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vet trips and new shoes

August 1, 2007

I spent my entire day at UC Davis yesterday. Three of our animals had appointments, so I was elected to take them all in. I actually enjoy going to Davis, mostly because it gets me out of the office. It takes about 1.5 hours to get there, one way. The unfortunate thing is, I was driving the red van which has no FM radio, tape deck, or CD player. You’re stuck with AM radio. In the morning, most AM radio is talk talk talk. I scanned and scanned and scanned again; evening my favorite oldies station on the AM side wasn’t coming in. So, we rode in silence. I hate talk radio, in other words.

Sprout, one of our goats, needed to be seen because of a recurring lump on his jaw. He has also been “unthrifty” as of late, and appears to have lost weight. We all imagined that this was some kind of tumor or mass, (as it has been in the past, I believe) so we weren’t looking forward to the prognosis. It turns out he just had an abscessed tooth! So, Sprout gets to come home today. Hopefully he’ll cheer up and starting eating again. I felt so bad for him though, when I arrived to drop him off. His legs started shaking and he started “bleating” (that’s the “baa” sound they make, folks). He was so scared and nothing I said or did comforted him. When I picked him up today, we were trying to lead him down the hall back out to the van, and he stopped all of a sudden. Wouldn’t budge. The student that was helping me said, “Oh, that’s the room we took him in yesterday.” Sprout recognized it and thought we were going to take him back in there. I had to tug on him a couple times and he started to move, and as soon as he saw the van he picked up his pace. Too cute.

Iris, one of our turkey girls, had a swollen foot, so they took x-rays. I haven’t found out what’s happening with her yet, but I’ll probably find out today when I pick her up as well. Foot and leg injuries in our turkeys girls are serious business, just like in a horse, and if it’s something that we cannot fix, we have to euthanize them. It really sucks. Today, whenI picked her up, she had new shoes on too! These bandages look so ridiculously funny.

Finally, Russet, one of our roosters, (although, Davis kept referring to him as “Ruffet”, probably because they misunderstood the name when we made the appointment), was seen yesterday because of his foot problems. They checked out his feet, which he had been seen for before, and re-wrapped them with new bandages. I had to laugh because they called the new wrappings “shoes” and I imagined our little Russet walking around in new Air Jordan’s. Russet was driving me nuts on the way back to the farm, though. He kept eating the straw that he was laying on the floor of his carrier. The pieces he was choosing to eat were too long and they would get lodged in his throat. It’s like eating a string of spaghetti that you didn’t chew up and it’s partially down your throat and partially in your mouth. He would shake his head, trying to either swallow it or fling it back out. I had to pull over twice to pull the damn straw out of his mouth! I could see him, out of the corner of my eye, shaking his head furiously, trying to get this straw down or out. I ended up laughing my ass off because he just looked so ridiculous.

One thing I don’t like about going to UC Davis is that there are a variety of animals there, for various reasons, and sometimes I try not to think about what they’re there for. One time, (this was last year sometime, when I was taking the piglets in for their surgeries) I saw this cow standing outside in one of the pens. A chunk of her side frame was missing, in the exact shape of a square, and in it’s place was this clear plastic box. Inside that box were (one of) her stomachs and it’s contents. I guess the idea was to show the students what a bovine’s digestive system looks like. I wanted to barf. She was standing there, chewing her straw, and the look she gave me was something I will never forget. I looked away and never went over to those pens again. I can’t imagine what happened to her after that. I don’t even want to think about it.

Yesterday I met a very nice goat named Harry, who seemed to actually belong to someone, as their companion. He was neutered, so that meant they weren’t using him for breeding, which was a nice change. He was very sweet, and very curious. When the vet students went into the pen next to his to retrieve the sheep that was in there, he stood up on his back legs, rested his front hooves on the wall, and peeked over to see what was going on. He was attached to an IV of some sort, so I could track his movements from above his pen by watching the IV container dangling above it. I probably wasn’t supposed to pet and scratch him, but I did, and of course he insisted on more and more every time I stopped. I think he was feeling really lonely.

Also during my stay at UC Davis yesterday, waiting for some or all of our animals to be released, I was able to read a huge chunk of the new Harry Potter book. I don’t know how many of you out there are HP fans, but this book is fantastic so far. There is so much action going on. It seems weird though; I feel like I’m reading this book in a bubble, because I’ve been avoiding contact with other folks and websites that are discussing this book, for fear that the ending will be spoiled! I’m only about halfway through at this point, trying to read as much as possible whenever I can. I can’t wait to find out what happens so I can finally talk to someone about it.

The end.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. Billy permalink
    August 2, 2007 10:24 am

    the cow with the window in the stomach is “used” for feed experiments. They can open the portal and retrieve samples at different stages of the process. They say its not painful, right.

    Dont spoil the ending of H.P.!!

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