Bedside Manner

In the dim and distant, I trained and qualified as an Registered General Nurse (Nov ’81 set, if you are interested) at The Middlesex Hospital in London, W1.

I was not a very good nurse but my training has always stood me in good stead, especially today.

Daisy and I spent the day nursing a standard Shetland pony mare with hyperlipemia – a horrid illness that I knew very little about.


Poor love had been visited by the vet numerous times and by now had an intravenous drip of alternating glucose and Hartmans.


Firstly, I was there so the owner could get some rest (up for 40 hours straight and beginning to feel dizzy).


Secondly, I was there to keep the IV monitored (one drop per second) and to talk to the vet, with the owner, when he visited.


I left Daisy and OH to sort out the mess of the Thordale boys – unrug, feed, Haakon’s hoof dressing (thank you Jo), muck out, etc. while I drove over to become obssessed by the IV drip.

The bag had to be changed and I vaguely remembered what to do.  Then the thing stopped dripping with a huge air bubble in the tube bit before the drip chamber thingy.  I looked at it blankly knowing I was supposed to do something when luckily my hands remembered and did all the right things.  Most odd.  The last time I had monitored a drip was 30 years ago.

And so we pushed fluids orally and did our very best.  Every 30 minutes, I would hold the mare’s head up, while Daisy pushed a bottle of glucose water or “gruel” down her.   I hope the mare lives.  Please get all your healing vibes out for this lady.  Daisy and I really want her to live.  We gave her our best all day, while her owner slept.

This evening, the mare is looking perkier and even began to take an interest in her surroundings.

I may have been a lousy nurse for humans but at least I can remember vaguely what to do for animals!


8 thoughts on “Bedside Manner

  1. Deb Twomey

    Don’t ever underestimate any past skill that you may have learned. I have found that they will eventually have another surprising use. Healing prayers going your way

  2. Louise

    Many years ago our first Shetland pony mare went down with hyperlipemia. We believed her to have been in foal and we believe she reabsorbed the foal as a result of her illness. She recovered and had a filly foal a couple of years later who is still with us at the age of 25.

    Peggy had several more foals after that and stayed with us all her days until she was PTS aged 23.

    Sending healing vibes to this little lady and hoping she lends as well as our Peggy and has an equally long and happy life xx

  3. Dee

    You did good.Hope the little girl makes it; now I have to go look up hyperlipemia. 25 years as a medical research technician and I don’t know exactly what it is.

  4. Terri

    How encouraging that she has rallied! Kudos to you for dusting off your old medical skills and helping a friend in need.. Healing thoughts from far across the pond. Please keep us posted on her.


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