Probang used on cattle for FMD sampling (© All rights reserved by Eufmd)

Probang is surgical tool in veterinary medicine used to reach obstructions and either force them along the oesophagus by (gently and carefully) using the probang as a ram or, by using a hollow probang into which a rod with a corkscrew is attached, extract objects such as pieces of potato or turnip too long for the paunch, or to take samples like for example foot and mouth disease. It is used mainly for cattle, but it can be used also for small ruminants and other animals.


Kahun papyrus

Veterinary papyrus

Veterinary papyrus

Kahun papyrus (c. 1900 b.C.) is first written data about veterinary medicine and probably the most famous of these ancient Egyptian medical texts and provides the most extensive detail on veterinary matters. Several treatments for some diseases are described, including diseases of cattle, dogs, birds and fish and they are concentrating largely on afflictions that concern the animal’s eyes.

This is a part of text from the large fragment of papyrus:

[Treatment for the eyes (?) of a dog with (?)] the nest of a worm …………… if when it courses (?) scenting (?) the ground, it falls down, it should be said “mysterious prostration as to it.” When the incantations have been said I should thrust my hand within its hemu, a henu of water at my side. When the hand of a man reaches to wash the bone of its back, the man should wash his hand in this henu of water each time that the hand becomes gummed (?) until thou hast drawn forth the heat-dried blood, or anything else or the hesa (?). Thou wilt know that he is cured on the coming of the hesa. Also keep thy fingers ………….

Treatment for the eyes (?) of a bull with the wind (cold ?) If I see [a bull with] wind, he is with his eyes running, his forehead ? uden (wrinkled ?) the roots (gums ?) of his teeth red, his neck swollen (or raised ?): repeat the incantation for him. Let him be laid on his side, let him be sprinkled with cold water, let his eyes and his hoofs (?) and all his body be rubbed with gourds (?) or melons, let him be fumigated with gourds ……… wait herdsman ……………. be soaked ………….. that it draws in soaking ……….. until it dissolves into water: let him be rubbed with gourds of cucumbers. Thou shalt gash (?) him upon his nose and his tail, thou shalt say as to it, “he that has a cut either dies with it or lives with it.” If he does not recover and he is wrinkled (?) under thy fingers, and blinks (?) his eyes, thou shalt bandage his eyes with linen lighted with fire to stop the running.

Treatment for the eyes (?) of a bull with ushau in winter If I see a bull with [usham] in winter, and he is blinded (?) his two eyes are thick; gash thou as above. If I see abull with ushau in winter from cold, since its arrival in (?) summer, his temples are wrinkled (?), his eyes running, his stomach groaning (?), he does not walk (?) ………………….. thou all its body with ……….. as is done to one with a bruise (?).]

Note: According to this source, “ushau” is probably trypanosomiasis.

African horse sickness status

World map of African horse sickness status

World map of African horse sickness status

In May 2012, World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) added African horse sickness to the list of diseases for which the OIE has put in place a specific procedure for official recognition of disease status.

Currently (as of May 2013) there are 54 countries in the World which are officially free from African horse sickness.  Those countries are:

Algeria Croatia Luxemburg Qatar
Argentina Cyprus Malaysia Romania
Australia Czech Republic Malta Singapore
Austria Denmark Mexico Slovakia
Azerbaijan Finland Netherlands Slovenia
Belgium Republic of Macedonia New Caledonia Spain
Bolivia France New Zealand Sweden
Bosnia and Herzegovina Germany Norway Switzerland
Brazil Hungary Oman Tunisia
Bulgaria Ireland Paraguay Turkey
Canada Italy Peru United Kingdom
Chile Kuwait Poland United States of America
Chinese Taipei Liechtenstein Portugal Uruguay
Colombia Lithuania

Online veterinary anatomy museum

Online veterinary anatomy museum

Online Veterinary Anatomy Museum (OVAM) project aims to provide access to veterinary anatomical resources in the form of a virtual museum. It is a collection of anatomy resources organized into categories according to the species, system and region covered. The museum now hosts digital assets from over 15 institutions including all the UK veterinary school and vet schools in the rest of Europe, India and Australasia.

To see online veterinary anatomy exhibits within one collection please visit:

World Veterinary Year stamps (Portugal, 2011)

To celebrate the World Veterinary Year in 2011 Portugal post have issued four stamps and one souvenir sheet to illustrate, in a rather colorful way, various aspects of the veterinary profession by picturing various domestic or farm animals.

The first stamp picturing a pig is associated to the animal protection and health. The stamp with the DNA symbol inside the horse stands for the genetic research for improvement of animal breeding. The cat stamp pictures the medicines and medical products used for animal. And the last stamp, the one that pictures a cow producing milk is associated with public hygiene.

The souvenir sheet is associated to “The Centro de Recuperação de Animais Silvestres de Lisboa – LxCRAS, a structure under the City Council of Lisbon and part of the National Network of Centers for the Recovery of the Fauna. It is located in the Biodiversity Space in Monsanto Forest Park. It was officially inaugurated on 15 October 1997 to meet the growing demand and request of the citizens of Lisbon for the collection, reception and recovery of autochthonous wounded or weak wild animals.

Technical details:

Issue Date: 07.09.2011
Designer: João Machado
Printer: Joh. Enschedé
Process: Offset
Colours: 4-colour offset
Size: 40 x 30,6 mm, 125 x 95 mm
Values: EUR 2.50, 2.80, 3.83, 4.01