VIN REPR300-0121: Medical Care of the Neonatal Puppy and Kitten: Those Important First Weeks

The lectures for this course will be presented in an audio format using a webinar platform.

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Presenter: Joni Freshman, DVM, MS, DACVIM
Course Open: January 26-March 5, 2021
Real Time Sessions (RTS): Tuesdays, February 2, 9, 16, and 23, 2021; 9:00-10:30 pm ET (USA)
Course RTS Times in Your Area: World Clock Converter

Level and Prerequisites: This basic course will be open to veterinarians actively interested in canine and feline neonatal care including husbandry and monitoring, physiologic differences, causes of illness in neonates, evaluation of ill neonates to include diagnostic testing, and treatment of ill neonates.
VIN CE Course: Open to veterinarians. This course has been submitted for RACE approval for veterinarians.

Course Information:
Understanding and competency of neonatal differences in physiology, evaluation, care, response to treatment, and common afflictions is critical to the survival of these youngest patients. Importantly, ill neonates can die quite quickly if appropriate action is not taken in a timely manner. Many owners of pregnant animals have little knowledge of how to care for these small patients as well. This course will discuss the important aspects of home husbandry, the physiologic differences between neonates and older patients, the common causes of illness, evaluation and testing of ill neonates, and finally treatment of these tiny patients.

Week 1 (Real Time Session February 2, 2021): Neonatal Husbandry and Physiology
Presenter: Joni Freshman, DVM, MS, DACVIM
Format: Audio
Objectives: Upon completion of this session, the participant should be able to
  • Understand the basic care and monitoring needs for neonates in the home
  • Explain to owners of litters important management actions at home
  • Understand the physiologic differences between neonates and older puppies and kittens

Week 2 (Real Time Session February 9, 2021): Causes of Neonatal Illness
Presenter: Joni Freshman, DVM, MS, DACVIM
Format: Audio
Objectives: Upon completion of this session, the participant should be able to
  • Understand the variety of illnesses that commonly affect neonatal puppies and kittens
  • Form a differential diagnosis for the clinical signs presented in a neonatal patient
  • Understand the comorbidities that often occur in this context
  • Understand the pathology of common neonatal health conditions

Week 3 (Real Time Session February 16, 2021): Evaluation of the Ill Neonate
Presenter: Joni Freshman, DVM, MS, DACVIM
Format: Audio
Objectives: Upon completion of this session, the participant should be able to
  • Complete a physical exam on a neonatal puppy or kitten
  • Recognize clinical signs of the ill neonate
  • Understand what diagnostic steps can be taken on a neonate
  • Calculate the amount of blood to safely draw from a neonate
  • Make critical decisions on which tests are the most important for an ill neonate

Week 4 (Real Time Session February 23, 2021): Treatment of the Ill Neonate
Presenter: Joni Freshman, DVM, MS, DACVIM
Format: Audio
Objectives: Upon completion of this session, the participant should be able to
  • Determine treatment plans for the ill neonate
  • Implement care for the ill neonate, including intraosseous administration of medication or blood, intranasal oxygen administration
  • Understand administration of fluids and nutrition in the neonate
  • Understand medication alterations in the neonate.

Successful completion (scoring 80% or better) on the end-of-course test is required to earn a certificate of completion for the course. To learn more about the requirements for earning a CE certificate, please refer to Receiving Your CE Credit and Course Completion Certificate.

Course Materials: Course materials will be available in the course library prior to each Real Time Session.
Required Textbook(s): There is no required textbook for this course.

About the Presenter:
Joni Freshman is a 1984 graduate of the Colorado State University School of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences. She spent 6 months interning at the Denver Zoo, then completed a small animal medicine and surgery internship at Auburn University. She returned to CSU for a 3-year internal medicine residency and an MS in Clinical Sciences with her research in canine reproduction. In 1990 she became a Diplomate of the ACVIM. After managing reproduction centers in Los Angeles and Dallas (with semen freezing center) she returned to Colorado and joined a practice, opened a semen-freezing center, with a practice of 60% reproduction/neonatal and the rest internal medicine and general practice until 2001.

