No confusion over transfusion
that saved a cat's life
Australian vet whose family come from Lisburn has been featuring
in the Australian press after he successfully used blood from
his own dog to save a cat.
Michael Auld is the son of a former Scout
Master at First Lisburn Presbyterian Church. His parents Helen
(nee Mulholland) and Houghton Auld emigrated 'down under' on
August 17 1949.
He recently featured in newspapers in the
Brisbane area after he successfully used blood from his own dog
to save a cat whose condition had become critical on the
Michael, who is based at the Belmont Road
Veterinary Surgery in the Australian city, was operating on
Toby, an 11 year old ginger tabby to remove a 10 centimetre
tumour from his groin.
Initially, Toby's owners Keith and Lynn
Batten noticed their pet had slowed down.
"Then, as Lynn was brushing him, she
discovered the large lump.
He was taken to Mr. Auld's surgery and during
the operation the vet was forced to take 70m1 of blood from his
King Charles Spaniel Honey.
"We had to do something quick otherwise Toby
would have died," he added.
The vet also said although it was unusual to
take blood from a dog and use it in a cat the situation "called
for desperate measures.
"I've heard of this kind of transfusion
before but I hadn't done one," he said.
"It was pretty unusual for a cat to have such
a large tumour."
Toby underwent a chest x-ray and blood tests
to determine whether the tumour had spread.
A fine needle biopsy confirmed it was an
osteosarcoma which is usually found in the bones.
Thanks to Mr. Auld's expertise the cat was
able to return home and recuperate in the Australian sunshine
while lying out on the deck of his owner's home.
Mr. Auld has nursed many animals back to
health. However, one of his more unusual cases involved a pet
tortoise which managed to break its shell.
After being consulted by the tortoise's
owners Mr. Auld made a special plastic shell for their pet which
is still going strong.
Mr. Auld's mother is the daughter of Ellen
and Harry Mulholland who lived in the Knockmore area.
Before leaving Lisburn for Australia she
worked in Connolly's Newsagents in Castle Street.
Her husband Houghton, who died in 1980, was
in charge of the office at Millar and Stephenson Coal Merchants.