Doc Rare-Beast’s Clinic Diary: No Effort Spared to Save a Creature’s Life!

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Doc Rare-Beast’s Clinic Diary: No Effort Spared to Save a Creature’s Life!
Author: Ken’ichi Tamukai
Specifications: ISBN  978-4591155196
174 pages
12.6 x 19.0 cm / 5.0 x 7.6 in (WxH)
Category: Children & YA
Ages: 7+
Publisher: Poplar Publishing Co., Ltd.
Tokyo, 2017
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A veterinary doctor who is passionate about his work recounts his successes and failures—and ponders the nature of life and death for all living creatures.

In an era when not just dogs and cats but an increasingly diverse variety of animals are being kept as pets, animal hospitals find themselves being asked to treat frogs and rabbits, lizards and salamanders, and all manner of other creatures. Faced with a suffering animal, author Ken’ichi Tamukai is one of those vets who will do everything he can to help, whether it be conducting stomach surgery on a two-centimeter tree frog, taking a hammer and chisel to a massive bladder stone in a turtle, or attempting some other completely unprecedented treatment. In this work he describes his clinical encounters with more than 100 different kinds of animals, sometimes with humor, sometimes with soberness.

The book is also an autobiographical account of what led Tamukai to become a veterinarian, what he finds fulfilling about his chosen occupation, and what his life in constant close contact with animals has been like. He tells of the many different animals he kept as a child when his curiosity about all kinds of living creatures bloomed—including how he carelessly let some of them get away or die. He tells of his surprise when he discovered that the university he chose in the hope of learning how to treat iguanas had no courses in treating reptiles. He also discusses whether actions taken by humans in the belief that they are good for animals really make the animals happier, as well as various welfare issues associated with experimental animals, invasive species, trap-neuter-return (TNR) activities for feral cats, and the like.

A highly entertaining read, the book is also deeply thought-provoking about the place that creatures unable to understand language have in human life, as well as about the nature of life in general.