05 April 2007

A day in the life of an animal science student

Today, Dr. Kumar posted the biochem grades from the last test. I was a bit disappointed with my B, but an A isn't completely out of my grasp for the class yet. I'll keep on pressing!

I sheared a sheep. I'm quite proud of my patchy job too....Shearing sheep is a lot harder than it looks!!!

First line of action: tip the sheep...plop it on it's butt. They make it look easy...but for me to man-handle a 200lb animal when I only weigh around 135lb is a little hard. I lack the practice and the skill. ^_^ But what you have to do is grab the sheep under the jaw with your left hand while standing on the sheep's left. Then, your other hand goes on the sheep's right hip and pushes while the other hand is twisting the neck back toward the right hip... Meanwhile you're using your left leg to help sorta trip the sheep.

Now for the actual shearing part...it's a bit like a dance. Your feet have to be in the right position to be able to restrain the sheep while shearing at the same time. I can't remember all the little details...but at various points in the shearing process, the sheep's head was between my legs, I had 1 sheep leg behind my legs and one between, or one sheep's leg in my hand with the clippers in the other. Then while you've got the sheep in all these random positions, you have to hold the clippers just right and put pressure enough to actually shear her. Wow, all this is done while you are semi-squatting and bending over...ooo my thighs. It also takes muscles...poor little wimpy arms too ^_^ I definitely got my workout today, but I got through it albeit with a lot of guidance and help. Now I stink

Castration and vaccinations
I also helped castrate and vaccinate the lambs today...aww... They are not the little things they were a month ago. They've gotten so big!!!

First line of action: catch the little hopping, running lamb. Then, you lift the lamb by its front legs and plop it on its back. Hold the front two legs for whoever is vaccinating/castrating

Next: Pinch and shoot. The vaccines we gave today were given sub-q. Get a pinch of skin and insert the needle, but be careful not to go through both layers of skin and out the other side. Inject vaccine (we used 2 cc). The lambs don't really mind the shot...it's the restraint they don't like as much...unless of course it happens to be a ram lamb..then their fate just gets a little worse.

Ram lamb: time to loose the Ram-a-Lamb-a ding dong. The UA does this by banding. Sooo...while some one has the ram lamb restrained as described in the first line of action, another person uses the band contraption thingy and puts a band around the scrotum. Before you allow the band to tighten though, you have to feel around and make sure both testicles are in the scrotum. Then let the band tighten and remove the contraption thingy ma bob. The poor ram lambs have a big problem with this...I guess I can't blame them. *shrug* The band cuts off circulation over time and the scrotum falls off. No more testicles! ^_^

I helped with all aspects of this. I plopped em, gave em the shot, and removed the manhood of the ram lambs ^_^ All good experience for vet school ^_^

And now....I very seriously need a shower before I'm banned from my suite by my roomies ^_^

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