Meet Neville. He was acting strangely when his owner came home from work one night and on close examination, a small circular wound with a small amount of fresh blood could be seen on his back.
After calling our emergency team V.E.T.S, Neville was examined in our Ystrad Mynach Hospital. Helen, one of our vet’s was very suspicious of the small wound and he was admitted for further investigation.
After being given pain relief, Neville was sedated so x-rays could be taken and the wound explored. The x-rays revealed our worst fears, that he had been shot with an air rifle. Using the x-rays Helen was able to assess where the pellet was lodged. Luckily, the pellet had lodged in the muscle next to the spine. If it had entered the chest or abdominal cavity the results could be catastrophic.
The wound was then surgically investigated. Even though the wound looks very small and neat when the pellet enters the body it drags all the fur deep into the soft tissues with it, if left untreated infection will take hold. The pellet was located and successfully removed. Neville recovered well and after an overnight stay in hospital he returned home for plenty of TLC with his family.
Unfortunately, pellet injuries are not uncommon and are often presented to our emergency teams. Neville was lucky his injuries could have been much worse.
Thankfully, Neville has made a full recovery and his owners want to raise awareness of this dreadful, common injury. If anyone has information on the misuse of air rifles involving animals, please report your concerns to the police on 101 and the RSPCA 0300 1234 999.