Don’t Touch the Cat!

March 21st, 2011 by admin

cat anatomy

Don’t Touch the Cat!

This image is a tongue in cheek illustration of the willingness of cats to have various parts of their anatomy touched. Vet techs and those in vet school can find this a fun source of trade humor, but can also use it as a quick and easy way of learning how to best handle cats. This is important information for veterinary technicians and individuals who are studying to become a vet tech as an understanding of cat behavior and touchiness about its body will minimize stress on the animal and the vet tech safe and performing their job most efficiently. It is also useful information to pass on to new pet owners as well as important to teach young children who are living with cats. However silly, vet techs can consider using this image as a teaching tool for people unfamiliar with cats. If cats are mistreated by rough handling, it can break any trust developed with the animal and result in painful bites or scratches from the cat.

This image, which diagrams feline anatomy to illustrate areas that cats do not appreciate having handled, shows that cats are particularly sensitive about their undersides and their feet being touched. Cat tails and ears are other areas that should be handled with care as many cats are irritable about these areas being touched as well. The danger of reaching into these sensitive areas is, as the image shows, that cats are well equipped and well prepared to defend themselves with the use of all four sets of claws and their bites. Cats usually have an independent feline attitude and are typically not hesitant to enforce their boundaries. It behooves human owners and other handlers of cats to learn the rules that cats have set and adapt to ease feline comfort. By avoiding the stomach, feet, ears, and tail of a cat one can generally also avoid meeting the claws or teeth of a cat.

Although cats are portrayed as having unpredictable thought processes, this isn’t exactly true. Knowing the rules of anatomy to avoid touching is a good start. Cat behavior can be read in the eyes by checking if they are dilated, in the tail by responding to anxious twitching, in the ears which are back if the cat is angered, and in their overall condition of the fur and body language of the cat if it is crouching or defensive.

Infographic from: http://catsareassholes.tumblr.com/post/3680454163/thedailywhat-fixed-infographic-of-the

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A Day In the Life of Vet Tech

March 21st, 2011 by admin

A Day In the Life of Vet Tech

This video followed veterinary technician student Rachel Hinson on a day at her job at Banfield Clinic. In the video, Ms. Hinson explained that she was a senior student in vet tech school at Harrison College, but that she already was working full time at Banfield. What started out as an externship for her quickly turned into full time employment. After working at Banfield for a month, Rachel was moved up to a job as a “pet nurse”. Her pay was doubled, and she received numerous benefits including vacation time. Rachel credits the excellent teaching that she got at Harrison College as the reason why she was hired so quickly. “If you apply what you learned at school, they’re going to want to keep you as a tech,” Ms. Hinson says. The video also interviewed Jessica McBride, the Regional Hospital Director at Banfield. Ms. McBride said that although Banfield employs Vet Techs from many different schools, the ones that have come from Harrison have always been high-quality, superior to the students from other schools.

Rachel Hinson really appreciated the teachers, professors and doctors that trained her at the school. She said the teachers get to know you, and they will push you to do better rather than just letting you coast through. Because of her high-quality training at Harrsion’s vet technician school, Ms. Hinson was able to hit the ground running with what she had learned.

Ms. Hinson says that it is really rewarding for her to be able to help animals. She said that there are opportunities in this career to work with large and small animals, and like human health care this is a growing field. Ms. McBride confirmed this, stating that for many families pets are treated like kids, and as long as people want to have pets there will be a need for high-quality veterinary technicians.

Ms. Hinson showed the cameras some of the different areas of the clinic. She showed the kennel where the dogs are kept, and also the whiteboard where all current patients are listed. She said that the pets requiring surgery receive top priority, and showed the cameras the surgery suite. Banfield Clinic is only a year old so all the equipment in the suite and throughout is state of the art. Ms. Hinson commented that much of the equipment was the same as what she used in vet tech school, but that she received hands-on training for any equipment she was not familiar with.

Ms. Hinson’s heart for animals and her love for her job were apparent throughout the video. She echoed Ms. McBride by saying that pets are often treated like kids in a family, and although they don’t cry or whine like human patients, she can tell when they are in pain. She said, “These pets are children to most people, they’re part of their family, and I help them get better.”


