Greetings everyone. I wanted to post a story last night, but I was on-call and went out on an emergency right when I was done for the day. While some may complain about having to stay at work until 10 PM, here was my workplace (the picture). This block has really given me an appreciation of the Appalachian mountains. We were called to a beef cattle farm where the owner noticed a cow went into labor Saturday morning, but remained in labor until he called us on Monday night. One might think that the owner was being neglectful, but in reality he wanted to contact us sooner but couldn't catch and wrangle the cow for us to examine her. This was one helluva experience. We restrained her in a head chute and reached into her uterus to palpate the calf....or at least that's what we expected. Instead, we came upon what is referred to as a "fetal monster": a horribly mutated (and dead) calf that cannot come out of the mother because of its horrid disfigurement. There are a few causes for fetal monsters, but in this case it was most likely due to a disease called Bovine Virus Diarrhea (BVD). What made matters worse was the fact that it had become rotten of the past couple days and there was a subsequent infection of her reproductive tract. Needless to say, it was Foul (note the capital F). Our goal was to get the beast out of the cow without having to perform a C-section, which we did, but it took over an hour-and-a-half. The doctor hooked up some chains to its head and limbs and was reaching inside to keep it lubricated as I got to pull on the chains with all of my strength. To put it in perspective, I was still standing while pulling, but at a 15 degree angle with the ground. Because the calf was becoming rotten, whenever we placed a chain on any part of the body, and I pulled, I just fell on my a** because the body part would just tear off (I say body part because only half the time we knew what it was exactly. After much fatigue and loss of patience, I yanked what remained of the monster out of the cow.....only to have it follow with all of the bloody mucus and fluid that built up inside that promptly splashed all over the clinicians lap.
While this has by far and away been the most disgusting thing I've had to deal with, I've been delightfully surprised. In fact, I've enjoyed it so much that I'm thinking about doing an internship in it next year. I feel it would be nice for me to work with dogs and cats most of the week, then driving around to farms a day or two per week. This would work out perfectly for my wife and I since she won't be graduating from her PhD program until a year after I do. I'm still entirely on the fence about this and would love to hear input from other people. What are your thoughts?