Ping pong diplomacy eased American and Chinese relations in the early 1970s. While this has absolutely nothing to with veterinary medicine, I often think of it when I auscultate a cow, especially if I am suspicious of a displaced abomasum. It just so happened that on a farm call we made last week, we came across a cow with an LDA (left displaced abomasum). Though we talked about such a condition in the food animal course of our third-year curriculum ad nauseam, I actually had never diagnosed one before nor heard what the abnormal ping sounds like in real life. A pong is suggestive of rumen atony. Finally, I had the answer right in front of me and was so excited to hear the noise.
Sterility during surgery on cows is not the same as the sterility employed in dogs and cats in the operating room, but we did as good a job as we could to ensure that the surgical area was kept clean and dry during the omentopexy. Part of my job was tail-jacking her while she stood there in the stanchion as the veterinarian’s arm reached across her viscera to puncture the abomasum and then pull it to the body wall. I could only imagine what it must have been like to be in her hooves. There were a few times when I had to press into her and occasionally give a kick to her right leg to prevent any falls. After it was all said and done, the operation was a success and the cow was doing great.