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Ryan Hospital: Client Stories


 The best way to learn about the difference a Ryan Hospital specialty care veterinarian and clinical team  can make in your animal's life is to read the stories our clients have told.

Patients, Ryan's Emergency Service

Emergency Service Patient Stories

Holden rescued from Ibuprofen poisoning

  • When Holden, a four-year-old Australian Shepherd mix, ate Holden, Ryan Hospital patient nearly an entire bottle of Ibuprofen, his owners rushed him to Penn Vet’s Emergency Service. Holden was unconscious upon arrival.
  • Penn Vet’s emergency and critical care vets intubated him and performed gastric lavage (stomach pumping). But nothing came out when they tried to rid his stomach of its contents.
  • So Holden began hemoperfusion treatment, during which blood leaves the body through a catheter to be purified.
  • Ryan Hospital is the only veterinary hospital in the area with the equipment and expertise necessary to perform this complex dialysis procedure, which ultimately saved Holden’s life.

Poppy, the cat: head trauma survivor

  • When a cat named Poppy suffered severe head trauma, her owner rushed her to Penn Vet’s Emergency Service. A CT scan showed that Poppy had skull fractures that would require surgery and dental reconstruction.
  • Ryan Hospital’s emergency and critical care veterinarians work closely with specialists in other disciplines when treating patients. Thanks to collaboration with Penn Vet’s surgical and dentistry teams, Poppy was quickly on the road to recovery.

Summer, the Chihuahua, walks again

  • When Summer, a three-year-old Chihuahua mix, was suddenly paralyzed, her owners feared the worst. They brought her to Penn Vet’s Emergency Service right away in hopes of finding a remedy.
  • Advanced diagnostics revealed the problem. An MRI showed that Summer had a herniated disk that would require surgery.
  • Through Penn Vet’s team-based approach, the Emergency Service staff collaborated with surgeons to give Summer a successful outcome. Only one day after surgery, Summer was able to walk again.

Spotty Cat, fire victim

  • Red Paw Emergency Relief trusts SpottyCat, fire rescue, Penn Vet ESPenn Vet’s Emergency Service to care for many of the displaced, injured animals they rescue from disaster situations.
  • After escaping a house fire, Spotty Cat was treated at Penn Vet for smoke inhalation, burns, and other injuries. Thanks to the life-saving care that Spotty Cat received, he was able to reunite with his family.

Police dog Pedro returns to active duty

  • The Philadelphia Police Department trusts Penn Vet’s Emergency Service with the care of their hard-working K9 cadets.
  • Officer Sean Elkins brought his canine partner Pedro to Penn Vet when he was injured in pursuit of a suspect. Thanks to his successful treatment, Pedro was able to return to his important work apprehending criminals. 

Happy Tails Billboard Contest Winners

Penn Vet's 'Happy Tails' Billboard Winners 

Humphrey's mysterious illness

  • HumphreyWhen Humphrey, a rescue bunny with an unknown health history, became seriously ill with GI stasis, veterinarians at Penn Vet’s Ryan Hospital saved his life. Humphrey spent several days in the Exotics department.
  • “The team stayed in contact with me daily and even checked in following Humphrey’s release,” said Humphrey’s owner, Victoria Boaz.  “I simply can’t say enough about the wonderful team of vets and students at Penn Vet! Not only did they explore every avenue possible until they found and treated the cause of Humphrey’s illness, they also cared for him with compassion and affection.”

Lukas walks again

  • LukasLukas, a Ragdoll cat, was just over a year old when he suddenly had difficulty jumping and going up and down steps. His condition rapidly worsened to the point where he was only able to take a few weak steps before lying down to rest. He even had to lie down to use the litter box and to eat his food.
  • Another vet delivered the devastating news that Lukas’ happy life would have to come to an early end, as he would never recover.
  • Lukas’ owners brought him to Penn Vet’s Ryan Hospital for a second opinion, and he was given hope that recovery was possible.
  • The vets at Penn Vet diagnosed Lukas with a lower motor neuron disease, a polyneuropathy affecting the nerves and muscles. After treatment with steroids, Lukas was back to his normal self.
  • “The staff at Penn Vet are truly amazing, caring, and talented,” said Lukas’ owner, Jenny Togias.

Toby's battle with lymphoma

  • TobyToby, a Labradoodle, was diagnosed with cutaneous T-cell lymphoma when he was eight years old. At Ryan Hospital, he underwent a series of tests and ultimately had a mass removed.
  • Today Toby is cancer-free.
  • “The clinical team at Ryan Hospital gave Toby the best care possible and never stopped researching his case. Once they discovered that he was cancer-free, they called immediately to relay the happy news. We were always kept well informed,” said Toby’s owner, Kim Dugan.
  •  “I am so grateful for everyone at Penn Vet. Thanks to them, Toby can play again. Their knowledge, care, and compassion made a potentially heartbreaking situation bearable.”

Tristan meets the Comprehensive Cancer Care team

  • TristanAfter being diagnosed with melanoma on July 30 of this year, Tristan, a Shetland Sheepdog, was seen by Penn Vet’s Comprehensive Cancer Care team.
  • During Tristan’s first visit, the team mapped out a complete treatment plan, Tristan received his first melanoma vaccination, and he was scheduled for his initial radiation treatment the following day.
  • His successful treatment concluded on September 1.
  • “I only wish that my human friends suffering with cancer could have the same quality, compassionate, timely, and coordinated care that Tristan received at Penn Vet,” said Tristan’s owner, Sue Anderson.