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I created this blog as an instrument of what I have encountered in the world of veterinary medicine as a proud vet student. Comments and suggestions are welcome here at;


Aina Meducci 2012


The following blog posts is not genuinely from my research but through readings and citation from trusted website. I do not own any of the copyright and therefore you may use it at your own risk


Happy reading!
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Blood sampling in animals

I was recently coming from the farm trip and the thing I enjoyed while working is blood sampling. Honestly, bleeding program is the most exciting activity for me; to see the blood oozing out from vein to the tube and you can't help the satisfied feeling because you have done it. However, I have only learn to do venipuncture to animals such as sheep, goat and cattle. I have not put a try on other animals (it'll be pleasure to practice) and here's some information about blood sampling technique in animals.



1. Needle

Needle size : The smaller the number, the bigger the lumen

Needle and needle sheath

2. Holder

Holder: To direct the blood from the needle to the vacutainer

3. Vacutainer tube

Containers containing coagulant (commonly used in veterinary medicine)
  • Red top: Contain clot activator and gel for serum seperation
  • Orange top: Contain thrombin (a rapid clot activator) for STAT serum testing
Containers containing anticoagulant (Commonly used in veterinary medicine)
  • Green top: Contain sodium heparin or lithium heparin for plasma determination
  • Purple top: Contain ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (EDTA) strong anticoagulant used for full blood count and blood films.

Where to take the blood??

1.Sheep and goat: Jugular vein

2. Cattle: Coccygeal vein and jugular vein

Coccygeal vein

Jugular vein

3. Pigs: External jugular vein and marginal ear vein

Jugular vein

Marginal ear vein

4. Horse: Jugular vein

5. Cats: Jugular vein and medial saphenous vein

cat_veni_bag.JPG (24169 bytes)

Jugular vein

cat_med_saph.jpg (28898 bytes)

cat_veni_saph_needle.jpg (24833 bytes)

Saphenous vein

6. Dog: Jugular vein and cephalic vein

Jugular vein

Cephalic vein

7. Poultry: Wing vein

Wing vein bleeding

8. Elephant: auricular (ear) vein, cephalic vein, saphenous vein

Saphenous vein

Auricular vein

9. Rabbit, rat or mice : Marginal ear vein, jugular vein, cephalic vein, saphenous vein

10. Iguana (or some cold-blooded animal) : Ventral tail vein

Ps: When time comes, I'll post the blood sampling procedure

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Parasitlogy; McMaster Technique for fecal egg count

Aim: To check the effectiveness of the anthelmintics by counting the estimate number of the worm's eggs.

Fecal egg count using modified McMaster technique is currently the main measurement used for selection for parasite resistance.


  • 2 beakers or plastic equipment
  • Weighing scale
  • Measuring cylinder
  • Mortar and pastle
  • Filter
  • Spatula
  • Pipette
  • Saturated salt solution
  • McMaster slide
  • Compound Microscope
  • Animal feces


1. Weigh 3 grams of faeces and place into a container.

scales and container into which faeces are being placed

scales and container into which faeces are being placed

** Feces must be fresh. Wear gloves.

2. Add 45ml saturated salt solution

flotation fluid being added to container

3. By using mortar and pastle grind off the feces (to remove the fiber) and filter the solution into another beaker.

pouring solution from one beaker to the second beaker

4. Stir the solution by using spatula and leave for 2-3 minute (to allow the fiber to become sedimentary at the bottom of the beaker

stirring contents of beaker

5. Pipette the solution and fill the first compartment of the McMaster slide

filling McMaster chambers

filling McMaster chambers

filled McMaster chamber

** the second compartment may be filled by other sample
for example: 1st compartment = sample A
2nd compartment = sample B

6. Observe the McMaster slide under the compound microscope at 10x10 mag


** Do not use 40x and 100x because the objective will break the thick upper part plate of the McMaster slide.

7. Identify and count all eggs within the area of both chambers


8.The number of eggs per gram can be calculated as follows:

Count the number of eggs within the grid of each chamber, ignoring those outside the squares. For example:

Egg counting
Sample A Sample B

*Read from the first left row down to the second row up to the third row and next..


