Become a Veterinary Assistant

Are you considering a career as a veterinary assistant? This course will answer all of your questions and more as you learn about pet nutrition, preventing parasites, health and safety issues, reasons for and against spaying and neutering, and how to best assist owners in times of need.
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6 Weeks / 24 Course Hrs
Starting  August 18, 2021
Offered in partnership with your preferred school

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Learning method

Course code: pcv

If you have ever considered a career as a veterinary assistant, you might have quite a few questions about what it is they do: What vaccinations do cats and dogs? What is the best way to control fleas? What do you do if your dog has a cut? What is the best way to deal with an emergency situation involving a pet? This course answers these questions and more.

You will learn about pet nutrition and a variety of health and safety issues. You will understand how to treat and prevent parasites, including roundworms and heartworms. You will even learn the facts of life, as it pertains to dogs and cats. You will explore current thoughts on spaying and neutering, how to deal with the very emotional issues of euthanasia, pet loss, and how best to assist clients in a time of need.

What you will learn

  • Learn the fundamental skills you will need to become a veterinary assistant
  • Gain insight into the reasoning and recommendations made by veterinarians
  • Discover the inner-workings of the typical veterinary hospital from marketing to cash flow
  • Learn all the basics in health care for dogs and cats, including some cutting edge practices
  • Consider the role of veterinary assistant from every angle - from addressing the grief of euthanasia to maintaining confidentiality in medical records

How you will benefit

  • Discover the best diets, treatments, and daily care for your pets
  • Learn knowledge and skills that can lead to a rewarding career
  • Gain insight for developing a comprehensive health plan for the animals you love

How the course is taught

  • Instructor-led or self-paced online course
  • 6 Weeks or 3 Months access
  • 24 course hours

This first lesson starts way back at the beginning and introduces how ancient veterinary medicine evolved into the modern-day practice that you're accustomed to. You will learn why a veterinary assistant is just as important to the success of the practice as the veterinarian.

In this lesson, you will learn how vaccines protect against disease. And just as important, you will learn why they sometimes fail. You will take a close look at how often vaccines should be given, why they may be ill-advised, and why vaccinosis is so controversial.

This lesson addresses the parasites that can infest both pets and people. You will see the worms that live in the intestines, and get acquainted with heartworm, a nasty guy that lives in the arteries. You will explore how parasites infect people, what they do, and how to prevent their invasion.

Have you ever wondered how to pick the best food for your pet? This lesson will give you the tools to make the right decision, and how best to pass the information to your clients. You will also talk about the role of prescription diets in pet health.

This will certainly be the most emotional lesson in the entire course. The topic is euthanasia, and you will look at it from the perspectives of both the client and the hospital employee. You will explore the stages of grief that everyone goes through after a loss.

In this lesson, you will learn why a veterinary hospital can be a dangerous place. You will see how X-rays, anesthetics, and certain drugs can harm you. You will finish this lesson with Economics 101, a glimpse into the cash flow of a typical veterinary hospital.

Designed like a short course in human first aid, this lesson will help you cope with almost any veterinary emergency, and you will discuss ways that some emergencies can be prevented. There's even a segment on cardiopulmonary resuscitation for dogs and cats!

What is the most important parasite affecting people's pets? If you answered the flea, you're right. In this lesson, you will learn all about this parasite. You will hear about other crawling parasites that also live on or in the skin (mange) and how they can be managed.

Did you know that as a hospital employee, any advice you give could end up in a lawsuit? You will find out how to handle these situations and, related to this, how to maintain client confidentiality. You will round off your study of client communications with an introduction to client education programs.

As soon as you're hired as a veterinary assistant, you will be helping to prepare prescriptions. In this lesson, you will find out how to do this correctly. You will also learn about your role in keeping accurate medical records.

In this lesson, you will learn all about alternative therapies that some veterinarians are applying in their practices, including acupuncture, homeopathy, herbs, and chiropractic care. You will also examine the plusses and minuses of each diet.

In the last lesson, you will take a close look at animal behavior. You will delve into how best to train puppies and kittens, and more importantly, how to share the information with your clients. At the end of the course, you will see how everything you've learned can be put together for a comprehensive health plan.

Jeff Grognet has been a companion animal veterinarian for 25 years. He was a pioneer in the field of veterinary assistant teaching, developing his first course more than 18 years ago. Due to the success of his veterinary receptionist/assistant courses, he expanded his teaching into other high-demand areas including pet first aid and alternative medical therapies for companion animals. He practices at a veterinary hospital and contributes regularly to several magazines.

Requirements:

Hardware Requirements:

  • This course can be taken on either a PC or Mac.

Software Requirements:

  • PC: Windows 8 or newer.
  • Mac: macOS 10.6 or later.
  • Browser: The latest version of Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox are preferred. Microsoft Edge and Safari are also compatible.
  • Adobe Acrobat Reader.
  • Software must be installed and fully operational before the course begins.

Other:

  • Email capabilities and access to a personal email account.

Prerequisites:

There are no prerequisites to take this course.

Instructional Material Requirements:

The instructional materials required for this course are included in enrollment and will be available online.

Instructor-Led: A new session of each course begins each month. Please refer to the session start dates for scheduling.
Self-Paced: You can start this course at any time your schedule permits.

Instructor-Led: Once a course session starts, two lessons will be released each week for the 6 week duration of your course. You will have access to all previously released lessons until the course ends.
Self-Paced: You have 3 month access to the course. After enrolling, you can learn and complete the course at your own pace, within the allotted access period.

Instructor-Led: The interactive discussion area for each lesson automatically closes two weeks after each lesson is released, so you're encouraged to complete each lesson within two weeks of its release.
Self-Paced: There is no time limit to complete each lesson, other than completing all lessons within the allotted access period.

Instructor-Led: The final exam will be released on the same day as the last lesson. Once the final exam has been released, you will have two weeks plus 10 days (24 days total) to complete the final and finish any remaining lessons in your course. No further extensions can be provided beyond these 10 days.
Self-Paced: Because this course is self-paced, no extensions will be granted after the start of your enrollment.