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Should You Microchip Your Pet?

Why should I microchip?
Do you remember hearing about the fire in Fort McMurray? What about the floods in BC? Well, microchipping is helpful in these kinds of situations as well as if they get lost in general. When your pet gets lost or a natural disaster/storm has somehow made your furry friend separate from you. Microchipping is your best bet to get them home. When someone finds your friend, all they have to do is bring the animal into a vet clinic and scan the microchip. Then copy the microchip number and contact the company that did it and let them know you found the animal. Then they can notify the owners and let them know their best friend was found.

What should I consider when microchipping?
When you start to think about microchipping there are a few things you will want to think about. Will this benefit my pet and me? How is the microchip given? What company do they use at my clinic?

Will it help me track my pet when lost?
Unfortunately, microchipping does NOT help track your pet as awesome as that would be. All microchipping can do is read the code to find out who owns them. This means you will need to make sure with your company that your contact information is always correct including name, phone number, email, etc.

How much are they?
Microchipping can vary in costs depending on many things such as province, clinic, company that the microchip is from, or if it is included with a surgery. I have seen them range from $30-$80. Make sure to call your veterinarian and ask them what their price is. Also, ask if it is cheaper to do it at their spay and neuter or any other surgery they may be having.

When should I get a microchip?
The best time to microchip your best friend is when they come in to get spayed or neutered. Why is this the best? Well because the needle for the microchip is larger than our regular needles. While the largest we normally use is an 18g the microchip needle is about a 12g. This means that our furry friends who are on the smaller side due to breed or age would prefer to be under the anesthetic gas and not feel anything. The next best time to get a microchip is as soon as you get your furry friend. This will make sure right away if anything happens you can get them back.

How does Microchipping process work?
So to start when you have chosen to microchip, the first step is to bring your friend into a veterinary clinic. Then a needle that has a microchip inside of it is attached to the syringe. Each microchip is a different number and each microchip comes with a tag that also has a unique name. Do not confuse these; your tag number will not be the same as your microchip. The tag just lets others know they are microchipped. Then the needle is given into the subcutaneous skin between their shoulder blades. It is a very quick procedure. If your pet is awake while we do this, depending on the pet as they each vary in what they can handle or how they react, they may get a spray-on them to help freeze the spot and make it a better experience. After this, a form is filled out on your behalf and sent to the registry to have all your information. However, the vet clinic only does the registration so you will have the responsibility of making sure the information is correct. The registration process can take up to 48 hours to complete. After that you get to sleep well knowing that your furry friend has the capability to make it back home to you should they go missing.

By: Ashley Goss, Veterinary Technician



How do I become a veterinary technician?

This is the end to RVT week, a time to celebrate our technicians and what they do to help our clinics! In honor of this we will be talking about how to become a veterinary technician. To answer this question we must first look at what are veterinary technicians. "A veterinarian’s assistant, trained to provide medical care for animals, as performing diagnostic tests or administering vaccines and medication." - Now that is just putting it in the most simple terms. If we went in depth a bit more you would get the following. "Veterinary technicians are animal nurses (and much more). In addition to their nursing duties, they act as patient advocates, phlebotomists, radiology technicians, laboratory technicians, anesthesia technicians, and surgery technicians. Except tasks legally restricted to veterinarians, such as diagnosing disease conditions, performing surgery, prescribing medications, and prognosing medical outcomes, veterinary technicians are trained to do everything a veterinary hospital requires to run smoothly." - AAHA Certainly! Veterinary technicians play a crucial role in the healthcare of animals. Their responsibilities encompass a wide range of tasks, making them an integral part of the veterinary team. In fact, you may sometimes hear them referred to as veterinary technologists, as they possess a comprehensive understanding of various medical procedures and techniques. To become a veterinary technician, individuals typically undergo rigorous education and training. They typically enroll in specialized programs that span anywhere from 18 to 36 months. These programs provide them with the knowledge and skills necessary to excel in their field. Upon completion, aspiring veterinary technicians may take a national exam known as the Veterinary Technician National Examination (VTNE). The VTNE is a comprehensive assessment that evaluates the breadth of the technician’s understanding across multiple species. With a total of 300 multiple-choice questions, covering various topics, this exam ensures that technicians are well-prepared to handle the diverse challenges encountered in their daily work. From animal anatomy and physiology to pharmacology and radiology, the VTNE examines their proficiency in all essential areas. Successfully passing the VTNE paves the way for technicians to become registered veterinary technicians (RVTs). The RVT title signifies their achievement and signifies their commitment to upholding high standards within the profession. As registered technicians, they can further contribute to the well-being and welfare of animals, working alongside veterinarians to provide exemplary care. In summary, veterinary technicians are highly skilled professionals who have invested significant time and effort into their education and training. Their role in the veterinary field is invaluable, as they bring expertise, compassion, and dedication to ensure the health and happiness of our beloved animal companions. So let’s simplify the steps into a list to become a technician! Research and Understand the Role: Take the time to learn about the responsibilities and duties of a veterinary technician. This will give you a clear understanding of what the profession entails. Obtain a High School Diploma or Equivalent: To pursue a career as an RVT, you will need a high school diploma or an equivalent qualification. Make sure you meet this prerequisite. Research Accredited Veterinary Technology Programs: Look for accredited veterinary technology programs in your area. These programs are designed to provide the necessary education and training to become an RVT. Choose the Right Program: Evaluate different veterinary technology programs based on factors such as curriculum, facilities, faculty, and clinical opportunities. Choose a program that aligns with your interests and career goals. Enroll in a Veterinary Technology Program: Once you’ve selected a program, complete the application process and enroll. Be prepared to meet any admission requirements specific to the program. Attend and Complete the Program: Dedicate yourself to your studies and practical training during the veterinary technology program. Attend lectures, laboratory sessions, and clinical rotations to gain the knowledge and skills required for the profession. Acquire Hands-on Experience: Seek out opportunities to gain practical experience in veterinary clinics or animal hospitals. Many programs offer externships or internships, which provide valuable real-world exposure. Prepare for the VTNE: The Veterinary Technician National Examination (VTNE) is a comprehensive exam that assesses your competency as an aspiring RVT. Study diligently and use preparation resources, such as practice exams and study guides, to enhance your chances of success. Schedule and Take the VTNE: Once you feel prepared, schedule your VTNE. The exam is administered by the American Association of Veterinary State Boards (AAVSB) and can typically be taken at designated testing centers. Obtain State Licensure: After passing the VTNE, you will need to apply for state licensure. Each state has its own requirements, so make sure to complete the application process and submit the necessary documentation. Continuing Education and Career Development: As an RVT, it’s vital to stay current with advancements in veterinary medicine. Pursue continuing education opportunities, attend conferences, and consider specialization or advanced certifications to further enhance your knowledge and skills. Remember, the journey to becoming an RVT requires dedication, hard work, and a passion for animal care. Follow these steps to embark on a fulfilling and rewarding career in veterinary technology. Written by: Ashley G, VT Resources AAHA – NAVTA –

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