Fourth year is finally here!

May 2018

Since we last spoke, my third year of veterinary school ended rather abruptly with finals on Monday-Thursday, and my first day of fourth year beginning on Friday at 8 am. I am now over halfway through my first rotation, Equine Ambulatory. Even though I am on the food animal track for graduation, one equine course is required among ambulatory, medicine, and surgery.

My experience with horses at the beginning of May prior to my rotation included one encounter, a trail ride during elementary school. Since then, I have performed and assisted with numerous physical examinations, vaccinations, dentals, blood collection, medication administration, and caslicks procedures. It has been a whirlwind of knowledge in such a short period of time. You definitely don’t remember everything from your first three years of veterinary school when put on the spot, so it prompts you to look back on your notes or read some research articles. This exercise alone further solidifies the commonalities of equine cases.

It has been great to see and work with classmates that I have had little to no interactions with previously. There is definitely a feeling of increased comradery with your classmates during fourth year. We understand what others are going through, whether it’s the long hours, little sleep, or constant feeling of being unprepared. As clinicians have explained, “you can survive anything for two weeks.” Even though, I had no interest in taking an equine rotation or practicing on horses in the future, I have a new appreciation for those that do and have been engaged in the cases.

My next stop is back to swine for the Clinical Pharmacology and Treatment Management rotation with the Swine Medicine Education Center. It will be nice to get back to a familiar species, but I will miss spending most of my day outside, interacting with a variety of clients.

Overall, my fourth year has started off extremely busy and I have quickly learned the importance of keeping a positive attitude, helping out classmates and clinicians, asking the silly questions, and not being afraid to say I don’t know.

Until next time,