Friday, 30 September 2011

Lub dub, lub dub, lub dub...

Equipment Required: A Stethoscope

Cardiology.... unfortunately it was just a one week rotation, but it was fun while it lasted. Unfortunately we only got to work with everyone's favourite teacher once, but regardless, the rest of the week was fun and interesting. Cardiology is one of those topics that can seem very daunting, can be quite easy to learn, and then when you try and put it into practice you realize that it actually can be quite difficult! Each day was filled with ausculation, echos, ecgs, and the occasional radiograph. It was good but short, and it would have been nice if the students got to do some of the ultrasounding, because in first opinion practice we'll likely be doing some of that before referring. Regardless, we had a pretty interesting week, having had some rare and unusual cases, including a cat wit PDA -- apparently a referral vet will only see like 4 of those in their lifetime. Despite enjoying cardiology, I'm definitely looking forward to the weekend, as the weather is supposed to be amazing! I love Indian Summers!

Sunday, 25 September 2011

So long Malton.. it's been fun!

This week has been a fairly good week at Rainbow vets! There has been a steady caseload, which is makes for a good learning environment, and thankfully, the cases have been quite varied! It’s a nice change from RVC where all of our cases were colics! This week I did get opportunities to place catheters and I got to scrub in on a surgery to remove 2 dorsal spinous processes from a horse that had “kissing spines.” It was fun to get to work on an animal that was actually standing during surgery (aside from the massive kick to the vet’s femur). I think it’s great too that I can still be amazed by some of the things I see during surgery too – like the size of the pieces we removed! I’m still 100% positive that I want to work with small animals when I’m done school, but it’s definitely been a cool experience to have worked with such giant and amazing beasts! Alas, back to good old Potters Bar for a week of Cardiology :-)
At the Malton train station, awaiting my train home

Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Time to explore!

This weekend I worked half a day at the clinic and then spent the Saturday afternoon exploring Malton. I was planning on looking through the shops in the market square, but once I got there I realized I had forgotten my wallet back at Sophie’s, so in the end, I just browsed around then headed back to relax and read some of my book (see Current Reads section). Saturday evening was pretty cold so we lit the fireplace – first fire of the year! 

Church in Market Square, Malton

Bridge over River Derwent, Malton

This morning we got up bright and early to head to a car boot sale (a first for me). Along the way I noticed several horses, just tethered along the roadside every now and then, which to me seemed unusual. Apparently that’s what the gypsies do with their horses when they aren’t using them. Weird. Anywho, the car boot sale had a lot of people selling a lot of junk! There were some people that had some interesting and unique things, but all in all, it’s just a giant yard sale! 
Car boot sale

After that Sophie dropped me off in the city of York for the afternoon. While there I went on a free walking tour, courtesy of the {Association of VolunteerGuides}. While Neil gave us a history lesson (I had no idea York had a history involving Scandinavians and Vikings), we got to see the Roman/Medieval walls, St Mary’s Abbey, King's Manor, Bootham Bar, York Minster, the Treasurer’s House, the Shambles, and an overall tour of the town. After the tour I grabbed some lunch and then shopped around (I was good and didn’t buy anything), then made my way to the bus station, where I boarded a bus back to Norton. Tonight Karen, Sophie’s friend and Rainbow Vet employee came over and we had some wine and Chinese while helping Soph address envelopes for an event at York House –{ A Literary Gala}. Nothing too exciting, but a nice end to a fantastic weekend! 
City Art Gallery, York

St. Mary's Abbey, York

The Shambles, York's oldest street

York Minster

Thursday, 15 September 2011

Off to North Yorkshire I Go

For the next two weeks I’m staying in the lovely little village of Norton, North Yorkshire, while I attend my equine EMS placement at {Rainbow Equine Hospital} in Old Malton, Yorkshire. My train ride here was somewhat stressful, as initially, my train from Potters Bar was late (I was afraid I wouldn’t make my connections), then, my second connection was cancelled halfway through because a train had malfunctioned further up the track and couldn’t be moved for sometime. At this point everyone had to disembark (I have no idea where we were at this point) and we all had to wait for other trains that would get us where we needed to go. I was initially scheduled to make my last connection in Leeds, but instead had to travel to York and change there for my train to Malton. I eventually got there where Sophie (the super nice lady I’m staying with) picked me up from a somewhat sketchy train station. From there we went to her place where she had some Chinese food waiting for us! She has the cutest house and should definitely consider making it a B&B (she had nice towels and a plush bathrobe set out for me)! The next morning I was due to be picked up at 8am by one of her friends, but my alarm didn’t go off and I slept in until 8:10! Her friend and I didn’t have eachother’s contact info, so instead I hailed a cab and made it into work about 20 minutes late – great start, I know!  The next day, Jonny the vet was able to fix Sophie’s bike, so that I could take that to work everyday. Thankfully everyone there was super nice, so things went quite smoothly for the rest of the week!

