Monthly Archives: August 2011

Whirlwind Week!

Gah! Okay, so I was mostly good about posting every day (even though I’m sure some of you noticed the posts were actually usually published a couple of days later…) except for the end, because things got very busy! Monday and Tuesday were really great, I got in some great unique experiences and had some really nice goodbyes. Everyone is hoping to see me again in two years, for residency. We’ll see! The director of the residency program had some really nice things to say when I was leaving, and told me to make sure I stay in touch. So those are good signs, and that residency program is toward the top of my list, so yay!

On Tuesday night, my wonderful husband started my birthday early by bringing me a delicious banana fudge pie from a place known in Los Angeles for their pies (Four N’ 20). It was seriously amazing! Then we got up early Wednesday for a 2 hours drive to my birthday surprise. Which was a two night stay at Big Bear Lake!! It’s a gorgeous lakeside resort town way up in the mountains, and I couldn’t have been happier :) It was absolutely perfect! We got there early in the day, and walked around town checking out the shops, grabbed lunch, walked around the lake, and had a great and relaxing day. Then we went to where we were staying – a private cabin at a bed and breakfast with a real fireplace (not gas) and a spa tub – do I have the BEST HUSBAND EVER or what?! We had the most delicious dinner both nights (lobster lasagna the first night, crab legs with a lake view the second), built a fire both nights which made me extremely happy, the breakfasts at the BnB were to die for, we went hiking, took a ski lift to the top of a mountain, we just had an incredible time together. I couldn’t have planned a better way to turn 30 than a romantic mountain getaway with my husband. We checked out of the hotel Friday and drove back to L.A.

But my birthday celebration wasn’t over! We were back in L.A. for only a couple of hours before Tara and Jeff came and picked me up and we went to Las Vegas for the night! We stayed at the Monte Carlo, had dinner at an amazing sushi restaurant, drank, hung out at the casinos (I won $20 at a slot machine, haha, the tables are too expensive and too intimidating!), and just generally had an amazing time Friday night and Saturday. Not only do I have an amazing husband, I have wonderful friends. How’d I get so lucky?!

And the past couple of days I’ve just been relaxing, lounging around the apartment with the kitties, etc. I really should be getting things ready for the drive back to Sacramento early Thursday morning, but I’ve had such a hectic summer that I’m enjoying taking it easy. I’ll be regretting it when I’m going crazy trying to get everything together, but I’ll worry about that when the time comes! Right now, I think I’ll play some World of Warcraft instead ;)

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Day 45: Busy Friday!

Today was really busy, which I like. In the morning I helped one of the AHTs with mouse blood collections. By “help” I really mean that I took the capillary tube from him and put the blood into a blood tube and then put it on ice while he prepared the next mouse (the mice were anesthetized with isoflurane and he collected blood retro-orbitally). He offered to let me bleed a couple, but since I’ve only done it twice before and these were important research mice, I passed.¬†That took three hours (it was a LOT of mice), and afterwards I went on rounds with him, checking up on cases, etc. I did get to trim the teeth of one mouse with malocclusion. It still makes me nervous that I’m going to cut their lips or tongue, but I’m definitely getting better and more confident. Then it was time to break for lunch!

After lunch, I went with one of the doctors and AHTs to help with a pig with a rectal prolapse, poor thing. So they anesthetized him, and I helped by holding in the prolapse (yes that’s exactly what it sounds like, haha) while the doctor put stitches around the anus. The idea is for it to not be too tight for the animal to defecate, but tight enough to keep the prolapse in. When he was checked on later, the prolapse had no reoccurred, but there was fresh feces, so yay! Then I went off to help with physicals on new pigs. It was just doing TPRs, but the more experience with pigs the better! I have to say, I really love pigs, they’re wonderful animals. :) ¬†From there I went with an AHT on rounds in some of the rat breeding rooms, which is always fun because baby rats are ridiculous! By then it was past time to leave for the day, so it was off to home!

I only have 2 days left… Monday and Tuesday. That sucks, because I’ve loved working there! The good thing is that Scott has something planned for my birthday for Wednesday-Friday, and I can’t wait! <3

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Day 44: Slow Afternoon…

This morning I went on rodent rounds with an AHT, and it was pretty typical. Checking on cases, writing up new ones, etc. It may sound boring, but I really enjoy going on rounds. I like seeing all the different facilities, the different cases that come up, and how they’re treated. Then I helped him label blood tubes for a huge collection he has to do tomorrow. That saves him a ton of time, and I totally don’t mind helping out when I’m needed.

The afternoon was…. slow. Probably the slowest yet. I didn’t really do anything except goof of on the computer, talk to one of the residents about school and residency options, talked to the other AHTs, etc. I left a bit early since nothing was going on. Then I came home and went to the early spinning class. My wonderful husband is out doing a voice-over job, so I’m just lounging around waiting for him to come home.

