May is Veterinary Nursing Awareness Month, a whole month dedicated to raising awareness of the veterinary nursing profession and the vital role they play in animal care and treatment.

What was started as an awareness day by the British Veterinary Nursing Association (BVNA) in 2005 quickly grew into a week and expanded even further to a month in 2012.

Sarah is a veterinary nurse at Cave Veterinary Specialists and kindly took time out to tell us about life as a vet nurse.

Sarah Appleton in New ZealandHow long have you been a vet nurse and what training did you have to do to achieve your qualifications?

I have been qualified now for just over three years. I started as an animal care assistant here at Cave before finding an apprenticeship to complete my training. I chose to go down the diploma route because I feel I learn a lot better when I am hands on – not to mention the thought of writing a dissertation scared me! 

What attracted you to a career as a vet nurse? 

Since I can remember I have known I wanted to work with animals. My Mums dream job was to become a vet nurse but she never got the chance, this inspired me to take on the same dream and get where I am today.


What are the best things about being a vet nurse?

Cuddling puppies and kittens of course!  All jokes aside that is a very small part of my job that I enjoy when we get the time to do so. I love being a vet nurse, from all the rewarding work that we do. To care of  someone’s pet and see them leave the hospital knowing you played a part in saving that animals life is a feeling you can’t even describe.


What kind of attributes do you need to be a good vet nurse?

You need to be able to work well under pressure, being a vet nurse no two days are the same. It’s all about being a team too! You have to have patience and a caring nature. It would also help if you enjoyed tea and cake because we do that a lot!


What advice would you give someone thinking about a career as a vet nurse?

Be ready for late nights in theatre, weekends on call, diarrhoea explosions, cat attacks, bad backs, low wages, hard work and so much more BUT I promise you it is all worth it! 


What are the best things about working at Cave Veterinary Specialists?

Sarah AppletonWithout a doubt it is the team I work with. Everyone here is family and we spend the majority of our lives together, if it’s not at work it’s on one of our socials! I also have to mention our Christmas party is legendary, I love being on the social committee!


For more information on Vet Nurse Awareness Month, visit