Large Animal Facilities in Veterinary Hospitals

Large Animal Facilities in Veterinary Hospitals
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  • 0:00 Large Animal Practice
  • 0:59 Hospital Rooms
  • 2:30 Hospital Services
  • 4:07 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Artem Cheprasov
This lesson will go over the major rooms and services you'll encounter in a large animal hospital, such as the exam rooms and neonatal intensive care unit.

Large Animal Practice

Do you have a pet dog or cat? Well, some people have pet horses, pet cows, pet pigs, and even pet alpacas. While many people don't consider these animals as pets per se, it doesn't matter. In either case, there will come a day when they'll need medical or even surgical care.

And although the majority of veterinarians are in small animal practice, a veterinary clinic or hospital that primarily treats dogs and cats, there are still, thankfully, plenty of veterinarians who are in a large animal practice, a veterinary clinic or hospital that treats food animals, equines, or both. Many of the rooms, facilities, and medical services that are available to dogs and cats are available to large animal practitioners, especially equine practitioners.

In this lesson, we'll go over some of the major components you may find in a large animal hospital.

Large Animal Hospital Rooms

Firstly, many large animal veterinarians go out and visit local farms and ranches to diagnose and treat their patients. This is because it is sometimes difficult for owners to come out to a large central hospital, or there may simply not even be one nearby.

But let's say that an owner has used a trailer to bring their large animal to a large animal hospital. In that case, we can expect that the animal will be brought into a holding pen or exam room area where it will be restrained as necessary for the veterinarian to assess the problem.

Other times, the problem can only be assessed if the animal is allowed to walk around in a large space. In that case, special rooms, hallways, or outdoor areas exist in the veterinary hospital where the patient can be checked for signs of lameness, an abnormal gait or stance.

A treatment area in the hospital will serve as the place where relatively minor procedures can be performed, while an operating room will be used for major procedures, especially in horses. There will also be specialized radiology rooms built with radiology equipment not found in a small animal practice, which aids in taking x-rays of large animals.

Hospital stalls will always be present throughout the facility in order to allow for the continued monitoring and treatment of all patients. And like small animal clinics, an isolation ward will be in place for the housing of patients with contagious diseases.

Large Animal Hospital Services

In many respects, a large animal hospital has virtually all the same components as any small animal hospital but on a much larger scale - which makes sense. After all, how much bigger is your pet horse than your pet cat? And just like the rooms and facilities are similar in their function, large animal hospitals offer essentially the same breadth of services and expertise to horses and food animals as small animal practitioners offer to dogs and cats.

Let's go over some of them:

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