Kakato Scholarship 2019 August‘s Diary

Knowing It is coming to my very last summer holiday and so I stayed in Hong Kong for almost the whole of the holiday and spent time with my families. At the same time, the bringing up of extradition law has led to some huge social as a result in conflicts, demonstrations and protest all over the country.

At the end of the summer, I participated in an animal health related assembly, discussing the effects caused by teargas on animals, which is closely related to what I am studying and I wanted to listen to other people’s opinions on this from different professions. There was one thing I was interested in and wanted to discuss, and that was about police dogs. Seeing from many news reports showing police dogs was brought to teargassing scene without wearing any gas mask. Dogs’ nose is very sensitive and would be even more sensitive to the chemicals emitted from the tear gasses than to a human. Adding the adverse psychological effect caused by the stressful working environment, should this be considered cruelty to the dogs? Life should be respected regardless of whether it is a human or an animal. While the policemen were wearing full gears of protection, whereas their police dogs didn’t have any form of protection, isn’t it just too ironic? Though the number of people who participated in the assembly was relatively small compared to others, I do hope that more people would pay more attention to this issue, and fight for the animal welfare that these poor animals deserve.

—Linda Lau


My second internship was at a special pet clinic in Hong Kong. Similarly, to my previous internship place, which was an exotic clinic and apart from that all other aspects of the clinic are quite different to each other.

Wild animals are taken and are dealt with at the Kadoorie Farm, with every decision we make, we must consider their species population as well as its environment.  So not only we should consider the treatment of the animal, which is different to handling animals at the clinic, where we only need to think of the owner and the animal.

Two valuable experiences were gained from this clinic internship: first was from a rescued Yellow-footed tortoise. It was a very peaceful process, didn’t need the doctor to make any emergency things nor there were nurses running nervously to get medications or any bad CPR. Because the tortoises have a slow process of death and we cannot perform CPR on them, we could only assist it to breathe artificially, and then monitor its heartbeat for a response. In my knowledge, tortoises are a long-lived animal, never really thought of death for them, but as I witnessed a 17-year-old Yellow-footed tortoise passed away slowly in front of me, did shock me.

The second experience was the encounter of a more than 10 kg Snapping turtle at the clinic, which is a large dangerous carnivorous turtle. I curiously asked the owner why he kept a Snapping turtle, and he said that he thought it was cute as he saw it from a pet shop and did not consider that it would grow so huge and ferocious, and now he does not know how to take care of it to its best suitability.  To me, this is a tragedy, because of the contradiction between people and wild animals. As they want to raise the animal but cannot provide the best.

I really want people to know that they should not only consider the present but also the future, and think about how to take care of them.  As I feel some wild animals need our respect rather than our love.

—Yoki Chau


Like the previous summer holidays, I went to work as a vet assistant in an animal clinic. Since I knew that I am going to study pharmacology in the coming semester, I paid more attention to the use of different drugs. I learnt that pharmacology is much more complicated than I expected. I have to understand how the drugs are absorbed by the body, how the drugs take effect and how the drugs are processed and excreted by the body. In the past I thought being a doctor is hard, but the more I learn, the more I feel that being a doctor is an extremely formidable challenge. Whenever a patient comes in, you have to utilize all the knowledge you learnt in all 5 years in order to make an accurate diagnosis, what action should be taken to treat the condition and to make a good prognosis.

On the other hand, I planned to work as a volunteer for other clinics in the coming holidays since the clinic I have been working in only treats dogs and cats and the kinds of surgery available are often just neutering only. I want to explore more especially rabbits and orthopaedics.

—Ernest Yu