Posts Tagged ‘anesthesia’

Anesthesia for the Pet Practitioner

Friday, April 15th, 2011

Anesthesia for the Pet Practitioner, Third Edition

Five Stars!


I love this book.

Anesthesia is the most important thing we do as veterinary teams.

Those are some pretty strong statements.  OK, not the first one.  I love almost every book I read.  I have no minimum standard.  Everyone’s in!  But I love this book on a whole deeper level than most.

Is anesthesia really the most important thing we do as veterinary teams?  I mean, we do a lot of things!  I asked my own team the other day, actually as we were all standing around a dog who was at the beginning of an anesthetic procedure.  Around the dog… “Yeah.”  “Yeah.”  “Yeah.”  “Yeah.”  “Really, guys?”  I said.  “We do a lot of things.”  They proceeded to tell me exactly why anesthesia is the most important thing we do much more articulately than I am about to do here, but I will try to share their wisdom…and my convictions…with you.

Anesthesia is the most important thing we do.

I realize that is a sweeping statement.  I realize that between all the team members and all the pets and all the clients and all the diseases and injuries and preventative care measures, there are countless things we do, and it is unfair to say ONE thing is the most important.  It is.  Nothing else we do carries the same risks, even to healthy pets, as anesthesia does. It is a powerful thing. This book reflects that well.

The Cover: I would be remiss if I did not mention the cover of Anesthesia for the Pet Practitioner.  It has a sleepy (not sedated, just sleepy) Golden Retriever at the top!  What’s not to love?  SO cute!!  And the bottom half of the cover is a pretty blue with a bit of orange.  Still getting used to the orange, but it is nice.  So…

Five Stars on the Cover!


The rest of this review is at:

The Wagging Tail Blog

I was going to put it all in one place, but The Wagging Tail is a professional site geared towards veterinarians, and I did not want to leave out the silly parts of my review, you know, like how cute the cover is!  Also, Banfield’s website was just updated, and it looks amazing.  I haven’t clicked through all the pages, but what I have seen looks really neat.

So that is here, and more is there, but if you really want to know if the book is all that…don’t take my word for it!  I think you will really like this one, vet teams.  I saw that it on Amazon for twenty-two dollars new – crazy inexpensive for a veterinary text!  I may buy a copy to have at home.  I also just saw that it is available online for free!  I am still not used to “turning pages” on the computer screen, but if you are not stuck in the last millinium and like things like Kindle and iBooks, you will like that cool feature!

And to all our other friends…Aren’t you glad we obsess about this stuff?  Do you agree that anesthesia is the most important thing that veterinary teams do?

I Love You Obie

Monday, May 10th, 2010

It was almost ten years ago I accidently killed my own dog while anesthetizing him for a routine dental cleaning.  I have not lost a dog to anesthesia before or since.  I have lost two cats and a kitten to anesthetic deaths, all prior to Obie.  I have anesthetized thousands of patients with no complications.  Statistics don’t matter when your pet is 100% dead.

Obie was brought into the hospital I worked at in Littleton with his friend Herbie Dog.  Their owner had passed away and their caretaker did not know what to do with them.  We had Benji Dog at home.  Obie came with the name “Benji” so we renamed him Obie (O.B.) for “Other Benji.”  For ten months, it was really fun to have three goofy old Poodles to walk with and play with and just hang out with.  You will have to get Max the Cat’s side of the story from him.

Obie died first, suddenly and tragically.  I don’t remember how long our team performed CPR, I just remember we didn’t hold back with anything we had, and were exhausted and shocked when we finally quit.

Benji died also suddenly and tragically five months later, but with none of the horrible heart-clawing guilt to go with the sorrow.  And Herbie, Herbie was the best of all I suppose.  We had him euthanized at sixteen and a half years of age when he could no longer function due to the severity of his arthritis.  Less than two years after we adopted Benji, our first dog, and all three were gone.  My grieving for Benji and Herbie, if the strands can be seperated, which of course they can’t be completely, was sad and straight-forward and almost complete.  My grieving for Obie was jagged and painful, stilted and at times abandoned, an open wound that I did not know how to treat.

I have always struggled with depression, but the struggle has been multiplied since losing Obie.  Struggling is better than not struggling I suppose.  I was seven months pregnant with my first baby, Amanda, when Obie died.  I really wanted my Grandma Amanda to meet my daughter Amanda.  My Grandma Amanda died the same month as Obie did.  I warn clients that when two horrible things happen in a short span of time, the grief is not added, it is multiplied.  And I hover to make sure they are ok.  But I let them assume that I know because I am a veterinarian, not because I still cry when I try to revisit September 2000.

Obie was our blind dog.  I am not sure he even realized it, as he was very well adapted.  We called Obie our Swiffer Puppy, because he was soft and fuzzy and white and his fur collected everything.  He had two surgeries to attempt to restore his sight.  Neither restored his sight, but he came through both surgeries without a hitch, which I did not even think to thank God for at the time.  After each surgery, he wore an e-collar to assure he would not paw at his eyes while they healed.  Obie was the only pet I ever knew who LOVED his e-collar.  He would stand in the middle of the living room listening for Max the Cat or Herbie Dog, then run at them full speed, picking their hind end up in his e-collar and make them play “wheelbarrow” with him across the room.  Then Max would scowl, or Herbie would stand confused, and Obie would smile a big blank-eyed smile with his tongue hanging out.  He had the best smile, as beautiful as any Greyhound’s smile.  He was the happiest dog I have ever known.

When Obie died, Mom and Dad sent us a TCBY gift certificate and a card that I still have.  I realized recently that I have not been back to TCBY, my favorite yogurt place ever, since we used that gift certificate.  How could I have not realized that sooner?  It has been almost ten years.  That’s a weird thing not to notice.  Now that I have, I probably still won’t go back.

Stephanie gave me a very sweet card too and a bag of Hershey Hugs, and a real one.  I have also not eaten Hugs since I ate that entire bag in one day.  Also weird.  I love chocolate.I miss you Obie.  I love you.  I’m so sorry buddy.

I have told myself all these years that I have not written about Obie or discussed his death much because I don’t want people to think anesthesia isn’t safe.  It is.  I also probably do not want people to think leaving their pets in my care isn’t safe.  Who knows why I waited?  I didn’t even know I had frozen yogurt and chocolate issues until recently.

But also, I probably haven’t said much because I didn’t want to go through this.  What was I thinking writing this when I am alone?  It has been in my head so long, I guess I just figured it was a rainy, depressing day anyways, so why not?  This is horrible.  But maybe it will be better later.  Most days are.  Some are still pretty rough though.  Guess I just made this one of them.