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Mystery Solved for Pacha

25 January 2017

Pacha, a lovely 2 year old French Bulldog, was suffering from regular vomiting episodes and also some breathing problems, which was very worrying for her owner. Pacha was referred to Willows to further investigate the reoccurring symptoms she had.

Pacha was initially seen by Willows internal medicine Specialist Isuru Gajanayake, in the hope of getting to the root cause of her vomiting. Several investigations including blood tests, ultrasound examination and specialised radiographic studies, which were carried out by the Specialist imaging team we have at Willows, concluded that Pacha’s problems were due to several contributing factors. Pacha was suffering from inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) as well as a hiatal hernia (this sees part of the stomach being squeezed up in to the chest cavity). Following these investigations Isuru recommended that Pacha was also examined by soft tissue Specialist surgeon, Chris Shales.

Chris discussed with Pacha’s owners that one of the contributing factors to her symptoms was Brachycephalic Obstructive Airway Syndrome (BOAS). BOAS is a condition that is associated with short nosed breeds such as Bulldogs, Pugs and Shi Tzus and the problems it causes include severe breathing difficulty, poor tolerance to exercise and it can contribute to uncomfortable gastric reflux caused by a hiatal hernia.

Pacha had surgery performed by Specialist surgeon Chris to address the problems caused by the BOAS, which involved shortening her overlong soft palate (the floppy area of tissue at the back of the throat) removing abnormal tissue from her larynx (voice box) and widening her very narrow nostrils. During this surgery Pacha was monitored closely by our Specialist anaesthesia team. By performing this surgery it helped Pacha to breathe much easier and without effort. Further surgery was performed on the hiatal hernia and Pacha has now recovered from these surgeries and is doing very well. So in this case Pacha’s mystery was solved by a multi-disciplinary team effort!

Pacha’s owner is delighted with the improvement in her health and said “I can’t thank Chris, Isuru and the team at Willows enough. It was terrifying to leave my pet to be operated on, but Chris kept me fully informed at every stage and I was full of confidence. We’re still having tests to get Pacha’s diet right (to manage her IBD) but she is so much better now. She was my birthday present and we had her from 13 weeks old, so I feel very privileged to live close enough to Willows who could give her the best possible treatment. Pacha even likes returning for check-ups, so that speaks volumes!


Pacha with his owner

Pacha with his owner


For further information on Pacha’s conditions please see:

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) Information Sheet

Brachycephalic Obstructive Airway Syndrome (BOAS) Information Sheet

Internal Medicine Specialist page

Soft Tissue Surgery Specialist page

Diagnostic Imaging Specialist page

Anaesthesia and Analgesia (Pain Relief) Specialist page