Though most people equate the dog days of summer with those dreadfully hot summer days on which you are so lazy and have no desire to do anything, the term dates back to ancient times when it had a different connotation. The ancient Greeks noted the constellation Canis Major to be rising before the sun and believed that it brought with it immense heat at this time of year. This constellation looked like a dog to them, and the dog’s nose was none other than the brightest star, Sirius. The Romans would refer to this part of July as dies caniculares (which literally means “the puppy days”).
Rotating through the ambulatory rotation in the heat of the summer has its pros and cons. Although I definitely prefer not having to work on the farms in the frigid New England winter, the heat can sometimes wear me down, especially if I am not adequately hydrated. Since making the mistake of only bringing one reusable water bottle on the first day of the rotation, I have learned my lesson and not done so since then.
Ironically (in the context of the phrase), I have not seen many dogs over the past few weeks. There were a few Great Danes that belonged to a cattle farmer whose farm we visited, but the main focus of that visit was treating four calves (that were probably around the same size at the dogs come to think about it). While I have thoroughly enjoyed my time on the farms, it will be nice to return to seeing canine patients on future rotations.