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WATCH: Vet performs incredible life-saving surgery on goldfish with tumours

PUBLISHED: 19:00 23 September 2019

Toni the goldfish had several tumours and required surgery from Suffolk Exotic Vets Picture: CATHERINE THOMAS

Toni the goldfish had several tumours and required surgery from Suffolk Exotic Vets Picture: CATHERINE THOMAS

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A tumour-ridden goldfish has been given a new lease of life after surviving surgery a Suffolk vets.

Toni the goldfish bares little scarring following her life-altering surgery at the Trimley St Mary-based vets Picture: CATHERINE THOMASToni the goldfish bares little scarring following her life-altering surgery at the Trimley St Mary-based vets Picture: CATHERINE THOMAS

Toni the six-year-old goldfish was riddled with tumours when brought to the team at Suffolk Exotic Vet Services in Trimley St Mary.

Needing potentially life-saving surgery, Toni was taken to the operating table for one of the smallest possible surgeries in the veterinary world.

Dr Catherine Thomas, who performed the surgery, said: "We see a lot of goldfishes, but we don't tend to have many owners who approve of them having surgery.

"It is relatively common for these lumps to develop just like with any other animal.

"Toni was very uncomfortable beforehand and was in quite some pain when she knocked the lumps on the side of her tank."

Toni was put into a tank containing an anaesthetic solution to put her under, before being transferred to the operating table, where Dr Thomas used cautery to remove the lumps and prevent bleeding.

A heartbeat monitor was attached to her chest, creating whooshing sounds on the video as Dr Thomas had to remain as delicate as possible.

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It remains unknown what caused the lumps, although there is a possibility it may have been cancer - and could return.

Dr Thomas added: "The surgery itself wasn't difficult, I'm used to dealing with small and fiddly things.

"The main thing was the anaesthetic, fish breathe through oxygenated water and so it can be really difficult to keep them under."

After an hour-long surgery, Toni had products applied to her wound to prevent further bleeding and put inside a fresh-water tank to recover, before being taken home by her owners two hours later.

According to Dr Thomas, the size of the animal doesn't affect her task at hand.

She said: "Our main responsibility as vets is to give animals a higher quality of life.

"That isn't just for cats and dogs, it's for every single animal big or small.

"We normally learn about cats, dogs, horses and farm animals in training, but I've always had an interest in exotic animals.

"We were all relieved when Toni was back in the water swimming."

Toni later made a full recovery.

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