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A Vet Tech’s Duty to Animals

March 18th, 2011 by admin

Some jobs are just that–jobs. These jobs only require that a person show up, fill their hours with mundane work, and wait for a paycheck. This is nothing like the job of a veterinary technician.

Veterinary technicians are professionals that have spent years training at a vet tech school, in order to commit their lives to helping animals that are unable to help themselves. A job as a vet tech requires patience, compassion, and motivation. These individuals have a duty to the animals they serve.

Three Ways Every Veterinary Technician Fills Their Duty to Animals:

1. By showing compassion and understanding to each animal, as well as the family that loves them.
Even the best vet technician school cannot teach compassion. People that choose to be vet techs usually love animals and have a desire to help them to the best of their ability. This is a necessary personality trait considering the tasks that veterinary technicians are expected to perform.

vet-tech's-duty-to-animals ts_78035091In veterinary hospitals, the veterinary technician is the person who speaks with the patient’s owner and conducts the initial exam. The vet tech will talk to the pet owner about any problems, answer questions, and document the animal’s weight, temperature, appetite, and any unusual behaviors, before the veterinarian is brought in. Pet owners that are concerned or upset about their pet’s condition will usually voice their concern to the vet tech, who will relay the concern to the veterinarian.

Vet techs are also responsible for grooming patients, dressing wounds, restraining animals before procedures, and other tasks that require both patience and kindness.

2. Staying cool and working efficiently under pressure.
Vet techs also fulfill their duty to animals by caring for them in high pressure situations. Not everyone can keep a cool head in emergency situations. Veterinary technicians are responsible for performing first aid, assisting surgeries, administering IVs, giving anesthesia, and other tasks that require a steady hand and clear head. While these professionals are trained for emergency situations in vet technician school, no amount of training can guarantee that a person will really perform when the pressure is on.

3. By being adaptable, accurate, and hard working.
No day in the life of a veterinary technician is the same. One day a vet tech many take inventory, stock supplies, and carry out administrative duties. The next day may require the same person to collect samples, carry out lab testing, give x-rays, and administer medication to patients. This not only requires a good work ethic, but these tasks also require a person to be very accurate. When it comes to medication and testing, small mistakes can cause big problems.

People that do not easily adapt to change will not succeed in this field. Vet techs are self-motivated and dependable. These professionals don’t need to be constantly supervised to provide their best work. Vet techs fulfill their duty to animals by being compassionate, working well under pressure, and completing a variety of tasks that ultimately provides patients with the highest standard of care possible.

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Veterinary Technician — Career Considerations

March 18th, 2011 by admin

Veterinary Technician — Career Considerations 

The reality of being a veterinary technician should be carefully considered prior to deciding to enroll in a vet technician school. While there are many rewards, there are also many different kinds of stressors related to the work that must be dealt with. Preparing for this in advance can help you to make an informed and educated decision before enrolling to become a veterinary technician.

There are many times when the technician must interact with animals who are hurt, scared, and who may try to lash out. This can be very difficult for some people, but it is a reality of the field.

The potential disadvantages of working as a veterinary technician to consider:

• Stress — It is not always an easy thing to be seeing the different procedures that occur routinely in veterinary medicine. Many people are not used to it, and must develop the coping skills so that they can be an effective member of the veterinary team. This might take an extra effort, so it is extremely helpful to be realistic about your stress management skills before investing in training.

• Unpleasant Job Duties — When assisting in the performance of procedures, the animals must be handled in the prescribed manner, and this can be difficult for some people to be able to do on a regular basis. Doing research on what kinds of tasks you will need to do, how you will be trained, and how frequently you can expect to perform them can help relieve the uncertainties around this issue.

• Euthanasia — It can be a sad experience to have to euthanize an animal that you have been interacting with for years. This is another area where it is important to assess your coping skills.

• Public Interaction — People will have questions about the various procedures, including euthanasia. It is sometimes necessary to console them as well as answering all of their questions. If you are considering enrolling in a vet technician school, and are concerned about your ability to handle the public, be sure to ask them what their program does to train veterinary technicians to handle these situations.

Advantages of working as a veterinary technician:

It can be a very rewarding field to be in, because the nature of your work will be to interact with animals on a regular basis, and sometimes for the long term. If working with animals is what you love to do, the advantages of being able to help animals through the different stages of their life can be a serious consideration — just as important as a paycheck.

