Colonic, ureteral, and vascular injuries secondary to stick impalement in a dog


  • Presented at 15th IVECCS, September 2009, Chicago, IL.

  • The authors declare no conflict of interest.

Address correspondence and reprint requests to
Dr. Gretchen L. Schoeffler, Department of Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, Box 25, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853, USA. Email:


Objective – To report the surgical repair, case management, and outcome of a dog with sepsis and severe intraabdominal trauma secondary to a penetrating stick injury.

Case or Series Summary – A 1.5-year-old, spayed female, mixed-breed dog was presented to the emergency service after incurring a small laceration on the medial aspect of the left pelvic limb while running in the woods. The wound was surgically explored and a primary closure achieved. The patient was discharged the same day with oral antimicrobial therapy. The following morning the dog was represented to the emergency service for acute vomiting. Abdominal radiographs were performed and demonstrated loss of serosal detail and pneumoperitoneum. An emergency celiotomy was performed and revealed distal colonic perforation, left ureteral laceration, and lacerations of the left common iliac vein. Ureteronephrectomy, as well as primary closure of the distal colonic perforation and left common iliac vein lacerations, were performed. The patient recovered and was ultimately discharged from the hospital 5 days later. Follow-up 1 year later revealed no significant physical exam or biochemical abnormalities.

New or Unique Information Provided – A seemingly benign penetrating stick injury initially deemed to be superficial in nature was later demonstrated to have resulted in sepsis following severe intraabdominal trauma that included lacerations of the distal colon, left ureter, and left common iliac vein in a dog. Successful surgical management and intensive care led to a full recovery without any residual impairment noted a year later.