Kiwi Post July 2011

We arrived at a dairy farm the other day to find out just how much of a shambles dairy farming currently is in New Zealand. Of course, we all know things are changing fast, but none of us ever guessed it could slump so low.

There were three of us, on farm at 4AM, to pregnancy scan and record an 800 cow herd. We pulled most of the gear out of the car, got set up, and went back to the car to find we had managed to somehow lock it with our car keys and –most distressing of all- all our phones inside.

No problem, we had most of our gear and could carry on scanning while someone broke into it and unlocked it. Plenty of half-employed drongos on a dairy farm to do this in five minutes. So we started up scanning.

But modern dairy farms have changed. And, when it comes to a bit of breaking and entry, not for the better. Nobody employs drongos anymore. These days on Kiwi dairy farms the vast majority of staff are likely to be from overseas and have a tertiary degree. So, if they’re not from Europe with a science degree, they’re from the Phillipines with a veterinary degree, or Asia with an agricultural degree.

So, a little over 3 hours later when we came to wash up we found that nobody had broken into our car because nobody had any idea how to. Worst still, even if they could, it would be simply unthinkable for them to carry out such a wanton act of crime. On the farm that day, including us, were 8 people from 7 nationalities with at least 9 degrees amongst us, and not a single Kiwi. Continue reading Kiwi Post July 2011

Re: Dr Coghlan’s article on considering the exposure of cruelty (The Veterinarian, June 2011)

Dear Editor,

Export of live animals for slaughter is a result of one motive – there is money to be made.

In the article, the first response that “Australia has an obligation to animals to continue the trade to countries with mediocre welfare records” beggars belief.

It is painfully obvious that the Meat and Livestock Authority and Livecorp have . . . → Read More: Re: Dr Coghlan’s article on considering the exposure of cruelty (The Veterinarian, June 2011)

Oral examination results in rescued ferrets: clinical findings

Ferrets have increased in popularity as pets, and a growing number are seen in companion animal practice. Domestic ferrets are commonly used as animal models for research of human oral conditions. The present study evaluated the prevalence of oral pathology in rescued ferrets which – to the authors’ knowledge – has not yet been described in . . . → Read More: Oral examination results in rescued ferrets: clinical findings

Army of vets deliver care to Pacific

Veterinarians from the Australian and US armies, Spanish navy, World Vets and Vets Without Borders provided veterinary care to animals on a four-day mission in Timor-Leste last month.

The exercise was part of the Pacific Partnership annual humanitarian aid mission, and is sponsored by the US-led Pacific Fleet.

Queensland vet Major Amanda Parry, a reservist with the Australian . . . → Read More: Army of vets deliver care to Pacific

Current Therapy In Equine Medicine 6

This text continues on in the format of the previous five editions. It is a multi-author book comprising chapters on clinical pharmacology, medico-legal, nutrition, behaviour, infectious disease, the cardiovascular system, the gastrointestinal system, the musculoskeletal system, the nervous system, the eye, integument, endocrine and urogenital systems, reproduction, the foal and a miscellaneous chapter covering the geriatric horse, chronic weight loss, stem cell therapy, laser equipment, hyperbaric oxygen therapy and maintenance of horses in a sling among others. There is also a table of common drugs and the approximate doses as well as normal clinical pathology data.

The text is well illustrated with a small number of black and white photographs, diagrams and images and 31 colour plates in nearly 1000 pages of print. Each chapter is written by an expert in that field, the information provided if of a high standard and generally comprehensive. There are no references cited in the text however there is a short list of suggested further reading provided in each chapter as well as some websites to explore.

Earlier versions of the text tended to cover selected topics within each body system which required the reader to have multiple editions in order to have all aspects of equine medicine covered. This sixth edition however seems to cover most aspects of equine medicine as well as many areas of basic surgery and diagnostic imaging, although the editors advise for complete coverage the fourth and fifth editions should be consulted.

There are some sections that are not normally covered in equine texts. For example “Assessing Saddle fit in Performance Horses”, “Biochemical tests for cardiovascular injury”, “Anaesthetic at high altitude” and “The silicosis and osteoporosis syndrome” which make for interesting night time reading. There is also good coverage of many newer areas, particularly those involving nuclear magnetic resonance imaging. Continue reading Current Therapy In Equine Medicine 6