VNUR20310 Small Animal Nursing Assignment Example UCD Ireland
This course will prepare you to take care of small animal patients, from the first client contact with your practice through diagnostics and inpatient nursing. You will develop the skills necessary to provide optimal nursing care for all types of small animals, including those with complex health needs. You’ll also be introduced to common medical problems/conditions as well as fluids therapy or transfusion medicine, nutrition, care, and handling of exotic pets.
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In this course, there are many types of assignments given to students like individual assignments, group-based assignments, reports, case studies, final year projects, skills demonstrations, learner records, and other solutions are given by us.
On completion of this module, students will be able to:
Assignment Activity 1: Identify normal and abnormal clinical parameters in small animals
Normal clinical parameters in small animals include body temperature, heart rate, respiratory rate, and blood pressure. Abnormal clinical parameters may include an increase or decrease in any of these values, as well as changes in mucous membranes, capillary refill time, and pulse quality.
- Normal body temperature in small animals ranges from 100-102.5°F, depending on the species. A decrease in body temperature is called hypothermia, while an increase is called hyperthermia.
- Heart rate in small animals normally ranges from 60-180 beats per minute (bpm), depending on the species. An increase in heart rate is called tachycardia, while a decrease is bradycardia.
- The respiratory rate in small animals ranges from 10-40 breaths per minute (bpm), depending on the species. An increase in respiratory rate is called tachypnea, while a decrease is called apnea or dyspnea.
- Normal blood pressure for small animals ranges from 80-120 mmHg. A decrease in blood pressure is called hypotension, while an increase is called hypertension.
Assignment Activity 2: Identify methods of infectious disease transmission (including life cycles where relevant) and how to prevent/control disease spread
Infectious disease transmission can occur through contact with an infected animal or object, ingestion of contaminated food or water, or inhalation of infectious particles. Infectious disease transmission can be human to animal, animal to animal, or animal to human.
Common methods of infectious disease transmission include:
- Ingestion of contaminated food/water/objects
- Direct contact with infected animals and their secretions (e.g., bites, wounds)
- Indirect contact with objects or surfaces that have been contaminated with the virus (e.g., doorknobs, countertops)
- Airborne transmissions, such as in the case of certain viruses or fungi
Prevention and control of infectious disease spread include proper hygiene, disinfection of surfaces and equipment, and vaccination of animals as appropriate.
Assignment Activity 3: Identity and/or describe the clinical presentation, potential causes, diagnostics, and nursing management of common medical diseases in small animals
The clinical presentation of common medical diseases in small animals can vary depending on the disease. Some diseases may cause sudden onset of symptoms, while others may have a more gradual onset. Symptoms may include fever, vomiting, diarrhea, changes in behavior or activity level, difficulty breathing, and seizures.
Potential causes of common medical diseases in small animals may include infectious agents (e.g., bacteria, viruses), genetic susceptibility, dietary issues (e.g., food allergies), or unknown causes (idiopathic).
Diagnostics for common medical diseases in small animals may include blood work, fecal testing, X-rays, ultrasound imaging; bacterial culture and sensitivity; additional testing as indicated.
Nursing management of common medical diseases in small animals may include providing supportive care (e.g., fluids, nutrition, oxygen), administering medications as prescribed, and cleaning and disinfecting contaminated areas.
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Assignment Activity 4: Select an appropriate fluid type, accurately calculate fluid requirements and infusion rates, and indicate how to prepare for and/or monitor fluid therapy
Fluid therapy is a type of treatment that involves the replacement of fluids lost through dehydration, vomiting, or diarrhea. Fluid type should be selected based on the patient’s condition. The fluid types that can be used include dextrose/saline (D5W), lactated ringers, normal saline (NS), Plasma-Lyte A, and Normosol R.
Calculate the volume required for fluid replacement by estimating body weight in kilograms and then multiplying by 0.5 to get the volume in liters.
If the patient is not vomiting, calculate the infusion rate by dividing the volume required for fluid replacement by the desired hourly infusion rate. If the patient is vomiting, a bolus infusion should be given first to replace fluids lost due to vomiting, and then the infusion rate should be calculated as the total volume required for fluid replacement divided by the desired hourly infusion rate.
Prepare for and monitor fluid therapy by attaching an infusion set to a bag of fluids, setting the rate to the desired flow rate, and verifying that the correct patient is being infused with the correct fluid. Inspect the site for signs of infiltration (e.g., swelling, redness, pain) every hour during infusion.
Assignment Activity 5: List and explain the dietary modifications needed by small animal patients with medical diseases
There are many dietary modifications that may be needed by small animal patients with medical diseases. Some common modifications include:
- Feeding a special diet prescribed by the veterinarian;
- Providing small, frequent meals rather than one large meal;
- Adding water to the food to increase hydration;
- Avoid dairy products, fatty foods, and high-sugar foods.
Assignment Activity 6: Discuss the veterinary nursing care of exotic pets
The veterinary nursing care of an exotic pet involves a different type of caring than domestic pets. You will need to make sure the animal is healthy and stay attentive to their needs.
The veterinarian’s role in nursing care for exotic animals can be to provide vaccines and medical treatment, monitor the growth, development, and health of the animal over time, prevent or limit disease transmission among animals or humans that may come into contact with them (these include warning about risks such as for rabies) and educate owners about how best to keep them safe.
The veterinary nurse’s role in nursing care for exotic animals can be to handle the animal safely and gently, clean the cage regularly, provide high-quality food and water, ensure that there is a steady supply of safe bedding, keep a diary of changes in behavior or appetite that may indicate illness, administer prescribed medications or supplements at appropriate times, and notify the veterinarian of any concerns.
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