On the 28th October and the 11th November, our NC Animal Care class was split into two groups to visit the Consulting Veterinary Services Laboratory and Disease Surveillance Centre.
While we visited, we got a tour, from Lesley McRoberts (Senoir Laboratory Scientist), of each of the labs, disinfection areas and storage areas too! We got a tour of their isolation unit where there would be strict access to enter if it was in use.
We also got shown round the walk in freezers and storage rooms. We were provided with white long dust coats to wear while the tour was taking place. While having a tour, our class was shown what diseases they look for and how they are able to notice the diseases being present on an agar plate.
They also had a massive sterilising machine which looked a bit like an oven, they used it to sterilise any utensils that needed cleaned thoroughly after use. When we walked into the lab next to the autopsy room, there was a horrible smell of dead animals and it was really warm too. They used the autopsy room to check for diseases in the dead animals that may have caused the animal to die.
They are able to do this by taking samples from the carcass and doing various tests on them. They normally take the heart, kidneys, lungs and liver from the carcass to carry out the tests on.
At the end of the tour, each one of us was offered a chance to come back in when we have any free time to do some work experience.
I’m sure many of our class mates will take this great opportunity for some great experience. And thank you for being able to show us around your labs.
By: Emma Connolly, (NC Animal Care)