My first week I met the vets – Jonny, Mandy, Moses, Oli, Zoltan, Bob, and Ieu. I also met the new interns, Matt and RVC ’11 Grad, Jon, and a vet student from Bristol, Sarah-Jane. Everyone made my first week fun and useful as I’ve gotten a little more experience in equine med: More handling, IM injections, IV injections, observing surgeries I’ve never seen before, setting up fluids and a whole lot of imaging! I’m hoping that next week I’ll get to do some IV catheters, among other things.

On the Wednesday I met Sophie and her cousin at her shop, the {Malton Relish}, and from there we went to a pub called the {New Malton Pub}. We shared a bottle of wine and I had the carrot and cumin soup with a side salad -- both were very tastey! I'm looking forward to the weekend, as I'm hoping to be able to check out Malton and all its charm!

The team at Rainbow Equine Hospital (source:
Malton Relish (the little red building on the corner)

The New Malton Pub

Sunday, 11 September 2011

From horses to more horses!

So my Equine Medicine rotation has now come to an end. It was tough at times – we lost 5 horses (3 in 1 day!), but it’s always nice to have those ones that make it home. There was one case in particular that had suspected foxglove poisoning; He would get better, then get worse, then get better, and get worse. He was there for pretty much the entire time we were. Thankfully, I’ve heard from some classmates that he has gone home this week! Yay! On one of our last afternoons we had some time, so we took one of the horses out for a walk and graze, and had a little photoshoot of our own. Erin wasn’t there unfortunately, as she had to travel into London to the Natural History Museum to drop off some plant/hay/reflux samples to be identified. Enjoy the photos below! Next stop: Old Malton, Yorkshire for some Equine EMS!

Lauren & I

Jamie, Lauren, and I

Jamie making one of her famous faces

And another....

Hard at work... obviously

Lauren as one of Jamie's participants for her research project

Thursday, 8 September 2011

Equine Medicine... and Botany?

As all of you know, I'm currently on my Equine Medicine rotation. It involves a 7-7ish day dealing with sick and sometimes (surprisingly) pushy horses, horsey people and other horse vets. This week I've been responsible for three horses -- One belonging to a famous person, one belonging to the school, and one very nervous gelding. Each of the horses were in for different things, which was a nice break from all of the colics we had to work up while we were on out of hours. The school has given us many opportunities to practice our practical skills, such as taking bloods, giving injections, ultrasounding, viewing endoscopies, peritoneal taps, and completing physical and neurological exams. We also got to hang out with some repro research people for a few hours this week, which gave us a nice review and some experience with uterine ultrasound. However, some days are not as interesting... for example, when we spent the afternoon traipsing around ginormous pastures looking for hepato-toxic plants that are not necessarily currently in season, using in season photos to aid identification. FUN TIMES *sarcasm*!

Anywho, I'm just 2 days and one case presentation away from starting my next block: Equine EMS!

The cows that live in the barn next to the stables

"Beauty" the teaching pony that had to stay in the hospital due to colic

The school's ostriches that live near the research stables

Jamie and Lauren -- vet student, teacher, med student AND botanist

Sunday, 4 September 2011

Done with Equine Out of Hours!

Meds/checks every 2-4 hours, walking and grazing and refluxing horses all throughout the wee hours of the morning when normal people are all asleep -- that's the life of an Equine Out of Hours Student. Thankfully, I've finally finished my week of it!! It's been a tough but fun week. We had the opportunity to work up quite a few colics and learn some new skills (ugh refluxing), along with eat tons of junk food, learn the dance to MJ's Thriller, and watch reruns of the {Inbetweeners}, all to help us stay awake! I would have loved to have posted photos of all the horses we worked with, but I'm unable to do so due to confidentiality reasons. Instead, I'll post some random photos taken during our more delirious moments, usually the early morning!

So next stop is Equine Medicine, which requires changing from my 6pm-8am shift to a 7am-6pm shift -- and in just 24 hours.. Ugh! Hopefully my body won't hate me too much for depriving it of sleep today. Wish me luck!

Watching the sunset over the barns

Jamie skipping in the barn -- obviously excited to be working nights

Jamie and I dressing up
Sunrise over the pasture