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Last Updated: Thursday July 15 2010 06:37 GMT

World-first surgery on dolphin

Dottie now she is better

A dolphin has become the first in the world to have special surgery on her kidneys.

Dottie, a dolphin at SeaWorld in San Diego, had kidney failure after she developed kidney stones that were difficult to treat.

She had to have dialysis, which is a special medical procedure, which humans often have when their kidneys fail.

Luckily Dottie responded to the treatment and is now back playing with her friends and family.

However, she still has to have lots of tests done regularly to make sure her kidneys don't fail again.

Dottie having treatment
Dottie having treatment

Staff noticed Dottie was ill when she stopped eating and tests showed she had kidney stones. They tried lots of usual treatments but they didn't work.

The staff and vets at SeaWorld eventually had to have help from 'human' doctors at the UC San Diego Medical Centre, because dialysis had never been done on a dolphin before.