Hello all I hopefully will start posting more regularly now I am back in reins so to speak 😉 I have been working 3 days per week during the summer at BearlEquine and hope to continue this on a regular part time basis if possible and work holds up.
The practice in Blyth is growing nicely and if any fo you have small animals in the Blyth area we would love to see you at the practice, unashamed plug 😉 the website gives you all the details you need to know, http://www.st-clair-pet-care.com
Planning delays have meant the cat practice is somewhat behind schedule but work is slowly progressing and we will let all you who also have cats know whem we should be opeing this. In a strange way cats and horses go together. Sarah has just completed and passed her GP certificate in Feline Medicine. The early site can be seen at http://www.simplycats.net
Ramblings from a life in Vet Practice…
Hi and I apologise once again to my mother and cat Merlin for the delay on posting. At least I know I have 2 individuals whom read my ramblings on the internet about all things veterinary 😉
Last weekend I was on call again 2nd weekend of 3 and spent 5 hours in the car on Saturday and travelled some 250 miles during the day. However the best was yet to come!! The call came in @ 10pm just as I was starting to relax for a mare foaling. Now it is a veterinary urban myth that if the mare has not foaled by the time the vet arrives it tends to be an epic encounter. However this mare had suddenly started foaling and something long and tubular was hanging from its vulva. On close questioning this was almost certainly intestine and thus the mare was most unlikely to survive. On arriving as quickly as I could, I confirmed my suspicions that this was actually large bowel hanging from the mare due a larger rupture around the cervix and that she would have to be destroyed unfortunately. However we needed to see if we could save the foal. I administered a high dose of painkillers and sedation to the mare and attempted to foal her. However the foals head and both front legs were bent backwards and despite straightening them we could not get the mare foaled normally. Thus an emergency standing caesarean was carried out and a very flat, weak filly was produced which I thought had little chance of survival.
The filly was removed for immediate resuscitation and the harrowing job of putting the mare to sleep was carried out. This was a really brave well behaved mare with a lovely kind owner and everyone involved was deeply upset ;-(
By this time the foal had recovered remarkably well and yet despite this miracle seemed unable to stand. On close examination she was found to have severe bilateral carpal contracture. This is a rare deformity of the front legs where the carpi (knees) are fixed in a flexed position and unable toe be moved even after surgery. Due to the hopeless prognosis it was decided to put the foal to sleep also.
Thus after some 4 hours work and care based on over 26 years in practice I ended up with a dead mare and foal!! No one really tells you about this in vet school and you start to understand why vets have a very high suicide rate especially in new graduates. It can be in many cases a very rewarding but harrowing lonely job in large animal practice.
However 2 days later I did a mare and foal check on a delightful Appaloosa filly foal and as they say life goes on 😉
Then to continue this vein of depression I saw my first case of grass sickness on Wednesday night and that mare was put down also! A 5 year old the best mare on the farm! This particular farm has had grass sickness in the past but not on this field, and not on the premises for 3 years!! Classical symptoms fine body tremor low grade colic signs but pulse rate of 75 beats per minute, very hard cannon ball faeces, low grade drooling from the mouth, reduced gut sounds and a foul smelling breath. Diagnosis can be challenging in some cases but was straightforward here. Due to the mares pain and distress she was put to sleep.
I hope you realise I have had a bad few days and things will get better I hope 😉