There may be very difficult days when you have to deal with different types of stress, but for people who really love helping animals it can be a great career decision. You get the rewards of helping animals through the different stages of their life. There is always a need for veterinary technicians, and the job security factor can be a considerable advantage. You may also enjoy steady work and good benefits.

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Cool Jobs You Can Get With A Vet Tech Degree

March 17th, 2011 by admin

When people think of Veterinary Technicians, they commonly associate this job with working in an animal clinic. Although the majority of vet techs work in a clinic or veterinary practice, there are many other places where a vet tech can be employed as well. Basically, wherever there are animals, there will be a need for people who can care for those animals and make sure they maintain good health.

One unique option is to work in a marine entertainment venue, such as Sea World. Working with large marine mammals is definitely one aspect of this job that differentiates it from ordinary clinical work! Because of the specialized nature of a job at a marine park, a student in vet tech school should be certain that this is the career path they want to take, and then work to build contacts within that field to help them get the job they are looking for. Professional associations such as the International Association for Aquatic Animal Medicine can help you build a contact base to land that dream job.

Less specialized than Sea World but still within the realm of entertainment venues would be animal parks like zoos and Walt Disney World’s Animal Kingdom. Vet techs in these parks work with a variety of different animals and gain a wide berth of experience. Not surprisingly, jobs at zoos are the most competitive. A variety of animals makes zoo jobs some of the most interesting, and many of these venues have a low turnover because of high job satisfaction. To prepare for a job in this arena, consider taking classes about large animal medicine, and also volunteering at a local zoo to gain real-world experience.

jobs-you-can-get-with-a-vet-tech-degree ts_200248287-001<br />
For those who enjoy working with large animals but also want to travel, circuses such as the Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey Circus might be an option to pursue. As with zoo employment, jobs with the circus are extremely competitive. Gaining experience with large animals is a must, as well as a love for learning and being willing to try new things.

As you can see the job options for a veterinary technician are definitely not limited to a medical clinic. Wherever there are animals, people will be needed to care for those animals. Decide in what capacity you want to use your talents, and then take the classes best suited to that arena while you are in vet technician school.

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What is a registered veterinary technician?

March 17th, 2011 by admin

A registered veterinary technician is a trained professional that provides essential tasks that may consist of animal care, laboratory diagnostics, application of medicines, and veterinary clinical assistance. A vet tech school is ideal for someone who has passion for the care and well-being for animals. You can transform your love for animals into a rewarding career and future. Attending a popular veterinary technician schoolwhat-is-a-registered-veterinary-technician ts_86536219 will prepare you with all the training and skills you need to become a part of the veterinary technicians’ team. In this field, students have to take certain courses that may include math, animal health, medicine, biology, dentistry and hands on training in a veterinary office.

A vet technician school can help a student attain substantial qualifications that will enable them to succeed in the vet tech marketplace. Since this particular field is in high demand, the outlook for veterinary technicians is very positive. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment rate for vet techs has been estimated by an increase of 41 percent, and this number is deemed to increase in the future. In some regions in the United States, the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America reported that registered veterinary technicians earn as much as $31,030 annually. This is good news for those who are considering a great career where they can have a lot of interaction with animals.

Normally, before a student gets his or her degree, a two or four-year formal academic course is required in combination with a state-administered certification. It is suggested that a professional veterinary technician should continue with their education. This continued education will allow them to keep-up-to-date with the latest technology and they will also learn new techniques in the field. An aspiring vet tech has the choice to attend classes on campus or online.

Information gathered from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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Veterinary Technician’s Role in a Surgical Procedure

March 16th, 2011 by admin

A veterinary technician is a person who has undergone extensive training at a vet tech school so as to gain the skills necessary to assist veterinarians. Besides passing the exams form the vet tech school, the technician is also expected to pass a credentialing exam depending on the state in which they live.

The main role of a veterinary technician in a surgical procedure is surgical monitoring before, during and after your pet’s surgical procedure. The technician’s support role ensures an efficient, safe and successful outcome of the surgical procedure. Prior to any general aesthetic procedure the veterinarian must perform a full physical examination of your pet, pre-anesthetic blood work to check the liver, kidney and other vital organ function and an EKG to make sure the heart is healthy and functioning properly. The veterinary technician then places an IV catheter and administers prescribed pain medication before the surgical procedure to help prevent post operative pain.

