Course Overview

Please Note: The instructor for this course will be unavailable from May 3, 2015 to May 21, 2015. Each student's personal end date is being extended by 2 weeks as a result. During this period students will continue to have access to the course and may submit assignments that will be graded upon her return.

Anesthesia is required for most surgical procedures, rendering the patient immobile, unaware, and without pain. In addition, certain diagnostic procedures require anesthesia, notably stomach or airway endoscopy, bone marrow sampling, and occasionally ultrasound. Animals may require anesthesia for therapeutic procedures, such as urinary catheterization to relieve obstruction, injection into a mass, or removing fluid from the eye to treat glaucoma. Aggressive animals may require anesthesia in order to be safely and humanely handled for even the most general of procedures, such as a physical exam or blood draw.

In addition to anesthesia, analgesia is often managed by anesthesiologists and anesthetists and included in the considerations for anesthesia. A balanced anesthesia protocol can be utilized for different drugs with different effects so that a high dose of just one drug can be avoided. The movement to higher quality anesthetic management requires a commitment to our patients. We are not just adding medications and monitoring equipment. We must look at our patients as a separate individual. Is the patient young or old, calm or excitable, small or large, healthy or diseased?

By thinking of our patients as individuals, we can adjust a given protocol to achieve the best possible balance of safety and comfort. Through the application of advances, we can provide a much more valuable service to our clients and provide safer anesthesia for our patients. We need to forget the thought that anesthesia is giving so many mg per kg of drug, with the only question being the weight of the animal. This course can provide a basis for viewing anesthetic management as the essential of quality veterinary medicine that it should be. It is recommended, although not required, for participants to work in practice to complete this course.

Partner Courses: The art and science of anesthesia and analgesia is constantly adapting to new advances. Anesthesia: Advancing Small Animal Procedures and Protocols: Part One and Anesthesia: Advancing Small Animal Procedures and Protocols: Part Two are partner courses designed to provide advanced level training to help practitioners and veterinary technicians update and expand their procedures and protocols.

Anesthesia: Advancing Small Animal Procedures and Protocols: Part One provides an in-depth review of the evaluation, considerations, and regulation of acid-base balance and fluid therapy. The anesthetic management of dogs and cats across such considerations as species, age, breed, and other factors like trauma and pre-existing disease are also addressed. Drug selection from the viewpoint of procedure-related factors covers topics including the level of invasiveness and length of procedure. The next section reviews the anesthesia and immobilization of small mammals like laboratory rodents, pocket pets and non-domesticated/exotic patients. This course then moves into anesthetic considerations for special procedures such as ocular, cesarean, trauma and the critically ill, neonatal and geriatric, dental and orthopedic. Select procedures including laryngoscopy and bronchoscopy, CT and MRI are addressed as well. Please review the learning objectives and content sections below for more details.

Anesthesia: Advancing Small Animal Procedures and Protocols: Part Two picks up where Part One left off, starting with considerations for patients with cardiovascular disease, respiratory disease and airway compromise. It also addresses neurological disease, endocrine disorders, renal disease and liver disease. The final module reviews the factors involved in anesthesia emergencies and accidents including high-risk patients, cardiovascular emergencies like cardiac arrest, respiratory insufficiency, delayed recovery and other situations that need to be understood and planned for. It is recommended, but not required, that participants take the courses in order. It is also highly recommended that the participant have a strong foundation in the fundamental principles of anesthesia, well beyond a surface training in dial-setting and number watching. The content covered in our Basic Principles of Anesthesia Part One and Part Two courses should already be mastered. The advanced courses build on a foundation and will not provide basic level training.

Enrollment: The enrollment button on this page enrolls into the Part One course only. To learn more about Part Two please use this link Anesthesia: Advancing Small Animal Procedures and Protocols Part One catalog page.

This course was previously titled Advanced Concepts of Anesthesia, Small Animal Part Two.


Continuing Education Credits

Course meets the requirements for 25 RACE hours of continuing education credit for veterinary technicians and veterinarians in jurisdictions which recognize AAVSB's RACE approval. However, participants should be aware that some boards have limitations on the number of hours accepted in certain categories and/or restrictions on certain methods of delivery.

This course is an interactive online course that meets RACE requirements; program number 57-10160.


Participation Access Parameters

The design of this course allows participants to enroll at any time. 

After enrolling, please allow up to 48 hours for course activation. Each participant will have a personal start and end date that begins upon activation.


Course Content

Anesthesia: Advancing Small Animal Procedures and Protocols Part Two is an advanced level 6-week course. The content, assignments, examinations and case studies address acid-base balance, fluid therapy considerations, balanced anesthesia, drug selection and procedure related factors in patients with special needs and situations. It covers anesthesia and immobilization of a number of small animal species. Ocular, cesaarian, trauma, critically ill, neonatal, geriatric, dental, orthopedic and select diagnostic procedures are also reviewed.


Course Focus and Learning Objectives

This course is designed for the anesthetic technician and veterinarian seeking to provide anesthesia and analgesia focused on the patient as an individual and who wish to expand their understanding of the factors that need to be taken into consideration when selecting drugs and developing protocols. It is highly recommended that the participant have a strong grounding in the fundamental principles of anesthesia, well beyond a surface training in dial setting and number watching.

