Sausage dog’s windpipe injury causes him to ‘blow up like a balloon’

Sausage dog’s windpipe injury causes him to ‘blow up like a balloon’
Copyright Credit: Willows Veterinary Group
Copyright Credit: Willows Veterinary Group
By Cristina Abellan Matamoros
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The vets had never seen anything like it.


A sausage dog was rushed to an emergency vet in Warrington, northern England, after he became three times his size.

Four-year-old Trevor was found to have a hole in is his windpipe that left air trapped under his skin. The rare skin condition made the pet "blow up like a balloon".

The vets had to stitch up Trevor’s windpipe to “deflate” him to bring him back to his normal size.

Trevor’s owner Fran Jennings says she found her wiener dog all blown up one day but does not know what caused it.

Fran's daughter Jessica said that when she saw her mum's dog he looked like a "fat seal," adding that his whole body was like a blob and you couldn't tell his face from his neck.

Vet Michelle Coward of Willows Veterinary Group who operated on Trevor said she had never seen anything like it.

Credit: Willows Veterinary Group
The X-ray shows Trevor’s whole body from above. It shows how Trevor’s skin has been lifted off the body wall by the air.Credit: Willows Veterinary Group

“There were no external injuries that would explain how air had got under the skin, so we suspected that an internal injury to the airway or oesophagus could have been allowing the air to leak into the body.

“Every time he took a breath, some of the inhaled air escaped through a hole in his windpipe around the muscles and fatty tissue under the skin, and X-rays showed the emphysema was worsening.

“Surgery was the only way to repair the injury but due to its location, there was a significant risk of complications," she said. 

“I have never seen a case like this before and it was a new surgery for me.”

Coward added that Trevor recovered well from the surgery and that there shouldn’t be any long-term impacts on his health.

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