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In November, 2022, Brutus - who has an affliction for running up and down his driveway - was struck by his owner’s sister’s car just outside of Waihī. PHOTO: SUPPLIED

Brutus and the perils of the driveway

A nearly two-year-old staffordshire bull terrier named Brutus was almost bested by the cars he loves to chase after being hit by a family member’s vehicle and lay stuck against its exhaust.
In November, 2022, Brutus – who has an affliction for running up and down his driveway – was struck by his owner’s sister’s car just outside of Waihī.
“It happened after work on a Friday evening, around 6pm at home on the owner’s shared driveway,” Franklin Vets veterinarian Dr Stephanie Fulton said. “Brutus was stuck for about 10 minutes while they found a trolley jack to lift the car off him. It appeared at the time that his right front leg had been run over completely, too.”

As soon as he was free, Brutus was rushed into Franklin Vets’ Waihī clinic after hours. He was immediately given pain relief, while cold running water was used to cool the large burn on his back.
X-rays were taken of his neck, front legs, and pelvis, which showed he had multiple fractures in his front right leg. He was stabilized over the weekend and transferred to Franklin Vets’ Pukekohe Clinic early on Monday.
“He had orthopedic surgery to repair the fractures and two plates were used to stabilize the
broken bones,” Dr Stephanie said. “A large area of skin was removed over his back to assist in healing the area that had been burnt by the exhaust. Because of the way Brutus’s leg had broken, he needed to have two plates used to properly stabilize the fracture.”
After surgery, Brutus was put on strict cage rest and exercise restrictions, which meant he had to be on a lead every time he went outside.
Six weeks later, x-rays were taken again to see how his leg was healing.

Brutus needed to have two plates inserted to stabilse his fractured leg. PHOTO: SUPPLIED

“We could see on the x-rays that it was healing nicely, and new bone was being laid down around the fractures. Brutus was then allowed to slowly increase the amount of exercise he got and is happy now to be allowed out for short walks,” Dr Stephanie said. “His skin wounds are all now healed and aside from some impressive scars, he is back to his normal happy, bouncy self.”
Dr Stephanie said it was always “a bit of an adrenaline rush” treating animals that have been in an accident.
“You never know what you’re going to be dealing with when they arrive,” she said.
Dr Stephanie also advised pet owners to opt for pet insurance, stating that insurance often meant difficult decisions around the best treatment options didn’t need to be made.
Brutus’ owners, meanwhile, were “so grateful” that their pup was able to recover from the accident, and told The Profile he was now able to “run around with his friends again”.
“The whole experience was a very traumatic event for everyone involved, especially my sister who was driving the car,” the owner said. “She felt very guilty about the incident and now drives very slowly up the driveway.”