Veterinary Assistant Diploma

There is currently a high demand in this industry for appropriately trained personnel. The Veterinary Assistant Diploma Program aims to provide graduates with the best-suited combination of animal healthcare training and veterinary office skills.

Students learn to assess and prioritize client appointment requests and respond to clients’ basic questions about general animal health care. Students are introduced to animal breeds, medical terminology, animal health practice, pre- and post-surgical care, nutrition and diet, vaccines, parasites, pharmacology and common surgery.

This program maintains the highest possible level of standards and it keeps current with the industry and employers’ requirements.

Upon graduation, students are prepared to begin a career in veterinary assisting, veterinary office reception, or administration and can work in:

  • Veterinary Clinics
  • Hospitals
  • Animal Daycare
  • Animal Welfare Organizations
  • Wildlife Shelters
  • Zoos
  • Aquaria
  • Laboratories
  • Breeding Kennels and Boarding Facilities

Upon successful completion of this program students will receive the following:

  • Veterinary Assistant Diploma
  • American Red Cross Pet First Aid Certificate
  • WHMIS Certificate
  • Radiology Certificate
  • Idexx Certificates
  • Hills VNA Certificate
  • Royal Canin Certificates

Program Breakdown

Success Strategies

This module orients students to the expectations of college-level study and introduces strategies for success such as time management, goal setting, study skills, utilization of campus resources, critical thinking and note and test-taking skills. Students will be expected to demonstrate initiative and take responsibility for their decisions.

Employment Strategies

Students will learn to create professional resumes and cover letters. They will have the use of a job search lab which has unlimited internet access. The facilitator will also be available to provide advice on job finding resources, interview skills /techniques, and mock interviews.

Veterinary Medical Terminology

This module is designed to introduce students to the language of veterinary medicine and basic terminology. It introduces the basics of medical word formation using prefixes, suffixes and combining forms. Terms pertaining to pathology, diagnosis, and treatments as well as descriptive and anatomical terms for different species, will be discussed. Proper pronunciation of medical words and their correct spelling in order to increase the student’s ability to communicate effectively within their profession.

Veterinary Anatomy & Physiology

Building on their basic knowledge of veterinary medical terminology, students will develop their understanding of the various systems. By studying the body systems separately, students will learn terminology, anatomy, physiology, diagnostics, surgical procedures, and pathology associated with each system.

Animal Health

Building on their basic knowledge of veterinary medical terminology, students will develop their understanding of the various systems. By studying the body systems separately, students will learn terminology, anatomy, physiology, diagnostics, surgical procedures, and pathology associated with each system.

Animal Nursing

In this module, students gain a fundamental understanding of animal health. With a focus on client education, students gain a solid understanding of animal diseases including medical conditions, general animal health information, clinical symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment. Students also learn the array of veterinary diagnostic techniques including preparation for analysis of blood, urine, and feces. Students gain specialized product knowledge, enabling them to confidently counsel clients on the purchase of diets. Students will also learn about vaccination protocols. Emergency conditions are clarified and students will get their Pet First Aid Certification through the American Red Cross. Prenatal care and parturition are also covered.

Veterinary Pharmacology

Students will be introduced to the basics of veterinary pharmacology, including veterinary medications, dosage forms, pharmaceutical calculations, terminology, and transcription. Over the counter and prescription, antiparasitic drugs, as well as an introduction to neutraceuticals, will also be covered.

Surgical Procedures and Equipment

Students gain awareness of the surgical procedures, and types of equipment commonly used in an animal hospital. Instruction focuses on commonly performed surgeries, pre-surgery procedures, anesthetic protocols, and post-surgery homecare.

Veterinary Clinical Procedures

Students gain awareness of the surgical procedures, and types of equipment commonly used in an animal hospital. Instruction focuses on commonly performed surgeries, pre-surgery procedures, anesthetic protocols, and post-surgery homecare.

Veterinary Dentistry and Special Services

Students will be introduced to the basics of Veterinary Dentistry. Concepts covered will include anatomy of the tooth and surrounding structures, tooth surfaces, dental formulas for the dog and cat, dental charting and dentistry instruments. Dental disease and prevention will also be covered. This module will also briefly cover special services offered in modern veterinary medicine including rehabilitation therapy and acupuncture.

Animal Species

This module covers the identification and care of exotic species and large animals. Students will also be introduced to common dog and cat breeds including conformation temperament, modern uses, and medical ailments.

