February has truly leapt by this year, with 38 new surgical patients and some very interesting cases coming through the hospital.

Thank you as always to the support of practices in Cornwall and the South West who entrust us with their cases.

Amongst orthopaedic cases we’ve seen six cranial cruciate ligament rupture cases (treated with either Slocum TPLO or Wedge TPLO) and two patella luxation cases, including a cat. Cats typically require a relatively robust repair of tibial crest transposition, with a tension band wire supporting arthrodesis wire pin fixation (see radiograph).

Handdrawn images of positioning of dogs for shoulder radiography
Colin Whiting and son building a dove cote

Recently I gave two lectures at the Cornwall Veterinary Association Congress in StIves, giving tips on patient positioning for orthopaedic x-rays and an overview of current procedures for treating cranial cruciate ligament rupture.

The congress is followed by the annual black tie ball, which is a great opportunity to catch up with colleagues at practices throughout Cornwall.

I was off for a week over February half-term, including an exciting train trip to London with the children for some sights, a rock concert and a visit to the Roald Dahl museum in Great Missenden.

Back home we’ve had the drills and screws out again (together with a protractor and some tricky sums) for an octagonal dovecote construction…we’re still waiting for the first residents to move in.

Kindest regards to all, Colin

Colin Whiting with son on his shoulders outdoors having just erected the homemade dovecote

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X-ray of cat leg with repair of tibial crest transposition, with a tension band wire supporting arthrodesis wire pin fixation

Sadly we diagnosed a lovely 3year old rottweiller with a very rapidly progressive distal femoral osteosarcoma. Fracture repair cases also included humeral, radial, lateral condylar and metacarpal fractures.

Post-operative reviews included Diesel the mastiff who had bilateral TPLO surgery last month, following cruciate liagment rupture and meniscal tears in both knees- his recuperation has proceeded really well, and we posted a video of the big fella on our practice facebook page.

Amongst soft-tissue cases we’ve performed two gastrotomies and three bowel resections, including a puppy with ileocaecocolic intussusception. I assisted my colleague James Christie who performed an adrenal tumour removal, and we had a bilateral lip fold resection case that responded extremely well to surgery.

Lip fold dermatitis is a painful and severely malodorous condition that can seriously denigrate owner-pet relationships; affected animals are miserable and can become very facially sensitive.

Topical and systemic antibiotic medication can help, but recurrence is common. Surgical excision of the folded skin can bring a permanent resolution and is very rewarding.

Handdrawn images of positioning of dogs for shoulder radiography
The Whiting family building a dovecote