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A Local Guide Dog Who Survived Against The Odds Wins Bravery Award

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Yoshi– a five-year-old guide dog from Welshpool – has won ChesterGates Veterinary Specialist’s highly acclaimed Pet of the Month title in recognition of his incredible bravery in recovering from life-saving surgery.


Yoshi’s owner, Colin Jones, had become increasingly concerned about Yoshi when he went very quiet and kept stopping on their walks. Yoshi also went off his food a little and took a long time to eat it, which wasn’t in character for him.

Colin took him to his local veterinary practice, Camlas Petcare Vets, who kept him to run some tests. They then referred to Yoshi to ChesterGates Veterinary Specialists in Chester.

At the hospital, a CT scan revealed that Yoshi had a life-threatening condition – a twisted lung lobe that required emergency chest surgery as he had 2.5litres of fluid in his chest.
Colin Jones commented: “I was naturally very worried. Guide Dogs provided transport for Yoshi and I was kept updated on his progress every step of the way.”

Yoshi is Colin’s third guide dog and while Yoshi was away, he experienced considerable isolation and did not feel confident enough to go out on his regular trips.

ChesterGates’ Soft Tissue Specialist Surgeon, Daniella McCready, carried out the surgery and explains more about the condition and procedure:“Lung lobe torsion, where a lung lobe twists on itself, is normally associated with Pugs and large deep-chested dogs, so to diagnose this condition in a Labrador is highly unusual. When a lung lobe twists, the blood and air supply to the lung lobe is stopped causing the lung lobe to die off. There are many reasons for this but often there is no underlying cause and the lung lobe twists spontaneously.

The twisted lung lobe leaks fluid into the chest and this fluid needed to be removed before an emergency thoracotomy was performed. A thoracotomy is where we make a cut between the ribs to access the lung lobe. The abnormal lung lobe was removed with a special stapling device.

Thankfully, Yoshi made a great recovery and within 24 hrs of this life-saving surgery, he was demanding treats. The long-term outlook for Yoshi is good and I am thrilled that he has made a full recovery and can continue his life-changing work as a Guide Dog.”

Yoshi was in hospital for a week and after that, had to go to Guide Dogs’ headquarters in Leamington Spa to recover and then into respite care for almost two weeks after that before being reassessed and finally returned home to Colin in Welshpool to a hero’s welcome.

Colin said: “It is wonderful to have Yoshi home with me again. He is my best friend and not only does he keep me safe and give me my independence, but he brightens my day with his joyful outlook on life.”

“ChesterGates did a brilliant job and kept us updated every step of the way. Yoshi is mending really well and is back to his old self.”

“I am very grateful to ChesterGates and to Guide Dogs for the superb care they took of him. It is wonderful to have my dear friend back home again.”

ChesterGates’ awarded their Pet of the Month title to Yoshi in recognition of his bravery and in keeping a happy, positive disposition in the face of such adversity.

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