Thursday, February 09, 2006

What's the Worst That Could Happen...

Well... trinamick's (I'd put a link, but you all know who she is anyway) last comment is completely responsible for this one...

What comment you may ask? "And there's nothing quite as disgusting as a prolapse" would be the one. For those of you who don't know, and I'm guessing that means 99% of you, a prolapse occurs due to the strain of birth in cattle. And there are two different kinds of prolapse. One is called a vaginal prolapse, the other, a uterine prolapse.

For those of you preparing to eat something right about now... I'd wait to eat, or put off reading this post for a while to give it a chance to digest. But for those of you that like to rubberneck at car wrecks, keep right on reading.

The vaginal prolapse is merely where the bladder... let me go back a minute. You see, in it's essence, the cow's koochie is really not much more than a large tube sock type affair that happens to be made out of flesh. Once you understand that concept, you can visualize the difference between the two types. The vaginal prolapse is where the bladder pulls loose from it's moorings and winds up poking out the back end of a cow through their vaginal opening. The main problem with this is that the extruding bladder basically pinches off the pee tube (techincal term there, ask a vet if you don't understand) and the bladder can't drain. This leads to kidney failure and death. It looks like an inside out sock. Of course that sock is about the size of a football and stinks like... like... like a prolapse. A combination of stale urine and dried feces. If you really need to know, go smell g_s' underwear sometime. I'm sure there will be more than a slight similarity... (I kid, I kid)

How can I put this delicately... hmmm... the thing about these types of prolapse is that the "sock" isn't completely inside out, it's just like half way. Kinda like when you grab the top and pull it down from your calf to your ankle. Most of the sock is still the right way, it's just the end that's a bit off... Ok... when this happens, you have to squeeze the "juice" from the bladder and push it all back in. Unfortunately, they push it right back out again, so you end up sewing them up so that it won't come back out and heals up while on the inside.

The OTHER kind is the uterine prolapse. That's where the entire sock is inside out. I've only seen 2 cows survive this operation. The main uterine artery is very exposed and if things just don't go perfectly it gets ruptured and they bleed out internally within seconds. This is about the size of... well... it probably wouldn't fit in the trunk of Michele's new car. It's big and ungainly, and very fragile. With these, you've got to gently squeeze it back in while holding it in there. At least a two man operation, and by the time you get done your arms ache from holding onto this 100 pound blob for an extended period of time.

I suppose now you all can see why KTM said "And there's nothing quite as disgusting as a prolapse". Of course I've now got to tell you about what is actually more disgusting than that. Blame her, not me... :P

Animals get cancer just like humans do. The main difference is that we don't operate on most of the tumors like they do in humans. The one that does get the operation is when the cancer is in the eyeball. We call those cancer eyes, and you can cut those out and usually save the cow.

I'm sure you've all had a thorn or sticker caught in your sock before and had to stop and pick it out because of the irritation. Cows can't do that. Occasionally, they get a sticker in their eye and it sits there and festers until it turns cancerous. If you catch it early enough, you can save the cow. If you don't, the cancer spreads into the bone and they eventually die when it eats their brain away. Of course it's not quick, or painless, and it stinks. Imagine a large watermellon sized open sore that stinks like rotting flesh while it drips and drains blood, puss, and other nasty things (How's that gag reflex doing KTM?). Not pleasant and you can smell them from 100's of yards away.

So one time, we have this cow in the squeeze chute so that we can remove her eye. We've got her head tied up so she can't flop around and hurt us, about all she can do is groan. Now when you start this task, you deaden the eye with lidocane, the same thing your dentist uses. And there's really no good way to do it other than stick a 6 inch needle in behind the eyeball and deaden the nerves. That's the easy part. Then you've got to actually cut the eye from it's socket and sew the hole closed. They bleed terribly during the process. It's by far-- THE. MOST. GREUSOME. THING. That we have to do.

So we're removing this eye, and just by chance an alfalfa seed salesman drops by with some alfalfa for us. He's an older fellow, probably 75+ at the time, and he sees us out there so he walks out. He can't really tell what exactly is going on until he get's within 30 feet. "Oh, man..." he groans and turns his head. "Hey Lynn... How ya doin?" "Well, I was pretty good..."

For the next half hour or so, he looks away for as long as he can, then he just can't help himself and he's got to turn back and look at it. "Oh, gad... that's gotta hurt," he says, and looks away for about 30 seconds. But it's too tempting, and before it's all done he's right there watching every step. I thought he was doing really good until we flipped the eyeball over to the side and the dog grabbed it and took off with it like a prize porterhouse. It was at that point that he decided to just unload the seed and leave.

So the next time you hear anyone say, "Nothing's worse than...", you'll all know better.


Anonymous BC said...

I remember the prolaspe but this eyeball thing is pretty gross. I dont think it would gross me out to watch but having the dog run off with it is almost amusing...


2/09/2006 7:39 PM  
Blogger trinamick said...

Dear Readers of LL's blog:

I am so sorry.


P.S. My brother used to work in a locker plant, so he would save the stories of absesses and cancer-eyed cows for the dinner table. Prolapses were talked about every chance possible.

2/10/2006 9:47 AM  
Blogger NYPinTA said...

I only read the first paragraph. Then I skimmed and yet still feel... ick.

2/10/2006 10:32 AM  
Blogger LL said...

What a bunch of wimps...

Word Ver: mstew -- how fitting after this post. Mmmmm... stew...

2/10/2006 4:43 PM  
Blogger John said...

Why won't teh words vaginal prolapse leave my brain? Why?

2/13/2006 2:47 PM  
Blogger LL said...

Kinda rolls off the tongue, doesn't it...

2/13/2006 7:48 PM  

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