The quick thinking of a Victoria vet saved the life of a five-week old puppy overdosing on opioids.
An unresponsive puppy was brought in to the VCA Canada Central Victoria Veterinary Hospital in January, and the owner was unable to pay for treatment. The clinic called the Victoria Humane Society, which said it would cover the costs.
“But the vet couldn’t figure it out,” said Penny Stone, executive director of the Victoria Humane Society. “He was just lying flat… they did an X-ray and couldn’t find a blockage and thought he would die.”
Then, Dr. Christin MacIntyre thought of an innovative solution; she went to the back of the office and grabbed a vial of Naloxone, an opioid blocker, and injected the puppy.
“He just popped right up and started barking,” Stone said. “When Dr. McIntyre phoned me she was just crying.”
The owner relinquished the dog, named Skittles, to the Victoria Humane Society which put it in foster care in a home in the Highlands. Skittles is currently living with several other dogs, including one of the 11 golden retrievers the Victoria Humane Society fostered with the help of a Bernese mountain dog in early September.
Skittles is a small shih tzu/pug/Jack Russell cross that is now eight weeks old and ready for adoption. Stone said he’s great with dogs and cats, but very needy and likely to stay quite small.
He’s also pretty good with ferrets, Stone said, after he met one at the Oaklands Veterinary Hospital when he was getting neutered.
This was the first case of a dog overdosing on drugs that the Victoria Humane Society has seen directly, but Stone said she’s hearing about pet overdoses happening more and more often.
“Apparently all the vets carry Narcan now,” she said, referring to the brand name of Naloxone.
Anyone interested in adopting Skittles can apply at victoriahumanesociety.com
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