Operation gives lucky Pippa third chance at doggie life

HADSPEN puppy Pippa Munro has been given a third chance at life.

The seven-month-old is now able to eat and keep thing down for the first time in her life.

Just 10 days ago, the border collie cross was as thin as a rake.

At 14 weeks old, she weighed only five kilograms _ yesterday she weighed about 16.

Pippa had surgery last week to fix her rare heart condition, called persistent right aortic arch.

The condition caused her oesophagus to squash in the middle, making it impossible to get food down.

Fixing the condition was a risky operation for Animal Medical Centre doctor David Allen, and it was the first time he had done anything like it.

Dr Allen said he worked near major nerves throughout the operation.

``You've got the heart there and we are cutting just above it,'' he said.

``It's pumping away and there are nerves everywhere, we were within millimetres of a major nerve the whole time.''

While dog owner Claire Munro knew the operation's risks, she said she had to take the chance as it was better than letting her son Archie's best friend starve to death.

``Anything he ate, he would just vomit straight back up,'' Mrs Munro said.

``I was very nervous, but we trusted David.''

The operation gave Pippa her third chance at life.

She was originally adopted out via Gumtree by a Hobart family and rescued by Mrs Munro's friends Emma and Jodi Bryan.

Mrs Munro then took Pippa under her wing, taking the number of pets the family owns to six dogs and six cats.

 `We're really passionate about our animals and about animal rescue,'' Mrs Munro said.

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