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[personal profile] estelraca
Since I end up posting about work anyway, going to try doing it a "Best and Worst Cases of the Day" type thing.  Then you guys can see the good as well as the bad that comes with the profession, and not just when Estel has a breakdown (though so far we're three for three nights, woohoo).

Best cases:

C-section!  I absolutely love c-sections, provided things go well.  They're a (relatively) routine surgery.  The mother dogs are intentionally anesthetized so they come up fast, which can make it a bit of a hectic surgery anesthetically but means the lag time from being done with surgery to them going home is minimal.  It involves pretty much the whole clinic--there's one vet scrubbed in doing the surgery, ideally one working with the pups in case anyone needs dopram/epinephrine, and then ideally as many hands as there are pups so that all the pups are woken up and rubbed down as fast as possible.  It's chaotic, crazy, and at the end of it you have an incubator full of squeaking puppies.  This one we had four squeaky bulldog puppies.  Bulldogs are one of the most common breeds to need a c-section, since we bred them to have big heads and squat bodies with hips that are too narrow for the big-headed puppies to pass.  Without vets and c-sections, there would probably not be a bulldog breed.  (Warning for anyone out there thinking of buying a bulldog or especially of breeding one--there's a reason they are so expensive.  They are unnatural.  Cute, but unnatural.)

We aren't allowed to take pictures of client's animals, but here's a reference pic of newborn bullies squeaking in an incubator:

They are really cute and make these high-pitched little squeaky sounds.  Our four were a totally brown one, a white one, a brown and white similar to the ones above, and a white one with a few brown splotches.  It was awesome.

Runner-up for best case goes to my recheck on my dog fight surgery.  The dog was a rescue dog who got into a tiff with her canine sister--she tried to take her sister's eye out, her sister tried to gnaw her leg off.  I fixed up both of them.  The sister's already adopted, and now that this one doesn't have a big yellow drain tube in her leg anymore she's probably getting adopted tomorrow.  They're super sweet dogs with people, they just don't like other dogs, so they should make some nice pets for appropriate families.
Worst cases:

The worst one is actually a surgery I did Friday.  It was an ear hematoma--blood builds up between the three layers of the ear following trauma or infection.  Given that the dog had an infection when it came in (and had one in Jan. 2013 that was left untreated), I'm betting on infection in this case.  The surgery went fine, the dog woke up great Friday night, ate for us Saturday morning, so I sent her home Saturday afternoon.  She died Sunday morning at home from a GDV with splenic torsion (a twisted gut).  There's no real consensus as to what causes a twisted gut, but the owner's dead certain it was anesthesia and it was just unpleasant, especially for something that wasn't supposed to be complicated.

Other bad case is a 10 month old kitten with a broken acetabulum (the area of the pelvis where the leg bone meets up with the pelvis) and a severe necrotic abcess (area of infected and rotting skin) on one front leg.  She was hit by a car a month ago, the owners took her to a different vet who gave her an antibiotic, she seemed to be improving, but then went downhill again.  The owner doesn't have much money.  I'm 90% sure the kitten has FeLV or FIV (basically kitty AIDS viruses that are picked up via the mother, fighting, or grooming) due to the severity of the infection--a young cat should have gotten better after antibiotics, not have this huge nasty open wound still.  The owner wouldn't let me test because she doesn't want to know, since there's no treatment for either virus, just euthanasia when they get a life-threatening illness that we can't fix.  I'm pretty sure kitten is going to die, but I did what I could for it, and if it manages to survive and get into better shape in a few days I'll do what I can to fix up the leg (it's too infected to do surgery right now, and the kitten is in too rough a shape even if the owner had the money right away).

So that's the highlights of a day in the life of the Estel vet, provided nothing too traumatic happens in the next hour.

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