On Monday, March 26, a small, mixed breed pooch named Stupe arrived at South Africa’s Highveld Ridge SPCA for a routine neuter.
Within seconds of the pre-anesthetic drug entering his bloodstream, Stupe went into cardiac arrest and died on the table.
The veterinarians and staff refused to give up on their patient, administering CPR for over an hour until Stupe’s heart was beating regularly and he was breathing on his own. Unfortunately, the little pooch was not out of the woods yet.
Although his vital signs stabilized, Stupe did not regain consciousness – he was in a coma. Such severe reactions to anesthesia are very rare so Stupe’s caregivers reached out to professors at the College of Veterinary Science of the University of Pretoria for advice.
They were told all they could do was continue supportive care and “wait and see.” It was up to Stupe whether or not he would pull through.
On Wednesday – two days after his deadly reaction – Stupe opened his eyes, wagged his tail, attempted to stand up, and even let out a “proper bark”! The next day he was even stronger, standing up in his cage and walking outside for a morning potty break.
Stupe was still weak and wobbly, but eating well and showing signs of progress. The doctors and nurses who had worked round the clock to keep him alive were ecstatic, hugging eachother and shedding tears of joy.
“This little cross bred dog was given no medication to stimulate his recovery,” they announced via Facebook. “His will to live and the soft caring nursing by SPCA staff brought him back.”
Caregivers at the Highveld Ridge SPCA have taken to calling Stupe “Lazarus” – the dog who rose from the dead.
As of April 4, the brave pup was still experiencing neurological symptoms related to the severe drug reaction, but he is continuing to grow stronger every day. It remains to be seen whether any of the adverse affects will be permanent.
H/T to Ridge Times
Featured Image via Facebook/SPCA’s Kosmos Group