- Not a substitute for professional veterinary help.
Not all heroes wear capes—some wear vet scrubs!
Such is the case for the team at Uplands Way Veterinary Clinic, a pet hospital in Norfolk County, England, whose hand-crafted bandage art recently rose to TikTok fame.
All Wrapped Up
From Pixar to Pokémon, this clinic designs imaginative bandages for its patients, in an effort to bring a bit of joy to what can be a stressful time for pets and their parents. Rover spoke with Uplands Way’s head nurse, Emily Philpot, to discuss how this unique initiative found its feet (or rather, paws).
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Philpot said the team’s first muse was an injured Terrier named Pippa who arrived at the clinic in rough shape from a dog fight in 2018. After surgery, it became apparent that Pippa’s healing process would be lengthy, requiring a full chest bandage that would need re-wrapping multiple times per week.
“We were continually dressing [Pippa’s] wounds to help her heal, so we decided to get creative with making the bandaging more fun,” Philpot said. Instead of bland wrapping, the team began to suit the recovering pup in stylish dressings that ranged from a ladybug to Superman.
From here, creativity took flight. Since Pippa’s rehabilitation five years ago, the clinic’s dedicated team has enjoyed creating new designs for incoming patients. Today, these creations are lovingly constructed by three nurses—Stacey, Esme, and Charlotte—and it has become second nature to provide recovering dogs and cats with artful bandaging.
If a particular design is requested, it is made ahead of time so the pet isn’t kept waiting.
“We generally create designs in batches and have a folder with them ready to go,” Philpot said. “If a particular design is requested, it is made ahead of time so the pet isn’t kept waiting. We really enjoy finding out what the family likes. We’ve had children who like tractors and bumblebees, for example, so we’ll use that for a design.”
Of course, the pets visiting their clinic get a say too! A dog named Rocket was the recipient of a rocket-themed bandage, while a Labrador named Dougie was the inspiration for a series of creations inspired by the Pixar film, “Up!”
Bound for Smiles
Crafting new designs keeps spirits high as the clinic continually cares for injured or ill animals. “The most common reason for a bandage is a wound on the foot or lower leg,” said Philpot. “This might be a surgical wound from a lump or grass seed that we have removed, or it could be for a cut that we are trying to heal. We’ve also designed unique tail bandages, like our cute caterpillar, in the instance that a dog requires a tail amputation for a medical reason, such as severe tail trauma.”
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To keep the wrap breathable, all designs are made from various colors of the same gauzy material as the bandage itself. Since this type of material sticks together, pre-made art can easily be placed onto an animal’s custom bandage. Philpot noted that this method ensures the pet’s healing process is never hindered.
Though a vet visit in the wake of an injury can feel overwhelming for a pet parent, an adorable bandage featuring the “Up!” balloon house, hand-crafted by a team of devoted animal lovers, might just make the visit a little bit easier for all.
For more cute photos and cool bandage art, follow @uplands.way.vets on TikTok.