The next step is general induction occurs and your pet is surgically prepped in a sterile manner for the procedure. Once in the operating room, the technician hooks up monitoring equipment to monitor the heart, blood pressure and oxygen saturation levels of the animal.

A professional technician trained at a proper vet technician school is always with the veterinarian during the procedure ensuring that your animal’s vitals are constantly monitored and can intervene or alert the doctor of any issues that may arise. Once the surgery is finished, your pet will continue to be monitored until he is fully recovered from the anesthesia. IV fluids and pain medication are also continued for as long as the veterinarian feels they are necessary.

Your pets care does not end there, post operative pain management is very important in the healing process of your pet. Your veterinarian will prescribe the best possible pain management protocol to ensure that your pet recovers as pain free and comfortable as possible. Therefore, veterinary technicians go to vet technician school to learn skills that enable them to work together with the veterinarian to ensure that your pet receives the highest quality of care, before, during and after their surgical procedure.

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What is the difference between a veterinary technician and a technician assistant?

March 14th, 2011 by admin

difference-between-veterinary technician-and-technician-assistant ts_86537145When applying to become a veterinary technician, there are two options: that of a technician or a technician assistant. The main differences between the two are education and salary.

Technician assistants are trained on the job. Additional education is available as a short program through some schools. However, the majority of vet tech schools have programs designed for those who want to become a veterinary technician.

In order to be a veterinary technician (also known as a veterinary technologist), both a two-year and four-year program are available for the career. The two-year program at a vet technician school earns the student an associate’s degree, while a bachelor’s degree results from a four-year program.

Upon completion of veterinary technician school, the prospective veterinary technician must also pass a state-regulated examination to gain credentials. This is a requirement prior to employment in any state. The exam consists of three parts: an oral, written and practical portion. This exam guarantees the student is knowledgeable enough to work in any hospital or clinic. A common examination used by various states is the National Veterinary Technician exam.

On a side note, those who wish to work in a research facility are best prepared if they take the American Association for Animal Laboratory Science examination.

A veterinary technician can expect to make an average of $29,710 per year, while a technician assistant will only make $22,040.

On the plus side, employment in this field is expected to grow in the near future and the demand is not expected to be met, allowing for substantial opportunity for those seeking employment.

Shifts for either position can vary depending on the facility where the individual is employed. Work weeks can vary from 20 hours up to 50 hours. This is true for either a veterinary technician or a technician’s assistant.

Salary and wage information provided by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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What is the salary of a vet tech?

March 14th, 2011 by admin

The salary for a vet tech can vary, according to national statistics and depends on factors like experience, location, and education. Even for a beginning vet tech, who as graduated from a vet technician school and has less than a year of experience, the salary median annual wages of veterinary technologists and technicians were $28,900 in May 2008. The middle 50 percent earned between $23,580 and $34,960. The bottom 10 percent earned less than $19,770, and the top 10 percent earned more than $41,490. Veterinary technologists in research jobs may earn more than veterinary technicians in other types of jobs.

The more years of experience a veterinary technician has, the more they will make. Your degree from a vet tech school will pay off more and more.

A veterinary technician with an Associates degree can expect a salary range between $20,000 and $38,000 per year while a veterinary technician with a bachelor’s degree can expect a greater salary that starts around $33,000 per year up to $42,500 per year. A veterinary technician with closer to 15 years of experience can expect to see upwards of $45,000 per year.

If you have graduated from a veterinary technician school and are seeking a job as a veterinary technician, there are a variety of benefits you might receive. More than 80% of technicians receive health insurance, about half have dental insurance, about 4% are given malpractice insurance and slightly less than 30% are given disability insurance as a benefit. More than 90% receive a paid vacation, and more than 60% receive paid sick leave. Almost 75% receive paid legal holidays, and about the same percentage receive paid overtime. About 65% are involved in a pension plan their employer provides. Benefits have improved quite a bit for qualified vet techs since 1995.

The vast majority of new vet techs are hired after obtaining a two year Associate Degree. A veterinary technician assists a veterinarian with a variety of duties, including taking blood, giving medication, assisting with surgery, maintaining records, and many more.

Salary and Wage information was gathered from TechnicianSalary.net and the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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