The Bovine Tap

by Jens Arnbjerg (Veterinarian) and Joe Paradi (Engineer) - both corkscrew collectors

There are many corkscrew like instruments, tools and appliances which look like corkscrews for wine bottles but are really not for liberating the drinkable spirits.  These pages show a number of these with explanations of how they relate to the wine bottle opening types.

THE BOVINE TAP

This is a veterinary instrument that is used to relieve the gas some cattle develop when they eat certain grasses.  The typical problem is that the animal bloats as his/her stomach is filled with gas.  This is not a temporary situation and may last for several days.  This instrument is to provide the cattle with relief.

To relieve the obvious discomfort the animal feels, the veterinarian will push the sharp steel spike through the animal's side into its belly and then literally screws the plastic piece into the animal.  Once it is completely in to the base, the steel "trocar" is pulled out and the gas can escape.  Brrrrrr.... I don't want to think how the animal feels about this.

But, of course, this device is designed to relieve pain not to cause it.  So, it is used with local anesthetics applied beforehand, so the animal does not feel this operation.  The relief is when the gas is exhausted.

But, since this thing may be left in place for some days, the veterinarian will suture the device to the hide of the animal through two convenient suture holes as shown here.

For comparison, here are three genuine Champagne taps which work exactly the same way as the Bovine Tap - except for the suturing, of course!

Note that all three has the their trocars screwed onto the shoulder of the shaft to make sure that they are not lost and to allow the twisting motion to work when the pin is locked to the shaft.

The tap and the information was provided by Dr. Jens Arnbjerg a veterinarian in Copenhagen, Denmark and a corkscrew collector par excellence.  The page was created by Joe Paradi.


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