The one thing that I always looked forward to over Christmas break was spending Christmas dinner with my family!
Now that we are two years into our COVID-19 pandemic, and SARS-CoV2 and all it’s glory is here to stay, we need to adapt. It was fine when the government said, stay at home for two weeks and this will all blow over. The goal was to stop those cases from going up, up, up. We needed to flatten the curve. If we all worked together we’d beat this virus.
Here we are early 2022, and the fear of COVID is our life. Or, for the anti-vaxxers, the fear of vaccine side effects is our life. For some people, they can thrive inside a bubble. If they have a family unit where all the good in the world is within their home. But there are people who live alone.
I was just thinking about how many people I have been exposed to over the past two years. I wear my mask, wash my hands frequently, don’t go to huge social gatherings, but I’m feeling like I’m still missing out on life!
My mother and step-father are currently in Mexico. As soon as their age group was able to get the vaccine, they did. I waited. Once the vaccine had been out for the length of the human gestational period, my husband and I got vaccinated. There was a fertility doctor that was interviewed on a livestream (Dr. Nayot), who mentioned that since pregnancy is a high risk condition that if you got COVID you would more likely end up intubated in the ICU, and therefore my husband and I agreed that it wasn’t a risk we were willing to take. Sure, I was scared of the myocarditis side effects of the vaccine. I have an arrhythmia, that is excerbated by sleep deprivation and alcohol, but I couldn’t be sure that I wouldn’t develop a severe side effect. Thankfully, all I had was some pain at the injection site. Hubby had some flu-like symptoms, but was good after a day.
I went with the Moderna mRNA vaccine based on Dr. Nayot’s recommendations.
I know I haven‘t posted much on here! I’ve been investing a LOT of time in my content on TikTok.
This video has over 170k views on it. People like these weird and crazy things!
This was my first Cuterebra rabbit patient. Of course I learnt about the parasite in vet school, but never thought I would see a case!
The lifecycle of this parasite is interesting. The bot fly lays eggs around the rabbit burrow opening. When the eggs get warm from the body of the rabbit, they hatch and the L1 larvae attach themselves to the fur of the animal, and make their way into the mouth, nose or eyes of the rabbit. Already sounds gross! Once they are in the body, they migrate towards the skin’s surface and create a little capsule home for themselves. As they get older and larger they develop a little breathing hole in the skin which you can see with your naked eye! Ugh!
The larval migration takes 3-4 weeks, so you would have to back track about a month to know when the rabbit was actually infected.
Treatment is just as the video shows, removal of the larva. If not, the lifecycle continues with pupation. The pupae fall out of the breathing hole into the environment and an adult emerges to go on to lay eggs.
Prevention and treatment will be dependent on the species you are treating. For rabbits, everything is extra-label. It’s not like we have a specific pharmaceutical for botfly larvae. But they tend to die off with macrocyclic lactones (avermectins). I typically use kitten labeled selamectin in rabbit patients.
For more video content, please head over to my TikTok page!
Edit August 13, 2023:
For those of you who enjoy a cuterebra removal. Here is one in a ferret!