The Story of Menace: A Puppy’s Close Call

UntitledMenace was born 5 weeks ago, shortly after New Year’s day. She was a little white runt of a black litter, less than half the size of her four siblings. While she continued to be tinier than her littermates, she more than compensated for her lack of size with limitless energy and curiosity.

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Menace is one of the numerous soi dogs living on the streets of Hua Hin. Her family and a few other soi dogs in the area are a few of the lucky ones receiving regular aid from the XploreAsia team. With the much-needed food and attention, they are buffered against some of the horrors of malnutrition and rampant disease.

3At 4 weeks of age and weighing only 820g, Menace was trampled on by a pony almost 500 times her weight. The stunned puppy’s hind leg hung loosely by her side and she was struggling to get up. The team rushed her to the Kasetsart University’s teaching hospital, where her leg was X-rayed to evaluate the damage.

The X-rays revealed a complete spiral fracture through the proximal
third of her right femur which was proximally and medically displaced. Given her tiny size, an inch closer to her core and she would have broken her spine and suffered extensive trauma to her abdominal organs. She had narrowly escaped the devastating and fatal injuries which spell a death sentence.

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Fixing the fracture surgically was too much of a risk as she was too young and poorly nourished to undergo general anaesthesia, or survive potential complications from infection and sepsis. Luckily, puppies at her age lay down bone at a rapid rate as part of their natural growth, giving her the potential to heal quickly without having to undergo the knife. With her abdominal organs and spinal reflexes intact, she was put on a conservative treatment plan of rest, confinement, pain relief, and a nutritious diet high in calcium to support her healing.

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Menace was a little young to be separated from her mom, but given her 6injuries, leaving her on the streets was simply not an option. She was taken in by XploreAsia’s dog rescue program director Jaco, where she was given intensive nursing, lots of tender loving care, and a warm, dry and safe place to call home.

It has been a week since the accident and she has already impressed

7everyone with her astonishing rate of recovery. In just the space of a week, she had started bearing weight on her broken leg, playing and exploring with the same energy and curiosity as any other healthy puppy. She continues to have a healthy appetite despite the injury and separation from mom, and with the nutritional support in place, is staying right on track with her growth.

She is due for a her 2 week re-evaluation in a week’s time. We expect that her broken leg will heal at an angle and be shorter than the other one, and she will walk with a limp for the rest of her life. However, as long as her leg continues to heal rapidly, and her growth remains on track, her future in a loving home looks bright and hopeful.

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