Meet this year's incredible miracle pets

Dexter has been crowned PDSA Pet Survivor of the year!

Read the story of his horrific injury and miraculous recovery, and catch up with the other finalists too.

Dexter - Winner

Poor Dexter was found covered in blood in the garden, icy cold and struggling to breathe. At first his distraught owners thought he had been mauled by a fox or badger, as they live in a very rural area. They rushed him to the vets where x-rays revealed the horrific truth - Dexter had been deliberately shot through the roof of his mouth. He couldn't walk, he jaw was broken and he had 'shrapnel' embedded through his head and neck.

Vets were able to stabilise Dexter but that was only the beginning - he had surgery to fit a 'fixator' to his jaw to help it heal. He then began the lengthy road to recovery and rehabilitation. He was hand fed for weeks as eating was too painful for him, and nearly five weeks later faced surgery again to remove the fixator.

Watch Dexter's story


Brandy was out playing a game of fetch in the garden when things went disastrously wrong. Her owner Sophia-Jayne heard her scream, and to her horror she saw the stick was now pushing out of poor Brandy’s chest.

She was rushed to PDSA’s Thamesmead Pet Hospital where vets were astonished that Brandy was even still alive. The stick had pierced her mouth, travelled through her throat and was lodged in her chest. The vets said it was one of the worst stick injuries they’d ever seen, and it was miracle that it had avoided all her major arteries. She then faced the risky operation to remove the stick – there was no guarantee she’d survive the procedure, but it was her only chance.

Watch Brandy's story


Maximus, known affectionately as Maxy be his family, was in a suspected hit-and run accident and had somehow dragged himself home with horrific injuries. He was found slumped against the front door covered in blood. He was immediately taken to the vets where they discovered that the impact had fractured his skull in several places, his jaw was split in two and his right eye was missing.

Maxy was in such a bad way that they discussed whether it was kindest to put him to sleep. But his owners knew that this gladiator was a fighter, and that they had to give him every opportunity to survive. Vets devised a way to pin the two halves of his face together to help it heal. He had to be tube fed for weeks, but his owners were determined to help him survive.

Watch Maxy's story


Ginger tomcat, Skittles, was found impaled on railings near to his home. Incredibly he was still alive, but was unable to move. After a passerby called the RSPCA, he was rescued by the London Fire Brigade and taken to a nearby vet.

Stunned that he hadn’t died from the fall or the injuries, the vets performed emergency surgery to remove the railings from Skittles. Miraculously, the railings had narrowly missed all his vital organs, and they were even able to save his back leg, which at first they thought might have to be amputated. His owner, who had been desperately searching for him, finally spotted his story in the papers and realised it was him. They were reunited, but Skittles still wasn’t completely out of the woods, he ended up needing two further operations to help him recover.

Watch Skittles' story