The Vet’s Tail – What’s the Point

Is there a point to having a veterinary blog? To be honest, I don’t know.

I think there’s an idea in everybody’s mind (well, everyone that isn’t a vet) about what veterinary medicine is. Vets are smart. After all, there’s only a handful of veterinary schools, so it’s actually way harder to get into vet school than medical school. There’s a lot of playing with puppies and kittens. Sometimes we do cool surgery. Sometimes we euthanize animals, and that’s sad.

I’ve seen a lot of veterinary websites and blogs. Some are directed just to other vets, talking about medical conditions or cool surgical techniques. Some are directed to pet owners, ways they can take better care of their pets, and layperson information on conditions their pet may have.

What I haven’t seen is a blog for everyone, a blog that lays out what its’s really like to be a vet. The adrenaline rush of getting the emergency GDV case into surgery and saving a life. How challenging it can be to read a simple chest x-ray. How hard it is to euthanize 4 patients before lunch (that was my day today.) And, yes, of course, all the puppy and kitten kisses. But also the aggressive animals, the serious and sometimes disfiguring bite wounds.

I’m in a lot of really wonderful Facebook groups for veterinary medicine. Ones where I’ve realized that there is something about this job that links us, that makes us a real tribe that relies on each other, more so than any other career I can think of. Maybe I think it’s time the rest of the world sees that too, sees what it’s like to be us on a daily basis. Perhaps someone considering vet school will read this and the information and stories here will take off those rose-colored glasses and let them see what it’s really like. Some may decide after reading this that it’s not for them. Some may rise to the challenge. Maybe my colleagues will follow this blog, and remember that even when it seems hard, we all share the same experiences and are in this together.

So, I don’t know. I think I’m a little bored after transitioning from emergency medicine to general practice, but it was better for my family (something I’ll discuss later). I thought this blog might be a way to occupy me, to give me a challenge and to open some eyes. A catharsis of sorts. Maybe no one will read it, but I hope someone does, and I hope it helps.

So this isn’t just my tale (tail?). It belongs to everyone.