St Kilda Veterinary Clinic

03 9534-1741

Soft Tissue

Our veterinarians’ high level of expertise and our practice’s fully equipped surgical suite allows us to perform the vast majority of soft tissue surgical procedures that your pet may require. Soft tissue surgery encompasses any surgery that is not related to bones. It includes procedures such as desexing, exploratory laporotomies, caesareans, lump removals, biopsies, wound stitch-ups, removal of intestinal foreign bodies - the list is endless!

A very common soft tissue surgery is the removal of lumps. Some lumps may require a biopsy prior to removal to help understand whether they are cancerous or not. This information assists us in planning the surgery accordingly to give your pet the best possible outcome. Once they have been removed we recommend sending them to our external laboratory for analysis.

Although most lumps are benign (not harmful), a minority are more serious (malignant). In the case of malignant (cancerous) tumours, early removal and an accurate diagnosis is extremely important to maximise the chances of a good outcome.

If you find a lump or bump on your pet please make an appointment to visit one of our veterinarians to discuss any surgery your pet may require. 

Is your dog a brachycephalic breed? 

Brachycephalic dogs are "squishy face" breeds such as bulldogs and pugs. These dogs often experience a condition referred to as Brachycephalic Airway Syndrome (BAS), which effects their ability to breath effectively and can increase their risk of a number of health issues. 

Symptoms of BAS include:
* Excessive snoring
* Noisy or open mouth breathing
* Exercise intolerance
* Gaging or choking
* Cyanosis (blue tongue)

We find that these symtoms are worse in warmer weather and in overweight and obese patients. 

There are various conditions that necessitate surgery:
* Stenotic nares
* Everted laryngeal saccules
* Elongated soft palates
Stenotic Nares:
Often brachycephalic dogs have nostrils that are too closed to allow normal respiration. Instead of a nice, round opening, we see a slit. It is difficult for these dogs to breath with their mouths closed and we recommend surgery to open up the airways. A small wedge of tissue from each nostril is surgically removed and the edges are then stitched together. The sutures dissolve over time and owners report noticable improvement in a matter of days.
Everted Laryngeal Saccules: 
Laryngeal saccules are bags of tissue that sit in front of the vocal chords. In dogs with compromised upper airway flow, these saccules are pulled into the airway, blocking the opening to the trachea. Treatment involves removing the saccule tissue. 
Elongated Soft Palate:
If the soft palate is long enough to hang down into the airway it can block the opening to the trachea and prevent normal airflow. Surgical treatment involves removing the excess tissue to shorten the soft palate. 
We perform all of the above corrective airway surgery right here in the clinic!
If you have any concerns regarding your pet's breathing, please let us know.