Vet dresses as giant mouse to calm nervous rescue dog

A caring vet dressed up as a giant mouse to calm a nervous rescue dog that needed surgery.

Mike Farrell donned the huge grey and pink onesie-style outfit in order to examine Dalmatian Rupert, who needed an operation on his leg.

Owner Sonya Schiff had brought her furry mouse romper suit for her devoted pet to sleep on because it smelt of her.

But when the poorly pooch proved reluctant to be handled, Mike jumped into the costume to help him relax.

Sonya, from London, said: “When I adopted Rupert from Dogs Trust a couple of years back he had some quite serious guarding issues and aggression, which we believe were pain associated.

“It took a year for him to bond with me after his rehoming, at which point he developed separation anxiety if I left him.”

Sonja took Rupert to Davies Veterinary Specialists in Hitchin, Herts., to be checked out after he began suffering from a lame leg.

But he was very protective and showed signs of aggression if the vet tried to touch him.

He was eventually diagnosed with hip dysplasia and cruciate ligament problems, and 18 months later needed surgery.

Mike, an orthopaedic specialist at the clinic, said: “Initially Rupert growled when I tried to examine him in my usual clothes.

“His owner was worried about his aggression towards strangers and how he would respond to being
in hospital.”

Committed to making his patients feel at ease, Mike decided to dress up in the furry mouse outfit to see if Rupert would be less anxious.

The result – while hilarious – was highly effective and Mike was able to examine Rupert safely and then perform surgery on his ligament.

Monika Kafno, a dog behaviourist at the surgery, said: “As dogs have a superior sense of smell and ability to smell between 10,000 and 100,000 times better than people, their brain processes information in a very short period of time.

“This triggers an association of the smell with a particular experience or event in their life.”

by Tommy Lumby

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