species: click on a picture:
The Veterinarian Nurse
When you visit the veterinary surgeon with your pet, have
you given a thought to the veterinary nurse? Historically
the girl who worked at the vets was the maid who answered
the door when the vet was out. Gradually over the last 50
years the situation has changed.
There is of course no sex discrimination, but there are
only a few qualified male veterinary nurses.
During a normal working day a veterinary nurse will be
involved in a wide range od duties as answering the
telephone, making appointments, receiving clients,
assisting in the consulting room, working in the operating
theatre maintaining anaesthesia, cleaning and sterilising
instruments, preparing patients for surgery, assisting in
taking and processing X-rays, working in the laboratory,
dispensing drugs, etc.
The most important and always the most popular part of the
day is spent caring for the patients.
Dogs and cats, and of course other species, have to be
cleaned, fed, groomed, and above all, loved.
We have all learned to try not to become too emotionally
involved with our patients but all too frequently we do and
the empty cage, still with its label, around the middle of
the day usually means something furry or hairy is sharing
lunch with a nurse in the staff room. Surely this is what
nursing is all about: caring.
Clients are frequently unaware of the wide range of duties
we undertake and the depth of study needed to enable us to
qualify. More and more veterinary practices are happy to
emply qualified nurses knowing they have been trained to an
The work is challenging. always interesting and never ever
dull. There are some unhappy occasions but these are
necessary and hopefully are not too frequent.
Most nurses, when qualified, remain in general practice but
there are an increasing number of openings in associated
areas. Some nurses become veterinary representatives,
others work for veterinary wholesalers and drug comapnies,
quarantine kennels, breeding kennels and catteries and
For further details ask the nurse next time you go to the