Nursing with Norma April & May 2020

Hello friends! Apologies for the late blog…I’ve been doing lots of extra snoozing during these cold days.

I’m sad to report that last month we said “Farewell and Goodluck” to Nurse Bianca who has moved to Armidale with her partner. I was sad to see her leave as she would often sneak me cat biscuits when no one was looking . We wish her all the best and I know that any clinic would be lucky to have her.

Nurses Renae and Clare have recently moved into a new role and are now assisting Dr Hamish to help him keep up with the high volume of phone calls, follow ups and requests he receives daily.

As a result, we have welcomed 2 new nurses to my team! Rachel and Tara have both worked in Veterinary Clinics before and are both settling in well.

We have also welcomed Dr Crystal Ranelli to the team. Crystal has moved from Perth and is not looking forward to the cold Canberra winter HAHA.

This week Dr Crystal took me to her home for a SLEEPOVER!!! (I’m really enjoying these home visits – you humans have such large and snuggly beds and give the best treats!!!) It was a great chance for us to bond and have some warm snuggles! Although at one-point Dr Crystal SNEEZED.ON.ME!!!! You humans are so weird!! She apologised and explained to me that she is allergic to cats!!!! Dear readers, at that point I really thought that our adventure was over…. But…. she proceeded to take something called an “antihistamine” and shortly afterwards, we were best friends again!!

I spent the day exploring Dr Crystals home and looking at all the pictures of these large, wrinkly grey blobs called Elephants (that she loves!!), hiding in among her indoor plants pretending to be a tiger, sleeping in her linen cupboard and threatening to knock her 1000 piece puzzle on the floor. HAHAHA! We even had a skype session with her pets, “Seymour” the black Labrador and “Boo” the Domestic short hair cat, who are back in Perth.

I’m back at the clinic now, overseeing the reception team and being as unhelpful as always! As the cold weather rolls in I’ve found a new and annoying place to nap… under the heater on the desk.

With regards to how the clinic is operating, for the time being we will be continuing with our contactless consulting until the end of the month. We continue to have lots of interesting and challenging cases; and this week alone we have had to perform 3 blood transfusions on 2 different patients for 2 different medical conditions in less than 48 hrs!

Blood transfusions for our pets are both very similar and very different to human blood transfusions. In fact, we even use the same “blood collection bags” that they use at the Red Cross Blood Bank! Eligible dog donors will even donate the same volume as people…around 450mLs! This week, “Daisy” the yellow Labrador (owned by Dr Hamish) and “Ellie” the chocolate Labrador (owned by Nurse Katherine) were our life savers!! And both girls were more than happy to eat the doggo equivalent of a milkshake after their donations!

Dog donors must be aged between 1-7 years old, over 25 kg, be up to date with vaccinations, not be on any medication, be fit and healthy, not have received blood or blood products before and be a “Universal Donor” (or DEA 1.1 Negative) . Interestingly Dogs have 6 major blood groups and -unlike humans- in an emergency, dogs can receive a blood transfusion before being crossmatched! This is because their blood does not already contain antibodies and therefore cannot cause an immediate reaction. However, we can only do this once! If a patient required more than one unit of blood, they must be crossmatched! How cool is that?!?

Cats are different again; we only have 3 different blood groups. Cats can only donate 40-50mLs of blood at a time, and we are very likely to have a fatal reaction to any blood group that is not our own- so we must be crossmatched before a transfusion!! Cats must be 1-5 years old and over 4Kg, be an indoor only cat and be in good health.
Apparently, because I am the WQVH Clinic Cat -in return for my free accommodation- I am the “VOLUNTEER” feline donor in emergency scenarios…. Funny….I don’t actually remember ever agreeing to that????!!!!!

Well, that’s enough from me for now, I can hear Dr Hamish’s dog “Ted” raiding my food bowl again….looks like I’ll have to go tell him off myself.

Until next time,



Pin It on Pinterest

Share This