Veterinary Nursing of Exotic Pets by Simon J. Girling, Veterinary nurse and veterinary student training in exotic species has come a long way in the last four or ﬁve years.
Veterinary Nursing of Exotic Pets by Simon J. Girling
Previously often consigned to the category of ‘alsorans’, exotic species are increasingly seen in general veterinary practice, to the point where the house rabbit has ofﬁcially become the UK’s third most commonly kept pet, after the cat and dog. Even more telling is the fact that numbers of cats and dogs in the UK are on the decline, yet the number of small mammals, reptiles and birds kept by the public continues to rise.
From budgies and cockatiels to chipmunks and chinchillas, our interest in exotic pets has rocketed in recent years. With the house rabbit being the UK’s third most commonly kept pet after the cat and dog, and sales in small mammals, reptiles and birds continuing to grow, exotic pets have now become a specialist area of veterinary practice in their own right.Veterinary Nursing of Exotic Pets is the first book to address the need for a definitive reference book devoted entirely to the principles and applications of nursing exotic species. Developed from a City and Guild’s course, it not only covers husbandry, nutrition and handling, but also explores anatomy and chemical restraint, and provides an overview of diseases and treatments.
With this increase in these species kept as household pets, improved training in their care has thankfully started to become more important. Many veterinary schools and veterinary nurse training providers are devoting more time to teaching the husbandry and medicine of exotic species. Indeed, 2001 saw the start of the ﬁrst course in Veterinary Nursing of Exotic Species, run through Edinburgh’s Telford College and leading to a City and Guilds recognised qualiﬁcation.
There is no turning the clock back. Exotic pet species are here to stay. It is therefore our duty as veterinary surgeons and veterinary nurses to ensure that we are up-to-date with the latest husbandry and medical details so that we may offer as good, if not better, levels of care as that provided for more traditional domestic pets. We hope that this book will help in that quest and may be of use to veterinary nurse, technician and veterinary student alike.