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Day 43: ART Lab and Necropsy Class

I spent my morning in the ART lab (which I talked about extensively in this post), which is always fascinating. Today they were working on putting clutches of eggs into dishes with sperm collected from males. I got to help out quite a bit, so it was fun and super cool. I was there all morning helping with that, and took a late lunch. After lunch the AHTs had a mouse necropsy class, which was basically the same thing as the workshop that I went to a couple of weeks ago. I was excited for it though, because the more practice I can get the better. Doing necropsies on mice is something I’ll probably be doing my entire life. So we did a full and complete necropsy (one of my fav parts is inflating the lungs with saline by inserting a needle into the trachea – so cool!!) under the guidance of one of the lab animal veterinarians and the necropsy technicians. I really enjoyed it and, though it sounds weird and morbid, had fun. :)

Now I’m hanging until I head over to spin class… I’ve been good this summer! I don’t always eat the way I should, but I’ve been going to spinning 3-5 times a week! I love it and plan on continuing with a place I found near Sacramento. Which reminds me, I don’t think I’ve talked about it, but I moved out of my Davis apartment and will be moving into an amazing two bedroom/two bathroom apartment in Sacramento with a washer and dryer!! And the kicker? It’s about $200 cheaper than my Davis apartment was! I can’t wait. I hate moving, but I like getting into a new place and deciding where everything’s going to go and decorating from scratch! :)

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Day 42: Last Week

Since next Tuesday is my last day of this internship, I’m officially in my last week :( Today was really busy, and I had a great day. It started with rodent rounds, which I actually really like. Sure, the covered species are a lot of fun, but for some reason I really love rodents! Of course, that’s a good thing, since I wanna be a lab animal vet. So I helped with the mice that need daily checks +/- supportive care (I’ve talked about them many times), helped assess and treat new cases, and checked in on current cases. Then I went off with another AHT to do some mouse work in a lab. She had to give tail vein injections at certain time points. I’m always amazed at how quickly and easily she does them, especially in black mice – the pigment makes the veins pretty much impossible for me to see. The went into lunch, so I left to go eat.

In the afternoon I helped teach the mouse class, all the while getting more experience myself. I appreciate that the AHTs are comfortable with me teaching people how to work with mice – it’s nice to know that they trust me and are confident in my abilities! After the class I went with an AHT to check on a pig with diarrhea and a fever. Then it was time to kill an hour and a half before the second sugar glider lecture! I talked about it last Tuesday, and this Tuesday was another lecture on a different subject. Yay sugar gliders! I’m sad I won’t be here when they arrive, but I’m thankful I get to the chance to learn all about them.

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Day 41: Introducing Scott to My World

This morning was typical – rodent rounds, those same mice that need daily checks, assessing new cases (there were a lot!!), and updating current cases in a couple of different buildings. There was also a tech meeting first thing, and I went to that.

After lunch, Scott stopped by to get a tour of the facilities :) He’s never been in a vivarium, and he’s always been interested. So an AHT took us around. We visited the chinchillas, the rabbit room (a personal fav), a few rat rooms (including a breeding room with BABIES!), the pigs, the frogs, and the vervets. He really enjoyed it and the only thing that really surprised him was how vocal the pigs are. It was nice for him to see a vivarium, so that when I talk about it he understands. Also, since his wife is going to be working in this field, it’s good for him to know what that entails. Plus it was just fun taking him around and visiting the different animals. :)

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Day 40: Interesting Necropsies

This morning I went with an AHT on rodent rounds, and helped with the mice I talked about yesterday – I got to give a couple more SQ injections. Then at 11am one of the veterinarians performed two educational necropsies. When a mouse needs to be euthanized, if the lab doesn’t need it to collect tissues, one of the vets will do a necropsy if it seems like something cool and let us watch and participate. Today’s were really interesting – they both had large, firm masses in their abdomens. One was very unilateral, the other was extremely large and taking up the entire caudal abdomen. The first one was pretty clear – we guessed that it was a kidney and indeed it was – the mouse had a very severe case of hydronephrosis. I’ve never seen a kidney so dilated! The other case was a bit more interesting (and confusing!). The mass in the caudal abdomen did not resemble any normal tissue and was so large that it was pressing all of the other abdominal organs cranially, up under the diaphragm. We were able to find and confirm normalcy of the testicles, bladder, and seminal vesicles and it wasn’t coming off of the intestines… so the doctor’s best guess was that it was (or used to be) the prostate. She removed the mass and placed it in formalin, so it will be interesting to hear what she finds on pathology. Have I mentioned that I love path and necropsy? :) Only about a hundred times…

After that I went home early! There wasn’t anything in particular going on, and I wanted an early start to my weekend :) So now I’m hanging out, reading, watching TV, and generally relaxing until my husband gets home.

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