommon, the procedure had been performed before. Dr. Rich said that he had performed the 'fiddly' surgery a few times over the years. 'It has always been on quite old fish, whose owners had grown to love them.'

Dr. Rich said that the procedure went well, and George is in recovery. 'For the owners, it's not about having a fish, it's about having this fish. If you have a pet, regardless of what it is, then you have a responsibility to look after it as best you can. I'm not saying that everyone should go out and get surgery for their fish, but pet owners need to be responsible.'

'If your pet gets sick, take them to the vet and find out what the options are,' Dr. Rich said.

Hopefully everything continues to go swimmingly and the bright little fish will be back in his tank soon.

The vet and owner's love for George clearly indicates that fishes are friends, not food. Meanwhile, enjoy a meat-free meal on KindMeal.my to spare some lives of George's little marine friends – http://KindMeal.my/

Source: http://dailym.ai/XCLeC5 « Back To Articles