Online CPD for Vet Nurses

Neurology in Practice (*NEW* - Oct 2023)



Start:  2nd October 2023

CPD:   15 hours (UK), 15 points (AUS, NZ) over 6 / 8 weeks 

Level:  Intermediate




Veterinary nurses will likely have to nurse patients with varying degrees of neurological disease throughout their career. Understanding how a patient is affected neurologically, and knowing their basic care needs, will allow for successful nursing of these patients in practice.


Although neurological patients may seem daunting initially, by going through these patients step-by-step from history, through diagnosis, treatment and nursing care, we can make these cases less daunting and more rewarding.


Each week we will look at a different aspect of veterinary neurology so that you gain a full picture of how and why certain treatment options are preformed/required. Following the course, you can apply the knowledge of various conditions and how these will affect the nursing care requirements of the patient, to produce successful nursing care plans, as well as fully support your clients that have pets with on-going neurological needs at home.


Week 1
Patient History and Assessment

  • Taking a thorough history
  • Initial patient assessment
  • Anatomy
  • Neurological examination
  • Localisation

Learning objectives
After completion of this week, participants should be able to:

  • Successfully take a detailed history from owners and distinguish if the problem is neurological or not
  • Assess / triage the patient’s overall condition
  • Understand the neurological examination and describe what the findings may suggest
  • Discuss neurological lesion localisation and appreciate how this will allow planning of diagnostics tests

Week 2

  • What do we need to know and when?
  • Blood tests
  • Urine
  • Imaging
  • MRI
  • CT
  • Radiography
  • Myelography
  • Ultrasound
  • Electrodiagnostics
  • Muscle and nerve biopsies

Learning objectives
After completion of this week, participants should be able to:

  • Understand if diagnostic tests are required
  • Know what tests should be prioritised – especially in emergency / critical cases or money sensitive situations
  • Understand what genetic tests are routinely carried out in neurology
  • Have a basic understanding of advanced imaging protocols and which ones should be used
  • Understand why and when electrodiagnostics are used in practice
  • Discuss why muscle and nerve biopsies may be taken

Week 3
Spinal Conditions

  • Intervertebral disc disease and other common spinal conditions
  • Medical versus surgical treatment
  • Hemilaminectomy surgery, ventral slot surgery and other surgical approaches
  • Fenestration and durotomy – what does it mean and why?
  • Atlanto-axial instability, fractures and other vertebral malformations

Learning objectives
After completion of this week, participants should be able to:

  • Display knowledge about common spinal conditions seen in practice and understands why surgery is or isn’t performed
  • Describe how surgery affects the patient’s anatomy. Understanding surgery allows for a more considerate approach to nursing these patients
  • Show an awareness of any likelihood of recurrence

Week 4
Brain Disease

  • Seizures
  • Meningoencephalitis of unknown origin (MUO)
  • Vestibular disease
  • Head trauma
  • Neoplasia
  • Toxins
  • Otitis media / interna

Learning objectives
After completion of this week, participants should be able to:

  • Explain primary and secondary seizures and potential causes, and understand when to start anti-epileptic treatment
  • Discuss the clinical signs of MUO, how it is diagnosed in practice, along with the treatment options available
  • Know how to triage the emergency head trauma patient and use the Glasgow Coma Scale
  • List other causes of disease that may cause patients to present similarly to brain disease patients

Week 5
Neuromuscular Disease

  • Common neuromuscular diseases seen in the UK
  • Myasthenia Gravis
  • Polyradiculoneuritis
  • Tetanus
  • Toxoplasmosis

Learning objectives
After completion of this week, participants should be able to:

  • Show an understanding as to how different neuromuscular diseases affect our patients
  • Discuss treatment options available to patients for these conditions and know the nursing care required to support them during their recovery

Week 6
Nursing the Neurological Patient

  • Nursing care required to successfully nurse patients in hospital
  • Bladder dysfunction and care
  • Nutritional / hydration needs
  • Handling techniques
  • Exercise
  • Complications
  • Complementary treatment options
  • Promoting good overall patient care in practice

Learning objectives
After completion of this week, participants should be able to:

  • Consolidate knowledge from the whole course to successfully produce nursing care plans for a variety of neurological conditions
  • Identify which bladder management technique is required for various patients
  • Understand appropriate handling techniques and when one should be used over another
  • Help support clients that have pets with ongoing neurological care needs at home
  • Discuss the long-term care and monitoring these patients may require

This course will be fully tutored by Zoe Hatfield and will consist of 15 hours of CPD given in various formats, including tutorials, tasks, case studies, forum discussions and quizzes.

