Wednesday, February 19, 2020

4087. DRAFTDr Sing's Canine caesarean section in 2004

Water bag

The appearance of the water bag outside the vulva tended to confuse the new breeder.  Would the puppy be coming out soon?  How long should he wait before consulting the vet?  What happened if the bitch ruptured the water bag with her teeth and lots of clear water spilled out. Should he wait for the puppy to be delivered and how long should he wait?

Once the water bag appears and no puppy is delivered for over 30 minutes , an experienced breeder will rush to the veterinary surgeon for an emergency Caesarean delivery. If surgery is done within 60 minutes, chances are that the puppy will still be alive and not stressed out.


Uterine inertia

2 water bags



SilkieXShetland in Feb 10, 2004 (around 14 weeks old).Fighting to be first
It is not very common to see TWO water bags in any bitch. This meant that two puppies were jammed up inside the birth canal (vagina) and time is of the essence to save the puppies and this means an emergency Caesarean delivery.

The Silkie bitch was accidentally mated by a Sheltie. The puppies were larger than ordinary Silkie. Would they be born naturally if the two water bags had not presented themselves?  It is hard to say. 

To provide affordable Caesarean surgeries, no X-rays were taken. The breeder thought there would be two large puppies. After all, Shelties are larger than Silkies and the crosses would be definitely larger. The bitch did not look heavily pregnant.

Surprisingly, four Silkie X Shetland puppies were delivered by Caesarean section after midnight and were strong and vigorous.  They grew up well and two were vaccinated by me at around 14 weeks old (see picture below).   Very attractive cross bred puppies. Small bitches will mate with large dogs even though the owners think that they cannot do it. 
Case 3: Dystocia - Uterine Inertia. Case seen in February 13 2010 on Chinese New Year's Eve 2 hours before my reunion dinner. See full report at:
Oxytocin injection and wait or an elective Caesarean section?

Motor bikes are a most common form of transport, Siem Reap, Cambodia
Motor bikes are a most common form of transport, Siem Reap, Cambodia

I was the observer at the above Caesarean section on this 2010 Chinese New Year's Eve. As I had no car, I rode pillion on a motorcycle similar to the ones in the pictures above, to visit the vet with a salt and pepper Miniature Schnauzer with dystocia (difficulty in giving birth).
The vet had given an oxytocin injection. If the dog or cow has dystocia, give oxytocin first. Puppies would then be born naturally. So easy as that?

But you can't tell that oxytocin injections in a heavily pregnant Miniature Schnauzer will lead to natural delivery of 5 pups. So, the vet has to step down from theory to practical aspects. Waiting and waiting will mean some delays and possible deaths of a pup or two. Or even the death of the dam. Only the vet can make a decision as to whether to perform an elective Caesarean section or not. In this case, oxytocin was given. Nothing happened for half an hour. It was wise for the vet to perform the Caesarean section and the outcome was excellent. The white pup was larger and might not be born alive if there was more delay waiting for oxytocin injection to work. The owner wants a happy ending and in this case, all 5 pups were vigorous and the dam was safe.
The above reports on canine entropion and dystocias are written primarily for the veterinary undergraduates introducing them to a brand new animal world they don't usually see as Singapore is not an agricultural country. Undergraduates are encouraged to write their medical reports to improve and store their knowledge to make themselves better veterinarians.  

Monday, February 17, 2020

4086. Egg drop syndrome in Singapore

NOBILIS EDS from MSD Animal Health

Egg Drop Syndrome-76 (EDS-76) is a recognized disease of chickens and Japanese Quails, which is of high economic importance due to its drastic negative effects on egg production in laying birds. The aim of the present study was to better understand the EDS-76 viral disease process in Japanese quails (Coturnix coturnix japonica), since very limited studies have been conducted in this species of birds. For this purpose, an experimental study was conducted with infection of EDS-76 virus in laying Japanese quails to reveal pathology, effect on egg production/quality and immune responses of this virus in these birds. By 7, 9 and 13-15 Days Post Infection (DPI), drop as well as aberrant egg production and lower mean egg quality were observed compared to control birds. Significant histopathological changes were observed in genitalia and spleen. Haemagglutination Inhibition (HI) and Enzyme Linked Immunosorbent Assay (ELISA) titres rose rapidly by 2nd week when it became maximum; thereafter declined and maintained at low levels up to 10 week post infection. The mean total protein values in infected quail gradually increased to 4.10±0.05/100 mL without any change in mean albumen value at 12 DPI. In conclusion, the course of the EDS-76 is significant not only in chickens but also in quails even though it occurs occasionally in quails. Explorative pathological, blood biochemical and immunological studies are suggested during EDS-76 viral disease course in quails. This would aid in formulating effective disease prevention and control measures for this economically important disease of poultry.

