A Day in the Work Life….

If you’ve been following my blog, you may already know that life as a vet is not all fuzzy bunnies.  Some days it’s crazy, some days quiet.  Some are filled with variety, and some require vaccine after vaccine.  This week, Tuesday was a great example of how  things can go.

Tuesday is my Monday, it is when we re-open from our weekend off. There is often lots to do and this week was no exception!  It’s usually a mix of shelter dog health and owned pets coming in for veterinary care.  Every Tuesday I arrive at Saga just before 9 am after my 1 mile bicycle commute, always with 2 Coke Lights in hand, one for me and one for my tech Ingrid to help us get going!  Ingrid lets me know what she already has lined up and we get to it.  Much of what happens is unexpected.

Usually I do most of my spay/neuters on Thursdays, but there are occasional exceptions.  In the morning I neutered a Rottweiler puppy and in the afternoon an adult Chihuahua.  Neither one was all that pleased.

I also needed to recheck some of my previous surgeries.  One is a large mastiff mix that is a shelter dog recovering from eyelid surgery.  The other was a second opinion chihuahua mix from last week that needed financial help to get her front leg partially reattached (dog bite).

In the morning I also checked on a stray that was picked up over the weekend.  This dog was in such poor condition that before any treatment I decided to do some tests.  He was positive for both heartworm and tick fever (ehrlichia) and along with his other issues and severely low body weight I decided on euthanasia.  This is unfortunately the reality for some of our island dogs who do not receive any regular care or prevention.

A neighbor to the dog seen here below was kind enough to offer to pay for care for him.  He was suffering from chronic skin disease and a limp in his hind leg.


Meanwhile in the bathroom…..A drop off from last week that was not picked back up is giving birth to kittens.


Add in a quick bike ride home and back for lunch and to let my own dog out.

I  rechecked my after hours emergency from the previous night, a tiny 0.7 lb poodle mix that had not eaten well due to being removed from it’s mom and sold at 5 weeks (too young).  It had hypoglycemia (low blood sugar), already entering seizures and was close to death.  She recovered nicely.


One cat was dropped off with a “sore leg”.  We pulled her out of her cage to find this.  Yikes.  This wound was from a trauma and is a week old.  I clipped, cleaned, trimmed, flushed, and removed the broken bone segment before bandaging and starting meds.

Today also included: a newly purchased puppy with probable parvo virus, a shelter dog with bloody diarrhea, a mass removal suture recheck, a health certificate for a flight home to the USA, a pregnancy check in a pitbull, a vaccine with anal gland expression, a first puppy vaccine, a skin infection, and vomiting of unknown origin.

It looked like this…


Never a dull moment!


6 thoughts on “A Day in the Work Life….”

  1. Wow! so much work! I’m out of breath reading what you do in a day. Being a vet is tremendous hard work. You do it all! A doctor refers his patients to specialists whenever they need surgery, but you as a vet has to know it all. I’m very proud of you Samantha! Keep up the good work, but also take the time to relax and enjoy life! xx00xx


  2. I want you to know how much I appreciate not just the work you do, but the time you take to share the reality of life for and with animals on this island. Having to rely on donations to carry out most of your work is not easy, but I believe as you share more of your stories and pictures, people will step forward and offer support. At least I hope so. I also hope that this will help educate our entire community on the needs of the animal population, especially the need for education that can help decrease the needless suffering of these animals. Thanks for what you do and for your positive attitude.


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