May 29, 2020


A dachshund runs across a lawn


Each year, on a Sunday in early February, people around the world tune in to watch an athletic spectacle unlike any other. The ultimate test of strength and determination, the Puppy Bowl, pits two fierce rivals – Team Ruff and Team Fluff – against each other in an adorable battle for the prestigious Lombarky Trophy.

Since all of the competitors are rescue puppies, grit and toughness are never an issue and these pups give it their all during this one-of-a-kind event. That’s why it was so strange when Mabel the Dachshund was withdrawn and aloof during the Puppy Bowl’s three-day production schedule. Her new owners, a dog loving family from Connecticut, were a bit puzzled by her behavior until a check-up revealed a life-threatening condition: a hepatic (liver) arteriovenous fistula with multiple portosystemic liver shunts as a secondary condition.

In short, the blood supply to and from her liver was malformed, so the liver was unable to do its job, and Mabel was getting sicker and sicker. Her family was stricken. They had fallen in love with this sweet, playful pup and they were willing to do whatever it took to return her to good health.

Fortunately, Mabel’s family brought her to the Animal Medical Center. Led by Dr. Chick Weisse, our innovative Interventional Radiology and Endoscopy team recommended an advanced surgical treatment for Mabel that would attempt to seal off the errant blood vessels around her liver. Not even 8 months old, Mabel entered AMC on February 24th, 2020 for the surgery and subsequent monitoring in our Intensive Care Unit.

Three days later, she was cleared for discharge, a bit dazed, but beyond thrilled to be reunited with her family. Although her condition will continue to require medication and a special diet, her post-surgery prognosis is excellent, and Mabel is doing fantastic at home with her family and doggy siblings, Taco and Diego!

With the help of AMC doctors, Mabel scored the biggest touchdown of her young life and we’re thrilled to see her happy and with a new lease on life!

Watch Mabel as a country music star in her Puppy Bowl music video!

A cute dachshund lies in a lap
Two puppies on screen during the Puppy Bowl
A dachshund wearing an e-collar on her owner's lap
A veterinarian explains discharge instructions in an exam room
A dachshund eating a treat
A dachshund sleeping
A dachshund sleeps on its back
Three dogs sit on a couch