4085. Rare sighting of Oriental Garden Lizard near a car. 12.30pm 17 Feb 20

Afternoon, this lizard does not move away, permitting me to photograph.

Saturday, February 15, 2020

4084. reyna. An emaciated guinea pig has chronic scabies

Feb 16, 2020

The young guinea pig's crusty skin disease was checked by Vet 1 using a skin scraping. He examined the skin scraping under the microscope. He could not see any mites and therefore mis-diagnosed this case. The owner washed her pet with the prescribed anti-fungal medication. The guinea pig's health deteriorated as he ate lesser amount of food over several weeks. The guinea pig was at death's door. She decided to consult Toa Payoh Vets.

Skin scrapings by Dr Daniel showed the scabies mites (VIDEO EVIDENCE). The guinea pig was emaciated and malnourished.

Trixacarus caviae infestation in a guinea pig can kill it if the infestation persists for months as there will be emaciation. 

1. Early treatment of scabies is important. Most residents lead hectic lives but do make appointment to see the vet when your pet has skin diseases.

2. Seek a second opinion if the guinea pig has no response to veterinary treatment within 7 days.
  (see rabbit case - Day 5 of ivomectin injection).

Skin scrapings may not show mites. There is a need to take at least 6 skin scrapings to rule out mites. In this case, the localization of the crusts is widespread all over the body, leading to Vet 1 diagnosis of a fungal infection. The owner usually uses home remedies or pet shop medicine for some time. This affect the proper diagnosis of scabies in the guinea pig.


Scabies mites burrow under the skin and infests the cooler areas of the body. These are the ears, nose and paws. The whole body has crusts when the disease lasts for many months as seen in this rabbit. It responds well to treatment  but must be correctly diagnosed to achieve success.

VIDEOS - Edit the footage, narrate as follows: About the life cycle of the scabies mites, diagnosis and treatment.

Advise at least 6 skin scrapings to eliminate the presence of mites. Some owners dislike so many scrapings as they feel that the pet suffers. One negative scraping does not rule out scabies infestations. SHOW FOOTAGE OF MICROSCOPE AND THE SLIDE


4084. A rabbit has has severe crusted body - chronic scabies.

Chronic scabies are rarely seen in Singapore's rabbits and guinea pigs in the years 2000 - 2020 as the pet owners would have applied spot-on insecticides to the young ones to prevent the disease reducing considerably the number of scabies seen in Singapore. Younger vets or pet shop operators seldom see a long-standing infestation, known as chronic scabies.

This is illustrated in a  case in 2018. The buyer returned the rabbit to the pet shop owner. Her first rabbit was treated by the vet for similar skin crustiness, but it did not get cured and had passed away. The pet shop owner phoned Dr Sing Kong Yuen that she had a "new" disease seen in the rabbit.

"The rabbit has a rhinoceros horn", she told me. "You will be the first vet in Singapore to encounter such a rare disease!"  I went to her shop. From the distribution of the skin crusts to the distal parts of the body (ears, paws, nose), I diagnose this rabbit as having chronic scabies. It is "rare" in Singapore in the sense that it had developed such thick crusts/ Treatment with 2 injections of ivomectin cured this rabbit who is now well cared for by my Veterinary Assistant Ms Hsu.

July 2018


Singapore vets rarely see chronic scabies in the rabbit as it is an untreated pet for some months.

Nowadays, the pet shop owner is well educated and will usually treats them with spot-on insecticide early. The vet does a skin scraping of the crust. It may show no mites, but the diagnosis cannot be ruled out.

So I was surprised to see on case of chronic scabies in 2020. The owner said that Vet 1 had taken skin scrapings and confirmed that there were no scabies. He prescribed some washes, but the skin disease got much worse. The guinea pig lose a lot of weight.

