So you have to bear my description instead. My confession will be concise.
Rat dissection – our initiation to the world of medicine, I suppose. It’s very easy really – we are to dissect a rat (two students to a rat), and just have a good look at the insides. Oh yes, and draw certain organs and systems. But here is the irony – we did not look at our rats to draw. We simply traced out a standard picture taken from the internet. Our rats died in vain….heh.
For some strange reason, bio classes are overpopulated with girls. This in turn causes a problem – too many girls who refuse to touch a rat. Girls who were squeamish fought to have a boy as a partner (oh you lucky males), or a girl who was not so freaked over rodents. Yours truly was the not-so-squeamish, so my partner was very free…she was the one that took the video. Not of me dissecting though, thank goodness.
Executing the rats reminded me of the Holocaust. They were placed in a large glass jar – about ten or so – and cotton soaked in chloroform was dropped in. With the jar being transparent (duh), we had the privilege of witnessing the rats dying. It was not painless and it was certainly not very quick either. We were all much freaked that halfway during the “operation”, they would wake up, so we put in lots of cotton, and we left them there for a long time…piled up on one another, scrabbling, scratching each other, jumping and sliding against the smooth walls, dying…until their fur was soaked in chloroform.
Was that too much for you?
After our teacher demonstrated with a rat (which horror upon horrors, was a PREGNANT rat @.@) , it was our turn.
I eagerly fished out a rat by the tail, pinned it to the board, and hacked it open with a scalpel, and bellowed a MUAHAHAHAHAHAA…..
No lah. Of course not. In fact I was having a very hard time picking a rat because I wanted a male, so that I know I’d never dissect a PREGNANT rat. Of course none of us knew how to differentiate between male and female rats, so in the end I chose a thin one that (hopefully) was not pregnant. Then I had a very hard time poking a pin through its paw. You are supposed to do that to all FOUR limbs so that the body does not move. For some strange reason it reminded me of the Crucifixion.
Although I was not squeamish, I am no sadist either. Ok, I admit it, my hand was shaking when I was holding the pin. I think I took five minutes for the first paw…because it just seems so…wretched. Cruel.
But once the first paw was pierced, I got on fine. Snip, snip, snip, pin, pin, pin. We took a good look at everything…and yes, it was NOT pregnant. Yay.
And now for the real horror: what we did after.
Me – ok la, I did a few awful things as well….I pull out the intestines just to see how long they were. They were very very VERY long. I also took a look at its teeth (which needed some Colgate, stat). But that was all. I packed it all in nicely back as well as I could, and then wrapped it very neatly in paper.
The rest of my mates, once they got over their squeamish feelings…well, some chopped of the head, someone pulled out the intestines too…but instead of going “oh wow, very long”…he/she started making it lay out around the rat…just to see how long was in proportion to it. Others weren’t paying attention to our teacher and dissected the head instead and looked at the brains instead of the digestive system.
The worst (best?) was this: He skinned the whole rat. Oh yes he did, and he did it very well for a first timer (or is he a beginner??? Hmm). EVERYTHING came off in a nice fur mat…including the little cute ears. I couldn’t help admiring his handiwork. That would be one cool handphone case. Oh no, did I just say that?
The worst (best?) part: he said “Teacher, can I preserve this and take home??”
=____=||| Bio students no life la.
What happened to the rats in the end? We are to wrap them and toss them into a huge garbage bag. I doubt everyone wrapped theirs though. I think they just threw them in. I, on the other hand, thought we would be able to bury them in the school field. Wouldn’t that be some way of expressing remorse? The field would become a cemetery for rats and at night their spirits would come back and haunt the school (which would freak all the scouts out HAHA!).
So yep. That’s all. We were supposed to do it again to study the respiratory system, but our class was very soft-hearted and told our teacher (who was very soft-hearted as well), that since we have used our first rats to the fullest capacity (we checked out every system the body could possibly have), why waste? So we were off the hook. They felt like saints.
I was thinking that, those rats were probably raised in captivity, were fed on processed food and kept in cramped spaces, to be sold off to us students. Even if we didn’t buy them, they would have been bought by others. What difference did we make? Their suffering shall persist, from generation to generation.
And that was my report on rat dissection. Videos and pictures would come AFTER I leave school.
Holiday now, and apart from taking a break I hope to clear up some things, write something, read something and study SOMETHING.....IF that happens. It MUST!
Happy hols to those who have them...to those with summer hols...i envy you.....=)