VETS S7024 - Introduction to Veterinary Nursing

Full Title:Introduction to Veterinary Nursing
Module Code:VETS S7024
Credits: 10
Valid From:Semester 1 - 2015/16 ( September 2015 )
Module Delivered in 1 programme(s)
Module Description:This module is designed to prepare the student for the first work placement, with particular emphasis on small animal practice. The student will be introduced to Health and Safety, handling, clinical examination, nursing care and the role of the veterinary nurse.
Learning Outcomes:
On successful completion of this module the learner should be able to
  1. Perform a basic veterinary clinical examination and employ appropriate restraint techniques.
  2. Evaluate small animal accommodation, assist with nursing care of hospitalised small animal patients, administration of medication and the provision of first aid.
  3. Apply appropriate cleaning and disinfection protocols to various areas of the veterinary practice.
  4. Describe the responsibilities of the veterinary nurse with respect to the employer, client and patient.
  5. Analyse specific hazards, risks and control measures, associated with the veterinary workplace.
  6. Source Health and Safety publications and legislation and apply them to the veterinary hospital environment.
  7. Perform basic veterinary nursing skills in a safe manner.

Module Content & Assessment

Indicative Content
Introduction to the profession of Veterinary Nursing.
Professional ethics, personnel relations, and responsibilities to employer, clients and patients, emphasising client confidentiality.
Role of the nurse in the veterinary practice (Veterinary Practice Act 2005 and Veterinary Practice [Amendment] Act 2012).
Use of proper veterinary terminology.
Parts of the clinical examination.
Clnical history, signalment, distance examination and physical examination.
Clinical examination techniques with emphasis on small animals.
Recognition of normal ranges of temperature, heart rate, respiratory rate, mucous membrane colour and capillary refill time in all common species. Recording and reporting results of the clinical examination.
Introduction to animal behaviour.
Recognition of normal animal behaviour and identification of behaviour associated with illness or injury. Aggressive behaviours.
Handling and restraint techniques.
Safe, secure and humane animal catching, calming, restraint, handling and transport. Restraint techniques for specific procedures i.e. medication administration and blood sampling.
Medication administration and blood sampling procedures.
Administration/sampling routes, sites and techniques. Secure storage, recording and administration of animal remedies and medicines.
Small animal hospital accommodation.
Types of accommodation (Kennel/cage layouts; construction materials and design); Environmental requirements (Temperature, lighting and ventilation). Biosecurity in animal accommodation areas including isolation facilities
Introduction to animal welfare.
RSPCA Five Freedoms: Use as a guide to nursing care. Steps to reduce stress associated with hospitalisation of cats and dogs.
Monitoring hospitalized small animal patients.
Signs of normal health; monitoring ingestion, elimination, vomiting, respiration and evidence of pain.
Introduction to nursing care of small animal patients
Provision of nutrition, warmth and comfort, hygiene, mental stimulation and exercise. Basic grooming and bathing of hospitalised patients.
Admission and discharge of patients with emphasis on informed consent and recording of information.
Introduction to first aid.
First aid techniques, answering emergency phone calls and assisting with emergency presentations.
Principles of cleaning and disinfection including relevant terminology.
Types of disinfectants and antiseptics: Safe,correct use in different areas of the veterinary practice. Concept of standard operating procedures and their use in cleaning and disinfection protocols. Principles of patient preparation for surgery, concept of sterility and the requirement for asepsis.
Introduction to wound healing
Types of dressings and bandages. Structure of a basic bandage. Common techniques for dressing and bandaging (application of limb, ear, tail, chest and abdominal bandages)
Introduction to the nursing process (in preparation for devising nursing care plans) and nursing clinics.
Legislation relating to Health and Safety in the veterinary profession
Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act (2005); General Applications Regulations (2007); Chemical Agents Regulations (2001); Waste Management Regulations (1998) etc. - Rights and responsibilities of employers and employees etc.
Health and Safety Authority
Powers of inspection, Powers of enforcement and prosecution etc.
Safety statements
Relevant legislation, Hazards, Risks, Control measures, Risk assessments, Revision of safety statements, Duties of employers and employees
Hazards and risks relevant to veterinary practice.
Electricity, Chemicals, Noise, Pressurised gases, Animal handling, Zoonoses, Radiation, Clinical Waste, Manual handling etc.
Study and research skills including work placement preparation.
Library research. Academic integrity policy, plagiarism and Harvard referencing. Note taking. Managing study time. Assessment processes, use of feedback and understanding exam questions
Peer-assisted learning and support (PALS)
Weekly meeting with an assigned third year veterinary nursing student. Peer assistance with settling in to DkIT, both socially and academically, as well as advice regarding work placement (preparation and maximising learning opportunities)
Manual Handling
Theoretical and practical instruction specific to the veterinary workplace, culminating in a certificate of achievement.
Taking a clinical history
Role plays
Clinical examination of live dogs and accurate recording of results.
Use and maintenance of thermometers, stethoscopes, auroscopes and ophthalmoscopes.
Topical surface anatomy on live animals to identify clinically relevant anatomy sites.
Handling and restraint techniques using model animals and live dogs. Application of restraint aids.
Routine inspection and grooming of live dogs including nail care.
Handling of veterinary sharps e.g. needles, syringes, scalpel blades. Medication administration techniques using inanimate objects.
Application of basic wound dressings and bandages to live and model dogs.
Evaluation of small animal accommodation; safe handling of cleaning and disinfection agents; cleaning and disinfection of small animal accommodation.
Demonstration of handling and restraint methods appropriate to dangerous dogs.
Practical skills examination.
Assessment Breakdown%
Course Work50.00%
End of Module Formal Examination50.00%

