Like us on Facebook & Instagram
Questions? Comments?


Pastel Colors

Entry, Creative Corner
Alicia Bays, Virginia-Maryland Regional



African Conservation Experience

Entry, Experiences
Julia Kochan, Ross University

This certainly was an experience – a veterinary experience? Questionable. Although I went into this trip expecting “the unexpected,” knowing full well that you cannot create medical emergencies out of thin air, I did not expect the extreme excess of down-time that we experienced through ACE. Most of our time was spent doing game capture, which was fun for maybe the first 2 hours. Overall though, we probably spent a majority of our time running curtains across a “boma” – or in lay terms, a device created to “funnel” wild antelopes into a truck. Again, seeing the animals was fun and exciting, but that wore off after about 2 or 3 hours. The veterinarian that was in charge of our trip allegedly “dropped” us, and we were left in the hands of Boondocks, the animal capture and relocation company. Countless hours were spend napping in a lodge with no electricity, and no access to anything outside of the game reserve.  I think in lieu of our expected cancellation from the veterinarian that ACE could have stepped up to the plate and taken us around to do some sightseeing or visit some local parks – we are in Africa after all.
After spending over $5000 US, we did deserve some activity other than playing cards in a lodge.  However, I can’t completely bash this trip, because we did do a few veterinary-related procedures.  An injured lioness was treated, under the supervision of another veterinarian with a group of Ross students, which we soon became envious of.  There was another time we tagged along with that group of students to dart and move some sable and perform an arthrotomy on a Rhino. We did some individual translocation of some large antelope on our own, and we found some time to perform necropsies on two springbok.  So the whole trip wasn’t a complete waste, we did have a few isolated veterinary experiences. However, Boondocks treated us like children, did not allow us to casually drink or do anything social, and talked down to us as if we were “beneath them” and not there to participate in a work experience that we had paid for.  I would not recommend this company to Ross students looking for a veterinary experience. Wildlife Vets and another smaller veterinary group had much more veterinary experiences, were treated well, and left wanting to go back. Unfortunately, I left with no intention of returning to Africa, which was very disappointing.




'A Turd Treatise' by Pickles da Goat

Honorable Mention, Foot in Mouth Disease
David Kim, UC Davis

Deep in a forest, where life was simple and free
A young monk sat, meditating under a tree
To an audience of gathered birds and bunnies
He asked with a tranquil smile, why is poop so funny?
As life is ever changing,
So too does a doody’s shape.
There’s cow pies, pellets, and pudding
Footlong logs, leaving mouths agape!
Or what of its colors of various hues
Drink some Hypnotiq and watch it turn blue
Sterco stains brown, c-phyll creates green
Add crack in your diet to give it some sheen!
And let’s not forget its wondrous smells
Eat and digest; soon, a surprise scent will dispel
Over 31 flavors from rankly rancid to sickly sweet
Baskin Robbins? Pshaw, them feces have you beat
Praises we sing of this divine inspiration
O humorous gods, how great is your creation
And that is why, my dear animal brethren
That to talk of turd is to speak of heaven!




Long-term treatment of a canine intramedullary spinal cord hamartoma

Honorable Mention, Cases and Abstracts
Keiko Petrosky and Dominik Faissler, Tufts University

From the Department of Clinical Sciences, Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine, Tufts University, 200 Westboro Rd, North Grafton, MA, 01536

A nine month old castrated male Irish Setter presented for evaluation of intermittent paraparesis and hind end ataxia. A MRI showed a large inhomogeneous intramedullary T2*-W voiding lesion over T2-3 with an associated cystic component at T4. A Dorsal laminectomy and longitudinal myelotomy was performed at T2-4. A large, dark intramedullary mass was removed.  Histological analysis showed hemorrhage and a non-encapsulated, disorganized proliferation of vascular walls intermixed with fibrous tissue effacing the normal spinal cord architecture.  The diagnosis of a hamartoma was further supported by positive immunostaining with anti-factor VIII and anti-actin antibodies. Two months post-surgery the dog was ambulatory with mild hypermetric ataxia.  Eleven months after the myelotomy the patient presented for repeat imaging after the owner reported increased paraparesis and ataxia. At the mid-body of T3, the intramedullary lesion was noted more prominently than previously with an increased diameter of the T2*-W voiding lesion. The dog underwent definitive radiation therapy (3Gy/fraction, 15 treatments, total dose of 45 Gy). Additional recheck MRI studies at 16 and 25 months post-surgery showed an unchanged situation.  The patient continued to be neurologically stable, with mild paraparesis, ataxia and moderately clonic patellar reflex in the left hind leg.


And that's why we wear scrubs...

Honorable Mention, Foot in Mouth Disease
Rebecca Donnelly, Cornell University

A few summers before entering veterinary school, I was an intern at a small animal hospital in a suburb of Buffalo, NY. I eagerly absorbed as much information as I could from my mentor, and I jumped at any opportunity to perform even the most basic procedures. Of course, to a practicing veterinarian, an anal gland expression is less-than-enthralling. But to a student gunning for vet school, it's arguably more exciting than Christmas morning. The day finally arrived when the hospital's receptionist brought her dog in for a check up--the perfect victim for a practicing student. As the dog approached, my mentor prepared me with step-by-step procedure instructions. I listened intently with my heart pounding our of my chest for my first supervised procedure ever. Once the dog was on the table, the vet stood beside me as I began the procedure. With gloved, lubed hands and my gauze shield handy, I found "8 o'clock" and tried to squeeze. Clogged. I worked at it a little, and then, it happened.  My worst nightmare came true. The secretion shot directly to my side, past my "shield," and coated the front of my mentor--from neck to pants. Her jaw dropped and she stood, stunned, for several moments. Who can blame her since I just nearly missed her face with the infamous "butt juice." But, of course, she was understanding and just changed into a new set of scrubs. Life as a veterinarian, I'm sure, is often full of these stinky surprises. I couldn't look her in the eye for a straight week and did my best to avoid her in a one-vet practice (a tough feat, I might add). Eventually, life went on. But when it came time to ask for a recommendation for vet school, I did hint that she might leave out that one small detail!