Veterinary Business Communications

With a focus on providing the highest level of customer service, students learn that professional and informed front-office communication is essential to a successful Veterinary practice. In this specialized course prior to practicum, students focus on improving their interaction with clients, staff members, and product representatives. This module aims to improve student abilities in rapport development, conflict resolution, empathy, and grief counseling.

Veterinary Practice

Students will apply learning in scenarios that test their overall capabilities in a veterinary practice environment. Case studies and role play will allow students to participate, observe and critique each student’s level of competence and speed.

Practicum

This module is for course credits but has no grade. Students will be placed in actual work places related to their field of study and will be expected to act as a regular employee for the five-week period in order to gain the valuable “real world” experience and hone their practical skills that so many employers seek. Students are encouraged to find their own work experience placement; however, once placed, continuation in that placement is mandatory.

Veterinary Assistant Job Search

Students will update their professional resumes and cover letters. They will have the use of a job search lab which has unlimited internet access, a job search resource library and a fax machine and phone for contacting prospective employers. The facilitator will also be available to provide advice on job finding resources, interview skills /techniques, and mock interviews. Students learn how to summarize verbally their core curriculum learning and to market their skills effectively.

Course No. Course Name Hours Credits
P110 Success Strategies  20 1.5
P120 Employment Strategies  20 1.5
V110 Veterinary Medical Terminology  20 1.5
V120 Veterinary Anatomy & Physiology  60 4.5
V130 Animal Health  60 4.5
V140 Animal Nursing  40 3.0
V220 Veterinary Pharmacology 20 1.5
V230 Surgical Procedures and Equipment  40 3.0
V310 Veterinary Clinical Procedures  60 4.5
V320 Veterinary Dentistry and Special Services  20 1.5
V330 Animal Species  20 1.5
V340 Veterinary Business Communications  20 1.5
V410 Veterinary Practice  40 3.0
V610 Practicum  100 7.5
V700 Veterinary Assistant Job Search  20 1.0
TOTAL HOURS OF PROGRAM (27 WEEKS) 560 42

Program Fees:

  Domestic International  
Application Fee:         $150          $1,000  
Tuition Fee:    $8,000    $11,400  
Textbooks:      $389      $389  
Other Material    $658      $658   
       

Admissions RequirementsPlease contact us for more information on tuition, program costs and other details. Please see Student Loans, Grants for more information on program funding options and tuition.

As our ideal Veterinary Assistant candidate YOU:

  • Are ethical, dependable, honest, hard working and compassionate
  • Are an active community minded individual
  • Are able to multitask while maintaining a “Customer first” attitude
  • Have solid communication skills
  • Are able to work well independently or cooperatively within a team
  • Always have a pleasant and positive outlook on life and education
  • Are detail oriented and a quick study
  • Never treat Professional Appearance, Behaviour and Development as an after thought

Steps to Admission into the Veterinary Assistant Program

  1. Proof of Citizenship / Identification

    a.  Copy of picture identification (BCID, Driver`s License, Passport, Citizenship Card, Permanent Residence Card, Status Card)

    i. If applicant is under 19 years old, parent/ legal guardian consent required

  2. High School Graduate / Academic Qualifications

    a.  Copy of Transcript from a Canadian high school or Assessment Exam:

    i.  English 11 at 70% or better (any level)

    ii. Math 11 at 70% or better (any level)

  3. Proficient in English

    If English is not your first language, and you did not graduate from a Canadian high school, you will need to take the above noted exam in English. We place a heavy emphasis on Conversational English and this will be determined by Point 6 – Interview.

  4. One Reference – This must be from a person who can attest to your ability to successfully complete this program. This reference can be a teacher, an employer or a professional member of the community. For those students who do not have a professional reference, a friend or family member may be used. Fillable form available.

     

  5. Doctor’s Certificate. Fillable form available.

     

  6. Interview conducted by the Veterinary Assistant Program Coordinator or designate. Insignia College reserves the right to deny access to the Veterinary Assistant program based on the results of this interview and references provided.

     

  7. Resume (current)

     

  8. Tetanus Vaccination (within the last 10 years)List of Victoria clinics available.

     

  9. Basic Computer, Word Processing and Spreadsheet Skills – Skills verified by either employer or certificate indicating these skills. (Challenge exams and tutoring available, see Student Services or the Director for details).

     

  10. Admissions Essay – 1-2 pages outlining your understanding of the industry, wage rates, career goals, and why you will be successful in this career.

     

  11. Criminal Record Check – results must be within six months of program start date. Insignia College reserves the right to deny admission to this program based on an unpardoned criminal record that would be relevant to the academic or placement requirements of the program.