Every year senior internships involve a wider range of occupations and interests, from businesses to charity organizations to veterinary practices, where Evan Abernathy is paving the way at the Oradell Animal Hospital.
For Evan, this is the perfect place for him to gain some valuable experience that could help him in the future.
“I’ve always wanted to be a vet because I love working with animals, and looking at the website I saw that the hospital did almost everything; so, I decided to give it a try,” Evan said.
Senior Experience each week brings new people and new experiences. A normal day starts with Evan going in and meeting with his mentor, who then assigns him to one of the veterinarians at the hospital. Throughout the day, Evan shadows the veterinarian and contributes by making flushes, which includes putting the contents of an IV bag into a syringe. To some, this routine might seem monotonous, but that is far from the truth. There is always something new to observe for those who are interested.
“I didn’t expect the Hospital to do things like acupunctures and rehabilitations, and I was also surprised by how large the facility was,” Evan said. “I also didn’t think I would be able to do much because I’m not allowed to handle or perform anything on the animals directly, but they do let me do other things which I really appreciate.”
One of Evan’s favorite things about his internship, in fact, is being able to see all the different types of animals that come in for help and all the different treatments and procedures that the doctors in the hospital perform for and on the animals.
“I haven’t seen any really strange or rare animal yet; they’re mostly just dogs, cats, some ferrets and rabbits, but the types of treatments that the hospital does are interesting,” Evan said. “They do everything from acupuncture, which is placing needles on pressure points to relieve stress, to pulmonary stenosis, which is widening arteries in the heart to allow blood to flow normally.”
During the course of the year Evan has witnessed a number of special procedures.
“The most amazing thing I have seen so far is seeing a cat get its leg amputated and then seeing it totally fine only an hour after the operation,” Evan said. “It was just unbelievable how fast that cat recovered.”
Not every situation has a happy ending. The scariest thing he has experienced so far was seeing a dog collapse. Although the vet performed emergency CPR and other emergency procedures, the dog did not recover.
“The thing I hate most about being at the Animal Hospital is seeing an animal die or be put down. It’s really hard sometimes because you get this connection with the animal as you try to figure out how to help it. But in some cases there’s nothing you can do,” Evan said.
Despite the emotional difficulties that come with being a veterinarian, Evan’s mind has not been swayed. Being an intern at the Oradell Animal Hospital only further convinced him that being a veterinarian was the right profession for him.
“I would totally recommend this internship to anyone who wants to be a vet or go into the medical field,” Evan said. “But don’t do this internship if you really love animals because it gets really hard sometimes emotionally.”