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Program for Saturday, September 30

Small Animal


Valerie Fadok, DVM, PhD, DACVD
Zoetis / Bellaire, TX

Dermatologic tricks and techniques (reviewing cultures, skin biopsies, alternatives to scrapings, etc) using a case based approach Using real patients, we will illustrate the techniques used in dermatology to facilitate making an accurate diagnosis.

Sponsored by

GI – Liver/Pancreas

David Twedt, DVM, DACVIM
Colorado State University / Fort Collins, CO

The presentations will consist of case-based topics covering practical aspects of both liver and pancreatic disease in the dog and cats. Topics will include conditions such as chronic hepatitis, the role of copper in liver disease, feline triaditis and vascular disorders.

Large Animal

Animal Welfare

Marina Von Keyserlingk, PhD
University of British Columbia / Vancouver, BC

Animal welfare is emerging as one of the key social concerns regarding animal agriculture. Concern for the welfare of farms animals is not new, but the last few years have seen increased interest in farm practices. One of the dairy industry’s core strengths is the very positive view that many people have about dairy farming, and the ‘wholesomeness’ of both the milk and the way it is produced. Many consumers believe that cows spend their days grazing green pastures, conveniently turning grass into milk year after year until old age. This strength can also be regarded as a threat if industry practices no longer match evolving public expectations. Every year there are fewer dairy farms, and the ever decreasing proportion of society that works within this industry will never be able to able to ‘educate’ the large majority, at least not on all issues, all of the time. Moreover, the farmers themselves are part of this rapidly evolving society, and practices that were accepted by past generations as necessary may not seem so to the next generation of producers. Change will happen. During this presentation I will highlight some of our most recent work on engaging the farmers, veterinarians and the public as a means to help identify methods of care to come into harmony with public expectations.

Food Animal Herd Health

Dale Moore, DVM, MPVM, PhD, DACVPM
Washington State University / Pullman, WA

Dr. Moore’s presentation covers the critical control points that a veterinarian can monitor for pre-weaned calf care to prevent illness, encourage growth and enhance calf well-being. Included will be a walk through a formal assessment tool designed to help practitioners implement the audit as a new practice herd health service.

Cattle Stockmanship

Fred Muller, DVM
Merck Animal Health / Sunnyside, WA

Dr. Muller’s presentation will focus on settling weaned calves in new environments and training them to respond to pressure applied by their handler. The presentation will demonstrate how good handling will improve calf health and performance as well as improve labor efficiency of the farm. Common mistakes in cattle handling will be spotlighted to improve cattle movement.

Sponsored by

Calf Care Labor Issues

Dale Moore, DVM, MPVM, PhD, DACVPM
Kelly Reed, DVM
Bill Sischo, DVM, MPVM, PhD
Panel Discussion

More information coming soon…

Calf Health Management

Bill Sischo, DVM, MPVM, PhD
Washington State University / Moscow, WA

One session will focus on working with calf care labor and the issues involved in promoting compliance with protocols. The last session will be a summary of alternatives to antibiotic use in calf rearing and the evidence behind them.


Equine Behavior

Gemma Pearson, BVMS, ACP, MScR
PhD Student / Scottich Boarders, UK

These presentations will explain how horses really learn and how this knowledge can be applied by the equine practitioner, there will be a strong practical emphasis. Included will be evidence based techniques for dealing with common unwanted behaviors such as the needle shy horse, how to undertake nerve blocks without getting kicked, or give oral medication to the to a reluctant patient.

Equine Dentistry

Jon Gieche, DVM, DAVDC
Kettle Moraine Equine Hospital & Regional Equine Dental Center / Whitewater, WI

Equine Oroscopy: Description of the “design, build and cost” component parts of the oroscope. (how I built mine) Video clips of the oroscope in use showing anatomy, clinical findings (including things we often miss with only a mirror), complications of use and solutions to these complications. This is a very visually/video rich presentation with many video clips of the equine oral cavity.

Radiology in Equine Dentistry: Designed to detail the current methodology of Equine Dental Field Radiology. Direct (DR) and Computed (CR) are covered as many general practitioners may have either or both systems. Intra oral and extra oral techniques are covered including radiology concepts important to image acquisition like the Bisecting Angle Technique… Anatomical positioning with preserved skulls is covered in detail with examples of resulting radiographs.

Sedation and NN blocks in Equine Dentistry: In depth description of the local and regional anesthetic techniques used in Equine Dental Practice. Description will include techniques for all areas of the oral cavity and related dentition. giving the practitioner the tools to provide comfort and safety for the staff and patient during procedures. Common sedation techniques and methods I use to minimize the negative effects of particular sedative agents will also be discussed.


