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Guest Blog: Snake bite

Hectic Friday morning at our animal hospital. The waiting room is already full with wagging tails and nervous meows, but first I have to make sure that "Bandit" a brave 14 year-old Border Collie mix, fresh from a night at the animal emergency clinic, is in stable condition after he got bit by a Copperhead last night. The owner, worried about his dear companion, follows me in the treatment room where I do my physical exam, while my techs get everything ready for Bandit. Half an hour later, I am catching up with my appointments. I enter the first room and immediately apologize to my client and her pet for the long wait. "I am so sorry I made you wait. I have a snake bite patient who needed immediate care. Thank you so much for your patience!" She looks at me with a scared look, "How really? A snake bite? What are you supposed to do in a case like that? I thought you had to go to the emergency room." I tell her that yes, getting emergency care was the right thing to do, and that my patient has been transferred from the local emergency clinic. While I examine her dog and administer the vaccine, she looks at me, curious, " Is the man going to be ok?" I look at her, a little confused, "I do not know. What man?" "Well, your patient with the snake bite." I refrain a smile, surprised and honored that a client would think so highly of her veterinarian. "Oh, his dog got bit, not him. I do not know how to treat humans!" I did remind her before she left that in case of a snake bite, one is to rush to the closest emergency room, the one with M.Ds. P.S: I saw "Bandit" a few days ago. He has fully recovered from the snake bite! He gave me a look that I can best describe as "Bring it! I eat snakes for breakfast!" Medelita Guest Blogger: Julie Pearson, DVM. Julie is currently working on the East Coast as a small animal veterinarian. She was born and raised in France, where she got her degree before getting licensed in the USA. She enjoys being a general practitioner, and feels privileged to be there for her patients, whether it is for a wellness visit or a serious medical issue. Julie has been wearing Medelita since August 2010, and is seen here wearing her scrubs.