Sunday, August 26, 2012

Days 47-50: Cysts, Bite Wounds, Birthing

Nothing too much happened throughout most of the days between days 47-50 besides the basics (nail trims, ear cleanings, simple doctor appointments/checkups, etc.), so I combined everything that happened during those four days into one post.  Anyway, during these days, the only real/major issues we had were a Poodle mix named Sammie with a couple of strange cysts on his body, a Saluki named Loy with a bite wound, and a pregnant/birthing Pomeranian named Bolla.  Sammie’s surgery was fairly simple; Dr. Lou surgically removed the two cysts, and when we opened them, the first cyst (the larger one that was on his head) was simply made of skin cells, and the second cyst (smaller one on his back) was filled with pus and dirt (a cottage-cheese like substance), so it was basically a large pimple.  Loy had been bitten by another dog, so Dr. Lou cleaned his wound, inserted drainage tubes where needed, and stitched up the smaller areas; a normal procedure for a dog with a bite wound.
The large cyst on Sammie's head.

The smaller cyst on Sammie's back.

Dr. Lou lasering off the cysts.

The area on Sammie's head all stitched up after the cyst was removed.

Dr. Lou lasering off the cyst on Sammie's back.

Loy recieving a light dosage of anesthesia before Dr. Todd fixes his bite wound.

Dr. Todd placing the drainage tubes through the wound, and sewing up the smaller parts.

Loy, the Saluki.

The biggest issue/emergency we had was with Bolla, the Pomeranian who was pregnant and giving birth to her puppies.  This pregnancy was the third of three unwanted pregnancies (another reason to spay your female dog!), yet for some unknown reason, the family still hadn’t gotten her spayed.  She came in with an already-born puppy, and with a puppy stuck in the birth canal.  Because of this, Dr. Todd performed a C-section on Bolla.  The one that got stuck in the canal was dead (there was a lot of greenish-black fluid around this puppy, and it smelled really bad, as of dried blood; Pat said that those signs are a sure sign that the puppy is, unfortunately, dead), but the other two puppies (there were four puppies in total, including the dead one) were fine.  This situation was especially cool for me because this time, I was able to help clean the puppies and get them to breathe.  As soon as Dr. Todd cut open their sacs and pulled them out of their mom, Pat wiped them off and got rid of the sacs, and then Jen and I wrapped them in towels and quickly (yet gently) rubbed them and turned them over while wrapped in the towel to get them to start breathing and crying.  It took a few minutes, but after they began to breathe and cry, Pat used a bulb syringe to suck the excess fluids from their nose and mouths so they could breathe clearly (as well as so they wouldn’t choke on those fluids while trying to breathe).  After we further wiped them off, we placed them into an incubator with their first-born sister (they were all girls).  Dr. Todd then completed the C-section by spaying the mom (automatically done when performing a C-section), stitched her up, and then placed her in a cage in the recovery room.  I wrapped her in some blankets and gave her a little pillow so she would be warm and comfortable when she woke up, since she would most likely be freezing after waking up from the anesthesia.  After a while, once she was fully up and functioning, we were able to place the puppies into the cage with her so they could be with their mom, and also begin nursing.  We kept monitoring her and her puppies throughout the afternoon, and they were all doing perfectly fine.  Around evening time, her family came and took her and the puppies home.  It was a really meaningful way to end one of the last days of my internship!
Bolla when she first came in, with her first-born little girl (dark brown, by mommy's tummy).

Dr. Todd beginning the C-section.

Pulling out one of the puppies (it was the one that got stuck).

Cutting open the sac.

This one was the dead puppy; it looked very strange, and like I said it was covered with a lot of greenish-black fluid and smelled really bad.

Pat wiping the puppy off and getting rid of the rest of the sac.

The next puppy.

The last puppy, which was also the one I rubbed, and helped breathe and clean off. 

Mommy all wrapped up and warm after surgery.

Mommy with her puppies.

Mommy and puppies going home.

The last day of my internship was a really sad day for me.  I brought in a thank-you cake for everyone to enjoy, and they ordered pizza for us all to enjoy as well.  I hated saying good-bye and leaving everyone, and I especially hated saying good-bye to all the animals, specifically the stray kittens and dogs that I had bonded with and grown attached to over the course of my internship.  I really, really enjoyed the whole learning and hands-on experience; I find it almost unbelievable the amount the hospital taught me and allowed me to help with in the few months I was there.  I’m really going to miss working there, but I am definitely going back during my school breaks to either work as a part-time Technician, or as a volunteer (whichever one works out best).  Either way, I’m so thankful that I had the opportunity to have/do this internship, and I’m so thankful towards the hospital for taking me in and mentoring me; I’m extremely happy (and almost disbelieving) with how much learning and hands-on experience I was able to achieve.  I definitely know now that being a Veterinarian is the occupation for me, and I’m not going to let anything prevent me from achieving that goal.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Day 46: Puppy Issues/Questions and Necessities

