Saturday, April 14, 2007

Badgers, badgers, badgers, badgers.......

Yes, I have been terribly lax in updating the capers. No good excuse, really....

Anyway, I have just finished my first week at Badger Veterinary Hospital in Janesville, Wisconsin. It is a mixed small/large/exotic animal practice with 5 veterinarians. Two do strictly large animal work (which consists of 90%+ equine) while the other 3 stay on the small animal side of things. One of the small animal vets also does essentially all of their exotics work.
This practice is amazing! The picture above is the stained glass window in their reception area, showing the variety of animals they treat on an almost daily basis. The facility itself is very new and, as you can see from the clinic tour, beautiful and well-designed. The vets are all fantastic and great teachers, all clearly excited about what they do. The tech and support staff are very well-trained, knowledgeable and compassionate. I am staying in an apartment in the clinic, so I'm in the heart of the action! I'm very impressed with everything here, and learning new things everyday. I've gotten to work on all of my basic skills as well, from drawing blood to reading radiographs to neutering cats (which is a very fast and fun surgery to do!).

The majority of the cases I've seen are the typical wellness exams and vaccinations that are the typical fare at any veterinary hospital. Sprinkled amongst those are the anorectic cats, sick budgies, limping springers and the other, more complicated cases that most vets see on a daily basis. And there have been a few odd-ball things as well, most notably a greyhound with a spontaneous pneumothorax that has been receiving daily treatment in the form of chest taps for the last couple of days. It was recommended that he be transferred to another hospital where a chest tube with continuous suction could be placed, but the owners elected to go with the more conservative treatment.
One of my other favorite cases from the last week is this German Shepherd mix pictured to the right. She presented for anorexia and, after physical exam and bloodwork, she was found to be in kidney failure. She spent 2 days at the hospital on fluids and went home today, eating and with all of her blood values essentially normal! The question will remain as to how long that will last, but she will hopefully be able to be maintained in a state of comparative health and comfort for some time to come.
So, that -- in a nutshell -- is my first week at Badger! I'll hopefully be able to go out on some horse calls next week and see more of that side of the practice.

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