Hey guys! Yesterday (Wednesday the 28th, 2016) I shadowed a vet all day at his office. It was great! Meaning 8:30 AM to 4:30ish PM. Because, for you who don’t know, I’m very interested in Vet work. Here is the story of my day. Prepare yourself for a hurricane of words:
I’m going to tell you about the life changing day I had at the Veterinary Clinic yesterday. It was all so amazing.
I first got there and saw a cat outside, which I later figured out was ‘Rattles’, their cat. I went inside and was told that the guy I would be doing most of the stuff with was outside, but if I wanted, they said I could see a cat that had just had surgery. So I went in the back to see the cat, and watched a lady give it some fluids. I followed her around for a while, not doing a whole lot, but looking at the dogs and cats and helping her with some stuff. She said it was time for a dog to be neutered and got it out of its pen. She brought it in the surgical room where another lady was and they sedated it. I saw up to where it was getting really wobbly, but then it was time for the guy I was shadowing to go look at a horse with an injured eye. He asked if I would be okay with holding it while he sedated it, and of course, I said sure. He didn’t give it enough to put the horse on the ground, just to make it sleepy. It had a runny eye, and he said that was because the tear duct (where it ran from the eye down to the nose to drain) was clogged. So we went inside and got stuff for it…a bucket, a little thing to put in its nose, and a syringe with Saline…or something that sounded like that. While we were in there getting stuff, I looked in the surgical room and saw the doggy tied to the chair with a sheet over it, being neutered. I went back out with the guy vet, and he pulled the horse’s nose open and showed me a TINY- TINY- little hole where it breathes in and stuff at. Then he stuck a little white hose into the hole, not all the way up its nose, but just into it, and then pushed the liquid stuff in the syringe into the nose through the hose. Some snot came out of the hole and the other stuff, but the liquid didn’t make it up and out of the eye, so it wasn’t completely unclogged yet. So we got more liquid, did it again, got some more, and did it again. And that time it squirted out the eye a little, so we knew it was mostly good. Then he did the other side, just to make sure, and it came a LOT out of the eye, so we knew it was good! Then he checked out the actual eye and told the lady there was nothing wrong with it. Just then the horse woke up again and we loaded it in the trailer and went back inside.
He asked if I had been shown around much, and I said not really. So he went through all the rooms and showed me what each one was for. And what it had in it. There was the microscope, a laser machine they use to cut into an animal instead of a knife because it would cauterize it as it cut. There were a couple ultrasounds that they used to preg-check animals. They also had an x-ray machine in the bathroom that turned the ACTUAL x-rays into pictures! Then his office room with all his stuff, and the examination room, the surgical room, and many others. In the surgical room, there was a chart on how old your dog was in human years! Since Aggie is 5, she would be 38ish in human years!! Eeeek! There was another chart above the weighing thing for the dogs, that told how to tell if your dog is obese, overweight, perfect, underweight, or skinny! There wasn’t a whole lot to do…. He went to go do some cleaning up and some stuff in his office and I headed to the examination room where a lady was examining someone’s dog that had been throwing up stuff. She told the guy not to feed the dog the rest of that day, but just water it with little bits.
Next the same woman examined someone’s dog that had gotten its paw stuck in a trap. It didn’t look too bad, other than a bit of swelling… so I went back to where the guy I was shadowing was and he told me a bunch of stuff. About ring worms, parvo, some pig problems, such as common stomach aches from eating too fine of food. Or them rubbing so hard on each other that they turn something inside of them inside out. Also I asked him what the weirdest animal he’d ever treated before was. He said that in college, he had to do surgery on a wallaby at the zoo! After that it was lunch time, and he went to go eat, and I ate in the little room with tons of snacks… Then I just pet more on Rattles, listened to a guy make an appointment to have his dog spayed and such things as that. Then I found him again when he was back doing stuff on his computer. We left for another place where he said we would preg-check cows, vaccine some calves, give them ear tags, and then for the same people we would vaccinate their dogs and cats and then look at their goat with pregnancy issues. Then we would drop off some vaccines to a guy so that he could give them to his dad for his dogs.
On the way there he told me about Brucellosis. And how it was almost gone because of vaccines to get rid of it that people allowed by the government had given to the cows. He said that the only place it wasn’t quite taken care of was near Yellowstone, because there were Bison there that they couldn’t vaccinate, and if cows got near the bison there sometimes, they would get it. This link will tell you a bit more about that.
We also talked about his dog, and my dogs. My horse, my sisters, my pigs… A lot of things.
