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Obese dog undergoes ‘weight-loss’ surgery

This may be definitely first of its kind case in India that an obese female dog named Deepika, weighing 50 kg, underwent a laparoscopic weight-loss surgery to shed 5 kg in just a week, a source said.

The 8-year-6-month aged dog, which is owned by Yasmin Daruwala had undergone the laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy procedure which costed around Rs 1.20 lakh.

After shedding 5 kg of excess fat in a short span of time post-surgery, the dog is now comfortable and is able to walk and move around, which she couldn’t do for more than 2 years. She is set to weigh around 18-20 kg after a few weeks.

The landmark surgery which opens up new avenues for treatment in animals especially pets or in zoos facing similar problems was performed by a great team led by famous bariatric surgeon Dr. Shashank Shah and veterinary surgeon Dr. Narendra Pardeshi, founder of Small Animal Clinic, both from Pune.

‘She was around 5-6 years old when she became totally inactive, she would just laze on the couch, salivate, pant for breath. Her food and medicines intake shot up and we ended up spending around Rs. 10,000 per month,’ said the dog owner Daruwala.

In an extremely worried state of mind, she consulted various veterinary doctors with no solutions, and finally came in touch with Dr. Pardeshi who recommended the surgery to resolve the dog’s overweight issues.

‘Like us humans, obesity is a silent killer even in animals. The dogs in India are fed more on carbohydrate-rich foods much like some foreign breeds. Pets become obese owing to lack of exercise or high food intake. This was the case even with Deepika,’ said Dr. Shah of Laparo Obeso Centre, Pune.

Apart from obesity, this cannie had various other issues like high blood pressure, enlarged heart, hypothyroidism, higher BMI, panting, salivation from the mouth, joint problems and a bluish tongue.

A normal dog life-span of 12-15 years reduces by nearly half if they are obese or fail to get treatment on time.

‘This dog underwent various medical tests just like humans for fat percentage by measuring the ratio of her stomach and hind-legs, after which we prescribed a diet and medication. We made other attempts to bring down her weight, but it had little impact so we decided on the weight-loss surgery,’ Dr Pardeshi said.

On June 6, after a five-day liquid diet and a 12-hour fast, the dog was admitted to Dr. Pardeshi’s clinic for the procedure to skim off the extra layers of fat on her body, with minimum invasion, blood loss and was discharged after an hour.

For a week, Deepika was on a diet of clear chicken soup only. She was advised by the doctor to restrict movements. The dog is expected to shed down around 18-20 kg soon.

Since many pets also suffer from obesity issues, both Dr. Shah and Dr. Pardeshi have planned to team up for a Centre on Veterinary Laparoscopy, Endoscopy, Bariatric Surgery, Laparoscopic Hernia, thoracic and other procedures.

Deepika’s owner Daruwala is in an extreme state of happiness after the successful surgery. ‘There is a tremendous change in her post-surgery. She performs all activities easily, moves around boldly and has brought huge relief to me,’ Daruwala said, proudly patting her lovely black beauty.


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