IT has been a funny old week.

It started with the mysterious case of the vomiting cat, who needed surgery to remove, remarkably, a shiny five pence piece from his small intestine.

No-one seemed to understand when I asked if there had been any 'change' in his condition...

Then there was the Her Majesty’s Custom and Excise bomb searching dog with explosive diarrhoea. And there was the dog that swallowed the battery. How much do you charge for treating that? You couldn’t make it up.

What was really strange, however, was the sudden run (if you pardon the pun) of orthopaedic problems.

It always seems to happen this way. You don’t see a diabetic cat from one week to the next then suddenly you are treating a veritable colony of them.

First there was Tammy, the Cavalier with the gammy knees. Not the only member of her breed to be affected. Next day, we saw another. Similar conformation, same story.

Walking produced a hop, skip and a jump type gait and examination revealed bilateral dislocating patellae. Surgery was carried out on the worst leg, with the other pencilled in for two months time.

No sooner was the supporting bandage applied to this leg when in limped Roy, a juvenile Westie who had suddenly gone lame whilst trotting on the pavement. Those of you who have Googled the anatomy of the knee will understand his problem. With his relatively soft bones, he had managed to tear the attachment of his patellar ligament off the front of his shin bone; a condition called Tibial Tuberosity Avulsion. As a result, the quadriceps muscle of his thigh could not exert a pull on the shin bone and Roy was unable to extend his leg.

Surgery is required to remedy this situation, as failure to diagnose or treat results in permanent dysfunction of the leg. Happily, Roy is doing fine after the avulsed bone was pinned back on and wired down.

And heh, the orthopaedic drill was just being plugged in to recharge when Ginger’s owner appeared, cradling her damaged pet.

This wee soul had been stood on by a horse and both bones of the forelimb, the radius and ulna, were broken about mid shaft. A number of X rays confirmed that an orthopaedic plate and screws would be required for the best repair.

With so very many sizes and shape of dog and cat, general veterinary practices cannot possibly stock the huge variety of different surgical implants that may be required. Fortunately, these can be ordered with next morning delivery and all that is needed is that they be sterilised before use.

Used to be we could rely on first class post for this but now delivery is another £15, which only adds to the cost.

Despite her small size, it took two of us 15 minutes to fatigue her muscles enough that we could realign her broken bones. An hour later, a 57mm plate and seven 2mm screws had stabilised her leg.

Let’s hope that’s the end of the run! It has felt like a marathon…