The Client Experience

Andy Roark, DVM
DrAndyRoark.com / Greenville, SC

Dr. Roark’s topics cover communication skills to help everyone in the hospital rise to every occasion. Got an angry client on line 2, a potential new client on line 3, a current client who isn’t compliant with prevention recommendations in a room, and a client at the desk who can’t pay? Learn to handle each situation with easy to gain back the time and resources you need to be successful.

LVT Education Panel

Ragan Borzcik, DVM
Taryn Hudgens, DVM
Salvador Hurtado, DVM
Susan Wedam, DVM
Ryan Frazier, LVT
Noriko Riggleman, LVT
Laura Tautz-Hair, LVT
Jade Williams, LVT

This Q&A Panel will allow practice managers and owners the opportunity to better understand the current status of educational requirements, program developments and attrition rates within the local veterinary technology programs. Additionally this panel will seek to answer the common questions and concerns around “the technician shortage”. This panel is designed specifically for practice managers and practice owners to address what our local programs are seeing, hearing and experiencing from program application to graduation and post graduate surveys.

Employment Law

Amy Mensik, JD
Witherspoon Kelley / Spokane, WA

Washington voters recently approved Initiative 1433, requiring employers to provide paid sick and safe leave starting January 2018. 1-1433 differs from cities’ existing paid leave laws and may require you to revise your practice’s policies. Ensure your practice complies with this ever-changing area of law by joining us for need-to-know information on 1-1433
and existing paid leave laws.

Emotional Intelligence

Diane Marshall, DVM, MBA
Hill’s Pet Nutrition / Bellevue, WA

An introduction to Emotional Intelligence, with a focus on the veterinary health care team. Understanding emotions and how they affect our behavior and relationships is a powerful tool that everyone can use.

Wet Lab

Extra-capsular (Crcl) Repair Lab

Scott Lozier, DVM, MS, DACVS
VCA NWVS / Clakamas, OR

Though, extracapsular stabilization is no longer the gold standard for treatment of cranial cruciate tears it is still a widely used alternative. Achieving the best possible outcome with this methodology requires impeccable sterile technique, exacting implant placement and thoughtful consideration/treatment regarding the medial meniscus. Participants will learn to use the Intrauma Isolock implants while achieving these goals.

It’s a Vet’s Life

Personal and Professional Wellness

Carrie La Jeunesse, DVM
LaJeune Consulting / Southworth, WA

Session 1: Regardless of “area of practice,” the veterinary profession demands interaction, caring and effort that can be both rewarding and stressful. This interactive session will demystify compassion stress, and offer useable strategies and resources for promoting health for our professional communities and ourselves.

Session 2: Seeking the holy grail of happiness, satisfaction and balance across our life experiences sometimes can feel like an epic quest. In this interactive session, we will explore some proven and adaptable options for navigating the journey of work-life integration, and improving personal resilience.

Surviving the Technician Shortage

Richard DeBowes DVM, MS, DACVS
Salvador Hurtado DVM
Susan Wedam DVM
Noriko Riggleman LVT

Having trouble finding licensed veterinary technicians? You’re not alone! This panel discussion will cover the foundations of the technician shortage, discuss ways veterinary practices can retain experienced LVTs, and identify ways to utilize our existing paraprofessionals effectively.

Blending Family & Careers Panel Discussion

Cori Gross, DVM
Victoria Jones, DVM
Chantal Rothschild, DVM, DACVIM
Panel Discussion

How do you balance the challenges of a strong and vibrant family life with those of a dynamic professional career? Come hear our panel of veterinarians from various fields talk about how they have been able to be devoted to their family and still pursue an engaging career.

Financial Planning

Justin Kribbs, MS
OHSU / Washougal, WA

Trends in Borrowing and Income for Health Care Professionals: Borrowing for graduate degrees has increased greatly over the last decade, but have salaries and income expectations kept pace? This session will try and shed some light on the financial outcomes of health care professionals and how they align with those in the Veterinarian field.

Integration of Loan Repayment into Financial Planning Strategies: An analysis of the various loan repayment programs available to borrowers of student loans and how those repayment options can be integrated into a personal financial plan.

Alternative Opportunities in Veterinary Medicine

Brian Joseph, DVM, DDCAVM, WAVMA
Department of Agriculture Washington / Olympia, WA

Veterinary medicine provides more diversity in career possibilities than nearly any other career. They are not always obvious, may involve taking some risk or the need to operate outside one’s comfort zone, but they can provide career satisfaction.

