View Some of Our Past and Present Patients at the Hospital
Follow the stories of some of our patients and learn about the types of cases we see here at the hospital. Click on an album to view photos of the case and see what the team has been up to.
Charlie's Fracture Repair
Charlie's mother had been hit by a car, and unfortunately passed away. After checking Charlie over we realised he had a broken arm which needed to be repaired and some lung bruising. We strapped his arm to get him through the weekend and provided pain relief and off he went with wonderful Fauna Rescue Carers, Anne and Don. He was then taken to the Marion Animal Hospital for surgical repair of his fracture by our team of nurses and vets, including Dr Ru, Dr Phil and Dr Sheridan. He received many weeks of care with Anne and Don before returning this week to have his external fixator removed. He is climbing well and will be released once he has reached 5kg. We were very happy with Charlie's outcome and it shows how much we can achieve when we work together!
Sampson Flat Bush Fire Burns
Many of you know about the terrible fires that affected the Adelaide region in early 2015. We treated 10 koalas with burns from walking through the ash of their former homes.
It has at times been bitter sweet, because unfortunately we couldn't save them all, but we had seven patients that continued to improve and were released.
Adelaide is getting larger and our houses are slowly encroaching on areas that were once for wildlife. This means we often have possums, birds, reptiles and koalas wandering our back yards.
This puts native animals, particularly koalas, at risk from domestic animals. We see many koalas that have been attacked by dogs when they've been trying to navigate their way through the suburbs.
Please keep dogs locked up at night if you have a koala in the area to try and prevent these injuries. Luckily the koala pictured only suffered from minor punctures and was released after a short hospital stay. Unfortunately many others have to be humanely euthanised due to the extent of their injuries.
Shell Rot in Turtles
We have seen a few turtles with a condition known as shell rot. Shell rot is the common way to say a turtle has an infection of its shell, which can be secondary to fractures or injuries of the shell.
This turtle (Isaac) came into the clinic with small healing fractures of his shell but the entire carapace (top of shell) was covered in dark green moss and was very smelly. He had a betadine bath to scrub off all the bacteria and moss.
Once all the debris were removed, Isaac was started on an injectable antibiotic and a topical cream to help treat the infection of his shell. Because turtles with cracks in their shell can not go into water they have to be dry docked. This means they can only go in shallow water for an hour or two a day. Because most turtles only eat in the water we had to place a feeding tube, which is done under anaesthetic. This tube allows us to feed the turtle regularly which helps give them the energy they need to heal.
Isaac was released after two months of treatment.
This 2 year old female was found with a fractured front right leg and a baby in her pouch. 3 hours of intensive surgery performed by our vet and Dr Scott Rose at SA Vet Referrals was needed to repair the fracture. Mum and bubs had 10 weeks of recovery with one of our dedicated carers but recovered well.
Often when birds are hit by cars, or have flown into a window, they break their beaks. Beak repair is notoriously hard as it has to be very strong and shaped properly for the bird to be able to eat.
This musk lorikeet came into the clinic with her beak hanging on by a thread. We removed the dying piece of beak so we had a template for repair. After a few days of feeding her soft food while we tried to figure out the best way to repair it we came up with the idea of using acrylic!
The beak was gently glued back to hold it in place then acrylic was applied over the top to render the beak hard.
The musk lorikeet is now eating very well and should be released within the next week.
Farrah's Toe Amputation
Farrah is a young Brushtail Possum that came into the clinic after being burnt by electrical wire. She had severe burns to one of her front feet, but otherwise was not badly affected.
Ointments and bandages were applied to her foot but unfortunately one of the toes could not be saved. The toe was amputated under anaesthetic.
Farrah stayed with us for 10 days after the surgery so we could monitor for infection and ensure the wound healed well. She was then released back to her home in the wild.
Eye Removal After Being Hit by Car
This adult male koala was hit by a car and his left eye was badly damaged. Unfortunately it had ruptured and could not be saved. Lucky for him koalas do not need perfect vision to 'hunt' eucalyptus leaves so the decision was made to remove his eye so it didn't cause chronic pain.
The surgery was performed to remove his eye and he was released 7 days later, when we knew his stitches had healed well.
Gorgeous orphaned baby koalas often join us needing a little extra love and care before being big and strong enough to be released on their own.
Mange and Sarcoptes
Whilst our dedicated team do their utmost best to save the lives of our precious wildlife, unfortunately not all cases have a happy ending.
This middle aged female was found at the base of a tree in Adelaide’s eastern suburbs and tests revealed she was suffering from severe infection in her feet, hands and face due to fox mange or sarcoptes. The damage was extensive and sadly she passed away just 10 days into treatment.
Major Orthopedic Surgeries
This small fella was found in the carpark of the Belair Hotel in the Adelaide Hills late one night with severe life threatening injuries to his leg. Treatment began immediately followed by 3 hours of surgery performed by Dr Scott Rose and Dr Phil Hutt at SA Veterinary Referrals. The procedure involved pinning 3 fractures in his leg and stabilising with an external ring fixture. This is the first time this type of repair has been done on a koala in South Australia and possibly the country.
The extensive work and care given by our dedicated team saw this fella recover well. The pins were removed approximately 8 weeks later and he was a great prospect for release.