Course Overview

The phone is ringing off the hook! Line 1 is Mr. Derk. He thinks his cat, Hayley, may have eaten some rat poison and he wants to know what to do. Mrs. Lynch is on line 2. Her neighbor's dog escaped his yard and was hit by a car and she is on her way in with him. Line 3 is a good client, Ms. Heather. Her Riley is just not feeling well today. Heather saw her eating chicken bones that the neighbors threw over the fence a couple of days ago. Should she be concerned?

General veterinary practices are faced with multiple emergencies on a daily basis. Is the team ready to handle all of these emergencies? Who is responsible for triaging the cases? What protocols are used? When an emergency comes in, what are the responsibilities of each team member? How does the team tell one client that another emergency is more critical than his or her own pet?

ECC: The ABCs of Emergency Response is a 5-week course that covers the basics of emergency response. Telephone triaging and communicating with clients open up this course, followed by the definition and stages of shock. Patient assessment is critical, and covers mentation, crash plans, TPR, mm/crt and pain assessment. The most common emergencies seen in practice are covered, along with the ABC’s of CPCR for both the cardiac and respiratory systems.

Usually time is a critical factor when responding to emergencies. A trained and ready practice team can make the difference in patient outcome and client satisfaction. This course will help practices initiate team training in emergency response. Participants are not required to work in practice to complete this course.

PLEASE NOTE: This course contains flash based Articulate presentations. iPhones and iPads are not natively flash compatible but if a flash compatible browser has been installed on the iPad the presentations will play correctly. This link Flash on iPads provides information on flash compatible browsers. The presentations may also be viewed on a Mac.

This course was previously titled Basic Principles of Emergency Response.


Continuing Education Credits

Course meets the requirements for 15 RACE hours of continuing education credit for veterinary technicians 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 57-11974.


Veterinary Technician Specialty Academy Acceptance

The Academy of Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Technicians (AVECCT)

ECC: The ABCs of Emergency Response
is accepted by the Academy towards continuing education requirements.


Course Content

Topics covered in this basic course include the types and stages of shock and the basics of CPCR. It examines common emergencies, including those affecting specific body systems, seizures, and toxicosis. It also addresses electrocardiogram basics and emergency drugs, including a chart with usage guidelines. Fluid types, their appropriate usage and monitoring protocols, cardiac conduction, and the Heimlich maneuver round out the course.


Course Focus and Learning Objectives

ECC: The ABCs of Emergency Response is an introductory level 5-week course designed for veterinary assistants and veterinary technicians seeking to strengthen their understanding of the core components of emergency care.

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

  • Ask clients the appropriate questions regarding an emergency situation
  • Provide the client with basic first aid instructions prior to transport to the practice
  • Develop protocols to assist the distressed pet owner
  • Relay pertinent information to the veterinary staff regarding the incoming emergency
  • List and explain the 5 patient assessments used to determine the patient's emergency state of being
  • Know the meaning of the ABC's of CPR
  • Help develop a practice emergency protocol for team members
  • Relate common emergency scenarios and demonstrate general knowledge of routine emergency care
  • Recognize the 5 different types of shock and identify the 3 stages of shock
  • Learn the ABC's of CPR/CPCR focusing on patient recognition, assessment, and the therapeutics involved with resuscitation
  • Discuss common emergencies pertaining to the cardiac, respiratory, and urogenital systems


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.


Participant Feedback

...The case studies was the best part for me in this course. It allow me to think and was very apacable in my work place.

...I liked the layout of the modules. They were easy to understand, navigate and well organized. The instructor was also very timely in responding to assignment submissions and providing feedback. The case studies were also very helpful in applying the information learned.

...The course was laid out in an easy to read format and flowed in to the next section well. After graduating collage i never experienced any of these topics or even running blood work. I went in to shelter medicine where the answer for a non adoptable animal sadly was euthanasia and now I'm in a surgical unit realizing i need to brush up on my skills. This course helped refresh me on the different types of fluids and their use, emergency drugs and their use and important history information from the client about the patient.

...Aspects I liked included: - The info on CPR vs. CPCR. - The case studies allowed for critical thinking in potential real like situations and the research required to complete them allowed for greater understanding of the emergent situations featured.

...All parts were beneficial to me. I learned alot about emergencies and how handle them to what to look for in different scenarios and to how to go about treating patients with these situations. It was a great course.

...I liked the added course material, the responses from the instructor, the flash video was fun too.


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

Brandy Tabor, BS, CVT, VTS (ECC)Brandy Tabor, BS, CVT, VTS (ECC)

A native of Colorado, Brandy graduated from Colorado State University in the spring of 2003 with a BS in Equine Sciences. While attending CSU, she worked as a nurse’s assistant in the Critical Care Unit at the Colorado State University Veterinary Teaching Hospital. Here, she learned just how far you can go with a career as a veterinary technician. She enrolled in Front Range Community College in Loveland, CO, graduating in 2005. Brandy then moved to Parker, CO where she currently works as an emergency and critical care technician. She had the honor of becoming a member of the Academy of Veterinary Emergency & Critical Care Technicians in 2008.

Brandy has a passion for writing and has written several articles for Veterinary Technician magazine including ”Recognizing and Treating Diabetic Ketoacidosis”, “Heatstroke in Dogs”, and “Osteoarthritis”

Brandy currently lives with two birds, three cats, and one crazy dog.



Price: $162.00



VetMedTeam 2014