Michaela and Bonnie
Michaela Hughes and her spaniel Bonnie.

A veterinary nurse found herself on both sides of the consult table after helping with life-saving surgery on her pet dog.

Michaela Hughes, of Westway Veterinary Group in Newcastle, returned home to find her one-year-old spaniel Bonnie had been sick.

Suspecting her pet had eaten something she shouldn’t have, Miss Hughes drove Bonnie to Westway’s main hospital.

Emergency operation

X-rays revealed Bonnie had a foreign body stuck in her intestine, meaning emergency on-call vet Catriona Ferguson had to operate immediately.

While most owners would stay away from the operation, Miss Hughes immediately scrubbed up and prepared to assist Miss Ferguson with the procedure.

A solid lump of wood was removed from Bonnie’s gut, while three inches of the dog’s intestine, which had become severely damaged by the wood, had to be cut away.

Surprisingly calm

X-rays revealed the foreign body stuck inside Bonnie (click to zoom).

Bonnie was kept in hospital for two nights and is now recovering at home under Miss Hughes’ care.

She said: “I was surprisingly calm during the operation, but the next day I couldn’t stop crying.

“We could see from the x-rays a foreign body in Bonnie’s intestine and we had to remove it as soon as possible. I am a senior nurse, so knew what needed to be done and got scrubbed up and ready for action.

“I had a vet I really trusted, which gave me confidence. With part of Bonnie’s intestine being removed, there was a high chance of peritonitis, but, fortunately, this proved not to be the case.

“Bonnie is recovering brilliantly from her operation and the wound is healing well. She is eating and drinking normally, and is back to her old energetic self.”

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