Chronic Scabies in a rabbit


4083. How to make your own mask - not a substitute or replacement for surgical masks.

How to make your own mask: Hong Kong scientists reveal temporary solution for those unable to get protective gear because of panic buying and price-gouging 
  • Thousands have queued overnight outside pharmacies and prices have spiked because of dwindling supplies
  • Lab tests by City University find home-made masks achieve 80 to 90 per cent function of regular ones in terms of filtration of aerosol and droplets
Scientists in Hong Kong have invented a cheap and easy way to make home-made masks as the city, gripped by fear over the deadly coronavirus, suffers from long queues and price-gouging over its dwindling supplies of protective gear.
The University of Hong Kong-Shenzhen Hospital worked with the Science Park to devise the do-it-yourself method as thousands of people have waited overnight outside pharmacies promising new stock and costs spiking to as much as HK$400 or more for a box of 50 surgical masks. Often missing from the queues are many elderly – too weak or poor to join – some of whom have resorted to steaming the few masks they have left or and reusing one for days.
"I hope this can alleviate the public panic. Scientific tests found these home-made masks can offer a certain extent of protection if one doesn’t have a mask at home,” executive councillor and Elderly Commission chairman Dr Lam Ching-choi said.
"It’s not good for elderly to take such risks as queuing for a mask in the early morning.”
Lam said he was in touch with some schools to explore whether students studying at home could help produce more masks, adding that Professor Yuen Kwok-yung, the city’s top microbiologist tackling the coronavirus, had also endorsed the use of such masks.m
Releasing the procedure on Friday, the hospital said it hoped the home-made gear could serve as a temporary measure for those without surgical masks, easing the pressure on the city’s remaining stock.
Joe Fan King-man, the institution’s assistant hospital chief executive, said the home-made masks had undergone laboratory tests by City University and were proven to have achieved 80 to 90 per cent of the function of regular surgical masks in terms of their filtration of aerosol and droplets.
However, Fan said they did not serve as a permanent substitute for surgical masks.
"The home-made masks can only act as an alternative for those who don’t have any gear but need to protect themselves from infection. They can never be a substitute or replacement for surgical masks,” he said.

The Consumer Council is a partner of the project.

Required items: kitchen roll, strong tissue paper, elastic bands, a hole punch, paper tape, scissors, plastic-coated steel wire, a pair of glasses, plastic file folders and binder clips.
For the mask:
  • Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and clean your items
  • Put one piece of kitchen roll, with proper hygiene certification, on top of another
  • Place a piece of tissue paper, which will act as the bottom layer of the mask, on top of the two pieces of kitchen roll
  • Cut the stack of paper into two
  • Use the paper tape to seal off the two sides of the mask
  • Make two holes at each sealed side with the punch
  • Attach the metallic wire with paper tape to the top edge of the mask to make the nose bridge wire
  • Tie four rubber bands through the holes on the mask’s sides
For the protective shield:
  • Cut the file folder into two pieces
  • Attach one piece on the edge of the glasses with binder clips
  • The shield can be reused after disinfection for each usage
Note: The hospital said other materials such as cling film, air conditioner filter paper, and cotton cloth were not suitable for making the masks.
This article originally appeared on the South China Morning Post (SCMP), the leading news media reporting on China and Asia. 

Saturday, February 8, 2020

4080. REYNA. Dystocia - Uterine Inertia. A red-eared slider digs soil but no eggs are laid.

Thur Feb 8, 2020


Since aged 5 years, this 8-year-old red-eared slider had laid batches of 3-4 eggs twice per year. But no eggs were laid today despite soil digging. She was anorexic for 7 days. The slider had loose skin folds in front of the hind limbs, indicating a severe weight loss over the years. "We feed less and once a day," the mother said. The young man's mother said: "She is ravenous after egg-laying usually."

X-rays showed 6 well formed eggs. The slider was alone in this place except for another species.
The loose skin folds in front of the back legs and the inability to turn upright within 2 minutes suggested a slider in poor condition.

Digs soil. No eggs laid. Very thin. Anorexia 7 days.

ANOTHER CASE of a healthy slider able to lay eggs after oxytocin and calcium injection

As seen from the X-rays. 3 eggs had been laid nataurally

Poor nutrition like insufficient calcium and infections due to the extensive shell rot lead to WEAK uterine contractions. The slider must regain her health and weight if she is to lay eggs naturally. In this case, I did not give the oxytocin and calcium injections as the slider is very weak and may be infected by bacteria.

In such cases,  the slider will be unable to lay eggs after the injection.

Critical care and antibiotics are given for the next 7 days. The owner has to syringe feed 6 x per day the Critical care and observe the amount of stools and number of eggs passed. Oxytocin injections will be given when the slider is in better health if there are no eggs laid.

Update: Thur Feb 20, 2020

Phone owner