Life’s ticking over again for Angus

Angus Morrison is the first dog in Scotland with a pacemaker
Angus Morrison is the first dog in Scotland with a pacemaker
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A dog has been fitted with a pacemaker in the first operation of its kind in Scotland.

The Morrison family from Larbert got an early Christmas present when Angus, a Dandie Dinmont terrier, pulled through from the risky procedure and was able to return home for the festive holiday.

The operation was needed because the two year old dog developed a condition which slowed his heartbeat and led to him collapsing.

Owner Ian said Angus had been a normal young dog until just a few weeks ago when he became lethargic and started sleeping more frequently. In a visit to the vets he was diagnosed with a third-degree heart blockage and the operation, believed to have cost around £10,000, was the only option to save him.

The machine was fitted to his neck by veterinary cardiologists Craig Devine and Yolanda Martinez Perriera at Inglis Veterinary Hospital in Dunfermline - the first time the surgery has been carried out outwith a university.

The operation was a success and Angus is now resting at home.

Craig said: “Angus is very precious to his owners and he was at real risk of dying without the surgery.

“His heart rate was about 40 beats per minute, a normal dog in a clinic would be at around 140 beats per minute, so he was at risk of his heart stopping and dying suddenly.

“The pacemaker has changed his life. It’s like turning on a switch and turning a lethargic dog back to normal. It’s a privilege to be able to do that.”

Angus may need another operation when he is older to change the batteries in the pacemaker, which are designed to last nine years, but other than that he should live a normal life.