What does a week as an Externship student look like?

Externship Project

So you want to have an idea of what a week as an externship student could look like?

Among the many things that I love about my externship at Troy is variety! 

This week started with a house call to Strathyre Old Scottish Collies (www.strathyre.ca) for physical exams and microchips for 9 puppies. Not hard to imagine that spending a couple of hours with cute puppies can be a good start of the week. It was also a great opportunity to learn about Scottish Collies, if you have never heard about this breed you Ale blog with Scottish Colliesare not alone, it was a new breed for me too! According to the Scottish Collie Preservation Society, the origin of this breed dates back to 4000 BC when Celts that inhabited the Scottish Highlands used them as herding dogs. This breed is extremely loyal and great companions. The puppies were very well behaved and adorable.

Ale blog with fawnThe following day started with surgeries: a cat neuter and a dog cruciate ligament repair. In the afternoon horse calls, but of course not before an emergency (still my favourite field!), a horse sustained an injury after being kicked. After the initial assessment and radiographs it was determined that the injury was restricted to soft tissue only. Wound management was discussed with the owner and off we went onto other horse calls. As the day was coming to an end, the phone rang, I can’t tell you how excited I got every time I heard the phone ring around closing time...it usually meant an EMERGENCY! This time it was not a dog, a cat, or a horse...it was a fawn. When we found out about the emergency, Rayna and I got pretty excited, not every day you can help Bambi. A client brought him to the clinic because they noticed he was only using three legs when he was following their horses on their property. We were able to help him and he was transported the following day to a wildlife rehabilitation center. He had a broken radius and was very dehydrated, so he received some pain medication, fluids, and his fracture was stabilized. That night he ate very little, but the following morning he was very happy to be fed and of course I was happier to have the opportunity to feed him, I do miss working with wildlife!

Ale blog with snapping turtleWednesday morning was turtle rescue mission!!! A snapping turtle was laying eggs near the clinic; the problem was she decided that a good nesting site would be by the side of a very busy highway...I guess she likes to live on the edge! Dr. Paula surprised me one more time; turns out she is a “snapping turtle whisperer”. As we discussed the plan to help this turtle, along with a very interesting conversation on snapping turtles, we created a little barricade so that once she finished laying eggs she’d go back to safety instead of heading to the highway. Then we found another turtle nest that had received some visitors earlier, racoons!! Luckily there were many eggs left untouched. This time it was Sherri’s mission to keep the eggs safe. So the area where the eggs were found got raccoon proofed!! The day went on with dogs, horses and a mini donkey!

Thursday was small animal day!! Surgeries in the morning, and multiple dog and cat appointments throughout the day.

Ale blog with horsesThe week finished with a full day of horses and a very well behaved pig! On the horse calls we had annual vaccines, reproductive ultrasounds and dentals. I was able to do a power float on a very cute mare that day, which can be a little bit of an arm workout. Then the time came for the pig. We were getting ready for a little bit of drama from Mr. pig while his hoof got trimmed; turns out his owner had trained him to lay down as she brushed him. He lay down and Dr. Stephanie was able to trim his hoof without any problems. He was adorable!!

It was another busy week, many learning opportunities, great mentorship and a reminder of how much I love this profession. Coming back to my family at the end of the day was always amazing to be able to share with them my experiences; after all I wouldn’t be here without their love and support.