Poppy O’Shaughnessy/Lofquist – Success Story

Poppy is a 7 year old, female labrador retriever mix who was a neurology patient at the University of Georgia Veterinary Teaching Hospital (UGA VTH). According to her family, Poppy has always been an energetic, loving soul who loves to play her favorite game “Rocky,” which consists of chasing river rocks rolled across the ground and sliding them back and forth with her paws. She also loves trail walks along the Chattahoochee River. Being a constant presence of joy, Poppy’s family became quickly concerned one night when she began to shake and was unable to move her hindquarters. They took her to the nearest emergency hospital where they suggested Poppy be taken to the UGA VTH to receive further help and surgery.

An MRI revealed that Poppy was suffering from a compressive disc extrusion, which required immediate surgical intervention. The diagnosis of the sudden cause of Poppy’s paralysis of her hindquarters was Intervertebral Disc Disease, known as IVDD, which is one of the most commonly seen neurologic disorders in dogs. IVDD is a spinal disorder that follows the herniating of an intervertebral disc inside a dog. When a disc herniates, it can result in concussion or compression of the spinal cord causing lasting and debilitating damage. Poppy quickly underwent surgery at the UGA VTH to resolve the herniated discs between her shoulders and hips.

“Poppy was diagnosed by the late morning and with our go ahead, Dr. Kopec worked her magic on Poppy early that afternoon,” Poppy’s parents shared. “We had total confidence in Dr. Kopec and the UGA staff.”

During surgery, Dr. Kopec and the neurology team were able to successfully remove the compressive disc material, allowing Poppy to have the ability to move her hind legs again! Poppy was able to continue to make improvements at home and is now able to do everything she enjoyed before her surgery.

“Poppy is our everything. So, we couldn’t be more grateful to the whole staff and especially her doctor, Brie Kopec, and her senior veterinary student, Kayla. Poppy knew she was loved and safe. It meant the world to us,” her parent’s added.

Thanks to the neurology team at the UGA VTH, Poppy was able to make a full recovery and continues to have a joyous, radiant impact on her family and those around her.

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