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May 15, 2020

Celebrating Veterinary Nursing Awareness Month this May with Triona King

This May we celebrate Veterinary Nursing Awareness Month.

The aim of ‘Veterinary Nursing Awareness Month’ is to promote the importance of the veterinary nursing profession, the provision of responsible pet care and educate the general public about the different roles of nursing staff in practice.

We want to acknowledge all the wonderful nurses we have in the XLVets network and thank them for all their efforts during these challenging times. Keep the brilliant work up.

XLVet nurse Triona King, who works with Killenuale Vets, Tipperary shares with us her journey into nursing and why she loves it so much!

Four years ago I was working as a chef in a busy kitchen while studying to become a Veterinary Nurse. Growing up, there was always pets in our household and I loved being around animals. Several years ago my Labrador Lil was diagnosed with arthritis. We visited the vets frequently with Lil and the staff were always so good with her. At each visit the nurses were always so helpful. A combination of being an animal lover and the great experiences I had with the nurses during visits with Lil pushed me towards a career working with animals.

I began working in Killenaule vets to gain work experience during my veterinary nursing course. After graduation I was delighted to be offered a position. I love everything about my role. Every day is different and there is always something new to learn. The most satisfying part of my job is meeting patients again at re-checks when treatment has worked and hearing the owner describe how we have improved their lives and made a real difference. Each aspect of veterinary nursing is interesting to me from radiography to surgical nursing.

There can be tough days too, for example dealing with owners when they have to say goodbye to their pet – it can be very emotional, but you learn to be professional, consider the client and set aside your own emotions.

This covid-19 pandemic has changed they way we operate and engage with our clients, but we are responding swiftly and finding new ways of delivering our crucial service.

The profession is so enjoyable as there is a lot of variety each week. In Killenaule we are a mixed practice which allows me to leave the office now and then (preferably on a nice day) with one of our large animal vets to go TB testing. Coming from a town myself and having no background in large animals, I would have never imagined three years ago I’d find myself in a pair of wellies out on the farm for the day. Coming from a town myself and having no background in large animals, I would have never imagined four years ago I’d find myself in a pair of wellies out on the farm for the day.

Every second Saturday I am on reception duty, at the start I found this very difficult however practice makes perfect and now I am building relationships with clients. I know my new career will continue to challenge me and take me out of my comfort zone, but I look forward to it as my love for animals and helping them keeps growing.

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