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Tetanus

Wundowie — 2000-02-13

Today, Mary Jane, the kangaroo woman and the veterinarian-to-be Yvonne are visiting us. They have brought everything to vaccinate out camels against Tetanus. The tetanus vaccination is very important because it is quite possible that one of the camels will be injured or step into something and get an infection, which might mean his sure death without an appropriate vaccination.

Around 11 a.m. we enter the camel enclosure. At first I make Sebastian sit down. We tie his front legs together so he won’t suddenly jump up and hurt one of us. Then I hold him by the nose leash while Mary Jane explains to us where to place the injection. She pats his neck, seizes a large piece of skin with her hand and inserts the needle directly into the upturned skin fold. Then she pulls out the syringe a little bit to make sure she hasn’t hit a vein by accident and when no blood shows, she injects the serum. After that it’s Hardy’s turn. He, too, takes the shot with no problems. “Now it’s your turn,” says Mary Jane and passes the needle to me. Since on our Pakistan Expedition I had to give our camels plenty of shots, I don’t find the procedure difficult. I follow her example, and Istan and Jafar take their injections from me with no problem. Tanja is now to give the last injection to Kadesch. At first she refuses, but Yvonne and Mary Jane can convince her of how important it is to learn it now. But when I try to get Kadesch to sit down, he shrinks back. Apparently he has seen the needle and had some bad experience with this painful instrument over the years. We do all we can to persuade him to sit down, but he is adamant. With all the excitement and fear, he has a diarrhoea in the end, and we decide to give him the shot another time.

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