When little Wilson was rescued from a local shelter in Los Angeles, he was not in a good way. The poor pup was alone, underweight, and struggling to breathe due to a bite to the nose he received as a puppy. After various consultations, Wilson's new mum, Natalia Glady, was introduced to Dr. Tony Cambridge and the Veterinary Surgical Specialists team. A year down the line, Wilson's nasal passage has been rebuilt and he is the happiest pup in the world.

Wilson as a puppy
Wilson shortly after he went into foster care.

At only 6 weeks and 8lbs, Wilson was pulled by Angel City Pit Bulls in Los Angeles, from the non-public portion of the local shelter as a code orange. Wilson was alone, underweight, and had a broken nose infected with a large abscess, making it incredibly difficult to breathe. Two days after his initial surgery to drain the abscess, he was fostered out by Angel City Pit Bulls to his new foster home with Natalia Glady. After many long nights of comforting Wilson as he struggled to breathe, he had won his way into his new family's hearts and his forever home.

The magic of Dr Tony Cambridge

Wilson had such a gentle mannerism and a kind and loving heart. Everyone who meets Wilson quickly falls in love with his charming soul. Due to the trauma, Wilson has developed a heavy underbite and crooked nose, which definitely adds to his character. Unfortunately, his breathing became increasingly restricted as he grew. However, being such a smart pup and survivor, he quickly learned how to breathe while asleep by using his favorite toys to keep his mouth propped open.

After multiple vet and specialist visits, with unsure options, we were lucky to be introduced to Dr. Tony Cambridge at VSSOC Tustin. Dr. Cambridge became dedicated to creating a plan to getting Wilson to the life he so deserves. Wilson’s CT Scan showed only 25% of one nostril was open and the other completely sealed by tissue and bone. Wilson had begun to develop gastrointestinal issues and his respiratory system was rapidly aging due to his labored breathing.

Wilson went in for his first major surgery under the care of Dr. Cambridge in December 2019. Bone and tissue were removed from Wilson’s nasal cavity, creating one large nostril, just behind his nose. Even going through this tough surgery Wilson was wagging his tail and winning the hearts of the VSSOC staff as he came out of surgery.

Wilson as a puppy
Left, Wilson using his favorite soft toys to keep his mouth open while sleeping. Right, Wilson and family.

Revolutionary surgery to keep the nose

After nearly 6 weeks following the surgery, Wilson's tissue began to regrow, causing him to once again struggle to breathe. We reached out to Dr. Cambridge regarding Wilson’s tissue regrowth and he again dedicated his time to find another solution. Dr. Cambridge reached out to his international community of colleagues in the Veterinary Society of Surgical Oncology (VSSO). His request was answered by Dr. Bryden Stanley a Michigan State University Professor who, at that time was working at Massey University in New Zealand. Together a creative plan was put into place to surgically correct Wilson's nasal turbinate occlusion.

In April of 2020, the regrown tissue was removed and silastic tube stents with buttons to hold them in place were installed. Dr. Cambridge anticipated keeping the stents in for 3-4 weeks, however, Wilson being such a good boy was tolerant of the stents and daily cleanings for 10 whole weeks.

Wilson as a puppy
Left, Wilson after the silastic tube stents and buttons were installed. Right, living life at 150% after the removal of his stents.

Wilson's nose grows back!

Since Wilson’s buttons and stents have been removed he has completely healed with minimal tissue regrowth. It has been 5 months since Wilson has had his stents out and he is definitely living life to the fullest. He is able to breathe easily and sleep peacefully for the first time. His energy level has increased and he even drooled for the first time at the smell of his dinner being prepared. It is so wonderful to see him breathe easy and figure out all the new smells, living the life he deserves.

Wilson is such a lover and insists on paying it forward. He opened his house and heart to over 19 foster dogs and 40 foster cats and kittens. We are so motivated we are now in the process of starting our own Rescue focusing on those who need the most help.

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Our fur babies are our bodyguards, personal trainers, emotional support beings, private heaters, and life companions. If you have a heart-felt story to share about a pet or patient we would love to hear from you. Please contact us and share your story!