Diagnosis: Degloving injury
When my husband and I got married, I decided to leave Phoenix at my parent's house. After all, Phoenix loves running around outside with the dogs, Jackrabbits and deer.
Unfortunately, last year Phoenix was hit by a car in front of my parent's home. Luckily, instead of running away and hiding, Phoenix jumped over the fence and waited for help in our backyard. My parents found him the next morning with his back right leg swollen and open, exposing his tendon. They immediately took him to Bishop Ranch Veterinary hospital where he was seen by Dr. DeLano. Phoenix's leg was so swollen that Dr. DeLano wanted to make him as comfortable as possible and wait for the swelling to go down before he tried to close the wound. It was not until later that day that I found out Phoenix was hit by a car. As soon as I found out, my husband and I went to see him at Bishop Ranch. It seemed like he was going to be okay, but then I received a call on Sunday stating Phoenix was not improving.
On Sunday, Dr. DeLano had called my dad to let him know that Phoenix's leg was not looking any better and that we might have to amputate his leg. Phoenix is just as active as any dog, so I was faced with the decision to amputate or possibly euthanize him, since I knew he would be miserable not being able to run around and play.
On Monday, I decided to visit him before work. Phoenix had stood up on his injured leg on Sunday night, so Dr. DeLano decided that he was going to perform surgery. The soft tissue surgery that Dr. DeLano performed was successful at first. Unfortunately because we had kept his leg bandaged for ten days without giving the wound exposure to the air, the skin started to die which in turn made his wound bigger. Because of this, Dr. DeLano had to approach this soft tissue wound in a different way.
The new game plan was for me to drop off Phoenix every morning at Bishop Ranch where they would uncover his leg and monitor him. Phoenix had to wear a large E-collar, have his tail and the majority of his body wrapped up when his bandage was not on his leg so that none of his hair could get to the wound. Every night Dr. DeLano would bandage his leg and I would pick him up and take him home. The most amazing thing to me is that after Dr. DeLano's son's graduation, he still came by the hospital, to check on Phoenix's leg and personally wrap it. I do not know many people that would take time out of their personal lives to bandage a cat's leg when he could have had another veterinarian or a technician do it.
Dr. DeLano's aggressive treatment was working. As the months passed, we began taking Phoenix to see Dr. DeLano a few times a week and then once a week. I started to be able to change the bandages at home because his skin was finally growing back.
It has been almost a year now since Phoenix's accident and I am happy to say he is fully recovered and as active as ever. He no longer goes outside and Phoenix now lives with my husband and me in our home in Dublin. Every time I think of Phoenix's accident and the intense recovery, I think to myself Dr. DeLano was at Bishop Ranch that day for a reason. I think of Dr. DeLano as Phoenix's Guardian Angel. He went above and beyond for me and Phoenix for such a long time and no matter how busy he was, he was always there for us. He is truly one of the most remarkable people I have ever met and he will always have a special place in my heart.
Janae (Marr) Blotzer