A couple travelled 2,400 miles through eight countries to ensure their dog got the life-saving veterinary treatment it needed.

Long journey: Pelle travelled from Norway to Bristol for treatment. Image courtesy High Croft Vet

Norwegian dog owners Cathrine Sørlie and Nils Christian Nordahl made the trip from Oslo to Bristol so their canine companion, Pelle, could be treated for an intrahepatic portosystemic liver shunt.

When the golden retriever was diagnosed at three months old, his owners were told no vet in Norway could perform the type of surgery required to save the dog’s life; their only option was to medically manage the condition before having him euthanised.

Ms Sørlie said: “We were distraught by the news. Pelle is part of our family and we weren’t willing to give up on him just yet.”

She told a friend in England about the situation, which sparked the search to find a surgeon to undertake the task. After encountering a series of dead ends, they came across Kieran Borgeat of Highcroft Veterinary Referrals in Bristol, who agreed to perform the operation.

A date was set for the operation and the trio embarked on the 22-hour cross-country drive in July.

Kieran Borgeat said: “Pelle had an intrahepatic portosystemic shunt, which is where a blood vessel within the liver diverts the blood flow incorrectly.

“The surgery to correct it is very complicated, but still minimally invasive. There aren’t many veterinary practices even in the UK that perform the procedure due to the intricate equipment required. Thankfully, Pelle’s surgery went smoothly and the end result was a success,” he said.

After a four-day hospital stay, Pelle returned to Norway.

Ms Sørlie said: “Had we not found Kieran and Highcroft, Pelle would not have survived. Now we look forward to many happy and healthy years with our lovely, happy dog.

“A big thank you to Kieran and the staff at Highcroft for taking such good care of Pelle. We are eternally grateful.”

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