A north-east dog rescue centre is appealing for donations to help save a dog who suffered possible brain damage after temporarily dying during routine surgery.
Benjie, a two-year-old Jack Russell Terrier and Chihuahua cross, was hours from being put down when Until Every Dog Has a Home (UEDHAH) founder Karen Fairclough intervened.
His ordeal began last year as he was being sedated ahead of an operation to have him neutered.
As the procedure took place, Benjie went into cardiac arrest and for a time had no heartbeat, leaving his brain starved of oxygen.
Heroic vet intervention, including delivering a cocktail of drugs and carrying out CPR saved his life.
The neutering procedure was abandoned and Benjie was brought back round from the anaesthetic, but to their dismay woke up blind and was unable to walk for 24 hours.
With appropriate care, he recovered but the effects of the near-death experience were deeper than originally thought.
Benjie developed issues with aggression that were uncharacteristic, while other behaviours began to manifest too, raising concerns he had suffered brain damage and may have seizures.
Due to the issues, an appointment was set for the dog to be euthanized but UEDHAH intervened and requested he be transferred into their care instead.
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Founder Karen Fairclough said: “For now little Benjie is in limbo and urgently awaits funding so that he can live the life he was destined too.
“We are eager to get him up here and into his placement with us as soon as possible so that we can begin his care.
“He is going to require 24-hour observation so that we can determine what are ‘normal’ behaviours for him so that we are then able to identify any untriggered changes to behaviour which could indicate the suspected brain damage and/or seizures.
“It is important that we get Benjie settled as quickly as possible and get him to our vets so that he can be fully assessed.
“This, as you can imagine, will prove to be costly, but it is essential that we get to the route of his medical problems as soon as we can.
“He will also require basic training and a full behavioural assessment once we have the results of the medical investigations.”
UEDHAH is a non-profit organisation based in Garmond, Turriff, which offers behavioural training for high-risk dogs within the rescue system and lifetime placements for those who cannot be rehomed.
On the site are 18 dogs – five dogs including Benjie under UEDHAH and 13 rescues which Miss Fairclough has either raised or were given to her due to behavioral issues.
Miss Fairclough said: “Benjie absolutely deserves the very best of care.
“He is a sweet, friendly little dog who is curious about the world and thoroughly enjoys being a part of it.
“He is currently staying with the general manager of UEDHAH until we can get him up here. He’s a fantastic dog with a wonderful spirit and nature.
“We saved him just hours before he was due to be euthanized and after he died and was brought back during a routine operation.
“This is a little dog who has faced death twice and survived. He is fighting to be here and we are going to help him do that.”