So you love animals, have an interest in science and are thinking of starting a career in Veterinary Nursing? However, you are not sure if it is the right choice or where to start if it is. In this article, we outline the most desirable qualities of a veterinary nurse and those that employers consistently seek.
- Organised, positive, and a go-getter?
- Able to multitask in a busy environment?
- Able to handle stressful situations?
- A team player?
- A great communicator?
- A do-er!
- Passionate about caring for animals?
If you describe yourself as someone who has the above qualities then veterinary nursing might just be for you. Let’s look at some of these qualities further.
An organised multitasker
Imagine greeting a new puppy and their owner while in the middle of an emergency phone call and each owner wants your undivided attention. The ability to fulfil each need at the right time, whilst carrying a positive attitude is critical in being a successful veterinary nurse.
As a veterinary nurse, your days will be filled with a variety of tasks and let’s just say, no two days will ever be the same. You will be kept busy administering medications, answering concerned clients’ phone calls, mopping floors, cleaning cages, assisting in surgery, processing pathology results, advising clients of pet health care needs, comforting ill patients and assisting with the rehabilitation of animals, and that’s all before lunch. There’s no doubt about it, your job is to make sure everything gets done in an organised and professional manner.
Your job is also to ensure that these duties are performed within the standards and policy guidelines of the practice and in some cases under government regulations. As a result of this, you will often be tasked to maintain associated patient, hospital and supplier records such as daily cleaning checklists, patient hospital forms, supplier purchase orders, radiology and pathology results and patient records.
As a master of multitasking, you will need to carry out all of these activities in a timely organised manner. If this sounds like you, and you enjoy a busy environment, you are on the right path.
You manage stress well
With the pressure of an often busy schedule, you will be required to carry out tasks accurately and precisely whilst working cohesively within a tight knit team. There is no doubt, both the workload and pressure from such an environment can sometimes be stressful and tiring.
As a veterinary nurse, you will need to be able to think clearly under pressure and remain positive and calm when dealing with difficult situations and owners. This includes being able to handle the stress of a hectic and often challenging day and being able to maintain your energy and positive attitude throughout your shift and working week.
As a veterinary nurse you will need to be able to think clearly under pressure and remain positive and calm when dealing with difficult situations and owners.
Great communicator and team player
Dealing with negative feedback from an angry client, translating complex medical language into layman’s terms or even comforting a distressed pet owner as they receive bad news, are just a handful of the many situations you may be required to handle during the course of your day. Not only will you need to handle these situations effectively, but you will also need to communicate clearly and work together with other team members to help pet owners and those around you.
Nurses who are able to build rapport with others and who are able to maintain composure when under pressure and articulate, will do well in a veterinary workplace.
A genuine passion for animals and science
There’s no doubt about it, veterinary nurses have an undeniable passion for animals and for science.
You will be engaging with veterinary medical professionals, assisting with medical procedures and have an extensive understanding of medical terminology.
You will be trained to provide medical care such as placing IV catheters, taking blood, urine and faecal samples, assisting in surgery, performing basic dental procedures, monitoring anaesthetics, bandaging patients and much more. It goes without saying, you will have a passion for science including theory and a willingness to assist in medical procedures.
If you are passionate about animals and about medical science, and you think you are the type of person who will go the extra mile to help pets and their owners as well as animals in the community, then vet nursing might just be for you.
Having a can-do attitude will see you through the variety of tasks you may be asked to do. From nursing and feeding orphaned kittens or injured wildlife around the clock, carrying out cleaning duties or carrying bags of food to a client’s car, you are the type of person who will just get things done.
As a veterinary nurse, it’s also likely you will be required to work beyond the traditional 9-5. In this career, you won’t mind working long shifts or occasional weekends nor being asked to stay late to attend to emergencies.
Think you have the right qualities! What next?
Not sure where you will fit, but definitely want to work with animals? Check out this article about “Starting Out” to help you further. You can also read more about Veterinary Nursing careers here.
If the idea of multitasking in a busy environment, communicating with people, working in a cohesive team whilst working with animals sounds like something you could get passionate about, then a career as a veterinary nurse may be a great fit for you. If you have any questions or want more information about pursuing this career, contact us today.
Finally, you can check out the training qualification to become a Veterinary Nurse at Applied Vocational Training.