Volume 2 Issue 5

Promoting veterinary nursing today and into the future

Today I saw an amazing video showing a dog that was injured in the Missouri tornado on April 27 of this year. When the tornado had passed, one family was unable to find their beloved dog Mason in all the wreckage. When they returned to the house 2 weeks later to clean up, they were astonished to find Mason happy and waiting to see them. What made the story even more unbelievable was the fact that Mason had broken both front legs and it appeared that he had crawled home like that after being swept some distance away in the storm. The story made international news, and for good reason. Not only was the tornado a terrible tragedy, but the story focused on Mason's bravery and resilience, as well as the special relationship that he had with his human caretakers. Mason's desire to return to his family at all costs may not be surprising to many of us who are familiar with the interspecies bond that develops between animals and humans, but the spectacle was nonetheless noteworthy and perfectly illustrates why so many of us choose to work in the veterinary field.

Equine insect-related summer skin diseases

Equine summer skin diseases are primarily dominated by insect-related conditions, although outdoor allergens and the sun are responsible for the large proportion of the remaining commonly presented problems.This article reviews the aetiology, presentation and current diagnostic and therapeutic approaches to common insect-induced dermatoses including insect bite hypersensitivity (sweet itch) and harvest mite infestation.

How to place and manage indwelling urinary catheters

Indwelling urinary catheters (IDUC) are regularly used in veterinary practice and serve many purposes. IDUC often enhance the care of a patient by preventing soiling and urine scalding, providing essential monitoring and overall comfort and care. It is a necessary skill of veterinary nurses to be able to place them and know how to manage them properly. They also need to understand why the catheter is required in their patients and what signs to look out for to provide the best care for their patient. This article will be addressing the reasons why IDUC are used, how to place one in a canine patient, how to manage them and what the potential complications could be.

Equine sun-induced dermatoses

Photodermatitis is a commonly encountered skin condition in the horse in the summer months. This article explains the difference between phototoxicity and photosensitization and reviews the different dermatoses present in each condition. Pastern and cannon leukocytoclastic vasculitis is a less common cause of dermatitis affecting the lower limbs of the horse that has been associated with exposure to strong sunlight.

Vetnnet and Acovene: improving the chance of working in Europe

Several organizations within Europe are working on a continuous process of quality improvement of veterinary nurse training to make sure that veterinary nurses get a good education wherever they decide to study, but also to improve the possibilities of studying or working in other countries. This article covers the most important organizations and what they do: Vetnnet (www.vetnnet.com) and Acovene (www.acovene.com).

Adder bite in dogs

The European adder is not aggressive and only bites when provoked. Local effects include localised painful swelling often occurring within minutes of the bite. There may also be systemic effects with mental status changes and sometimes shock, coagulopathy, renal, hepatic or cardiac effects. Adder antivenom if indicated, depending on severity and location of the bite, is the most specific treatment and is expected to reduce morbidity with rapid improvement of swelling and reduce hospitalisation time. Other treatment is supportive with analgesia, intravenous fluids and antihistamines. Adder envenomation causes significant morbidity but low mortality.

Principles of barrier nursing in the veterinary hospital

This article aims to remind the reader of the importance of following barrier nursing techniques when patients are in isolation. It covers not only the use of personal protective clothing and equipment to protect veterinary nurses and patients and disinfection of the unit, but also how important the psychological needs of patients are as well as effective communication between veterinarians, nurses and clients.

Reflections on designing and implementing a nursing care plan

This article reflects on the author's own experiences of creating and implementing a nursing care plan in practice. The concept of nursing theory, the nursing process and nursing models are looked at and the importance of these concepts to the development of veterinary nursing as a profession is examined. Care plans have the potential to improve the care provided to patients by encouraging veterinary nurses to look at the patient as a whole and therefore move away from the medical model. To improve the chances of successful implementation, team involvement and thorough training is strongly recommended.

Veterinary tissue banking: the role of the veterinary nurse

Tissue banking involves harvesting specific tissues from donated remains, and processing and storing these tissues such that they may be used as tissue grafts in recipient patients. Veterinary tissue banking involves a coordinated series of processes including establishing and maintaining a donor register, informed consent from owners, tissue retrieval and processing, delivery of the graft to the recipient patient, and recording the use of grafts. Veterinary nurses may be involved in several of these steps particularly with communication to owners regarding the benefits of tissue donation and coordinating donation itself. Nurses working in practices with a surgical interest may manage an inventory of grafts in the practice as well as assisting with, and recording, graft usage by surgeons. This paper reviews the process of tissue banking with particular emphasis on the role of veterinary nurses and provides nurses with encouragement to become more involved in the tissue donation process

Readers' letters

The May issue of The Veterinary Nurse included a comment piece titled ‘Microchipping — is it time to make it compulsory?’ (Walsom (2011) The Veterinary Nurse 2:228). The Veterinary Nurse received the following correspondence in response.

Readers' letters

The May issue of The Veterinary Nurse included a comment piece titled ‘Microchipping — is it time to make it compulsory?’ (Walsom (2011) The Veterinary Nurse 2:228). The Veterinary Nurse received the following correspondence in response.

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