Saturday, June 30, 2018

Last ever Final exam!

Yesterday I had my last ever final exam which I guess means I'm now officially in Final year!

We 'only' have State exams left which are ~30min oral exams with a panel of 5 or 6 examiners.
I have one next Friday on Food Hygiene and Technology (which is as exciting as it sounds) and then from September we start rotation blocks. We'll have two solid weeks of lectures and then spendin 6 weeks in each clinic (Horses, Ruminants, Pigs, Smalls) with a State exam at the end of each block.

Unluckily for me (W surname ) I have the biggest and hardest exam (Small Animals) last so while everyone else will be enjoying summer I'll be stuck inside studying!

Friday, June 8, 2018

Contagious Diseases State

We’ve just had our State in Contagious Diseases and our group smashed it, we all passed and nearly everyone got an A.

I tried to study really hard for two weeks but the 30oC sunshine was a killer so most of the effective studying was done over the last four days.
I was a mess before the exam and being last in the alphabet meant I went in last but I picked a good question and the panel were really nice.
State exams for those that don’t know are the six final exams we have to do to pass vet school. We have two this summer and four next year which are split into species; Horses, Ruminants, Pigs and Small Animals.

One down, five States to go until we’re vets 🐶

Sunday, May 6, 2018

Veterinary Endoscopy Weekend

This weekend we were lucky enough to be visited by this years BSAVA President Philip Lhermette come out to Kosice to speak about minimally invasive (keyhole) surgery and endoscopy.
Philip has practiced endoscopy since 1995 so perfected lots of techniques for diagnostics and surgery and lectures at Nottingham Vet School as well as all over the world!

Burtons Veterinary Equipment drove over from the UK with the latest fixed and rigid endoscopes for us to try out with some awesome gastrointestinal models which have pathology we had to find and foreign bodies to remove.

There was also a station with rigid endoscopes for laparoscopy training with different tasks to complete like stacking sugar cubes, peeling oranges, removing stones from a kidney (red pepper) and balloons filled with water to simulate hydropericardium.

Céline the wonder pup came along for the practical sessions and loved laparoscopy...

The lectures were great and loads of us are now itching to find practices who do laparoscopic surgeries to do EMS at and learn more about the procedures. I'm sure that during my career we'll see more and more laparoscopic surgery with the medical advantages (less hemorrhage and pain, faster recovery) and clients requesting it.
I've said it time and time again but the technology available to vets for surgery is amazing - I loved the EndoGrab for fixing ovaries to the abdominal wall before zapping off the ovarian ligament, artery and vein with a LigaSure tissue and vessel sealer.

Many thanks to Philip Lhermette and Burton's for giving up your weekends and coming out to speak to us - a great time was had by all!

Monday, April 30, 2018

Dobšiná Horse Breeding

We went on a trip to Dobšiná to a horse breeding farm where they produce Noriker draught horses which are used for working in the forests.
They’re big chunky horses with lots of muscle and a good temperament so ideal for their work.

The foals are kept with mares for three years before being broken at four years old for basic training.

They had wooden stocks set up into which they brought the mares for transrectal ultrasound for early pregnancy diagnosis.

We were able to determine the gestational age by measuring the fetus length and how the heart was beating.

Sunday, April 29, 2018

Vaccination Day

Céline has been to the vets for her second DHPPi vaccination and wormer

She's had a little bit of a gunky eye for a few days which I was cleaning with eye cleaner from the pet shop which wasn't working so we have antibiotic and steroid eye drops to give five times a day to clear it up.
It seems a little excessive to give five times a day but best to get on top of it early and she's been really good about putting them in

Friday, April 20, 2018

Céline the Foster Pup

A friend has been fostering a dog with the hopes of adopting her when she graduates this summer but the job she has taken has long days so not ideal for having a dog! She is moving apartments this weekend and asked me to take her on as a foster.

She came over and was super nervous as she's only lived with girls before so it took a lot of treats to make friends but she settled in the evening.

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Dobre Pivo

When I left before Easter a few weeks ago it was snowing and suddenly Spring has arrived and it's 28oC!

We've had a few credit tests this week and everyone's been stuck inside studying so we spent the afternoon on Hlavna drinking with friends and getting a tan...

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Back on the farm

Happy to be back at the school farm with this lot...

We've been to the school farm so many times now that we know the drill and work really well together. We started off with clinical examination of calves doing TPR, taking swabs of nasal discharge or diarrhea if required, then going along and giving Triavit vitamin injections.
We spotted one calf which had an umbilical hernia so we flushed that with Betadine to disinfect it and it will be coming back to the university Ruminants clinic for surgery.

