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Unit information: Principles and Practice of Primary Veterinary Nursing in 2018/19

Please note: you are viewing unit and programme information for a past academic year. Please see the current academic year for up to date information.

Unit name Principles and Practice of Primary Veterinary Nursing
Unit code VETS10014
Credit points 20
Level of study C/4
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 4 (weeks 1-24)
Unit director Mrs. Hotston Moore
Open unit status Not open



All other first year units

School/department Bristol Veterinary School
Faculty Faculty of Health Sciences


This unit will enable students to understand how healthy animals functions and how health can be maintained. Students will learn to develop the essential skills of nursing care in the management of patients as well as the underpinning theoretical knowledge and application of the communication process in order to prepare them for communication with clients and other members of the veterinary team .

Intended learning outcomes

  1. Recognise the ethical and legal responsibilities of the veterinary nurse in relation to patients, clients (to include the public) and colleagues within veterinary practice
  2. Be able to recognise normal and abnormal parameters of both the healthy and unhealthy animal. Whilst considering animal welfare, deliver nursing care according to the patient’s needs.
  3. Define pharmacodynamics and pharmacokinetics and relate these to the dispensing of medicines in accordance with veterinary legislation and latest guidance.
  4. Recognise and demonstrate the complexity of the communication process. Including the demonstration of effective communication with clients, the public, professional colleagues and responsible authorities using a range of communication skills and tools.

Species range: Canine, Feline, Equine, Exotics

Teaching details

Lectures, small group working, use of a virtual learning environment (Blackboard) to submit reflective log entry

Assessment Details

The pass mark for this unit is 40%. Students must obtain a minimum of 40% in the following assessment :

2 hour written paper (100% weighting ) ILO 1,2,3,4

Students MUST PASS the following component:

30 minute practical ILO 2,3,4,

Students MUST ENGAGE with the following component:

1 x reflective log relating to the communications role play (ILO 4)

Students who fail to satisfy any of the above criteria will be deemed to have failed the whole unit and will need to redo that component part.

Reading and References


BSAVA manual of small animal practice management and development
Book by dawsonera - 2012

BSAVA textbook of veterinary nursing
Book by Cooper, B.; Turner, Lynn; Mulllineaux, Elizabeth; British Small Animal Veterinary Association - c2011

BSAVA manual of practical veterinary nursing: formerly BSAVA manual of veterinary nursing
Book by Mullineaux, Elizabeth; Jones, Marie; Pearson, A. J.; British Small Animal Veterinary Association - c2007

BSAVA manual of canine and feline emergency and critical care
Book by Boag, Amanda - 2018

Handbook of veterinary nursing
Book by Orpet, Hilary; Welsh, Perdi; dawsonera - 2011

Baillière's study skills for nurses and midwives
Book by Maslin-Prothero, Sian; dawsonera – 2010

A Veterinary Dictionary

Further reading:

The veterinary receptionist: essential skills for client care
Book by Corsan, John R; Mackay, Adrian R.; dawsonera - 2008

BSAVA manual of canine and feline advanced veterinary nursing
Book by Hotston Moore, Alasdair; Rudd, Suzanne; British Small Animal Veterinary Association - c2008