I am back in Ames, after a month of visiting family in California and completing my preceptorship at the ASPCA Humane Alliance in Asheville, NC. It was an amazing experience, and I was able to complete 15 spays and neuters during my time with the ASPCA. This was more surgeries than I could have ever imagine doing in my lifetime. I have definitely walked out of the ASPCA feeling more confident in my surgical abilities (and less scared of performing surgeries in general), and I can’t wait to apply what I learned through another spay/neuter opportunity coming up in the next couple of months.
My first rotation back in Ames was orthopedic surgery. It was a very busy and fast-paced environment, but I can definitely say I have learned so much about localizing spinal pain, diagnosing cruciate ligament ruptures and hip dysplasia, as well as all sorts of fractures. Not only did I learn about these forms of orthopedic disease, but I also learned so much about patient care and the medications utilized post-surgery. This was a very important learning opportunity for me, as I was able to write up discharge instructions for clients and teach them how to care for their furry family friend post-surgery.
My days in orthopedic surgery were met by clients who genuinely care for their pet, and were eager to learn how to continue caring for their pet. What made my day the most was when a client would let me know how much they appreciate all of the care we do for their pet. That to me is priceless. One of the coolest surgeries I was able to see and partake in was arthroscopy/arthrotomy of an OCD lesion of the tarsus on a mixed breed dog, as well as repairing a ruptured calcanean tendon on a friendly lab retriever with an external fixator.
Now that I have completed my orthopedic surgery rotation, I have gone from having 5 hours of sleep and one and a half meals a day to almost 7 hours of sleep and three meals per day on my radiology rotation. Radiology is a very nice change of pace, and I’ve been enjoying working with my awesome rotation mates in taking radiographs of all sorts of patients, big and small. We even witnessed a radiograph being taken on a tegu and on a chicken! How cool is that?! We also were also able to see a CT being done on a horse with an orbital fracture. That was such an amazing sight to see!
I am half way into my radiology rotation, and I am looking forward to my next rotation, which is public health. I hear we get to take a field trip to the exotic animal auction in Minnesota. Stay tuned for this exciting adventure! Until then, I suppose it’s time to get back to studying for the NAVLE.
Until next time,
“Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time”- Thomas A. Edison