Full Time

Course Work
Assessment Type Assessment Description Outcome addressed % of total Marks Out Of Pass Marks Assessment Date Duration
Practical/Skills Evaluation Manual handling. Practical class participation and reports. Practical examination. 1,2,3,7 35.00 0 0 Every Second Week 0
Project Quantitative risk assessment on an assigned area within a veterinary hospital. 500 words. Also presented to the class in groups (unmarked). 5,6 15.00 0 0 Week 6 0
No Project
No Practical
End of Module Formal Examination
Assessment Type Assessment Description Outcome addressed % of total Marks Out Of Pass Marks Assessment Date Duration
Formal Exam End-of-Semester Final Examination 1,2,3,4,5,6 50.00 0 0 End-of-Semester 0
Reassessment Requirement
A repeat examination
Reassessment of this module will consist of a repeat examination. It is possible that there will also be a requirement to be reassessed in a coursework element.
Reassessment Description
Students must attain a certificate in Manual Handling and attend a minimum of 75% of practical classes.

DKIT reserves the right to alter the nature and timings of assessment


Module Workload & Resources

Workload: Full Time
Workload Type Workload Description Hours Frequency Average Weekly Learner Workload
Lecture 3 x 1hour Health and safety lectures. 4 x 1 hour general nursing lectures. 7.00 Every Week 7.00
Tutorial Study skills and work placement preparation 1.00 Every Week 1.00
Lecturer-Supervised Learning (Contact) Peer-assisted learning and support session with third year students 1.00 Every Week 1.00
Practical DkIT and Dromiskin Animal Pound 3.00 Every Week 3.00
Directed Reading No Description 2.00 Every Week 2.00
Independent Study No Description 2.00 Every Week 2.00
Total Weekly Learner Workload 16.00
Total Weekly Contact Hours 12.00
This course has no Part Time workload.
Recommended Book Resources
  • Aspinall, V. 2014, Clinical Procedures in Veterinary Nursing, 3e Ed., Butterworth Heinemann Elsevier
  • Aspinall 2011, The Complete Textbook of Veterinary Nursing, 2e Ed., Saunders Elsevier
  • Lane et al. 2007, Dictionary of Veterinary Nursing, 3e Ed., Butterworth Heinemann Elsevier
  • Cooper et al. 2011, BSAVA Textbook of Veterinary Nursing, 5e Ed., BSAVA
  • Bassert, J. and Thomas, J. 2014, Clinical Textbook for Veterinary Technicians, 8e Ed., Elsevier
Supplementary Book Resources
  • Caveney, L., Jones, B. and Ellis, K. 2012, Veterinary Infection Prevention and Control, Wiley-Blackwell
  • Mc Bride 2001, Learning Veterinary Terminology, Mosby
  • Mullineau and Jones 2007, BSAVA Manual of Practical Veterinary Nursing, British Small Animal Veterinary Association
  • MacPherson, C. , Meslin, F., Wandeler, A. 2001, Dogs, Zoonoses and Public Health, Cabi Publishing [ISBN: ISBN:9780851999623]
  • Hugh-Jones, Martin E. Hubbert, William T. Hagstad, Harry V. 2008, Zoonoses: Recognition, Control and Prevention, Wiley Blackwell [ISBN: ISBN:9780470390313]
Recommended Article/Paper Resources
Other Resources

Module Delivered in

Programme Code Programme Semester Delivery
Dk_SVETN_7 Bachelor of Science in Veterinary Nursing 1 Mandatory