Survey of cat handling practices in North American veterinary clinics

Carly Moody and others, University of Guelph, Ontario

Visits to a veterinary surgery can be a stressful experience for cats, which may reduce the willingness of their owners to seek out future treatment for the pet. Appropriate handling and restraint strategies can be crucial to keeping aggressive animals calm and preventing injuries to the handler The authors surveyed 310 veterinarians and 944 VNs and support staff involved in handling cats at practices in the US and Canada. The results showed that more experienced staff and Canadian-trained vets were less likely to opt for full body restraint when dealing with fearful patients. They argue the need for further research into the effectiveness of low stress handling techniques, as recommended by the American Association of Feline Practitioners.

Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association 256(9), 1020-1033.

Educating veterinary staff to manage their clients’ grief on losing an animal

Kat Littlewood and others, Massey University Palmerston North, New Zealand.

In a western culture that does not always treat the grief resulting from the death of a pet as legitimate, veterinary staff have an important role in understanding and supporting their client's emotional responses. The authors investigated how grief management is taught to students at eight Australasian veterinary schools. They found the subject is covered mainly in the preclinical years of a veterinary course and this training was ‘non specific', including all categories of animals. They argue that ‘a more robust end-of-life management curriculum' can improve client happiness and increase professional satisfaction for the whole clinical team.

Australian Veterinary Journal

Owners’ priorities for the treatment and monitoring of diabetic cats

Carolina Albuquerque and others, University of Edinburgh.

Caring for a diabetic cat requires significant commitment from the owner, with support from the veterinary team for both the patient and client. The authors examined owners' perceptions and priorities for the care of their pet, the effectiveness of communication between client and clinical staff, and the impact of the disease on the everyday lives of owners. They highlight the importance of involving the whole veterinary team in educating the owner and in trying to understand that client's viewpoint, in order to achieve better compliance and satisfaction.

Journal of Feline Medicine and Surgery 22(6), 506-513.

Efficacy of a dental chew in controlling oral disease in toy dog breeds

Aurora Mateo and others, VETSIA veterinary hospital, Madrid, Spain.

Small and toy dog breeds are considered to be particularly vulnerable to developing periodontal disease and such pets may often be resistant to their owners' attempts at brushing their teeth. The authors describe a study into the clinical efficacy of giving a daily dental chew in two toy breeds,Yorkshire terriers and chihuahuas. In a crossover study those dogs receiving the chew had significantly reduced gingivitis, plaque accumulation, calculus formation and levels of volatile sulphur compounds in the breath.

Journal of Veterinary Dentistry 37(1), 22-28.

Novel method for urethral catheterisation in female cats and small dogs

Brittany Abrams and others, Ohio State University, Columbus.

Urethral catheterisation may be indicated for a range of investigations and treatments of urogenital conditions in veterinary practice. However the technique for placing the catheters may be challenging in small patients. The authors describe a randomised controlled trial of a novel two-catheter technique for urethral catheterisation in 39 sexually intact female cats and small breed dogs. The overall success rate for inserting the device was 79.5% with the new method and 43.6% using traditional techniques, although the process did take fractionally longer.

American Journal of Veterinary Research 81(5), 448–452.

Prognostic indicators in dogs with thoracic bite wounds

Anna Frykfors von Hekkel and others, Royal Veterinary College, Hawkshead.

Dog bite wounds represent about 10% of canine trauma cases and injuries in the thoracic region are known to have higher than usual mortality rates. The authors examined the clinical records from 123 cases over 13 years to evaluate the surgical findings and identify prognostic factors. Their findings show that damage to underlying structures may be present in cases with little evidence of external injury Patients with pleural effusion or a positive bacterial result from a wound swab were at significantly higher risk of death.

Veterinary Surgery 220(4), 694-703.

DOI: 10.1080/17415349.2020.1826768 

Veterinary Nursing Journal • VOL 35 • September-December 2020 •