Shih Tzu is Brought Back to Life – Twice!

October 11, 2022

Teamwork, Expertise and State-of-the-Art Technology at AVCC Provides Advanced Emergency Care for Soco

“Her odds of survival were not great,” recalls pet mom Lynn of her sweet dog Soco.  The 13-year-old Shih Tzu Mix  woke up one morning and was not breathing normally.  “It was like she couldn’t catch her breath and nothing seemed to slow it down,” adds Lynn.

Lynn took Soco to her family veterinarian who discovered her lungs were filled with fluid.  She was low on oxygen.  Soco then collapsed, coded and needed immediate resuscitation by her veterinarian.  She was referred to Advanced Veterinary Care Center (AVCC) in Davie for continued care.

“We rushed over,” says Lynn.  “We came in and the staff came and got her immediately.  The staff at reception was very patient in getting our information while we were distraught.  They were even kind enough to let us go back into the treatment area.   They were all very welcoming.”

While at AVCC, Soco coded again and had to be resuscitated back to life.  “It was very scary,” recalls Lynn. “Her chances of survival were about 25%.  But, we felt like she was in good hands.”

AVCC’s Mechanical Ventilator

Dr. Katherine Zamudio, who was caring for Soco, recommended the use of AVCC’s mechanical ventilator (one of only a few in veterinary practice in South Florida) to remove the fluid from Soco’s lungs.  It was the best choice, “given the severity of Soco’s cardiac disease and the fact that she could not oxygenate without assistance,” according to Dr. Zamudio.

This advanced technology allows AVCC’s doctors and nurses to care for severe, complex respiratory cases that would not survive without aggressive intervention and support. Patients with severe congestive heart failure, pneumonia, neurological conditions compromising ventilation and any other severe respiratory disease may be candidates for mechanical ventilation.

“So, they put her on the mechanical ventilator, just like for humans!” says Lynn.  “They continued to give us updates throughout the day and night.  They called and said she was doing surprisingly well and that her lungs were clearing out.  We knew she was a fighter and wanted to give her a chance to fight.  When we kept coming in, we could tell the staff grew attached to Soco.  Different nurses would tell me how they took care of her overnight, that they were caring for her and looking out for her as much as we do.”

Soco Heads HomeShih Tzu in grass

After surviving cardiopulmonary arrest, 24 hours of mechanical ventilation, and congestive heart failure, Soco was discharged to go home.  Dr. Zamudio credits the entire team at Advanced Veterinary Care Center for bringing, “our little fluffy friend Soco back to life,” she says.  “Without each one of them, it might not have been possible. It feels good to work with a team that is so self-reliant, driven, compassionate and motivated.  I’m very proud to be part of this team.”

Today, Soco is back to her normal playful self!  “She doesn’t behave like a 13-year-old dog,” says Lynn joyfully.  “She’s playful and loving and moves a lot.  She loves her toys and to play fetch and tug of war.  She likes to cuddle, especially the newest guest in the house.” And Lynn is especially grateful she found AVCC in her time of need.  “In the 13 years I had her, I’ve been to a lot of veterinary specialists and emergency hospitals.  The team (at AVCC) really cares for your pet when you are in a really stressful time.  They do as much as they can to ensure your pets’ health.”

To learn more about Advanced Veterinary Care Center in Davie, FL (Broward County), click here!

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