It’s NOT a dogs’ life

It’s NOT a dogs’ life

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Chemotherapy for dogs? Why not? When her pet dog, Pepito, contracted skin cancer, she didn’t blink at the steep cost of chemotherapy for the five-year-old she called “her child”.

The 53-year-old housewife, who wanted to be known only as Mrs. Chew, spent at least $1000 on Pepito’s treatment. That was over and above what she spent on micro-surgery and nutritional supplements for her darling. Mrs Chew is just one of the special bread of pet owners who demand the best possible care for their animals, regardless of the cost.

Vets interviewed refused to give figures, but one of them admitted that such doting pet owners are on the rise. That’s why the Animal Recovery Centre, off Bukit TImah Road, is a high-tech medical facility for pets. It offers not only chemotherapy but other treatment such as eye-care and even kidney dialysis for ailing pets.

It will be the first animal clinic to use a human dialysis machine on pets in Singapore. The machine is not in use yet, but costs will not differ much from what people pay for dialysis. “We also do facelifts on the pets- not for beauty purpose but only for medical reasons,” said Dr Jean Paul Ly, 48, who runs the veterinary clinic.

“Sometimes, some dogs have blockages in their nostrils and we open them up to help them breathe.” The Centre has an operating theatre that looks just like those found in large hospitals. Looming surgical lights, fibre-optic tools, an electrocardiograph and a large anesthetic machine make it seem like a scene out of the Emergency Room.

Even the air in the clinic is filtered to make it a sterile environment. Computer technology is used for better diagnosis. X-ray films of patients are stored in computers, allowing the vet to manipulate the images. Problems not easily detected like gall-stones, are quickly spotted when magnified on the computer screen. The clinic also plans to use the Internet to consult doctors overseas.

Such facilities and services have a hefty price tag for some, so are pet owners willing to surge? “I guess if you really love animals, and can afford it, it’s worth it,” said Mrs. Chew.

 

Extracted from: The New Paper

Written by: Ian Tan

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