PNEUMONIA, a cyst, urinary tract infection and even a thorn in his eye – but Badger has come through it all.

The accident-prone dog has defied the odds to become one of East Lothian’s oldest pooches.

The 15-and-a-half-year-old crossbreed could fill a veterinary textbook with the number of injuries, diseases and ailments he has suffered.

Yet the much-loved family pet, who lives with owners Hugh and Patricia Gordon in Pencaitland, keeps bouncing back to health.

Badger has been a patient at Dunedin Vets in Tranent since he was a puppy and, as he approaches his 16th birthday – putting him well over 100 in equivalent human years – he is the oldest large dog on the practice’s records.

Before he was even one, Badger suffered a urinary tract infection, cyst on his paw, thorn in his eye, had a mass removed from his chest and a torn nail. Since then, he has had two bouts of kennel cough, sprained his toe, a nasal infection, another paw wound, nail infection, skin infection, lameness in his hips and legs, and several lumps removed.

But the most serious bout of illness came in 2012 when his heartbroken owners feared they might lose him.

The golden retriever-dalmatian cross became extremely sick with pneumonia, leaving him with a chronic respiratory infection that requires medication for life.

Earlier this year, Margot Hunter, clinical director at the vet, had to perform surgery to remove a cancerous tumour – and then, only six weeks ago, he returned to the practice after breaking his tail. The injury resulted in his tail being docked.

Badger returned to Dunedin Vets this week to help launch its Prime of Life campaign to encourage owners to pay extra attention to signs of change in their pet as they enter later life.

Owner Hugh Gordon, a retired teacher, puts Badger’s longevity down to plenty of exercise and a good diet.

He said: “He has always been a very athletic and adventurous dog who used to jump four-foot fences and would be off as soon as he spotted a fox or a rabbit.

“At home, he is very gentle and calm and enjoys sleeping; but even at his age, as soon as he hears me picking up his lead and putting my boots on, he’s up and ready for a walk.”

During the campaign in November and December, Dunedin Vets is offering free urine tests for dogs, free blood pressure checks for cats and free nail clips for rabbits when they come along for the reduced price consultation.