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Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Practical things I've learned in vet school

Yesterday I learned how to age a horse with teeth. I went into vet school knowing how to age a horse using that groove on the side of the teeth, but unless the horse is somewhere around 15 years up to about 30 years, I was out of luck. I’m really confident now with horses of all ages - especially younger ones, which is a great little party trick. Unless I actually become a horse vet and then it might actually be useful….

It got me thinking what else “useful” I’ve learned in vet school. Not “cool” in the scientific sense or a “gee whiz” fact - but an actual skill that I could apply to a real life situation - even if there are tons of people better at it than me.

After a year of vet school, here’s the grand tally.

1. I know how to draw blood from all sorts of animals besides a sheep.

2. I can age a horse by teeth.

3. I can feel a dog’s kidneys. Or at least, one of them.

4. I can give IM injections to small animals

5. I can give a subcutaneous injection some where other than the back of the neck of a small animal.

6. I can look at a blood smear and probably tell you whether it’s normal.

7. I have the directions close at hand, I can stain/fix a blood smear.

8. I no longer think acupuncture in animals is complete voodoo

9. I know that neoplasia is always a differential for everything (boo!…)

10. I can tell you what the literature says on how to treat food aggression in dogs.

11. Small groups are the bomb! In a good way. And they will save your ass. And utilized correctly the whole IS greater than its parts.

And…..I think that’s it.

1 comment:

  1. As of yesterday I can add something else to the list - I can now ultrasound a dog and probably find all of the 5 five internal organs in the abdomen, and probably ID some other structures along the way. VERY COOL!


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