Upon completion of the course, the student will be able to:

  • Evaluate and develop a safe anesthetic protocol with sedatives, tranquilizers and anticholinergics for cardiovascular patients
  • Evaluate sedatives and tranquilizers for patients with respiratory disease and develop specific anesthetic protocols for patients with upper airway dysfunction and/or with lower airway dysfunction
  • Facilitate mechanical ventilation for patients with lower airway dysfunction
  • Evaluate sedatives, tranquilizers and analgesics for patients with neurological disease and identify neuromuscular blocking agents
  • Develop anesthetic protocols for patients undergoing specific neurological diagnostic procedures
  • Manage seizures perioperatively in patients with neurological disease
  • Identify disorders of the adrenal gland, pancreas, parathyroid and thyroid glands and develop anesthetic protocols to manage Discuss renal physiology and pathophysiology, determine the effects of anesthesia on the renal system and develop anesthetic protocols for patients with renal disease
  • Identify the effects of drugs on the liver and develop safe anesthetic and analgesic protocols for patients with liver dysfunction
  • Evaluate candidates that are a high anesthetic risk
  • Identify cardiovascular emergencies, potential allergic drug reactions and acute abnormalities
  • Establish protocols for CPR
  • Assess equipment malfunction
  • Assess patients with delayed anesthetic recoveries and identify and treat those with hypo and hyperthermia
  • Prepare for anesthetic injuries


Participant Feedback

...I like the multi-modal approach to learning with a variety of assignments that invoke not only rote memorization of the references but also requires application through critical thinking on many of the assignments.

...the textbook was good reference.

...The assignments concerning the protocols used in my own practice were the most beneficial to my day-to-day activity there.

...Just like the Small Animal Anesthesia Part One course, I also found this course to be really beneficial. I liked everything- the reading, critical thinking, and case study assignments. Doing all that work was worth it because it forced me to go back and re-read the chapter I just read. The instructor was also very helpful and provided some really good papers for me to read. She's very knowledgeable in anesthesia, and I'm glad I did both courses!

...Thorough discussion of potential anesthetic accidents

...I liked the assignment of creating a CPR flow chart as it is very useful at my hospital. It is a great visual teaching aid for coworkers that helps them to prepare for and assist in emergencies.

...I think, this course take all aspects that I need to learn, about physiology of the organs and systems thar are involucred in the general anesthesia, also this course provide a good knowledge, in diferent aspects in the clinic.


Required Materials

Essentials of Small Animal Anesthesia and Analgesia, 2nd Editionby Kurt A Grimm, William J. Tranquilli, Leigh A Lamont; 2011 Wiley-Blackwell

Important Text Information: This course utilizes a textbook. It is up to each participant to determine the best way to acquire the text. Some will already have the text in their library and, therefore, will not need to purchase another copy. Where to purchase and in what format is totally up to the participant. The text is available as a print publication and as an eBook through Wiley-Blackwell. The following link to their website is provided as a courtesy. Scroll down to the bottom of the Wiley-Blackwell page to view all book delivery options:

Purchase Text From Wiley-Blackwell

Important: Regardless of what option the participant chooses, access to a copy of the textbook is mandatory. Without the text, the student will not be able to complete the assignments, case studies and examinations as the material is not reprinted within the course. If enrolling close to or beyond the course start date, it is recommended that the text be purchased as an eBook to prevent text acquisition related delays.


Course Completion Requirements

Completed students are awarded a certificate of completion. Completion requirements include:

  • Instructor Graded Interactive Module Assignments: Designed to help the participant reinforce newly learned material

  • Instructor Graded Interactive Case Study Assignments: Designed to help the participant apply the newly learned skills and knowledge though patient and practice based scenarios

  • Examinations: All examinations must be submitted with a score of 80% or better

  • Course survey


Course Instructor

Mary Ellen Goldberg, BS, CVT, VMT, LAAS, SRAMary Ellen Goldberg, BS, CVT, VMT, LAAS, SRA

Mary Ellen Goldberg graduated from Harcum College and the University of Pennsylvania. She took the Virginia state boards and is also licensed in the state of Florida. Mary Ellen is a Surgical Research Anesthetist certified through the Academy of Surgical Research.

She worked at the Virginia Commonwealth University in the Division of Animal Resources as a Laboratory Animal Anesthesia and Analgesia Specialist and has been the instructor of Anesthesia and Pain Management at VetMedTeam, LLC since 2003.

In addition, she is the Co-Editor of the International Veterinary Academy of Pain Management’s newsletter and active in the formation of Academy credentialing for veterinary technicians and veterinarians. Mary Ellen is an elected member of the Board of Directors and Executive Secretary of the IVAPM (International Veterinary Academy of Pain Management). She is on the Exam Writing Committee and the Case Study Review Committee as part of the credentialing process for Certified Veterinary Pain Practitioner (CVPP). She is a member of the Executive Committee. She is a member of the American Academy of Pain Management, American Society of Pain Educators, and Association of Veterinary Anaesthetists.

Mary Ellen has now been appointed to the faculty at the Mannheimer Foundation, Inc., a primate facility in South Florida, to teach residents in Laboratory Animal Medicine from the University of Florida and other Veterinary Colleges about Primate Anesthesia and Analgesia. Mary Ellen is part of the faculty/staff for Canine Trigger Point Therapy Programs in The Woodlands, Texas. She does relief work as a veterinary technician for the Lion Country Safari Hospital in Loxahatchee, Florida.

Mary Ellen has worked in various aspects of veterinary medicine from small animal and equine to mixed practice, coccidiosis research for a pharmaceutical company, zoo animal medicine and laboratory animal medicine.

She lives in Boynton Beach, Florida with her husband. She has 3 grown sons.



Price: $179.00



VetMedTeam 2014