All along Joni has presented continuing education to national and international professional audiences as well as breed clubs on the topics of reproduction/neonatal care and has authored numerous journal articles and book chapters in this field. In 2001 she left full-time practice to focus on her business, Canine Consultations, where she writes, teaches, speaks, is an expert witness, and consults in the field of small animal reproduction and neonatology. She is a reproduction, pediatrics, and genetics consultant for the Veterinary Information Network and consults for Antech Veterinary Laboratory for small animal reproduction and neonatology, and also for a variety of commercial companies.

In 2003 she completed her veterinary acupuncture course at CSU and also operates AcuPets--a mobile veterinary acupuncture/manual adjustment/therapeutic laser practice that serves Colorado's Pikes Peak area.

Finally, she has been active with her Belgian Tervuren for over 34 years in conformation, agility, rally, scent work, obedience, coursing, barn hunt, and herding. Her AKC registered Zephyre Belgian Tervuren breeding program has produced Group winners and placers, Eukanuba award winners, the 2013 Top Owner Handled Belgian Tervuren, and High In Trial dogs in obedience, agility, herding, and scent work sport. Joni is an AKC licensed judge for the four Belgian Shepherd breeds and for AKC Scent Work and USCSS Scent work and judged conformation at the 2015 Belgian Tervuren National Specialty. She is currently training her seventh generation of breed champion and performance dogs.

Total CE Credit: 6

Tuition: Member $138 ($124 early bird special if enrolled by January 19, 2021)
Non-Member $231 ($208 early bird special if enrolled by January 19, 2021)
Prices are listed in US dollars.

*To ensure participants are ready and prepared for classes, enrollment will close on February 2, 2021 at 5 pm ET (USA) or when the maximum number of participants is reached.

*For more information on how online CE works, see the Participant Resource Center.

To Enroll:
  1. Enrollment qualifications: VIN CE courses are open to VIN member and non-member veterinarians. Veterinarians enrolling in a VSPN CE course must be a VIN member. Veterinary support staff must be a VSPN member to enroll in a VSPN CE or a VIN CE course open to VSPN member enrollment.
  2. Each enrollee must be able to receive emails from @vspn.org and @vin.com addresses. Email is our major form of communication with participants; personal emails are highly recommended rather than clinic/hospital email addresses.
  3. Each person is individually responsible for his/her own registration. To ensure that all information received is secure and correct, please do not enroll for a course on behalf of another individual.
  4. For further assistance call 800-846-0028 ext. 797 or email . Please include the course title, your full name, and contact information in your correspondence.
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"This program (RACE program number to be determined) has been submitted for approval by AAVSB RACE to offer a total of 6 CE Credits, with a maximum of 6 CE Credits being available to any individual veterinarian. This RACE approval is for the subject matter categories of: Medical, using the delivery method of Interactive-Distance: (Web-based, Teleconference or Audio-Conference). This approval is valid in jurisdictions which recognize AAVSB RACE; however, participants are responsible for ascertaining each board's CE requirements."

Course withdrawal and refund policy: A complete refund of the paid course price will be issued when your withdrawal request is received prior to the listed start date of the course. If you wish to withdraw after the start date please contact the VIN office 800-846-0028 ext. 797 to discuss eligibility for a pro-rated refund.

*For more information on VIN's upcoming CE courses, check the VIN Course Catalog.

Katherine James, DVM, PhD, DACVIM (SAIM)
VIN Education Director

VIN CE Services:
800-846-0028 or 530-756-4881; ext. 797
or direct line to VIN/VSPN from the United Kingdom: 01 45 222 6154
or direct line to VIN/VSPN from Australia: 02 6145 2357