The 1st Intern Adventure

This past weekend was a big one for the interns of the MMSC. We were all introduced for the first time. Julia and Irene, both students at the University of Kentucky, are two of the other new interns at the MMSC this semester. They will be working primarily on the training aspects of working here at the MMSC. After some brief introductions, we were on our way. Armed with new companions, we were ready to follow Melissa on our intern adventure!

The first stop on our journey was KESMARC, an equine rehabilitation facility located in Versailles, KY. Taking any type of horse, from mini to Clydesdale, the facility is well-equipped to address most any equine injury. They have a pool with a depth of 16 feet, an aqua-tread, a hot-walker, an indoor track, a vibrating platform, and a hyperbaric chamber. With this type of rehab arsenal, KESMARC has made a name for itself in the equine world. While we were there, touring the facility with Victor Torres, we saw them swim a horse in the pool. This allows the horse to exercise and maintain muscle without stressing injured tendons. We also saw them walk a horse on the aqua-tread. This also takes pressure off of injured joints while allowing the horse to exercise and work muscles. This is a rehab method often preferred for dressage horse. Because of the resistance provided by the water, the horse develops leg muscles and movements that result in a light and animated trot. The hyperbaric chamber was another interesting element of our tour. Though it was under maintenance, Victor explained to us the benefits of using a hyperbaric chamber. By using 99% pure oxygen, the chamber helps facilitate healing. All in all, it was an exciting and informative stop on our journey. Now armed, not only with new companions, but also with new information in our equine arsenal, we started on the second and final leg of our journey.

The last stop on our Melissa-led intern-adventure was Woodford Equine Hospital. Our guide for this leg of our adventure was Dr. Dan Routh. Dr. Routh took us through the forest of the equine pharmacy, taking the time to explain to us some of the intricacies of equine medicine. He also took us through the tunnels of hospital administration, giving us a bit of history about the creation and foundation of the hospital. He also explained a little bit about what they do to prepare for surgery, showing us some of the recovery stalls, surgery rooms, and equipment. All of there were wonderful. But, by far, my favorite part was visiting the barns. It was great to see a mare and her foal who were preparing to go home after being treated at Woodford. What better way to see the results of a job well done? We ended out time at Woodford Equine Hospital with a picture of the interns and Dr. Routh around a poster highlighting the partnership between Woodford and the MMSC. (Woodford is the official vet of the MMSC.)

This weekend was one centered on healing, on making sure the horse receives the best care he can, either to treat an illness or recover from an injury. Both legs of our intern-adventure dealt with some aspect of healing in the equine industry. It was amazing to see and learn about that aspect of the equine world, to have people take time out of their busy day to share some knowledge with eager learners. This was just the first weekend. I can’t wait to see what the rest of the semester will bring!