Brachycephalic Obstructive Airway Syndrome (BOAS) Surgery in Wolverhampton
Trusted Vets formerly Tudor House is rapidly becoming the people’s choice for Brachycephalic Obstructive Airway Syndrome (BOAS) Surgery. We are based in Wolverhampton in the West Midlands but have people travel from all over the UK due to our expertise in this area. We aim to offer our BOAS surgery at realistic prices while still offering only the best in treatments and aftercare.
What our BOAS surgery involves:
- We offer an X-ray to every patient, this is essential to investigate the presence of concurrent and secondary diseases such as aspiration pneumonia or hiatal hernia.
- Your surgery will only be carried out by a veterinary surgeon who is skilled and has a wealth of experience in this field.
- All of our BOAS patients will then have our head nurse as their dedicated nurse with them at all times during the recovery process.
- All of our BOAS patients will be offered an overnight stay for close monitoring.
Trusted Vets popularity is forever growing around the UK as we are becoming increasingly famous for our love and understanding of bulldog breeds and BOAS surgery.
We take pride in our ability to take care of these issues and surgery on a daily basis. It’s important to know that having a vet that has a lot of experience with brachycephalic breeds is extremely important when choosing to own this type of breed.
What is BOAS?
Brachycephalic Obstructive Airway Syndrome (BOAS) is a recognised condition predominantly affecting certain dog breeds with shorter muzzles, flatter noses and wide-shaped heads, known as brachycephalic breeds (‘brachy’ meaning short, and ‘cephalic’, meaning head).
Common breeds of brachycephalic dogs include
Common breeds of brachycephalic dogs include French and English bulldogs, Shih Tzus, Pugs, Boxers, Mastiffs and Pekingese. Other breeds with longer noses, such as Cavalier King Charles Spaniels and Staffordshire Bull Terriers, can also be affected, although less commonly.
In some brachycephalic dogs, the soft tissues of the nose and throat may be excessive and lead to partial obstruction of their airways. This makes it difficult for these dogs to breathe normally, causing noisy breathing and often heavy panting. This condition is a progressive disorder that can impair a dog’s ability to;
- Exercise and play – reduced ability, slow, may appear lazy or less inclined to go for a walk.
- Eat – frequently regurgitates.
- Sleep – excessive snoring and may wake themselves up when they can’t catch a breath properly.
The condition may deteriorate with time, so the sooner something can be done to help, the better the expected outcome. Also, general anaesthesia and surgery are far less risky in maintaining an open airway if the symptoms are mild or caught early.
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF BOAS?
Having narrow nostrils makes breathing difficult; some severely affected dogs have to pant to get enough air.
CROWDED NOSE AND THROAT?
Flat-faced dogs have a lot of nose tissue packed into a small space, which means they have to breathe through very narrow, crowded nasal passages.
OVERLONG SOFT PALATE?
Flat-faced dogs often have a large soft palate that sits further back than normal. It often covers the windpipe, which makes breathing difficult.
The soft palate can also cause problems during sleep – if it’s covering the windpipe you may notice your dog snoring or waking up suddenly gasping for breath.
A narrow windpipe makes breathing difficult, especially when exercising. Breathing through a narrow windpipe is a bit like trying to breathe through a drinking straw. There are also two sacs inside the windpipe that often become enlarged and cause further problems.
WHAT ARE THE RISK FACTORS OF DOGS WITH BOAS?
Obese dogs are more than twice as likely to show signs of BOAS as dogs with normal body conditions.
Unfortunately, the cause of death for dogs is 17% with extreme brachycephalic conformation (Pugs, Bulldogs and French Bulldogs) compared to 0% for all other breeds of dogs.
The lifespan of dogs with extreme brachycephalic conformation is younger (8.6 years) than all other dog breeds (12.7 years).
WHY ARE ONLY CERTAIN BREEDS AFFECTED BY BRACHYCEPHALIC SYNDROME (BOAS)?
Dog Breeds with short noses have a compacted skeleton which can cause a number of malformations. This includes malformations in their, spine, tails and nasal cavities and spine and their tails. This means their soft tissue is excessive for their skeleton. Which explains the amount of skin folds brachycephalic dogs have on their faces and bodies. Similar folds and excessive soft tissues are also present inside the body. This often leads to airway obstructions. The skin folds may also cause dermatological problems.
HOW IS BOAS TREATED?
As most of the problems included in BOAS result from upper airway obstruction, the main initial focus is unblocking the airways. This is mostly achieved by surgically widening the nares and shortening the soft palate. In most instances, dogs having undergone surgery will be sufficiently and durably improved to never require any additional surgical treatments for their airways. However, a small subset of dogs will deteriorate further with time and require more treatments, especially for their larynx.
CAN BOAS (BRACHYCEPHALIC OBSTRUCTIVE AIRWAY SYNDROME) WORSEN WITH AGE?
Dogs who suffer from BOAS, have more difficulty breathing, which then can cause secondary difficulties to develop over time. Added weight gain from restricted exercise and ageing over time may develop into life-threatening breathing difficulties in dogs.
WILL BOAS STOP MY DOG FROM SNORING?
The main objective of treatment is for clearing and unblocking the airways. Our veterinary surgeon will do a soft palate resection (removal of extra soft palate skin that promotes snoring). And a Stenotic nare resection (widening of the nostrils to improve airflow). The reduced effort required to breathe following surgery will greatly improve your dog’s quality of life. Most dogs will benefit from increased exercise, better feeding and digestion, heat tolerance, better sleep, and reduced snoring.
HOW LONG WILL RECOVERY TAKE AFTER BOAS SURGERY?
Depending on factors including age and the severity of your dog’s condition, it’s usual for the recovery period to be between 1 -2 weeks, for most recovery is uncomplicated.
Your dog will be treated for pain and also monitored for 8-24 hours before being able to go home. Once released, they should rest for 1 week, ideally, no activity that would cause heavy breathing and barking i.e short walks and light play.
HOW SUCCESSFUL IS BOAS SURGERY?
Recent studies have shown around 70% of dogs that undergo BOAS surgery show a significant improvement in life. Greatly improving effort required for breathing, eating and digestion, sleeping, snoring less loudly and exercise.
WHAT IS THE IDEAL AGE FOR BOAS SURGERY?
Surgery can be performed on puppies who are as young as 3-4 months old. The dog’s age determines the outcome at the time of operation and the level of severity of the clinical conditions. We prefer to wait till your dog is 9 months to a year old before performing surgery.