This course is tutored for 6 weeks, followed by a two week extension of untutored ‘catch up’ time, before the course officially ends.

All delegates will then have unlimited lifetime access to the learning material for future reference.


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Zoe Hatfield

VTS (IM-Neurology), RVN


Coming soon…


This online course is worth 15 hours of CPD.


A certificate will be available from the ‘My Courses’ section, for you to download and print, once you have completed the course.  A permanent record of your total CPD hours will also be recorded in your account section.


The Australian Veterinary Nurse and Technician (AVNAT) Regulatory Council has allocated 15 AVNAT CPD points to this continuing education activity.


This course is also recognised by the New Zealand Veterinary Nursing Association (NZVNA) as providing 15 CPD points.


Upon purchase you will be registered to attend the course, for 6 weeks from the start date.  The course will consist of various interactive tasks and lessons, including quizzes, case studies, forum discussions and further reading material.


The course is fully tutored, with new material will be provided each Monday morning, but the onus will be on the individual delegate to ensure that all tasks are fully complete.  The certificate will only be issued at the end of the course when all tasks have been accomplished.  Fewer CPD hours will be awarded at the the end of the course if there are unfinished tasks or there has been no contribution to the discussion forum, for example.


The course is fully flexible, and there are no weekly ‘deadlines’ – the lessons and tasks may be completed whenever is convenient for each delegate, and any live lessons with be recorded and made available later that same day.   Furthermore, all the course material will be available for a further 2 weeks, to allow delegates the opportunity to catch up on missed lessons and tasks, or to take the opportunity to delve further into the suggested reading texts.  Please note however, that the course will not be tutored by the speaker during these final two weeks, but the time spent will count towards your CPD hours.


After 8 weeks, the course will be complete and there will be no further opportunity to gain the certificate or CPD hours, however, you will have unlimited lifetime access to the tutorials, further reading and quizzes for future reference.  If you make any personal notes during the course using the ‘take notes’ app, these will be saved, along with your certificate and CPD record for permanent access in ‘My CPD’.


For some further information about our Online Tutored CPD courses – please read our PDF guide to Online Tutored CPD

This course has been listed as ‘Intermediate’ level


All of our courses are aimed at veterinary nurses in general practice, but everyone who works in the veterinary profession is very welcome to attend, whether you are a clinical receptionist, veterinary surgeon, student nurse or have been a qualified nurse for over 20 years!


The courses are not formally assessed for skill level, so the following CPD levels are just a rough guide to help you decide if a course may be more or less suitable:


  • Introduction – maybe most suitable for qualified nurses in general practice approaching a new topic or looking for a refresher course.
  • Intermediate – maybe most suitable for qualified nurses in general practice along with referral / specialist nurses looking for a refresher course
  • Advanced – maybe most suitable for referral / specialist nurses and highly experienced qualified nurses in general practice.

You will earn 250 Pawprint Points (£25 website credit) when you purchase this course


Our loyalty scheme rewards you with 10% in website credit to spend on future courses.  Choose pay with Pawprint Points during checkout.

Invoice My Practice

Payment with debit or credit card is the preferred payment method

Please ask your practice manager or accounts department to visit the website, register an account in their own name, and during checkout, complete the ‘delegate name’ and ‘delegate email’ sections with your personal details.  We will then register you a personal account on your behalf, and transfer the course booking over to your new personal account.  We will of course email you all the information you need to access this new account and your CPD course.

If you need an invoice and no other payment method is available to you, then please email [email protected] with all the following information:

Please note the following:

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