Disabled Boy’s Service Dog to Get Much-Needed Surgery

Nov. 12, 2013
BluePearl Veterinary Partners photo

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. – A disabled boy’s service dog will get the surgery he needs to repair ligaments in his leg on Wednesday thanks to Frankie’s Friends, Great Lakes Assistance Dogs, and Michigan Veterinary Specialists in Auburn Hills, a BluePearl Veterinary Partners hospital.

The 2-year-old black Labrador named Venture tore his cranial crucial ligament and is scheduled to undergo an arthroscopically assisted tibial plateau leveling osteotomy at MVS to repair the damage.

A TPLO is a minimally invasive procedure similar to those performed on people to repair a knee.  It can minimize pain and reduce the recovery time for patients like Venture.

Venture is the service dog for 5-year-old David Facey, who was born with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and cerebral palsy. As well as carrying David’s oxygen tanks, Venture is trained to alert when the oxygen saturation level in David’s bloodstream drops and he needs to be placed on oxygen.

Additionally, Venture has a calming effect on David and will stop him from running into dangerous situations.

Since his injury, Venture cannot currently carry David’s oxygen. The TPLO surgery will allow him to once again provide that service.

Dr. Kevin McAbee, a board-certified specialist in veterinary surgery, will perform the operation at MVS located at 3412 E. Walton Blvd. in Auburn Hills.

GLAD, Frankie’s Friends and MVS have all contributed to pay for the operation.

Frankie’s Friends is a non-profit that helps pay for life-saving emergency and specialty veterinary care for pets whose families would otherwise be unable to afford the cost of care.

GLAD is a non-profit organization that provides assistance and skilled companion dogs to children and adults with special needs. They train dogs to assist people with autism, medical and mobility issues, and certain psychiatric disorders, as well as sensory processing disorders and seizures.

About BluePearl Veterinary Partners
Formed in 2008, BluePearl Veterinary Partners employs more than 1,400 people including more than 350 veterinarians. BluePearl hospitals offer referral-only, specialty care services and most offer 24-hour emergency care. BluePearl does not provide primary care. The company is one of the world’s principal providers of approved veterinary residency and internship programs. BluePearl also participates in clinical trials that investigate the effectiveness of new veterinary drugs and treatments, providing pet families access to cutting-edge medicine that is not yet commercially available. BluePearl is headquartered in Tampa, Fla. BluePearl Veterinary Partners has five hospitals in Michigan: MVS in Auburn Hills, Grand Rapids, and Southfield, and BluePearl in Ann Arbor and Macomb. Specialists are available by referral for cardiology, critical care, dermatology, emergency medicine, integrative medicine, internal medicine, neurology, oncology, ophthalmology, radiology and surgery.