*** Update 8/21/09- It is with much sadness that I must tell you that little Kai passed away in the early morning hours today. Tonja wrote me to let me know. He had been doing very well so this was quite unexpected. Please join me in expressing our deepest sympathy to Tonja. May Kai live on in our memories forever.***
I’ve been a veterinarian going on 15 years now so it is not too often that I come across a disease I haven’t heard of. However, as I was looking over our schedule for the day, I came across an appointment for a pet that was 2 days old and the owner said it had hypospadias. I pulled out a text book and looked for it in there- I found nothing. So next thing I did was google it. From WebMD.com: Hypospadias is a male birth defect in which the opening of the tube that carries urine from the body (urethra) develops abnormally, usually on the underside of the penis. The opening can occur anywhere from just below the end of the penis to the scrotum.
So this afternoon I saw my first patient with hypospadias. His name is Kai, which means “Little Warrior” and he is a 2 day old Chihuahua. We assume he is a male since this is generally a male defect, but he does not have a penis and he does not have a vagina. He just has a red line where he “should” have a penis. He was rescued by Tonja Kurowski- Tonja has been doing rescue for about 6 years. Tonja was contacted by the daughter of Kai’s owner because he was going to be euthanized and she didn’t want for that to happen. So Tonja drove to Needles, CA to rescue him immediately.
When Tonja returned with this sweet little baby, she started calling around in Bullhead to see if anyone would see him. Once she told them what was wrong, no one would see him. So, Tonja went looking in other cities for a vet on the internet and found our hospital. She said we had quite a fan base, checked out our website and decided this was the place she needed to come. So, I got to see my first case of hypospadias. I took some pictures of Kai so you can see what this looks like but from what we could see, he may have a very tiny opening right next to the rectum where he is urinating from or he could be urinating directly through the rectum opening. Tonja said that when he urinates it appears to come from the rectum but is very difficult to tell because he is so tiny and because she must stimulate him to go to the bathroom. He actually looked quite healthy and was very active during his examination. We are going to give him very small amounts of antibiotics because we are very concerned he could get a urinary tract infection. Tonja is working very hard to keep him extremely clean when he goes to the bathroom. We are hoping for the very best and ask for your prayers and well wishes for him. He has an appointment with a specialist at the Las Vegas Veterinary Referral Center next week to see what can be done in the future for him surgically. Thanks to Tonja for bringing Kai to see us and we will keep all of you posted on his progress!