June 12, 2007

Worldwide Veterinary Service Trip, Day 1

Yesterday two fantastic volunteers arrived. Liz and Annie are two competent and witty Veterinarians from Australia, both living in the UK. Soon Liz is moving to Ithaca, NY where she will be doing a two year residency at Cornell University in Wildlife Pathology. They arrived with a donation that our clinic really needed . . . a refractometer, which can be used for body fluid analysis. I spent entirely too much time talking, no doubt starved for English conversation with females! We retired pretty early following a delicious vegetarian dinner!Dr. Annie Cook of AustraliaDr. Liz Dobson of Australia
Notes from Vet. Annie: “I am very impressed with the skill levels of the Veterinary Technicians. Esther is also great and very competent. We’re eating better here than we do at home, and I can’t believe the facilities, and it’s a lot more advanced than anticipated. It’s a great set-up.”
I responded to Annie that we owed a debt of gratitude to another Australian Veterinarian, Beth McGinnesken, who spent 6 months here last year organizing our animal birth control campaign, teaching proper sterilization techniques, and telling me what I needed for a well-stocked clinic!
Today we are conducting a veterinary clinic here at our jungle facility. People started arriving at 9:30 AM. There is a huge crowd of people and 12 animals awaiting treatment. Two dogs are currently under “the knife.” Annie and Liz have both neutered one male dog each, and right now Esther is spaying a female dog. I am thrilled that Annie and Liz were duly impressed with the abilities of two of our full-time VeterinaryAssistants. Ricardo and Behtjane (Betty Jane) have not received any formal training. They are experts at prepping animals for surgery and assisting in every way. They also know how to prepare the clinic and sterilize everything and set up sterilization stations for the vets.
Right now Annie and Liz are discussing treatment for heartworms. Esther’s English lessons seem to have paid off, and I am glad for her ability to practice English.

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