Journal Entry #8

01/12/01

    Today I woke up bright and early (that is, for a Saturday morning) at 7:00 am.  I had to be ready to go by 8:00 am for my "first year animal hospital rota".  After showering and dressing, I met up with Caroline and Rupert (first year classmates of mine) in the foyer.  We then walked outside and took the footpath to the veterinary school.  The weather was beautiful.  The sky was blue and relatively clear (as clear as it gets here, with clouds on the move) and the air had a crisp chill to it, indicating that winter is here. 

    We entered the small animal hospital building (a.k.a. the "clinical building") through a side door and found a huge corridor.  There was no one in site, so we walked down the corridor.  We went to the end and turned right into the cat ward.  There, we found someone to guide us.  She told us that the greyhounds were in the ward next door.  Moving next door, we found the ward with the greyhounds in it.  There was a guy there who handed us the greyhounds.  We were to walk them and bring "poo bags".  Two greyhounds (blood donors) were given to us: Meg and Beanie.  Meg is white with black patches and black speckles.  She also has a bit of grey around her muzzle.  Beanie looks much younger and is white with tan patches and no speckles.  They both had to wear muzzles for their own safety as well as safety of wildlife and small pets. 

    Meg and Beanie knew their way out.  Caroline and I walked them around Garscube Estate, getting muddy at the same time.  Meanwhile, Rupert was helping clean their runs and prepare their food.  When we got to the open green field, Meg suddenly laid down and rolled on her back in the grass.  She obviously loved to roll in the grass.  Beanie could care less.  After about 20 minutes, Caroline and I made it back to the small animal hospital.  We put the dogs in their runs and they were fed canned food.  My next assignment was to help the head nurse.  She was in a neighboring ward of dog runs and was performing treatments of 4 patients.  Already there was a tiny dog in a exercise-type run at the end of the ward.  I was to clean its run by placing the newspapers (that lined the run) in a trash bag and removing its bedding.  Then I had to scrub the run with a brush and some disinfectant solution and hose it down when finished.  Finally I had to squeegee the run and place fresh newspaper (a lot of it) as a lining.  The old bedding could be placed back into the run if it was clean.  Then the dog, of course, was placed back into its run.  I did this for all 4 dogs after the nurse had finished walking them. 

    I also had to remove the water dishes and measure the amount of water left, telling the nurse.  She also had me fill a couple dishes with 1000 milliliters of water.  Once, I even had to weigh one of the patients.  There was a HUGE scale in the main corridor that I was able to use.  It was not digital.  The last task I was assigned was to give a small dog its medicine in a bit of food, then give it the entire food dish.  After doing my duties in the G ward, I went over to see how Rupert was getting along in the cat ward.  I helped him by removing the food dishes from each of the cages and washing them.  He was sweeping and mopping the entire ward.  There were 4 or 5 cats and a 2 month old Dalmatian puppy in the cat ward.  After all was finished, we left and were to come back at 2 pm.  On the way out, we walked down the main corridor and looked in windows and doors.  We saw an ICU ward, several surgery suites, a radiology room with huge machines, and even a dentistry room. 

    I got back in my room at Wolfson at 10:30 am.  I decided to quickly do my laundry because the hall seemed "dead" and I would most likely be able to snag a washing machine and working dryer.  I was able to do all of my laundry without meeting a single soul in the laundry room.  Lucky!  I believe I also checked my e-mail at that time and headed down for brunch around 11:30 am.  I had some pasta with marinara type sauce, also yogurt, a banana, and some fruit juice.  It was pretty tasty, considering it was from Wolfson.  After brunch I drank some tea, listened to music and played hearts on the computer.  Michelle came over for a while as I finished up my laundry.  I left Wolfson around 1:35 pm and caught up with Caroline and her visiting friend, Trevor. 

    Caroline, Trevor and I were able to walk the greyhounds again.  The guy who worked in the wards also walked a greyhound.  We took all 4 greyhounds for a walk this time.  Meg and Beanie, also Tommy and Billy.  Tommy is white with black patches and no specks.  Billy (the one I walked) is white with tan patches and no specks.  They are taller than the two females.  What a long walk we went on!  We went near the river and then across the bridge.  Then we walked on a footpath on that side of the river until we ended up around the playing fields.  It was SO SO muddy.  Finally we returned over the bridge and took the road to the veterinary school.  Whenever the dogs spotted another dog being walked, they would break into loud barking fits and lunging at the end of their leads.  They would even try to nip at each other -- thank goodness they had muzzles. 

    Back at the animal hospital, we put the dogs away and fed them.  Then I had to wash their food dishes and brush Beanie's teeth.  Rupert had been helping there while we had been walking the dogs.  We were all able to go home after that.  It had been a very nice day at the hospital.  At home, I talked to Rebecca and Michelle about going to the gym.  Rebecca was doing laundry and we planned on going to the gym around 4pm, possibly 5pm if she was still waiting for a dryer. 

    I did more e-mail and listened to music.  It was 5pm by the time we finally left for the gym (Michelle had decided to go at 4pm).  We had a nice workout there.  I ran for 20 minutes straight on the treadmill (a record for me) and worked on my leg muscles with the machines.  I also did sit-ups.  It was dinner time by the time we came back from the gym.  Dinner was horrible!  There was supposed to be chicken as well as some minced beef and vegetables.  Well, I took something that kind of looked like chicken, but more like fish.  There was no fish on the menu, so I was hoping it was chicken (I don't like the fish here).  The other beef stuff looked gross.  I also took some broccoli and took strawberry cheesecake for dessert.   I ended up with just broccoli and cheesecake!  The "chicken" was really fish and it was nasty.  So I had to order pizza when I went up to my room.  The pizza arrived very quickly and it was pretty good, but not as good as the pizza back at home.  It was called "Perfect Pizza", which is now part of "Papa John's Pizza" (which I don't like back at home).  I even had some garlic cheese bread -- tastier than the pizza itself. 

    Then I STUDIED all night and listened to music at the same time.  Oh yeah, I did talk to my parents on the phone for over an hour.  I studied biomolecular sciences and learned the entire TCA (Krebs) Cycle, including enzymes and energy exchanges.  Now I know both Gylcolysis and Krebs, and need to focus on "oxidative phosphorylation" and a bit of "gluconeogenesis".  Once finished with that, I can FINALLY work on animal husbandry.  The exams are coming up in almost 1 week!  The first is Tuesday the 11th of December -- Veterinary Animal Husbandry.  Then Wednesday the 12th of December -- Veterinary Biomolecular Sciences.  These are the only tests and exams we have had to take this term!  Passing score is 35%, but it's not a good idea to score that low because the marks add up and you need a certain amount to enter the second year.  Also, the marks are part of the overall Professional Exams we have to take next year. 

    Tomorrow I plan on studying ALL day.  I am SO sick of studying already...yuck.  Wednesday we plan on ice skating at George Square.  That should be fun and should be a nice break in the middle of "study week".  We do have classes all week long. 


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