He told me that I could preg-check the cows after him if I wanted to, and I OBVIOUSLY did!!! He did the first one and said it was a 7. I wasn’t sure what he meant by that, but as he went, I figured out that that was kind of a scale of how close they were to calving. Six wasn’t very much. Nine was really close! After he checked the first one, he told me I could put on a glove if I wanted! AND I DID! I reached way up in the cow and felt the little calf. It was so cool! I couldn’t really feel anything on that one. But I felt about 5 cows probably and one of them was a nine!! He told me that the calf’s foot was about the size it would be when it was BORN! I felt something hard, but not terribly well. It was soooo cool though! When I pulled my arm out of course it was covered in manure. But I knew it would be like that anyways. I was glad I had a long, long glove on though! Then after he checked all of those cows, we took the gloves off and went to start vaccinating the heifers. The people then told us that they wanted him to preg-check them too, to make sure they WEREN’T pregnant. I didn’t do that with them, but I watched him. He would preg-check them, vaccinate them, give them an ear tag (which I refilled each time he was done), and then did a little number thing in their ear and rubbed it with green goo to make the holes filled with goo and turn green! There was one that needed de-horned, so he got his clippers, a bucket with water in it, a rope, some scissors, and some powdery stuff. He made the rope into a halter type thing and had the lady (that was wearing leather gloves) hold it while he clipped off the horns and then pinched the nerve with the little scissors so it wouldn’t bleed as much. Then he would shake the powder stuff on it, and then put his stuff with that in the bucket out of the way. We kept going, and there were three bad eyes to check. He looked at them, but said that they were all the same, nothing to do about them. But then there was another bad eyed one they saw a little later where its eye stuck out about oh… 1 ½ – 2 inches out from the eye. He said that he was going to cut into the outer part of the eye, and take out the lens of the eye. He cut into the outer layer, and blood spewed and liquid squirted everywhere, and I looked around him more just to see that, and part of the eye ball fall on the ground. He pushed the little part left of the eye further in, and stuck half an antibiotic pill in the eye, and quickly sewed it shut. I saw most of it, but it didn’t seem that gross to me. Or scary. It was kind of cool. I thought it was so neat that there was something you could do for an eye like that! He picked the squishy lens up off the ground and said that the cow already couldn’t see, so by taking the lens out (which was causing all the swelling) it wouldn’t hurt as bad. The lens was squishy, and he said it should have been hard. He said that the lens is what sends the image to the back of the eye, so that it can tell the brain so that you know what you’re seeing! There were two teenage kids there, a boy and girl. And although I didn’t see much other than the squirting, falling, and sewing, I saw that they were making some faces.
After that we went to the back of his truck and they found all their dogs and cats that needed vaccines. Then the vet went over to take a look at their goats. Which both had diarrhea. The lady had gotten a sample of one of the goats manure in a plastic bag, so we took it. He said that the other goat had already had her dead kid, so that was taken care of. Then we wrote down the few cows that were pregnant, how many we had preg-checked, and how many calves we’d vaccined, and preg-checked. Then we headed out to the guy’s place that needed vaccines for his dad.The vet I was shadowing later told me that he and this guy had gone to high school together, so they talked for a while about things. When we left the guy’s house where we’d given the vaccines, we went back to the clinic and washed up some stuff. I made sure to tell him thanks SOO much for having me out.
We got the goat sample (also known as manure), and mixed some with some stuff to make the parasite eggs (if there were any) float to the top. Then we swirled it around in a machine thingy, let it sit, put some more stuff in there, and took the top microscope glass and put it on the top of the bottle thing so that the eggs would stick to it, and put it under the microscope. The whip worms looked like a little football shape with bubbles on each point. There was one egg that had a squiggly line in the middle of it, which he said was the developing worm in the egg. He said sometimes you could see it wiggle, but I couldn’t. So all of that was a lot of fun. He also had to put in all the info about giving the dogs and cattle vaccines into his computer. Exhausting work.
There were some more examinations that I watched, including a lady with her tiny, TINY little dog named ‘baby girl’, that she was sure had a hurt leg. It was fine, but after that I asked him if it did have a hurt leg and he smiled real big and shook his head. As if it probably happened a lot. Then the guy that was the dad of the guy we dropped vaccines off to, came. He didn’t know he was coming that day either. His dog he brought was one that he needed to get vaccines for. My sister got there during the examination to pick me up, and I told the vet I had to go and said goodbye. And told my sister ALLLLLLLL about it in the car.
After the long day, I was DEFINITELY leaning more towards wanting to be a vet than ever. I want to help animals, I want to help their owners. I want to help society. But whatever I end up doing, whether it’s being a vet or a garbage man, I’m going to serve God forever in whatever I do. I’m K.A, and I want to make a difference.
So, did you like it? It was the most amazing experience ever. With the year spiraling down to an end, I’ve had so many amazing things happen this year, and I hope that one of these years, I may be going to vet college. If it’s God’s will. I’m also interested in being a Vet Tech. Or Vet assistant. The guy I interned with is an AMAZING guy, who’s very easy to be around, and fun to hang out with. He knows what he’s doing, and is calm about what he does. He’s an all-around cool guy.