Sample A

12 eggs x 100 epg = 1200 epg

*100 epg is the times factor for the McMaster technique

Sample B

15 eggs x 100 epg = 1500 epg

Interpretation of the results

More than 3000 epg, the animals must be given anthelmintics or change the deworming drugs because the higher the epg numbers indicates the worm's resistance against the anthelmintic drugs.
  • Eggs are produced only by fertile adult female (or hermaphrodite) worms and will, therefore, be absent in immature or single sex infections
  • The daily output of eggs by fertile females is influenced by host-physiological factors such as stress or lactation ( increased ) or immunity ( decreased )
  • Chemotherapy can also affect egg-production e.g. corticosteroids ( increased ) or sub-lethal anthelmintic doses (decreased)
  • Some food-stuffs may have a similar effect e.g. tannin-rich forages (decreased )
  • The concentration of eggs (per gram of faeces) is influenced by the daily volume of faeces being produced by the host, the rate of passage by the ingesta through the intestine, and the distribution of eggs throughout the faecal mass.
  • Some types of eggs are heavier than others and may not float well in solutions of lower specific gravity (e.g. Fasciola)
  • Some eggs from different species are indistinguishable (particularly trichostrongylids and strongylids). This complicates clinical interpretation as some species (e.g. Haemonchus) produce many more eggs per day than others (e.g. Ostertagia).

Ruminant eggs (commonly found)

Trichuris egg

Trichuris ovis

Length 70-80 µm
Width 30-42 µm
Lemon-shaped with polar plugs
Granular contents, no blastomeres

Nematodirus battus egg

Nematodirus battus

Length 164 µm
Width 72 µm
Shell thin, brown, parallel sides

Nematodirus filicollis egg

Nematodirus filicollis

Length 150 µm
Width 75 µm
Shell thin, colourless

Nematodirus helvetianus

Length 212 µm
Width 97 µm
Shell thin, colourless

Toxocara vitulorum egg

Toxocara vitulorum

Length 69-95 µm
Width 60-77 µm
Thick albuminous shell
Granular contents
Pitted surface to shell



(M. expansa and M. benedeni)

Fasciola hepatica egg

Fasciola Hepatica

Length 130-145 µm
Width 70-90 µm
Regular ellipse
Thin shell
Operculum at one pole
Granular yellowish-brown contents filling whole egg

Paramphistomum egg


Length 160 µm
Width 90 µm
Operculum on one pole
Pale grey to greenish colour

Trichostrongylus egg


Approximately 80 µm long
Broad ellipse
Barrel-shaped side walls
Blastomeres present, number vary

Source: The RVC/FAO Guide to Veterinary Diagnostic Parasitology

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Restraining domestic animals

A continuation from yesterday's farm work. I found a good web source that shows how to restrain domestic animals in various ways. Some I have seen in the farm and some not, but it's good to know it all though. :)


Occasionally, livestock must be restrained for examination and treatment. Restraining animal with care to ensure safety and minimum of stress.

Cattle and water buffalo restraining

Grasping the nostrils with thumb and finger
(I've never seen this one)

Upper jaw held by a rope

1. Double an eight-foot long light rope or sash cord in the middle.
2. Thread the two ends through the resulting loop to form another loop.
3. Slip it slowly over the animal's upper jaw towards the back of the mouth and pull it tight.
4. Tie the other ends of the rope to a post. Be sure that the head is slightly elevated.

Grasping the tail

Hold firmly the base of the tail and raise it straight over the back of animal

Restrain the hock (animal with mastitis)

Double-loop method

To reduce the possibility of injury to either penis or mammary gland of animals

1. Tie the animal to a post or tree with the use of a rope.
2. Double a long rope. Put the middle of the long rope over the neck of the animal.
3. Pass one end below the elbow, pass over the back and down the groin at the other side
4. Do the same with the other end of the long rope on the other side of the animal.
5. Pull the two ends of the rope.

Tying legs forelegs to a post or tree trunk
(looks creepy isn't?)

Tying all legs together

Restraining the calf

Goat restraining

Cradling a kid

Holding the goat between knees

Pinning a goat towards the wall with knees

Restraining around the hock

Pig restraining

Slipping a rope around the snout

Restraining smaller pigs

Restraining bigger pigs

Tie the snout and hind legs to post
(does it painful?)

Poultry restraining

Hold the birds by the legs and turn it upside down

Sources: Restraining animals and simple treatment;Humanity Development library

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