Well this is my second submission because the first one was long and awkward. I am a girl from Serbia, a tiny country in Europe (Not Syria and not Sibiria). I will be 19 in September and I am starting college in October studying veterinary medicine. I love animals (obviously haha), indie bands, tv shows and netflix, nature, cycling, crafts and diy stuff, reading classic novels, cooking and baking, photography and everything creative. I really love collecting postcards and stamps and I would love to talk via letters-snail mail, so please contact me if you are interested in that kind of communication. I am also interested in exchanging stuff from my country, learning about your culture and hearing about your day/week/life. I hope to meet a lot of people from around the world and be long term friends with them :)
Preferences: Anyone in my age range so maybe 17-22, any gender, anywhere in the world and prefer snail mail
Hi! I’m Meg, I’m 19 years old and I’m from Portugal. I study veterinary medicine and I’m going to 3rd year. I decided to find a penpal because I want to make friends. I love to learn about other cultures and to get to know other people. I love animals and reading: sci-fy, fantasy and some romances. Right now, I’m reading “Cosmos” by Carl Sagan and I really like to discuss diverse types of literature. I also love other forms of art and I really enjoy calligraphy and bullet journaling is one of my favourite hobbies. Besides that, I enjoy music, especially alternative (Tame Impala, Cage the Elephant, Artic Monkeys…), going to concerts and music festivals. I also love movies and series, writing, nature, learning and exploring new things. I also do some charity work at an animal shelter. In general, I’m a calm person: I enjoy rainy days, travel, bookstores, stationary, coffee and I love to help others. I don’t have any special preferences and my mail box is open to anyone: it doesn’t matter your gender or country or whatever it is you want to talk about, whatever I can do to help you I will. If you just want to send pictures of your cat (I love them by the way) or talk about the universe or something deep, it is okay: just know you have a friend. I really like handwritten letters and to send small gifts but email and talking through tumblr is also fine 😊
Vet school is not the easiest degree and therefore requires a lot of time (which we don’t have), dedication (which we must have) and motivation (which can be non-existent), in order to be successful. Now, there is no secret formula on how to study as everyone learns differently but, here are some study tricks, tips and techniques that may be useful.
To type or not to type…
I was previously a hand-writing notes kinda gal but have recently changed my ways. I used to print off the lecture slides prior to class and then would annotate, scribble and highlight all over them during the lecture. After class, I would then write out the scribbles I had taken into coherent notes with diagrams etc. This method had successfully gotten be through vet school up until this year.
With the increasing volume of information I am expected to learn, I have found that typing is much more efficient. If I type during lectures, it saves me from having to re-write them like I previously did. I edit them, add additional information and pictures and then print them off. This also allows me more time to actually learn and understand the information. The added bonus of typing is that your notes are easy to put onto a tablet or to access from computers on prac or when you graduate using DropBox, Google Drive etc.
Textbooks; worth it or a waste of money?
I love textbooks and still call on my beloved Dyce for an anatomy refresher or Zachary and McGavin for a pathological process. I am head-over-heels for Ettinger’s Textbook for Veterinary Internal Medicine. I think it is a brilliant investment for your career.
Textbooks are a good resource to have though they are very expensive. I suggest trying to source online PDFs if your pennies are tight, or have a look on Abe Books (secondhand books) or the Book Depository (may be cheaper than retail).
If you aren’t too sure before you pass over your precious dollars, check out your vet school’s library for a copy and see if you think it will be a valuable resource for your collection or turn to the Vetblr community for advice on what they think is a brilliant reference or a review on a particular book!
Go to your lectures
Seriously, go to lectures. Even if they are recorded, still go. You will be in an environment surrounded by other people who are engaged in a lecture which can encourage you to concentrate as opposed to sitting at home and watching it with a million and one distractions. I know some people learn better in a home environment (and fall asleep in lectures) and that is totally fine, but for me, being present in the lecture is way more beneficial. Plus, if you are at home listening to a lecture, you may miss out on your professor imitating a horse walking with Stringhalt!
Concentration is the key
I am sure that I am not the only one who sits there reading the same sentence of their equine orthopaedics notes over and over again because they are too busy thinking about how amazing cats are (am I right!?). I am also sure that I am not the only one who sits there typing notes to be seen 2 minutes later on Facebook or Tumblr.
We all have those moments (sometimes days), where you just seriously cannot concentrate whatever the heck you do. When I am having one of these bouts, I put time restrictions on myself. I find that when I do this, I tend to stay more focused at the task at hand. The Pomodoro Technique is brilliant. You study for 25 minutes and then take a 5 minute break. Repeat this 4 times and then take a 10 minute break, then start again. This way you are giving yourself a little reward after making your brain work really hard for those 25 minutes. There are some pretty cute apps out there as well for it!
Suffering from the zero motivation thing?
Books? Check! Laptop? Check! Highlighters? Check! Motivation? ….. Now you can be all set and ready to go but what is the point when as soon as you open that first page on your pathology textbook you just have absolutely no interest in what you are doing. Not only does this result in a miserable you, it also isn’t productive at all. I go through this from time to time where I just kick myself for wanting to be a vet and dragging myself through 6 years of uni and just can’t stand the thought of another second of cattle reproduction.
