The Curious Case of Hazel

Mar 2021 | Case of the Month

Hazel, now a 4 month old German Shepherd puppy, was picked up by her new family during one of the many snow storms of 2021! Her new family was excited to get her home and begin the new adventure of puppy ownership. Only being in her new home a day or so, Hazel’s family became concerned because she vomited a couple times and had some diarrhea. She was eating, happy and playful but couldn’t seem to keep food down.

On presentation to the office she was quiet but interested in the new environment and her physical exam was normal except for the diarrhea. Her fecal exam showed coccidia, a microscopic parasite, commonly seen in new puppies. We treated her with the appropriate medication but within a day and a half the owner was concerned because she seemed more lethargic, vomiting, and not eating. On exam there seemed to be a lump in her belly. X-rays showed a possible intussusception – a particular thing that happens rarely in puppies who have parasites and diarrhea where part of the intestine telescopes into itself. This basically obstructs the flow of the intestines and can cause part of the intestines to die. Hazel needed surgery. We opened her and found the intussusception in the small colon. We carefully pulled the two pieces apart. Everything appeared healthy. There were some adhesions on the intestines where they were stuck together but the ingesta still flowed through well and those adhesions would prevent recurrence. Today, Hazel is a happy healthy 4-month old puppy! She has no more restrictions and is free to continue on her happy puppy life with her amazing family!