Last updated: October 01. 2013 5:15PM - 479 Views

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From October 15 to February 27 of next year, Shawnee State University will be offering a two-part program for aspiring veterinary assistants.

The veterinary assistant training program is intended to help individuals gain basic skills and knowledge necessary to perform in a veterinary office, animal shelter, pet store or kennel at entry-level positions.

Veterinary assistants play a hands-on role with animals under the supervision of a licensed veterinarian and veterinary technician. Assistants help with medical care, feeding, bathing, and the dispersal of tests and examinations of animals.

Working with animals requires a love of animals and the knowledge of how to work with and take care of them.

Dr. Gail Counts, DVM, founder and co-owner of Shawnee Animal Clinic and Tim Wells, RVT, co-owner of Shawnee Animal Clinic will be instructing the program.

Ohio does not currently require certification to become a veterinarian assistant, as most training is gained through practice and non-credit development training programs such as the one being offered at SSU.

The training program will be divided in two parts: Veterinary Assistant I and Veterinary Assistant II. The first part will take place from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays from Tuesday, Oct. 15 to Thursday, Dec. 12, with a focus on learning the essential skills necessary to keep animals healthy, in addition to caring for them when they are ill, and how to correctly assist veterinarians in the office.

Following the end of the first part of the program, there will be a break until the program resumes beginning January 7. The second part of the course will take place from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. on Tuesday and Thursday evenings and will build on the skills and knowledge learned in Veterinary Assistant I.

Part II of the program will require additional labs outside of the classroom, at Shawnee Animal Clinic. Labs will be held every Thursday from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. during Part II of this program.

The program will require the use of two textbooks, available at the Barnes and Noble Bookstore on the SSU campus, “Learning Veterinary Terminology,” 2nd Edition, 2002, by Douglas F. McBride, and “Tasks for the Veterinary Assistant,” 2nd Edition, 2009, by Paula Pattengale. Students will be provided with “The American Red Cross Pet First Aid” as well, free of charge.

The cost of the program is $559 per course. Registration is available online at http://vetassist.eventbrite.com.

Additionally, anyone can register in person at University Outreach Services in the lower level of Massie Hall by calling 740-351-3274 or by calling toll free at 866-672-8778.

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