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Unit information: Clinical Veterinary Nursing Theory 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 Clinical Veterinary Nursing Theory
Unit code VETS20019
Credit points 40
Level of study I/5
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 4 (weeks 1-24)
Unit director Miss. Jenny Reeve
Open unit status Not open

All first year units


All other second year units

School/department Bristol Veterinary School
Faculty Faculty of Health Sciences


This unit teaches the principles of a systemic approach to the nursing interventions required for patients with medical diseases and surgical conditions. Included within this are concepts of anaesthesia and fluid therapy. The unit provides an understanding of the effects of the treatment options available to patients and how these may impact on patient quality of life The knowledge of basic pharmacology underpins this unit. The other significant component of the unit relates to concepts of diagnostic imaging, its clinical application and the nurses role in this.

The unit will provide the theoretical underpinning knowledge to support the students practical experience during second and third year clinical placements

Intended learning outcomes

On completion of this Unit, veterinary nursing students should be able to:

  1. Evaluate and apply the Health and Safety policies and procedures associated with veterinary practice. (to include pharmaceuticals ,diagnostic imaging , anaesthesia, medical and surgical interventions )
  2. Appraise and relate the ethical and legal responsibilities of the veterinary nurse in relation to patients, clients, society and the environment applying the RCVS Code of Professional Conduct for Veterinary Nurses.
  3. Describe the pharmacology of common veterinary drugs and evaluate their pharmacological effects.
  4. Define and apply the theoretical principles involved in the function and use of anaesthetic equipment. Prepare for and assist in the administration, maintenance, monitoring & recording of anaesthesia. Recognise anaesthetic emergency situations and employ intensive nursing care interventions.
  5. Recognise common veterinary medical and surgical conditions and the interventions required for their management. Implement nursing care according to individual patient needs.
  6. Be able to Evaluate and score pain in order to administer appropriate analgesia
  7. Prepare patients and equipment to perform and evaluate diagnostic imaging and associated techniques.
  8. Applying the principles of surgical bio-security to include sterilisation and disinfection, prepare for surgery and provide surgical assistance.
  9. Execute the collection, preservation and transportation of samples. Prepare appropriate diagnostic tests, recognising the limitations of the test results and identify the significance of spurious results.

Species Range : Canine, Feline, Equine , Exotics

Teaching details

Lectures, small group working, practicals use of a virtual learning environment (Blackboard)

Assessment Details

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

2 hour written paper (100% weighting) ILOs 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9

Students MUST PASS the following component:

30 minute practical ILOs 7,8

Student's MUST ENGAGE n the following component:

1 x reflective log relating to clinical placement ILO 5

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.

Resits as above

Reading and References


Canine sports medicine and rehabilitation
Book - 2018


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

BSAVA manual of canine and feline surgical principles: a foundation manual
Book by dawsonera - 2012

Veterinary surgical instruments: an illustrated guide
Book by College of Animal Welfare - 1997

The equine veterinary nursing manual
Book by dawsonera; British Equine Veterinary Association - 2001

The equine hospital manual
Book by dawsonera - 2008

BSAVA manual of canine and feline anaesthesia and analgesia
Book by dawsonera - 2016

Aspinall's complete textbook of veterinary nursing
Book by dawsonera - 2016

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

Anaesthesia for veterinary nurses
Book by Welsh, Elizabeth; MyiLibrary - 2009

Fluid therapy for veterinary nurses and technicians
Book by Hotston Moore, Paula - 2004

Applied pharmacology for veterinary technicians
Book by Wanamaker, Boyce P.; Massey, Kathy Lockett - 2014

BSAVA manual of canine and feline radiography and radiology: a foundation manual
Book by Holloway, Andrew; McConnell, J. Fraser; British Small Animal Veterinary Association - c2013

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

BSAVA manual of canine and feline clinical pathology
Book by dawsonera - 2016

Practical veterinary diagnostic imaging
Book by Easton, Suzanne; MyiLibrary – 2012

Further reading:

Small animal clinical pharmacology
Book by Maddison, Jill E.; Church, David; Page, Stephen W.; dawsonera - 2008

Small animal clinical pharmacology
Book by Maddison, Jill E.; Church, David; Page, Stephen W.; dawsonera – 2008