“Puppy’s mended heart in time for Valentine’s Day thanks to life-saving operation.”

Puppy Winnie had a lucky escape after her rapid heart beat became cause for concern (Image: PDSA)

One lucky five-month-old puppy had her heart saved ready for Valentine’s Day after needing emergency surgery to fix her rapid heart beat and murmur caused by a defect

Our pets are often considered family, sharing our life and home for many years. This means if our pets are unwell, it can be heart-breaking for the owners, particularly if they are only young.

A little five-month-old puppy scared her family and needed complex, life-saving heart surgery after they noticed her heartbeat was incredibly fast and a loud murmur could be heard.

Tiny Winnie-Wynter, a Cocker Spaniel, was taken in to hospital after her heartbeat refused to slow down, resulting in surgery. Thankfully she is feeling much better now with the owners ready to “spoil her” with love this Valentine’s Day.

Winnie had a murmur on her heart which was cause for concern ( Image: PDSA)

Owners Kersharn McPherson, 27, and Natasha Ashton, 32, noticed Winnie’s worryingly fast heart rate at just five-months-old and took her to see the vet. When examined at Croydon PDSA Pet Hospital, they noticed that as well as a quick heartbeat, she also had a loud murmur.

Heart murmurs are caused by abnormal blood flow inside the heart and can point to serious defects like Patent Ductus Arteriosus (PDA), which Winnie was suspected to have.

Caused by a congenital heart defect, PDA is found in younger dogs and is when a connection between the two major blood vessels leading from the heart doesn’t close after birth.

Worryingly for Winnie’s owners, in most cases, this defect leads to heart failure if not caught and treated as soon as possible.

Winnie was taken for x-rays at another PDSA Pet Hospital which revealed the little cocker spaniel had an enlarged heart due to the extra work it was doing to compensate the defect.

Kersharn and Natasha were distraught to have the diagnosis of PDA confirmed as most puppies with this illness go on to have heart failure before reaching one year old.

Winnie was rushed into surgery, on February 1, 2023, to give her the best chance of survival and fix the defect before it got worse. Due to her tiny size and the intricate and delicate nature of the operation, the surgery was high risk and incredibly tough to perform.

“Our world crumbled when we found out that Winnie had a serious, life-threatening condition at such a young age,” said Kersharn.

The five-month-old pup was so small that surgery was incredibly difficult ( Image: PDSA)

Senior vets from two PDSA hospitals, David Mills and Millie Wilder, teamed up to operate on the little puppy together in an attempt to fix her broken heart and give her the best chance for the future.

After staying overnight at the charity’s hospital, the little Spaniel returned home to her loving family to continue her recovery. Kersharn added: “I can’t express the relief we felt when we found out the surgery was a success and she was recovering well. We were bracing ourselves for the worst news, so we are eternally grateful to PDSA for saving our girl’s life.”

PSDA is an animal charity, run thanks to donations and provides free or low cost vet support and surgeries for families who are unable to pay for their pet’s medical bills.

“The surgery she had would have cost thousands at a private vet, due to its complexity, and we wouldn’t have been able to afford it,” shared the 27-year-old, “Like everyone, we’ve been feeling the impact of rising bills.

“I’m just so glad PDSA were here to help us in our time of need.”

While the worst is over, Winnie will be closely monitored over the next few months to make sure the surgery was a success and she has no adverse effects.

Kersharn said: “This Valentine’s and beyond, we will be spoiling Winnie with so much love. After beating all the odds, we can’t wait to enjoy many more years with her.”

Related Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *