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  1. Hi. I just needed to get your attention to ask this question. I was wondering what type eduational requirements it takes to become a RN or nurse to work in an emergency veterinarian hospital? I love animals and have had to take my own animals to the 24 hr type animal hospitals and I believe I have seen actual nurses there, not just technicians.

    I look forward to your replies if you know of anything or any websites that could help me. Also, do we have a category on the boards here at allnurses.com that deals specifically with these type nurses, because I could not find one.

    Thanks so much.
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  2. 16 Comments

  3. by   colleen10
    Where's VetTech when you need her?
  4. by   RN2007
    Is VetTech a real nurse or RN, because I am pretty sure that the emergency hospital has not only vet techs but also nurses. Can this be? Help me please...
  5. by   SmilingBluEyes
    Some "techs" consider themselves "veterinary nurses"...there was a LONG heated thread about this a while back. Might want to read it for food for thought. Their schooling and experiences DO indeed rival registered nursing's experiences/training on the "animal" side of things. Try PMing vet tech; she can fill you in, in great detail.
  6. by   P_RN
    http://www.fvta.net/programs.htm


    Florida

    Brevard Community College
    Veterinary Technology Program
    1519 Clearlake Rd.
    Cocoa, FL 32922
    321-632-1111
    FAX 321-634-4565
    http://www.brevard.cc.fl.us/alliedhe...t_program.html
    2 years-Associate of Science
    PROBATIONAL ACCREDITATION

    St. Petersburg Junior College
    Veterinary Technology Program
    Box 13489
    St. Petersburg, FL 33733
    727-341-3652
    http://www.spjc.edu/hec/vettech/hpage.htm
    (Guy Hancock, DVM-Director)

    On-Campus Program
    2 years-Associate in Science
    FULL ACCREDITATION

    Distance Learning Program
    Associate in Science
    FULL ACCREDITATION

    And no there isn't a veterinary technician forum here only human forums.
  7. by   colleen10
    If I'm correct, VetTech is a current RN student who was originally trained and has experience as a Vet Tech.

    I imagine there is a really good Vet Nursing / Vet tech school in Denver, Colorado. Have you ever watched Animal ER on Animal Planet? It takes place in Denver, Colorado and without knowing the specific education and repsonsibilities of Vet. Tech's and perhaps Vet Nurses I would say the whole staff is above par. They usually have an advertisement during commercial breaks for a school Vet. School that is located there. I also think I have seen a few episodes where they had students from the local school come in and work at the vet's office. I also think some of the regular staff on the show went to the school.
  8. by   RN2007
    How do I email Vet Tech? I have not been able to find her on this forum. Help!! Thank You.
  9. by   Ortho_RN
    Hey...

    I am also a Vettech, Certified not just trained I find it hard to believe there would be human nurses working there without Veterinary Training... But who knows.. Vets hire any Joe Schmoe off the street and train them to do the same thing I went to school for..

    But Vet Tech training is a two year program, with classes and clinicals in the different areas.. Feel free to PM me if you would like...

    Also want to add if you are thinking of changing to Vet Tech rather than RN school, think LONG and hard about it.. Most vets don't pay crap, usually less than 13/hr, lots don't offer benefits... Not worth it.. I love my animals, but I have to eat

    And the person that uses the name vettech on here is actually a guy...
    Last edit by nurs2b on May 29, '03
  10. by   vettech
    Originally posted by colleen10
    Where's VetTech when you need her?
    Him actually.

    Lets start with the basics -
    Almost every state has a licensure program for veterinary technicians, although the names vary. CVT (Cetrified Veterinary Technician) and RVT (Registered Veterinary Technician) seem to be the most common. They are the veterinary equivalent to an ADN. In Texas, were developing a Veterinary LPN type of licensure as well.

    I'm not 100% clear on the laws outside of Texas but I know the following is fact - no state REQUIRES techs be certified. For the most part, one gets certified mostly for the training and the marketability. The docs out there are finally getting used to having trained techs and thus, are allowing us to really spread our wings. Most of the new grad vets have worked with RVTs in vet school and are increasingly demanding them in their practices. At my practice, of 10 techs and 4 tech assistants, I'm the only one with any formal schooling.

    That said, as Nurs2b just said, think long and hard about the career change. I've been doing this just shy of 10 years and make $12/hr is all and I'm working for a speciualty practice in a major metro area. Most techs at "day practices" (regular vets - think General Practitioner) don't make what I make.

    Now, about your statement that you want to do this because you "love animals" - bad. Most I've known who said that was why they picked veterinary medicine didn't last long. We have to inflict a lot of pain on our pts, more than RNs IMHO. We also see a LOT of death.

    You have to do it for the love of the patients, yes, but also for the love of the JOB. I don't want to spark the debate again but I am a nurse. I am a caregiver with a highly refined set of skills. One of the most important of which is the ability to separate myself from the case and "just do it".

    In many ways, its a lot like working with children - they're scared, they're crying, they can't tell you what's hurting and they don't understand why you have to cause them pain to heal them.

    Last thing, about working emergency. Techs generally don't start working emergency as their first job. Most ECs (Emergency Clinics) need you to be able to at minimum: be able to run a code (CPR, know your emergency drugs, etc), shoot rads, draw blood, place a cath (even on a shocky kitten), intubate and know your way around a lab, and properly restrain. Few EC's are willing to train, in my experience.

    I'm not trying to talk you out of changing to veterinary medicine, just making sure you're going in with your eyes open.

    Feel free to PM me and we can discuss this further if you like.

    Incidentally, I'm with Nurs2B - I'm only changing because of the crappy salary. I'm within sight of a glass ceiling that will force me to stay where I am or sit in the management chair. I love my career and I'm not sure I'll enjoy human medicine as much as veterinary but, IMHO, nursing is nursing - doesn't matter what the species. Its time I actually made some money passing catheters, cleaning emesis, and all the other fun (and not so fun) tasks all nurses have to perform.

    BTW, Colleen10, you nailed it - I'm an ADN student who has my RVT and have been at this for 10 years.
  11. by   RN2007
    Thanks very much for your replies and very friendly advice. With that said, I will go ahead with the ADN RN program, because yeah - ya gotta eat. Years ago, I got a B.S. in Psychology and Masters Degree in Counseling and found that the pay was horrible and I abandoned the field after 5 years and got into sales and marketing that although I made decent money, I was pretty bored. Therefore, finally I am going to go into the human Nursing field, lol... Being a RN, you can go so many directions with the different types of jobs, and the pay is pretty good or a lot better than psych. Thanks Again
  12. by   vettech
    Originally posted by RN2007
    Thanks very much for your replies and very friendly advice. With that said, I will go ahead with the ADN RN program, because yeah - ya gotta eat. Years ago, I got a B.S. in Psychology and Masters Degree in Counseling and found that the pay was horrible and I abandoned the field after 5 years and got into sales and marketing that although I made decent money, I was pretty bored. Therefore, finally I am going to go into the human Nursing field, lol... Being a RN, you can go so many directions with the different types of jobs, and the pay is pretty good or a lot better than psych. Thanks Again
    I have a suggestion for you. If you love animals and want to work with them, talk to your local animal shelter or zoo and volunteer. I'm a foster home for kittens. Our local shelter requires that their kittens and puppies be spayed/neutered before leaving the shelter. I take in litters that are too young for the procedure and care for them until they are old enough.
  13. by   colleen10
    Hi VetTech, sorry about the Him/Her slip there
  14. by   vettech
    Originally posted by colleen10
    Hi VetTech, sorry about the Him/Her slip there
    Not a problem... its a natural assumption that it one is a nurse one is female. Everyone does it... you hear "football player" you assume male, even though there IS a women's pro league (and my local team, the Houston Energy, has won the championship both years of the league's existance). The assumption is made in veterinary med too... you assume all techs are female and all vets are male until proven otherwise. The reality is taht its a good gamble for techs but not for vets... the vet schools are graduating fewer and fewer males. Only 20-30% of newgrad vets are male and the number is dropping.

    I made sure to add "male RN student" above my avatar to cut down the confusion.

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