Another calf had a poo-ball (like chickens get on their feet) which had dried and stuck to it's tail so we soaked that in warm water to try and soak it off, took a while but the boys eventually got it off and left a bit of a sore so we cleaned that up too.

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Grey Squirrel orphans

A member of the public brought these babies into the clinic last week, we said they need to be taken back to their parents which they refused to do, so one of the nurses took them on.

They are grey squirrels which are technically vermin and should have been euthanised but the nurse is in contact with a wildlife rescue who have a licence to rehab and release them.

They’re über cute and need bottle feeding around the clock but they have already grown so much in the week that I’ve seen them!

Monday, April 9, 2018

BSAVA Manual of Avian Practice A Foundation Manual

I’m clucking eggcited to have finally got my hands on the new BSAVA Manual of Avian Practice
I've been waiting a while for this book which was written by John Chitty who came over to speak at our Exotics and Wildlife Weekend last year and finally got my hands on a copy at BSAVA Congress.

Pictured with my Burchell's Zebra skull 'cos why not aha

Sunday, April 8, 2018

BSAVA Congress 2018

April is finally here which means one thing, BSAVA Congress!
The way Easter fell this year worked out really well as I could come home for Easter, see practice and then stay home for Congress which is held in Birmingham.
There were about 15 students from UVM Košice who flew over and I had four friends staying at my house as my parents booked a holiday so we had a free house.

Congress is awesome as there are about 500 sessions (lectures and practicals) spread over 59 streams arranged by subject so truly something for everyone. The ones we found particularly interesting and useful were the Student Stream which covered the transition from classroom to clinic, giving advice on client communication, your first bitch spay and case discussions. It meant we could also socialise with other vet students, not that people did much of that, but I caught up with friends from my undergrad degree and others who I've done EMS with which was nice.

There was a big focus on Brachycephalic breeds (Pugs, Boxers, Cavalier King Charles Spaniels) and their associated problems this year; from illegally imported puppies from Europe and Ireland to ocular problems which was really interesting. Vets are working really hard with the media to stop using poor examples in advertising, focussing on healthy dogs and breeding towards individuals with longer noses and faces which can breathe. #BreedToBreathe

It sounds silly but as we study abroad our lecturers are amazing at what they do and their English is great but when you listen to native speakers they crack jokes and keep your focus so much better. My favourite speaker this year was Yolanda Martinez Pereira a Spanish vet working in Edinburgh who has the most awesome accent and had the whole room laughing.

We also attended PetSavers practical workshops on suture practice, placing of surgical wounds and nasogastric tubes.
There is a social event at the end of each day where we caught up with many Košice graduates and definitely had our fair share of the 15,000 complementary drinks served over the weekend! The best one is Thursday evening as we're International delegates we're invited to the Sea Life Centre for drinks and canapes.
Congress is awesome value for money at £94 for students which includes entry to the exhibition, all lecture streams and lunch each day. It is a great chance to speak to recruiters and graduate schemes to learn about career prospects, both in the UK and further afield. We spoke to several companies and hope to bring some out to Košice for talks and workshops which will help raise the international profile of our university.
We were a bit disappointed with the freebies in the exhibition compared to last year, mainly just got pens, but we got some great water bottles and reusable coffee cups. There was a big push to reduce plastic and we didn't take as many leaflets etc which we'll never read - all the drinks served in the exhibition were compostable 'plastic'!

It's surprising how many people you notice walking around, be it from local practices or social media - it's a bizarre concept introducing yourself to people you've spoken to quite a bit on Twitter and Facebook but everyone was really nice. We also saw loads of Kosice graduates who are all loving their jobs so that's a confidence boost.

I popped to see WVS who I went to India with last year and after I hosted a World Spay Day bake sale at vet school raising €222 they surprised me with a certificate...
Overall we had a great week and I can't wait for next year.
Thank you to all the BSAVA staff and volunteers who work hard all year to make Congress what it is.

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

World Spay Day for Worldwide Veterinary Service

World Spay Day is held on the last Tuesday in February every year and this year I decided to hold a fundraiser to mark the occasion.

Last semester I became the first international WVS Student Rep and thought the day would be ideal for fundraising and raising awareness of the work the Worldwide Veterinary Service do and about their Surgical Training Courses for Vet Students and Graduates.

Thank you so much to everyone who donated and baked for the event...