Today, in addition to having Technician appointments and Doctor appointments, I went into a patient’s room with Dr. Kris.  The client had just adopted a new Golden Retriever puppy (whom she named Jagger), and she brought Jagger in for his first checkup as well as to ask Dr. Kris questions about his behavior and relationship with her other dog (named Jake).  Jagger is about 8 weeks old, and his owner said that if he isn’t sleeping, he’s extremely hyper (like a normal puppy).  She said that most of Jagger’s energy is directed on her, which has been wearing her out lately.   She also stated that recently, Jagger has started to focus a lot of energy on Jake as well, and she’s worried about how their relationship is going to play out.  Jagger has been taking toys from Jake and starting to snoop around/eat from Jake’s food bowl, but other than that he’s been fairly mellow (i.e. he’ll be hyper one minute and then sleeping the next), and Jake hasn’t retaliated yet when his toys or food have been taken.  Dr. Kris said that of course, all of this can obviously still change; Jagger is still a young puppy and could become even more hyper, and Jake can still decide one of these days that he won’t tolerate Jagger taking is things anymore.  She said that when Jake decides that, he’s most likely to do a warning snap at Jagger to get him to back off, and usually, that will work and Jagger will stop what he’s doing for a little while.  Right now Jagger doesn’t really understand right from wrong/what he can and can’t do, and the fact that his owner and Jake and his only playmates make it more difficult and tiring for them as well.  The owner said that she is going to take Jagger to a doggie day care for half a day for twice a week so he can be socialized with other dogs.  On a health note, Jagger looked perfectly healthy after Dr. Kris checked him over; he has already received his distemper and parvovirus vaccines as well as his booster shot, and he received his Kennel Cough vaccine today.

One of the major that Dr. Kris focused on during this puppy conversation/explanation was food.  Since Jagger is hanging around Jake a lot (and his food bowl) and taking his toys, Dr. Kris said that this could cause Jake to get very protective of his food (she said that dogs get more protective over their food rather than anything else because they know/realize food is a scarce resource).  Therefore, not only will he get protective of his food when Jagger is there, but whenever anyone is by his food bowl (again, there aren’t any problems so far, but if this behavioral cycle between Jake and Jagger continues, Jake’s behavior could change to something like this).   Of course, Jake is on adult food and Jagger is on puppy food.   Dr. Kris said giving a little bit of extra-yummy food with their regular food will help both dogs understand that it’s a good thing when someone is by their food dish, rather than making them feel like they have to protect their dish.  She also said to leave them alone while they eat, and then take their dish away after eating for the same reason; so that they don’t ever get the feeling that they need to protect their bowl.  Since Jagger is a pretty new member to the family, she told the owner to start having Jake and Jagger eat in separate rooms for a while so that again, they don’t get protective of their food, and therefore don’t hurt each other.  Once both of them are on dog food, she said that they can eat in the same room again.  All of these steps can help prevent conflicts and ill-feelings between the two dogs, but Dr. Kris also warned and said that if they do have any conflicts or spiffs, not to interfere and let them sort it out themselves because they will then need to learn how to deal with and understand each other.  The only time the owner should interfere is if it looks like one of them (more so Jagger, since he’s the puppy) is going to get hurt, but since Jake knows Jagger is just a puppy, he shouldn’t try to do anything to harm him other than to warn him to stop whatever he’s doing; therefore, Dr. Kris simply advised to her to keep an eye on them just in case, but to not interfere unless it starts to get serious.
Jagger, the Golden Retriever puppy. 

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Day 45: Laceration Repair, FLUTD, Anorexia, Azotemia, Entropion

                Today we had some Tech appointments and some Doctor appointments, but nothing serious or ‘strange’, per se (mostly animals with cold-like symptoms, a cut on a toe, or just needing nail trims; smaller things like that).  However, we had more patients staying with us in the recovery room today than we have in a while.  The first new patient we had was a Domestic Short-Haired torti cat named Sprinkles who had received laceration repair (fixing a jagged wound) during the previous night.  She was sleeping a lot throughout the day, so she seemed to be recovering fine; she went home during the early afternoon.  Next to Sprinkles was Gabe, another Domestic Short-Haired black cat, who has FLUTD (Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease--that covers a wide range of urinary tract issues, but in this case, Gabe had bladder stones).  Dr. Kris performed surgery during the afternoon, and he is recovering fine.  Next to Gabe was another Domestic Short-Haired black cat named Chico, and next to Chico was yet another Domestic Short-Haired black cat named Max (whom I called Maxie).  Chico was in for the same problem as Gabe, but he had received surgery last night and was solely recovering and resting up today.  Maxie was here to medical board for the week while his parents were out of town.  He has Diabetes, and he also has no teeth (I’m not sure why he needed all his teeth removed)!   He was a very enjoyable patient/boarder though, always wanted to play and be pet, and whenever we would say “Max!” or “Maxie!” he would answer us back with a cute little meow.  He was such a sweetie!  At the end of the row next to Maxie was a Chihuahua named Coco, who was in the hospital being treated for Anorexia and Azotemia (in addition to not eating/not being hungry, she was also accumulating urea [nitrogenous waste products that are the breakdown product of protein metabolism in mammals and should be passed in urine] in her blood). She just transferred here this afternoon from another hospital, so I’ll have to check on her tomorrow to see what’s going on with her and see how she’s doing.  Lastly, the corral was housing a bulldog named Buddy for the day, who was receiving a dental as well as eyelid surgery.  He had what is called Entropion, which is where the edges of the eyelid (either upper or lower; in this case, it was his lower) turn inward, which causes the lid and the lashes to rub against and irritate the eye.  Dr. Karen performed the surgery (she just needed to remove part of the lower eyelid), and he rested a lot after his surgery was done, and he went home sometime in the evening.

