At our veterinary hospitals and clinics in 20+ countries, there’s never an ordinary day on the job. And our 70,000 pet-loving hero-Associates wouldn’t have it any other way.
Quite often, our pet tales become the delight of the internet – from a shell shocked tortoise to a golden retriever’s crawl of shame. So we’ve corralled some of these wild, funny, heart-warming, life-saving stories that also spotlight the amazing work our Associates do each and every day.
Munch the penguin gets his sight restored – and the glint back in his eye
When Munch the penguin began waddling into his penguin pals and missing fish during feedings, his zoo keepers suspected a problem. Turned out, Munch had cataracts, leaving him with very little sight. This meant that only specialist treatment could save his vision.
After one of our specialist teams performed cataract surgery, Munch not only regained his sight, but also the “glint” in his eye, recently fathering a chick named after the surgeon who saved his eyesight.
Sherman the tortoise is shell-shocked after eating six screws
Sherman the shell-shocked tortoise made headlines when his tummy upset led to a diagnosis of swallowed screws. During the three-hour operation, our surgeon managed to remove the screws and re-attach Sherman’s shell with dental putty. We’re happy to report Sherman is now recovering at home, and his appetite for fresh greens (hopefully not screws) is back!
Ben the Boxer feeling below par after swallowing 16 golf balls
When one of our veterinary teams examined Ben the Boxer for his bellyache, they discovered he’d swallowed golf balls – 16 of them – whole! Following the lifesaving, two-hour emergency surgery, Ben bounced back quite nicely. Now, his owner is hoping Ben will take up a different sport. “I'm going to have to buy some footballs for him to play with, as he can't possibly swallow something that size. Can he?”
Golden Retriever's crawl of shame leaves internet howling
Maui the golden retriever went viral on TikTok for sheepishly crawling across the floor after being caught making a mess. But in the news coverage that followed, our experts weighed in, saying pet parents often misinterpret submissive or appeasement signals to be a sign of guilt, when the dog really has no idea why his owner is upset. In fact, it’s more likely he just hopes this grand canine gesture of appeasement will make his human happy again.
@maui_thegoldenpup The crawl of shame 😩#goldenretriever #funnyvideo #andGO #guilty ♬ original sound - ✨Walter the Catt✨
Seeing is believing!
When Margo the dachshund was referred to one of our veterinary vision specialists, he got an eye-popping surprise: a “smiley face” emoji grinning back from the surface of Margo’s retina. Doctors operated to repair Margo’s severe ulcer with a corneal graft and she’s since made a full recovery. Incredibly, the smiley face remained unchanged, so it’s safe to say Margo is a very happy dog, both inside and out!
Score one for the squirrel
When a large hawk tried to scoop up a squirrel for snacking, it was the squirrel who took a bite – leaving the hawk with a ruptured tendon in its foot. Phoenix the hawk was taken to one of our veterinary centers, where doctors discovered she’d also developed an infected toe. Typically, such severe wounds would call for amputation, but our specialist team was able to treat the widespread damage and repair the complex injury. And, you guessed it, our grounded Phoenix is well on her way to rising again!
Sorte, a turtle with two heads, raises eyebrows
Speaking of shell shockers, when Sorte the baby turtle recently visited one of our clinics, our team was surprised to see Sorte had two heads. But when our medical imaging specialists performed a CT scan (not easy on such a tiny, unanesthetized turtle), they found something even more eye-opening.
Sorte has six legs, two backbones and two windpipes, but only one heart and one gastrointestinal system (which increases chances of survival). Our reptile specialist explains that Sorte’s rare anatomy is likely the result of a genetic mutation involving identical twin turtles that didn’t fully separate as embryos.
When a bear has a bladder problem, it’s big
It’s not every day our veterinarians are called on to diagnose and treat a 240-pound, incontinent bear, but that was recently the order of the day for one of our teams. Their MRI and exam revealed a malformation of multiple vertebrae and an abnormality in the position of the bladder. Thanks to their detailed diagnosis, our veterinarians can now find the best way to relieve the bear (and his caretaker) of the problems.
There are plenty more where those came from…
If you enjoyed those stories, check out some of other newsworthy patients: Pea Whizzle the Peacock who needed trachea surgery, a dog who traveled 8,000 miles to receive open heart surgery, a puppy who journeyed from Dubai to England for heart surgery, even a dog with extreme nosebleeds. And there’s Goldie the puffer fish who needed emergency dental surgery, Dotty the goldfish who had a tumor removed from her eye and the mystery case of Hiss the 15-foot boa.
As you can see, no two days are alike for our veterinary Associates around the world. But whether they’re making headlines for their complex diagnoses and treatments, offering advice about animal behavior or delivering daily routine care, they have one thing in common – a heartfelt passion for making the world a better place for pets.