A Day of Humor, Healing and Hope in My Life as an Animal Surgeon
by Dr. Nick Trout
Finally, a book that I'd love to shelve alongside James Herriot. Tell Me Where It Hurts gives readers an intimate look at what goes on behind the scenes in a modern animal hospital. The author, Dr. Trout -a veterinary surgeon trained in England and practicing in the US- describes many patients and incidents in his work, all compacted into the scene of one busy day. To add to the confusion of juggling numerous appointments, phone calls and consults with owners and colleagues, he often flashes back to other events earlier in his career that relate to the present case- jumping back into the current thread near the end of a chapter with a suddenness that often threw me for a moment. I had to flip back a few pages more than once to remember which dog with what problem he was talking about. He can be a little wordy, sometimes the jokes felt forced, and I never really like it when an author tosses around brand names to illustrate someone's wealth (or lack of) (probably just because I don't recognize them so they don't ring up the intended images). But aside from all those things, this was a great read.
So many things are discussed in depth. The relationship of the vet with pet owners, both good and bad. The skill of surgery and the beauty he sees in it. The frustrations of working with animals who can't tell you what they're feeling, having to deduce so many things. The heart-rending decisions, when owners must decide if their pets' life is worth the cost of the tests it takes to find out what's wrong, and the intensive care. Although dogs and cats are the mainstay of Trout's work, he also mentions working with livestock during his training, and peering over the shoulder of an exotics specialist to observe surgery on turtle. Overall, I really enjoyed this book and the appreciation it gave me for the hard work veterinarians do.
I borrowed this book from the public library.
Rating: 4/5 ........ 286 pages, 2008
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