BluePearl doctors repair cleft palate of bulldog who teaches acceptance


KANSAS CITY – Stanley, a 7-month-old bulldog puppy born with a cleft palate, was recuperating Thursday after receiving oral surgery at the BluePearl Veterinary Partners hospital in Overland Park.

On Wednesday, doctors from BluePearl removed some of Stanley’s extra teeth, shortened his soft palate and repaired the alveolar cleft, an opening in the bone of the upper jaw. The procedure closed an opening between Stanley’s oral and nasal cavities, said Dr. Gary Modrcin, a board-certified veterinary dentist and oral surgeon with BluePearl.

“We’re hopeful this will have a positive effect for Stanley,” said Modrcin, who is one of just 150 board-certified veterinary dentists and oral surgeons in the world, according to the American Veterinary Dental College. “We’re pleased to be able to help him and his owners.”

Stanley is owned by Deborah Pack, a preschool teacher who uses the puppy to educate children about accepting those with disabilities. To show support for Pack’s mission, BluePearl doctors performed the procedures free of charge. stansurg3

Pack asked doctors not to fix Stanley’s cleft lip so that he can continue to serve as an example to members of the community. She said she’s grateful for the help Stanley received and plans to continue to raise awareness about pets who are born with cleft palates.

 “This has all been such a blessing,” said Pack, who has been a teacher for more than 18 years. “Stanley is an amazing dog, and it’s so wonderful to see so many good people joining together to support him.”

 Pack takes Stanley to community events and local city council meetings with the hope of someday creating a statewide Stand Up for Stanley day. On Thursday, she presented BluePearl doctors with a plaque thanking them for their help in promoting acceptance.