Technicians & Assistants

Pain Management & Anesthesia

Kristen Cooley, CVT, VTS
University of Wisconson / Madison, WI

The Cool Observer: Monitoring Anesthesia With Confidence: Anesthetic monitors are only as good as the people using them. Increase your knowledge base on the how’s and why’s of monitors used during anesthesia. We will go over what is normal vs. what is abnormal to make you more comfortable with the information these machines give us. This lecture will also cover how to react to abnormal readings, and how to troubleshoot some common monitor issues. Monitors such as the pulse-oximeter, capnography, non-invasive blood pressure monitors (Doppler and oscillometric) as well as ECG monitors will be discussed.

Insight Into Anesthetic Drugs: Anesthesia has a lot to do with drugs; drugs for sedation, drugs for analgesia, drugs for unconsciousness and drugs to reverse the effects of another drug… Good anesthesia starts with a thorough understanding of the variety of drugs that we use. Re-examine common medicants, learn a few new tricks and discover how certain drugs can work together to provide a safer and more balanced outcome when it comes to both anesthesia and analgesia.

Anesthesia for the Patient with Renal Disease: Many of our veterinary patients present with some degree of renal compromise. Revisit the anatomy and physiology of the kidney and how this amazing organ functions when faced with adversity. We will review what drugs are considered “safe” for renal patients and those that aren’t as well as discuss the roll of the anesthetist in these compromised critters.

Mechanical Ventilation – To Breathe or Not to Breathe: Mechanical ventilation is under-utilized in veterinary practice. This lecture will review some basic respiratory physiology including what drives us to breathe and how we can use that information to better understand ventilation. A discussion of how ventilators work along with some troubleshooting tips will leave attendees with the knowledge to comfortably take their clinic ventilators out of the closet and put them in the OR where they will get used.

How They Tell Us When They Hurt – Recognizing pain in veterinary patients: Many of our patients are experts at hiding pain. Learn the subtle and not so subtle signs of pain in the species we commonly work with to improve comfort and quality of care. Treating Pain Doesn’t Need To Be a Pain: How to institute positive change in your practice
Why are so many people resistant to change even when it improves patient care and pain management? Unfortunately there is no easy answer. The good news is that by understanding why some people are resistant to change you can develop a solid plan to make positive change happen in your practice.

Behind the Eight Ball – Playing catch-up with a painful patient: Untreated or under-treated pain can lead to a patient that is very difficult to manage. Getting behind on pain management is stressful for everyone but there is hope! Learn about the drugs and techniques that can be used to calm down the nervous system and make painful patients more comfortable.

Compassion Fatigue Vs. Burn Out

Jade Velasquez, LVT
Woodside Animal Hospital / Port Orchard, WA

Compassion fatigue and burn out are often confused because they can be interchangeable. Quite often the signs we see in ourselves and others aren’t easily labeled. How do we figure out if we are suffering from a case of compassion fatigue? How do we identify when a coworker is battling burn out? We need to be able to tell the difference and begin talking about both issues in outside the conference room and in our clinics. Having a label is often a relief. But what do we do now? How do we learn to refocus our career and life to give ourselves and others the best chance at success and happiness? By attending this talk I hope to redefine the blurry line between compassion fatigue and burn out and give you feasible tools to regain your passion for veterinary medicine and for living life.

Hot Tech Topics

Liz Hughston, RVT, CVT, VTS
Vet Tech Xpert / San Jose, CA

Scooby’s Doobies: Can Cannabis Cure? With the advent of decriminalization of recreational use of marijuana in several states, and the increasing use of medical marijuana in human medicine, interest is growing in how medical marijuana might be used to treat veterinary patients as well. This talk will review the current ongoing research, any available evidence, as well as present anecdotal information about the use of medical marijuana for dogs and cats. Your clients are using it: get information to help them make the best decisions.

Play Nice! Drug Interactions Every Veterinary Technician Should Know: The number of medications we use every day in practice is astounding and increasing every day. Technicians are instrumental in both administering medications and ensuring the safety of patients receiving them so it’s important to know how drugs interact with each other. We will cover common medications used in practice and how they interact with each other – both positively and negatively – as well as basic pharmacokinetics

Your Best Staff: Developing A Training Program Training: New and existing medical staff can be an overwhelming task, and often one that needs to be completed overnight. Learn from two technicians who have been in your shoes, and have developed structured staff training programs in their hospitals. You’ll learn how to get started, gain support from the entire team, and retain great staff members through a custom training program you create.

Mentoring in the Veterinary Practice: A new employee gets perhaps one week of one-on-one training before they are set loose in the hospital. But are they really ready? A mentoring program in your hospital can help smooth the transition from new employee to great employee, while increasing the job satisfaction of your current staff members. This presentation will discuss the differences between training, coaching, and mentoring and how mentoring can improve both patient care and employee morale in your practice.

To V or Not to V – The Road to VTS: With thirteen specialty technician Academies currently approved by NAVTA, the Road to VTS has developed many twists and turns. This presentation will help to straighten that road and light.