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What's Up Doc? Facts

Dr. Pol and Charles work on a horse.

Dr. Pol and Charles work on a horse. (View larger version)

Photograph by NGC / Michael Stankevich

  • In 1903, the first female veterinary student in the U.S. graduated from the McKillip Veterinary College in Chicago.

  • The word "veterinarian" comes from a Latin word meaning "beast of burden".

  • The first veterinary institution dedicated to graduating African-American students was the Tuskeegee Institute in Alabama, opening in 1945.

  • Manure is important to crops because it is rich in nitrogen, phosphorous, and potassium.

  • Cows suffer from bloat, a sometimes fatal condition that arises due to rapid gas formation in the rumen, the first compartment of the stomach.

  • Pneumonia among beef and dairy cattle can cause many fatalities and is difficult to control.

  • In small animals, malignant tumors can result in death due to the rapid spread of the disease, if they are not removed in time.

  • One method used by veterinarians to examine animals is "percussion", which is simply tapping the body and listening to the sound, which can indicate to a vet that something is wrong.

  • The first veterinary college was the École Nationale Vétérinaire, established in 1761, in Lyon, France.

  • Until the 16th century the fields of medicine and veterinary medicine were closely intertwined, with the same doctors delivering both children and animals.

  • The Greeks and Romans knew of a "herd factor" among livestock, where they observed that animals kept together would suffer from the same diseases.

  • From 1919- January 1st, 2012, all dogs and cats entering Britain were subject to long-term quarantine to avoid bringing outside diseases into the country.

  • Copper sulfate, which Dr. Pol uses to treat horses suffering from founder, is useful as a desiccating agent, or something used to remove moisture.