The Externship Project Blog

Taking the externship bull by the horns

Posted November 1, 2019

The veterinary externship is a pivotal moment in the OVC experience. In Phase 1, it’s a distant concept and seems like an imaginary future in the whirl of first year anatomy. By final exams in Phase 3, it really is a light at the end of a long tunnel. This externship marks the moment when vet students truly start to become and act as their own doctors (under supervision), which presents exciting experiences and unique challenges. The eight...

Wise words from the animal kingdom

Posted October 28, 2019

Sadly, we are down to the very last blog of my externship and what an experience it was!!! I loved every single day at the Gray County Veterinary Clinic, I couldn’t have landed at a better clinic. Quite honestly, I ended up at this clinic on a whim – I knew I wanted to complete my externship outside of Ontario but other than that, I was relatively open to where I ended up.

I had talked to a few upper years as to how I should go about finding a clinic but other than that, I was...

Training for the Veterinary Olympics

Posted October 21, 2019

As I’ve said before, I grew to love surgery throughout my externship. Surgery was something that I never thought I’d have such a strong interest in throughout vet school. It always looked so stressful and meticulous with little room for error. My clinic was really generous in giving me many surgeries to tackle, supervised and...

Vet Tank

Posted October 7, 2019

On this week’s blog post, I want to cover a topic that perhaps isn’t talked about as much as it should be: the business aspect of a veterinary clinic. I’m guilty of getting so wrapped up in the medicine component of a clinic that I forget being a veterinarian, in particular a practice owner, involves a great deal of business management. Running a clinic entails practicing good veterinary medicine but also, thinking about revenue, training and managing staff, keeping...

My first solo case, Ivy the Dragon

Posted September 27, 2019

When I saw an appointment for a rarer pet coming up on the schedule, I asked one of our veterinarians if I could join in on the case, as it’s not every day I could work with a bearded dragon. To my surprise, I was told that this was going to be my first solo case of the externship! In that moment, I realized that I couldn’t remember anything about reptile medicine and started to internally panic. Ivy the dragon was scheduled for later that afternoon with...

A day without surgery is a day without sunshine

Posted September 18, 2019

I’m about six weeks into my externship and at this point, I feel like I’m a character in Grey’s Anatomy. From emergencies to complicated surgeries, it seems as if I’ve seen and dealt with just about everything imaginable. With that being said, the highlight of my time here has definitely been the surgeries, whether it’s a neuter or an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) repair, I’m always pumped to scrub in and get my hands dirty. If I had to do a rough tally, I’ve led about...

The essentials of essential oils

Posted September 12, 2019

I can’t believe how many interesting cases I’m being exposed to every day during my externship and! I’m learning a lot every day, and each case and patient I see allows me to learn more about what condition or symptoms they presented to the clinic with. One case in particular that I wanted to explore and learn more about was a potential essential oil ingestion toxicity in a four-month-old (and also very cute...

YOVO (You Only Vet Once)

Posted September 5, 2019

At this point, I’ve mentioned tirelessly that I’m a city girl, which means that I didn’t grow up seeing or handling large animals and food animals – this includes cows, horses, sheep, goat, pigs and chickens. Aside from a sprinkle of goat, chicken and horse experience, my first time truly working with any of these animals was when I set foot at OVC. It’s safe to say, I didn’t feel comfortable being around any of these species let alone being able to know how to treat them. However, as time went on and we worked with large animals at OVC, I slowly started to trust myself with handling cows, horses and sheep. By the end of Phase III (third year), I was comfortable with dairy cows and horses and...

Living the Dr Pimple Popper dream! Sort of…

Posted August 16, 2019

In my first weeks of my externship I was presented with Lily, a sweet 13-year young golden retriever owned by one of the new technicians at our clinic. Lily had a history of scratching her left ear repetitively which resulted in a big bulge on her ear known as an aural hematoma (aural = ear; hematoma = swelling of clotted blood within tissue). Luckily for me, this is a relatively simple surgery that is perfect for a vet student to tackle. Plus, who can resist the opportunity to cut into a fluid filled pouch and squeeze out whatever...

Pyometras explained

Posted August 16, 2019

Aside from the frequent spays and neuters I’ve seen at the clinic, another common surgery I’ve seen performed has been a pyometra surgery. There usually aren’t this many pyometras presented to the clinic, but there has coincidently been an increased number of them while I’ve been on my externship!

Pyometra is a common illness in adult intact (non-spayed) female dogs and cats, where the...