Thursday, March 8, 2012

Pass The Advil Please

These days I couldn't pick my nose if I wanted to....not that I make that a habit or anything. Tis the season for calving in sunny, windy southern Saskatchewan, and with that season you see the run of the mill things as a large animal vet including calving problems, prolapsed vaginas and prolapsed uteruses (These Are A Few Of My Favorite Things - thanks Julie Andrews). Let me say, I have gotten soft over the years doing mostly small animal medicine, or perhaps age has just crept up and I didn't notice it. The day started with a call with a heifer who decided to dump her calf bed out (blankets and all), so I rushed (1 hour drive) to get to her. If you have never seen a prolapsed uterus, consider yourself lucky. Imagine lifting (if the cow is standing) a 50-60 pound mass up to your chin, and then pushing that object what feels to be through an eye of a needle. You sweat and grunt, your arms feel like Jello, you think about people with office jobs and just when you think you have it in, it all comes blooping out. Then you start over. And over, and over if you are unlucky. Well this particular one of the morning was unlucky, and because it had been out for quite some time before I had arrived, and because I had the help of two other big strong men, we managed to make a few tears in the uterus - and this almost led me to have tears in my eyes. And the adage - if you have livestock, you have dead stock, came into play. Not a great way to start the day. I got back to the clinic, and washed the blood , sweat and tears from my eyes, and found out that it also soaked through my shirt, which changed the colour of my bra to the nicest of reds - Victoria Secret style. Well, I had to remove that, since it was soaking back into the fresh shirt I was wearing. The rest of the day was spent thinking what I could have done differently, wishing I had some Advil. I got through the rest of the day, and just before leaving there was a call - a heifer had been goofing around (ie trying to calve) all day and would I come out. Another 1/2 hour (opposite direction from home) was driven, and it was found that the heifer was not anywhere close to calving - her cervix was closed tighter than Fort Knox. So off to home I went, just in time to help Chris move some newly bought steers to a corral, and then into the house we went, to have the lamb loin that was in the slow cooker all day (thank God for slow cookers!). We just sat down to watch Coronation Street, when the phone rang - "My cow has a prolapsed uterus, can you come?" Dinner placed into the fridge, and I drove an hour to the cow, and as I drove the hour to the poor cow, I wondered if I would be able to raise my arms to my chest. There she was, standing there with her bed hanging at her hocks. With a huge heave, I brought the organ (and at that time of night, it did feel like a pipe organ) to the point of entry, and worked to get the mass back where it should be. The Uterine Gods shone down on me, and the uterus was put back in where God intended it to be. The cow was sewed up, I got cleaned up, and got back home to shower up. I warmed up my cold supper, and did get to watch my Coronation Street - looks like they had a worse day than I. A few Advil was taken, and in the morning I set out to do another prolapse - this time only a vagina. With all this grunting, I will be very surprised if I don't prolapse myself!


  1. After all of sure made a great story! One reason I am glad to have sheep and not cows...although those same sort of things seem to happen to me with the sheep...I'm sure the work requires less advil! The should'a, could'a, would'a's sure can get into a person's head when things go really wrong. Love reading you!

  2. Michelle Woodruff DVMMarch 13, 2012 at 7:50 AM

    Oh Wendy, I miss you! LOL However, I do not miss prolapsed uteri/uteruses... I really miss Coronation Street, we haven't had TV for over year now. It is the only program I miss. Sounds like a tough day you had. Funny, while I was reading this, I was thinking "that's exactly what I remember thinking a time or two when the bloody uterus wouldn't go back job....yes...must work on that!" What would we talk/write about if our lives weren't so full eh? Take care, love reading the blog, keep them coming.