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Thread: Update! Soft palate surgery on older bulldog.

  1. #1
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    Question Update! Soft palate surgery on older bulldog.

    I wonder about soft palate surgery... my Joey will be 9 years old next month, she wakes up around 3 am in the nights and it sounds like she's gasping for air. If she drinks too much she sometimes pukes some water right back up and she gets tired quickly.

    She's had both her hips fixed (FHO) and that went well. One hip was done in 2011 and the second one in 2012. She's not very active these days, she basically just gets up for food, water, relocation and to go outside to do her business. She is playful but she wants to play on her bed, she plays by rolling on her back, chewing toys or chasing my hands.

    I know it's hard to give advice but my question is: Is she a candidate for a soft palate surgery at all considering her age? My husband wants to do it and I don't, my fear is that she won't make it out of surgery, but I've always been nervous like that no matter of age or issue.

    My problem is that our vet stopped practicing, he's now out doing volunteer work in the South African communities to help animals less fortune. It's great of course but it complicates things for me since I have to start from scratch with a vet that I don't know and that doesn't know our dogs like Dr Dave did.

    Is it a big operation? is it worth the risk?
    You were born with the ability to change someone's life, don't ever waste it.



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    Default Re: Soft palate surgery on older bulldog.

    So sorry this is happening, but from what you're saying I think she is a candidate for the operation. Gasping for air at night and not holding water sounds worse for me. Of cource operation is a risk, at any age, but more bulldogs get through it than don't. The vet problem is a bigger problem in my book. Isn't there anybody else experienced with bullies?

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    Default Re: Soft palate surgery on older bulldog.

    Oh this is a tough one... on the one hand I agree that Joey is a candidate for the surgery, BUT it's crucial to have a good bully vet. I think that her age does play a part in the decision, but as you have mentioned she has had surgeries in the past and has done fine. Is there any way you could get in touch w/your old vet to see how he feels about her having the surgery or if he could recommend somebody?!!

    I'm so sorry you are going thru this, it's never easy when you have a senior pet

    "What we once enjoyed and deeply loved, we can never lose, for all that we love deeply becomes a part of us." Helen Keller
    RIP Wellie, Bella, Winston & Roxie

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    Default Re: Soft palate surgery on older bulldog.

    I'm in line with Riikka & Tracey. The vet is the more important of the two by far. Tyson had surgery at 8 yrs old, and did fantastic, but it was with an experienced bulldog vet. The fear is always there with any procedure though, Ugh. I feel for you. I've been there.

    My whole heart, Tyson.
    Whoever said diamonds are a girls best friend, obviously never owned a Bulldog.

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    Default Re: Soft palate surgery on older bulldog.

    So sorry to hear Joey isn't feeling well. I guess vets specializing in bulldogs are as rare in South Africa as in Sweden so I would start by looking for well-reputed veterinary hospitals with modern equipment and experienced surgeons and ask them for an evaluation. For Castor's soft palate surgery, we contacted a large animal hospital in another city as I wanted to make sure they had not only experience of this particular type of surgery but also (and perhaps more importantly) the equipment and knowhow that might be needed if something would go wrong.


    Castor is on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/castorthebulldog/

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    Default Re: Soft palate surgery on older bulldog.

    Thanks everyone We did get a recommendation to another vet, and I know Dr Dave wouldn't have suggested him if he wasn't qualified. I just worry cos he doesn't "know" Joey. Obviously we'll have to fill him in when going there but still... Joey has had so many issues, when we got her she was a mess and I'm honestly amazed that she's still with us. I guess she's stronger than I think, so maybe it is the best decision to get her the op...


    I guess a first step would be to bring her there and just let him decide, I seriously can't make decisions like this. I do think she's a candidate but her age and condition over all scares me, and I wonder why none of the vets that operated on her suggested this, then we could have had it done at the same time years ago. As far as I understand it's not a major op?
    You were born with the ability to change someone's life, don't ever waste it.



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    Default Re: Soft palate surgery on older bulldog.

    They just snip the extra (what looks like fat) off of her palate. The anesthetic is the main worry. Find out what they use,and how they moniter them,and what they do when she is coming out of the anesthetic.
    "
    “It came to me that every time I lose a dog they take a piece of my heart with them. And every new dog who comes into my life gifts me with a piece of their heart. If I live long enough,all the components of my heart will be dog,and I will become as generous and loving as they are"

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    Default Re: Soft palate surgery on older bulldog.

    Quote Originally Posted by Petra View Post
    Thanks everyone We did get a recommendation to another vet, and I know Dr Dave wouldn't have suggested him if he wasn't qualified. I just worry cos he doesn't "know" Joey. Obviously we'll have to fill him in when going there but still... Joey has had so many issues, when we got her she was a mess and I'm honestly amazed that she's still with us. I guess she's stronger than I think, so maybe it is the best decision to get her the op...


    I guess a first step would be to bring her there and just let him decide, I seriously can't make decisions like this. I do think she's a candidate but her age and condition over all scares me, and I wonder why none of the vets that operated on her suggested this, then we could have had it done at the same time years ago. As far as I understand it's not a major op?

    So sorry this is now happening at her age, but the palate is something that can continue to grow which might be why she was fine at a younger age, but not now.

    Go meet the new vet and see how the evaluation goes --- don't rush into it, make sure you become comfortable and if you current vet recommended this new vet -- it should help with you settling in with the new guy/gal.

    Sending prayers and hugs..... keep us posted
    ----------------------------------------------------------------
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    Thank you for all the love, fun and teachings




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    Default Re: Soft palate surgery on older bulldog.

    Googled the vet... his name is Dr Hans and he's a specialist surgeon. He does soft palate operations using laser and he used to work with Dr Dave. I believe we're good when it comes to the vet at least... so Riaan will make an appointment and we'll take her so he can at least have a look and we'll go from there.
    You were born with the ability to change someone's life, don't ever waste it.



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    Default Re: Soft palate surgery on older bulldog.

    It is a quick surgery and recovery is fast...a few days on wet food and back to normal...better than normal! Se's an older patient so make sure they do an EKG as well as bloodwork before moving forward with this surgery.
    The likelihood of any complication from this type of surgery is VERY small.

    saving as many as we can for the sake of Bullykind

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    Default Re: Soft palate surgery on older bulldog.

    I think Lola's soft palate has grown back since she had her first surgery at 2yo. Was contemplating asking the same question so thank you all for the insight. We too have to find a new bully vet.

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    Default Re: Soft palate surgery on older bulldog.

    Quote Originally Posted by oscarmayer View Post
    It is a quick surgery and recovery is fast...a few days on wet food and back to normal...better than normal! Se's an older patient so make sure they do an EKG as well as bloodwork before moving forward with this surgery.
    The likelihood of any complication from this type of surgery is VERY small.
    Thank you, I will ask them to do that if they don't suggest it by themselves.

    Her heart is my main concern since she's never been an active dog. The first 3 years of her life she spent in a small brick covered courtyard drinking pool water... we got her end of 2010, and then she had the hip op's one year apart. The recovery was long and difficult, not because it didn't go well but because she just doesn't like to walk. I have to bring a stroller and she's in it 90% of the time on a walk, even after recovery, and the vet couldn't find anything that would stop her from wanting to walk other than pure bulldog stubbornness, and stubborn she is. I don't know how people with jobs go ahead with surgeries like FHO cos it was a full time job for me to work on her physiotherapy.
    You were born with the ability to change someone's life, don't ever waste it.



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