Sprinkles, The DSH Torti cat.  The stitching and drainage tubes can be seen on her side where her laceration was repaired.

Gabe, (one of the) DSH black cats that had FLUTD.

Flushing Gabe's cathater before removing it to perform the bladder stone surgery.

His little bladder.

The BB pellet-like stones that were in his bladder.

Flushing one more time before stitching him up, to make sure all the stones are out.

Finalized stitching.

Chico, the other DSH black cat with FLUTD.

Maxie, the DSH black sweetie.

Coco, the little Chihuahua with Anorexia and Azotemia. She also has her little teddy bear with her for comfort!

Buddy, the bulldog with Entropion issues.  This picture was taken before the surgery, and as it shows, his right lower eyelid is droopy while his left  lower eyelid is right up against his eye.

His eyelid being fixed/stitched up after part was removed (the lower eyelid can be seen as 'droopy' agin in this picture, like his right lower eyelid is).

The few pieces of his lower eyelid that were removed.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Day 44: Small Car Accident, Baby Squirrel, NubNub Tail

                Today we of course had some Tech and Doctor appointments, and in the afternoon we had an emergency for a Maltese mix named Lucy that was hit by a car.  Luckily, after Dr. Roberta checked her over and performed some tests, it was found that there was no serious damage externally or internally to Lucy besides a few cuts here and there as well as a few gashes/abrasions on her thighs. One of the abrasions was larger than the others, and it needed to be cleaned and stapled shut (the other abrasions were small enough that they just needed to be cleaned).  Dr. Roberta first gave a Metacam injection to help with pain relief, then applied Tritop ointment to protect from bacterial infections on her skin, and lastly gave Lucy a Polyflex injection to help fight against skin bacterial infections.  After giving the injections and medications, it was time to focus on closing the larger abrasion.  Since it was such a small ‘procedure’, it wasn’t really necessary to put Lucy under anesthesia.  When Dr. Roberta tried to get the first staple in, Lucy yelped and jerked her leg back, so the staple didn’t go in all the way.  Lauren was holding Lucy, and I was scratching Lucy’s head and talking to her in order to try and distract her, as well as to try and help her feel more at ease.  It took a few more tries, but Dr. Roberta was then able to staple the abrasion closed.
One of Lucy's gashes.

The largest gash all stapled up.

Lucy, the Maltese.

                There were also two small yet interesting things that happened later in the afternoon today.  The first was that a client found a baby/just born squirrel (at least, we were all fairly sure it was a squirrel) while taking a walk, and so they brought it in because they weren’t sure what to do with it but didn’t want to leave it for dead at the place where they found it.  Unfortunately there really wasn’t anything anyone could do, especially since no one really knows anything about squirrels and no one really knew what was wrong with it; so, I’m not sure what happened with the squirrel.  The second was that one of the new stray cats that had arrived a few days ago had to get his tail surgically removed; the nervous system in his tail was dead, and he couldn’t move his tail anymore nor could he feel anything in his tail.  Because of that, the doctors removed it last night, but I didn’t know that had happened.  I don’t know what caused his tail to end up like that, but it was just an interesting thing to see a cat with a nub for a tail!  He’s also going to be put up for adoption soon; he’s a sweetie, so hopefully he’ll find a nice home soon!
The baby squirrel.

The kitty's nubnub tail!

The nice stray cat.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Day 43: Foreign Body

                Today, in addition to Tech appointments and Doctor appointments, we also had a foreign body/bladder stone surgery on a Lab mix that was performed by Dr. Kris.   I say it was a foreign body/bladder stone surgery because Dr. Kris wasn’t sure what it was going into the surgery; looking at the X-rays, she knew that something was in the bladder, and at first she thought it was a large clump of bladder stones.  However, once the surgery was underway, a piece of bone was what was pulled out.  We have no idea how it got there, and we never will.  But this was definitely an interesting surgery with an unexpected result!
Beginning to open the bladder.  Dr. Kris is inplacing 'safety sutures' (looping a thread through both sides of the bladder and securing them to the sterile sheet with forceps) with in order to prevent the bladder from moving during the procedure.

The piece of bone that was taken out.

The stitched up bladder after the piece of bone was taken out.