...they all looked amazing!

We ended up raising €220 for WVS which is amazing and I'm sure will go a long way to supporting the work they do all over the world.

Monday, February 19, 2018

Equine Endoscopy - Lower Respiratory Tract

This semester we started Diseases of Horses which we will continue next year, ending in a State Exam.

This morning we had a lecture on Lower Respiratory Tract diseases then went into the stables to auscultate the cardiovascular systems of various horses, both school and patients, to listen for arrthymias and other pathologies.

We then went into surgery to perform an endoscopy on the lower respiratory tract.
We sedated the horse with xylazine, applied local anaesthetic get to numb the nose and reduce irritation for the horse and passed a flexible fibreoptic endoscope up her nasal passage. It takes three people to do the procedure; one to hold the hose, another to hold the scope at the nostril and another to control the endoscope.
We were able to view the nasal passages and larynx down the trachea to the carina (which is the bifurcation into the bronchi). The carina should be sharp but in this case it was blunt or the angle was thickened due to mucosal oedema and inflammation which indicated a chronic lower airway disease. We entered the bronchi but it induced heavy coughing which made it difficult to visualise.
Afterwards we examined the guttural pouches to look for mycosis or mucopurulent discharge, which in this patient were clear - if they weren't we can flush them and do culture and sensitivity testing.

In the guttural pouches we were able to visualise the cranial nerves VII to XII, salivary glands and carotid arteries which it quite scary considering a mistake with the scope could cause severe bleeding or facial paralysis!

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Back at the PDSA

I've been back at the PDSA Seeing Practice before I head back to Uni and been having a great time. I've been going there for a couple of years now and love all the staff, they all have loads of experience which they are happy to share and are generally a nice bunch!

We seem to have loads of ex laps (exploratory laparotomy) this week. Dogs with suspected foreign bodies are admitted on fluids, X-rays done and then taken to theatre if required. I scrub in to be a human-bowel-clamp, closing off either side of the object as the surgeon cuts into the intestines. Then I get to practice my suturing and close the abdomen; I've not done much suturing since India so it took me a while to get my speed up! One of the vets commented on what an improvement she's seen in me over the last year which was really nice.

I also assisted in two fracture repairs at the start of the week, with the same vet I've done a few with before. I know the drill by how (no pun intended) so I can place a plate, drill, tap and screw it in, and actually be useful to the vet and ready with the next instruments we'll need.
All looked good in post-op xrays and a few days later at their check ups!

Later in the week they were a vet down due to illness so they had me doing consults and Pet MOT's. I call clients in to the consult room to do a clinical exam, take a history and any tests I think need performing like a minimum database bloods and urinalysis.
We had quite a few diabetic patients so I would check they are stable at home, take weight and a blood glucose before bringing in a vet to answer any questions and prescribe medications.

I took blood from a cat which looked like water, spun it to get a PCV and this was the result...

If you're not used to seeing these it's blood in a hematocrit tube which has been spun in the centrifuge, we measure the Packed Red Cells at the bottom (Plasma is at the top) which should be 30-45% ...this cat's PCV was 6% indicating severe anemia.

Finally on Friday we had a group of school children in who learn about the work vets and the charity do, then they learn how to gown and glove up. They come for a tour afterwards so while I was doing a lump removal I had an audience of children and wasn't sure if they were amazed or grossed out by all the blood!

You could almost set your watch by the 5 o'clock Pyo...
One of my consults finished her season two weeks ago, had a thick green discharge from her vulva and a temperature. I took her out the back to scan and we could see the Pyometra.
A vet came in to confirm, we put the dog on IV fluids and 30 minutes later she was on the surgery table having her infected uterus removed before we all went home for the weekend!

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Home for Christmas

For Christmas I got gig tickets, loads of socks (think Happy Socks with animals etc) and a Burchell’s Zebra skull...

Now I don’t know many people who had a zebra skull on their Christmas list but it’s exactly what I wanted and very #vetstudent.

I decorated my room over the summer and have started a gallery wall so he sits in the corner of my desk to complete that

Sunday, December 17, 2017

Cologne Christmas Markets

A few months ago WizzAir started flying from Košice to Cologne for €9.99 each way. A few of us from uni booked to go for my birthday weekend and friends from home booked flights to meet us there.

We did the usual touristy stuff and visited all of the Christmas markets. They're all so busy and overpriced that you just find yourself shuffling round the whole thing in a crowd of people and don't actually buy anything, except copious amounts of mulled wine and cheese.

