Before coming to veterinary school, I worked as a receptionist at a small animal hospital near my hometown. Being a good veterinary receptionist meant that I was on the front lines for all incoming phone calls. However, a lot of the times my clients would ask me questions I didn’t know the answer to. I would always forward these queries to one of our outstanding RVTs or veterinarians. Whenever I got the opportunity, I would start researching whatever question I had been previously asked, and I almost always ended up on Merck Vet Manual due to the concise, easy to read, and searchable format that it offers.
I still use the Merck Vet Manual today! Several of my classes have problem-based components where we are given a case and then work through a series of questions to get to a diagnosis or to better understand the pathophysiological process occurring. We were encouraged to use reputable online sources like Merck to help us learn more about each case. Just this week, I used Merck to learn about red maple toxicity in horses. Horses that ingest too much of this plant can experience Heinz Body Anemia and methemoglobinemia.
I can only foresee that the Merck Vet Manual will continue to become even more important to my education than it already is. For third-year, I am sure I will use it for further research in many of the medical courses I have to take, and it will be an invaluable resource on clinics. Once I graduate, the training wheels will be off, but I will still have fabulous and easily accessible sources like the online Merck Vet Manual to help me navigate my career in veterinary medicine!