Best thing to do when this happens is do not force yourself to study. It just makes everything a whole heck worse. Take a break (even if you literally just sat down to study). Go for a walk, go play with your pet, talk to a friend or call family. If I am really not happy, then I watch an episode of The Supervet or All Creatures Great and Small or take a trip down memory lane and look at photos from my past few years at vet school. Little things that remind you why you want to be here are sometimes all you need to get yourself into gear.
Organisation is also the key
I don’t know about you, but if I have everything in files with dividers, books with labelled sticky tabs in a categorical order in my bookshelf and an assortment of stationery I just feel like everything is right in the world. Having your notes prepared and stored in an orderly manner makes it easier for you to access information and is a good habit to get into yearly on in the degree. Also organise your computer files in a logical manner and back them up too! I still frequently reach for notes from previous years and it helps that I know where everything is.
Exams - that one word that strikes fear in all vet students
Preparation is key. I try and start studying for finals about a month before my first exam. This easier said than done because in that month, because you are still learning new material whilst going over older stuff. I write a list of topics to be covered before the exam for each unit and tick them off as I go.
I use my typed notes as guide and draw on textbooks and journal articles to incorporate my understanding of topics into a massive mindmaps on A3 paper. I find hand writing mind maps and drawing out anatomy, diseases etc really reinforces what I learn’t throughout the semester.
Feel free to add anymore tips or tricks that you may have and happy studying!
When you take a *What dog breed are you quiz* and it tells you that you are a Chihuahua
And at first I was all like,
So I took another one…. and got the SAME RESULT
And I keep asking myself “why,” because I do not feel afraid of the world, I don’t tremble, and I certainly don’t bite…
Obviously there is some mistake. Surely I am more like a mutt, or a Cavalier, or maybe some determined working breed.
But then I remember that I am an intern. And it started to make sense. Chihuahuas also tend to challenge things, they stand up for their tiny selves against REALLY BIG adversaries and think they can win. They can be stubborn, sometimes snippy, but extremely loyal.
But mainly, there’s this. This made me realize, I may actually be a Chihuahua. Because as a veterinary intern, this is me:
Every time they announce “There is an emergency, STAT!”
When you are asked to start a laraotomy surgery, alone,
When it is time for intern evaluations,
When you are the only doctor covering ER and the doorbell rings at 4am,
But that’s okay because I am learning an absolute ton, I am already a better clinician than when I started, and I am reaching the point where serious cases come into the clinic and I can actually say, “I GOT THIS.”
Congratulations to everyone who applied to the Match this year!
Three skin masses present on a 15 year-old, female-spayed, Domestic Short Hair. The kitty cat’s owner recently felt 3 small, firm masses on the patient’s left forelimb. The masses were about 1cm apart and non-painful on manipulation. Aspirates from all three lesions showed…
Copious amounts of these round cells! Most of these bad boys contain discrete, purple (or metachromatic!) granules. Any idea what these cells are…..? These are mast cells! Making this a mast cell tumor, sometimes called a mastocytoma. These cells will often ‘pop’ when cytology slides are made, releasing the granules into the background (see all the free granules in the bottom picture?)
Cytologic diagnosis: Mast cell tumor. Feline mast cell tumors are typically low-grade in behavior - meaning they grow locally but rarely spread to other parts of the body. In this case, the patient could be facing a more high grade tumor as she has multiple skin tumors simultaneously. The presence of multiple cutaneous mast cell tumors in a cat is no bueno - many of these cats actually have disseminated disease. In cats, disseminated mast cell disease will often shore up in the spleen. No word yet on this patient’s next move, although I suspect these masses will be removed and a hunt will begin for internal tumors.
Taking dental X-rays on a tiger in Indiana who needed a few root canals on his maxillary canines. I work with the Peter Emily International Veterinary Dental Foundation providing pro bono dental care to rescued exotic animals. The foundation consists of board certified veterinary dentists (Jan Bellows, Steve Holmstrom, Ed Eisner and more), general veterinarians, human dentists, and dental veterinary technicians. We fly from all over the U.S. to one sanctuary at a time and work for a weekend on as many animals as possible. beyond-limit this is the handheld dental unit I was telling you about.
So tonight I am off to start my 2 week placement with the Worldwide Veterinary Services at the International Training Centre in Ooty, India! Pictured above are some of the medical supplies that we have been collecting to donate to the centre. Stay posted for more updates from India!
Great weekend with great people. Worked on two black bears, 1 brown bear, a wolf and 5 birds with the Peter Emily International Veterinary Dental Foundation at Noahs Ark. The Bears had a combination of fractured teeth and abscesses throughout their mouths and got root canals and extractions. They also had some limb X-rays done while they were out since a couple of them were 30+ years old and had severe arthritis. The wolf was found chained and abandoned. He had several broken and worn down teeth (probably from chewing on the chain).