I went to Cologne years ago with school so wasn't aware of it at the time but they have a system where you go into a bar and they bring you a little 200ml beer. As you finish them they bring more and the waiter adds a tally to your bar mat so you know how many to pay for when you leave.
It's a neat concept and means you always have a fresh cold beer!

Friday, October 20, 2017

Eagle Hunting in Brno

Last year at Diakovce we met a group of Dutch falconers who we got on really well with and stayed in touch. They invited me and Leah to stay on after Opočno to join them for three days at a private hunt in Brno with their four Golden Eagles and a female Goshawk.
There was a bit of a hiccup leaving Opocno as the girls locked the key in their room and we had to leave at 5am for them to catch a train back to Kosice so I drove them the three hours to Brno while Leah stayed behind to get their luggage out of the room. We got everything sorted, found our hotel and perched the birds out in the gardens.

We were hunting on land around Brno airport and I've never seen so many hare in my life, the game was fantastic. Leah was flying a male Golden Eagle given to her by Bart, one of the Dutch guys.

They had a lot of slips on game as she got to grips with flying him and that evening they did some lure work by dragging a deer skin behind the truck - amazing to see!
On the second day together she caught a hare with him and once he was blooded (caught something) she was able to give him a name; Maximus.

Wes has been trying to catch Hare with his female Goshawk Elsa for two years but not had the opportunity. As there were so many hare in Brno and having flown hard for the past few weeks Elsa was at the perfect weight and fitness and had an amazing flight.
It's not a typical Gos flight so she obviously learnt how to catch it and it all paid off - Wes was delighted!

I really had the best time getting to know the guys and spending eight days with them I learnt so much about eagle falconry. The falconers so in touch with nature, know so much about the land and respect the quarry we're looking for. We saw loads of Roe Bucks (males) but didn't fly on those as they're out of season.

I was happy as they know I collect animal skulls so we found a complete Roe Deer female so I took her skull and cervical vertebrae. We also found a dead Buzzard underneath some electricity pylons which I've put in the freezer to process at a later date.
Four years ago I'd never seen an Eagle up close outside a zoo and now I've just spent eight days hunting with some of the finest eagle falconers in the world, helping make and fit equipment and handling the birds on a daily basis. I know it's cliché but I wouldn't change my life for the world.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

50th Opočno Falconry Meet

This week I travelled to Opočno in the Czech Republic with four friends for the 50th International Falconry Meet. We drove the seven hours from Košice on Wednesday afternoon, ready for registration and the first day of hunting on the Thursday.

The opening ceremony was held in the castle and amazing to see how many falconers and birds there were in attendance with 67 Golden Eagles and a whole lot more Falcons and Hawks on top of that.

It was great to catch up with friends we've made at previous falconry meets and to make new contacts.

We spent two days with the Golden Eagles and one day out with the hawks; Goshawks and Harris' Hawks.

Bart, a Dutch falconers and friend of ours, brought his new male eagle for the meet and on their first day out hunting together they caught a Roe Deer.
It was an awesome flight as the eagle locked onto the backend of the doe and she ran around a tree trying to get him off. He had several flights leading up to it but to hold on gives them confidence which is great for training young birds.

At the end of each day we had a ceremony to pay tribute to the game, a tradition which is still carried out with horns playing, a small fire and pine branches put into the mouths of the game.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Published in the Veterinary Times

A vet friend posted on my Facebook this week that my comments had been published in the Vet Times!

The article was about more possible vet schools opening in Keele and Harper Adams in the UK.
I commented on Twitter and the comments were published in the Vet Times...

People were commenting on the article saying there are already too many graduates. My point was that practices should value their graduates with salaries, benefits and support to keep them engaged and support specialist. So many vet graduates leave the profession within the first five years and there must be a reason for that...

If you can't read the comments it says;
"There are thousands of British students studying abroad who get no support - any incentive for them to work in the UK?
I know lots of British new graduates who have gone straight to Norway and Sweden for work-life balance and salaries double those offered in UK."

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

First Day of 5th Year

...started with this pair of cuties
Diseases of Small Animals is a subject I've been looking forward to because I'm pretty confident in my practical skills, surgery, taking a history and clinical examination when doing consults but as I've not studied internal medicine I'll pass the information on to a vet who will suggest a diagnosis and treatment with owners.

A lot of it comes with case memory in that you see similar presentations and recall the treatment but I'm looking forward to understanding the various diseases to form a list of differential diagnoses and possible treatments.