Today I hung out with AHTs while they did mouse work. And since I love mice, it was a good day. :) In the morning I went with one AHT to a vivarium in another building filled with mice. She did rounds, checked on health cases, etc. We also encountered a few pregnant mice with dystocia. Unfortunately, most of the time in these cases euthanasia is the only real option. The mouse is usually very ill, and it’s extremely difficult to successfully perform a c-section in a mouse and have her live through it – also, the PIs generally won’t choose to pay for it. So there was one that we euthanized, and we opened her up to see if the babies could be saved… but they were all already dead, which is usually the case with dystocia. :( But there was one mouse who was still bright and alert, and she was running around pretty active. She had given birth to 2 pups yesterday, but hadn’t delivered any more and was obviously still pregnant. Mice in this condition are good candidates for oxytocin, so the AHT drew it up and let me give it (SQ) – I’m getting very comfortable at SQ injections in mice. So we’ll see how she does… we checked back a couple of hours later and there weren’t any new pups, but hopefully she delivers and pulls through.
After lunch I went with a different AHT and watched her do some retro-orbital eye bleeds in mice. I helped by putting the blood into the tubes, cleaning up, etc. She asked if I wanted to do any, but I’ve only done it twice before in training mice, and these are important study mice, so I passed. Especially because an anesthetized mouse is a delicate situation. They need to be out enough to not move or feel the procedure, but if you go too long they’ll die.
Tomorrow will be a long day… work at 6:30am like usual, but I won’t be done until 7pm. Yikes. I’m staying for a lecture on sugar gliders 5-7pm. So it’ll be long, but I think I’ll learn a lot and it’ll be worth it. Did I mention that this isn’t mandatory and I asked if I could attend? What’s wrong with me?!