Cat saved by tiny £3,000 pacemaker

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A CAT has been given a new lease of life – after being fitted with a tiny pacemaker.

Family pet Snooks used to collapse eight times a day as his heart stopped beating.

The episodes got so bad that at time his heart would stop for up to 12 seconds.

An x-ray shows the pacemaker
An x-ray shows the pacemaker

 

But now he has one of his nine lives back after a team at the University of Glasgow School of Veterinary Medicine fitted him with a £3,000 pacemaker.

The intricate operation involved accessing his heart through his belly and attaching a special lead to the outside of the muscle.

During the operation
During the operation

 

This lead, which connects to a pacemaker, can detect when Snooks’ heart fails to beat and sends an electrical impulse.

Heart specialist Valentina Palermo said it is the first time the school had implanted such a device into a cat.

She said: “He had a history of heart blockages over three weeks and collapsed multiple times each day.

Valentina with Snooks
Valentina with Snooks

 

“Giving him a pacemaker was his only chance.

“We have placed pacemakers many times in dogs but Snooks was the first cat to have one at our hospital.”

A pacemaker recheck, which took place a month after the operation, showed that Snooks was doing well and has not collapsed since.

Checking the pacemaker is working
Checking the pacemaker is working

 

By coincidence, Snooks’ owner, 70-year-old Ian Anderson, underwent heart treatment at the same time as his cat.

Ian, from Kilwinning, Ayrshire, said: “My heart went into overdrive and Snooks’ heart slowed to a stop.

“Snooks got a pacemaker and I was treated with drugs at Crosshouse Hospital in Kilmarnock.

“Doctors warned me I may have to get a pacemaker too.

“Neither of us is getting any younger but thankfully there’s treatment for Snooks and me.”

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