CSU gets serious about training


Fort Collins, Colo.-Colorado State University (CSU) has taken an innovative step in handling euthanasia.

Fort Collins, Colo.-Colorado State University (CSU) has takenan innovative step in handling euthanasia.

In fact, the Argus Institute for Families and Veterinary Medicine hastaken the study of facilitating euthanasia and grief to a whole new level.

As reported in DVM Newsmagazine, the university broke ground on a new30,000-square-foot wing of its veterinary hospital. A large portion of thefacility will house its Animal Cancer Center, and the other side will becomethe home of the Argus Institute for Families and Veterinary Medicine. Thiscenter will include 12 new examination rooms, and can all be converted into"comfort rooms." Four of these examination rooms will also beequipped with observation windows for use in teaching and training.

Laurel Lagoni, managing director of the Argus Institute, says the physicalspace will allow the university to conduct more training for veterinariansand students in creating a "bond-centered practice," which hasbeen defined as prioritizing relationships with clients and their pets aswell as their staff.

"This focus on building and healing the relationships that stemfrom the human-animal bond forms the heart of a bond-centered practice,"the university says.

As part of its work, the Argus Institute has created guidelines for abond-centered practice. One set of guidelines specifically focus on petloss. The other guidelines are currently in varying stages of completionand focus on animal behavior, and trust and loyalty.

Lagoni adds that the Argus Institute is planning on conducting trainingprograms that bring in veterinarians or others from the hospital staffsto observe and learn skills focused on communications and grief counseling.

The long-range plan is to set-up a practice certification program focusedon this concept of a bond-centered practice, she explains. But that stepis still in the formative, planning stages.

Preparing clients for death, should actually start early in life, Lagoniadds. Veterinarians need to think about ways to educate pet owners aboutend-of-life issues.

She adds that the protocols developed on pet loss are one step in theprocess, and that it can really start a healthy examination on how the practicehandles euthanasia from client education to cremation or disposal of theremains.

For more information about the bond-centered practice guidelines contactTammy Mimms at (970) 491-4143 or e-mail Tmimms@lamar.colostate.edu.

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