november 16 2008
dogs given new hope
Three-legged kelpie Kramer is fitted with a custom-built frame, allowing damaged muscles to heal. Picture: Alex Coppel Source: Herald Sun
A THREE-LEGGED pooch and cancer-stricken dog have become part of Australian-first experiments by a Melbourne veterinary surgeon.
Dr Chris Preston, known for taking on risky cases other vets refuse, has used techniques usually reserved for humans on animals.
Dr Preston's pet, Bailey the Burmese mountain dog, is set to become the first dog in Australia to have a bone marrow transplant.
And Kramer the kelpie is Australia's first three-legged dog to be fitted with a custom-built frame, allowing damaged muscles to heal.
Dr Preston recruited world-renowned animal oncologist Dr Angela Frimberger to treat Bailey, who is suffering from lymphoma - a common form of cancer.
Last week she removed 400ml of Bailey's bone marrow, which will be returned to his body in a fortnight after high doses of chemotherapy.
"To be fair to the sceptics, we don't know what the outcome will be," Dr Preston said.
"But I am a veterinary specialist and I have weighed up the odds.
"What we're trying to do is prolong Bailey's life, without side effects."