I can’t believe that I have not written a post for over two months. Well actually I did two posts during that period but regretfully was asked to retract them. I think that put me off writing for a little while.
I just put so much of my heart and soul into each post and the only reason I blog about my work is to spread education and awareness.
I basically work 12 hours a day and dedicate my free time to blogging about my veterinary journey. I would like to reiterate that my posts are purely written to serve one main purpose and that’s sharing knowledge. That being said, the true value in sharing my veterinary knowledge is that it can potentially save a pet’s life or improve its quality of life.
Moving onto the latest developments in my veterinary career, so much has happened in the past few months and here are a few major announcements:
- I was offered a job at a pretty awesome practice in Sydney which I had to decline after much considerable thought.
- We have finally moved into our purpose built clinic that was in the makings for the past 3 years. I am absolutely in love with the place! I am shocked with how much the new space has boosted my morale and drive. I still can’t believe we moved an entire clinic in a matter of two days. We were not fully unpacked during that time but fairly functional. I managed to escape the post-move tweaking period as I went overseas. Now that I am back, I am even in more awe of this spacious and very well equipped new clinic. If you are interested in checking out our new premises. Please go to our Facebook page and check it out for yourselves.
- I recently attended an amazing veterinary dental conference that also included a wealth of information on how to approach anesthesia in the high risk patients (geriatrics, diabetics, renal failure etc). I have already started applying some of the valuable tips I learnt. I am also very excited to disclose that I will be enrolling next year in the behavioural medicine program. I should complete that course within a year and then I will finally be ready to sit my membership in behavioural medicine. Wish me luck.
- In October, I spontaneously took on a locum job overseas in Qatar. I worked at a very busy small animal practice for two and half weeks. I was testing myself and putting myself out of my comfort zone to assess how adaptable I can be. It was a very life changing experience. I saw a range of new cases I have never had to deal with. I had to communicate with clientele with so many diverse backgrounds, some of whom barely spoke any English. The most valuable lesson I learnt about myself is how well I connect with people and their pets. I was so pleased to see new clients in a new country feeling very pleased with my service.
The biggest compliment I received was when a staff member said: ‘Rayya, you are the happiest veterinarian I have ever met’.
I mean I was pretty stressed out at first as I had to tackle a new computer software coupled with new clients and a myriad of new protocols. My head was spinning and I felt run off my feet but I was obviously still able to maintain an outwardly composed appearance. I loved meeting so many new staff members from the lovely nurses, receptionists, kennel hands, drivers and of course fellow veterinarians.
It was hard leaving some of my cases behind and not being able to follow up. I made sure all my clients had my email address if they wanted to contact me for any questions. I will briefly highlight my Qatari adventures below:
I was running around frantically and I saw this client with a baboon hanging off his neck. I thought I was hallucinating from exhaustion. I continued with my consultations and when I finished, I asked the staff:
Was I dreaming or did I see a man with a baboon?
They all giggled and explained I wasn’t dreaming and they had to refuse seeing the baboon as he was illegally obtained and an occupational and health safety issue.
I was getting booked local Arabic speaking clients. I haven’t been practicing using the Arabic language for over 10 years and so I was quite rusty. It was also rather challenging deciphering the different accents. Arabic language can vary immensely from country to country just like the Aussie accent differs to the Irish and American one. Fortunately, many of them were also happy to communicate in English with me.
I had just finished vaccinating a gorgeous Russian blue kitten and booked her in for desexing when her owner asked me:
‘Are you happy to do a house-call to examine my cheetah?’.
I was baffled and said: ‘I will have to get back to you on this one.’ I discovered I only could if the cheetah had legal documents confirming it is registered with the international wildlife organisation. The owner informed me that she was registered and I was meant to go to his premises to examine her but didn’t get a chance. Bummer—
The client that gave me the biggest grief with the management of his pet was an AUSSIE. His dog had eaten 10 kg of cake mix and was vomiting and quite ill and he brought it into the clinic after 5 days of being so unwell! Mind you, that was even after I had spoken to him over the phone insisting he bring his dog straight in!!!Pretty ironic isn’t it?!?
I was faced with a very interesting case. A four month old kitten presented to me for being off her food and vomiting. Her owners were flustered that she appeared pregnant as they thought she was too young to even get into season. They were mortified as they realized they were at fault as they had looked after after a big male entire cat only a few weeks back. We did full blood work and ultrasound. Her kittens were alive and healthy and her bloods were normal. We started her on iv fluids and kept her in hospital until she was eating. We sent her home and she came back after 2 days as she was still off her food and straining to defecate. Further workup (xrays & repeat ultrasound) showed she was constipated and her pelvis was too narrow for her to have these kittens.
We had to recommend termination of her pregnancy.
We proceeded with the surgery and I discovered she had a ruptured uterus and her kittens were still alive and freely floating in her abdomen. I removed her uterus and sadly had to euthanasia the immature kittens. Thankfully, Yasmin has made a full recovery! My veterinary colleagues and I had never seen a ruptured uterus in mid gestation in a cat.
Yasmin looking very grumpy prior to her surgery
Euthanasia can always be a very delicate subject in pets. However, it was even more sensitive in Qatar because of religious views. Even if the animal was suffering and in the process of dieing, some clients refused our intervention and preferred their pet die naturally.
I simply had to respect their wishes even though I didn’t support their views by any means.
In the very few free moments I had at this busy clinic, I absolutely enjoyed hanging out with two parrots that were boarding at the clinic. Say hi to SUNSHINE & OLI
Last but not least, I was very lucky to be granted permission to enter the Falcon Veterinary Hospital. I was given a tour by Dr. Amrita, one of the practicing veterinarians there. This is one of the most exquisite and best equipped veterinary hospitals I have ever seen or fathomed to exist!
It was only created to treat FALCONS and is so well set up.
Falcons are fully worked up: xrays, endoscopes, blood & faecal testing, beak & claw reshaping & trimming, feather replacement for hunting season, microbiology & virology laboratory & so forth. They even had a gene coding machine; something many human hospitals don’t even have!
Enjoy the photos of all the lovely patients I met in Qatar. So fellow bloggers, I’m back so get ready to read my regular and weekly blogs.