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Vet unblocks donkey's stomach with cola
“It was touch and go for a while whether we continued treatment, as the impaction was quite severe” – Jamie Forrest.
Fizzy drink used to treat gastric impaction.

A rescue donkey’s stomach blockage has been successfully treated using 24 litres of cola.

Joey, a fifteen-year-old donkey at The Donkey Sanctuary in Sidmouth, Devon, stopped eating after his elderly mother died in November.

Soon afterwards, it was found that he had developed a large gastric impaction. The veterinary team at the charity used an abdominal ultrasound and conducted a gastroscopy to diagnose the problem and he was placed on a restricted diet to stop the impaction from growing bigger.

Jamie Forrest, one of the sanctuary’s veterinary surgeons, said: “Intensive treatment was required to resolve the impaction. As well as pain relief, we flushed Joey’s stomach with cola several times a day to dissolve the solid.

“We used six litres of full-sugar cola a day, spread out over three treatments, for four days, to soften and dissolve the impactions in his stomach so the ingesta could once again travel to his intestine.

“In essence, the cola acted like a drain cleaner. It eats away at the firm matter and eventually softens it to a point where it can pass.”

As well as dissolving the blockage, the full-sugar cola helped reduce the risk of hyperlipaemia. A second gastroscopy, conducted after the four days of treatment, showed the blockage had cleared.

Dr Forrest added: “We are really pleased with Joey’s recovery. It was touch and go for a while whether we continued treatment, as the impaction was quite severe.

“Thankfully, he pulled through. We thought he had the strength to survive the whole time so we persevered with the treatment, and we couldn’t be happier with the result.”

Fizzy drinks such as cola should never be given to a donkey by anyone who is not a qualified veterinary surgeon.

Image © The Donkey Sanctuary

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Special imports digital service set to change

News Story 1
 From Monday, 15 July, Special Import Certificate (SIC) applications will only be accepted via the Veterinary Medicines Directorate's (VMD's) new special imports digital service.

The original online special import scheme will be decommissioned. The VMD says that the new service is easier to use, more secure and reliable, and meets accessibility legislation.

The VMD is urging veterinary surgeons who have not yet signed up for the new service to do so before 15 July. The new digital service can be accessed here

Click here for more...
News Shorts
RCVS course explains concerns process

A free, online course from the RCVS Academy has been launched, designed to clarify RCVS' concerns procedure.

The content will give veterinary surgeons and veterinary nurses a better understanding of the process, and what they can expect if a concern is raised about them. It includes details of common concerns.

The interactive resource has been developed in collaboration with Clare Stringfellow, case manager in the RCVS Professional Conduct Team.

Ms Stringfellow said: "We appreciate that concerns can be very worrying, and we hope that, through this course, we can give vets and nurses a better understanding of the process and how to obtain additional support."

The course can be accessed via the RCVS Academy. Users are encouraged to record their learning for CPD.