Veterinary Emergency & Specialty Hospital of Wichita offers a range of exceptional continuing education (CE) programs to help our technicians and veterinarians expand their knowledge, hone their skills and continuously improve the quality of care they offer their patients. 

Our most recent presenter, a regular consultant of ours from Sterling, Virginia, is highly regarded in the veterinary industry. Julie Antonellis, LVT, VTS (ECC) has nearly two decades of experience in emergency and critical care. She provides detailed assessments and training for veterinary practices looking to elevate the level of nursing care they are providing their patients.

Julie presented to our hospital technician staff and current students of WATC pursuing a veterinary technician license. She gave an in-depth lecture on capnography and pre and post-operative care of critically ill patients.

Capnography is the monitoring of the concentration or partial pressure of carbon dioxide. CO2 is a crucial compound to monitor during anesthesia and patients on a ventilator. This training session provided an intensive refresh in addition to learning better methods of patient care and quality medicine. Our hospital prides itself on taking a progressive approach to medicine. We are dedicated to providing the best possible care to your pets, that’s our promise to you.

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We’re thrilled to announce our resumption of surgery services lead by Dr. Holly Smith, DVM.

Dr. Smith graduated from Oklahoma State University in 1995 and has been with VESHW three years. Her areas of focus will include orthopedic and soft tissue surgery as well as post-surgical rehabilitation. Dr. Smith is a member of the International Veterinary Academy of Pain Management, carrying the designation of Certified Veterinary Pain Practitioner, CVPP. She is a Certified Canine Rehabilitation Therapist, CCRT.  She is certified in Veterinary Medical Acupuncture, cVMA, and is also a DOC instructor at the Medical Acupuncture for Veterinarians course. Dr. Smith integrates the modalities of traditional medicine and pharmacology, acupuncture, massage, laser, rehabilitation, and surgery-both soft tissue and orthopedic, as indicated with a caring touch, to aid each individual patient along the journey of achieving the best level of comfort and mobility possible.
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“The one thing that makes or breaks surgery is the aftercare. We specialize in that." 

We have highly trained staff on duty 24 hours/day so and this allows us to provide the very best patient care post-operatively. Our pain management protocols ensure that our patients are as comfortable as possible while our rehabilitation works hard to get our patients back on their feet.


We promote strong leadership by empowering our team members and encouraging them to reach their fullest potential. Our shift leaders work hard and they were surprised with a fun retreat along with continued leadership training exercises. 

The shift leaders had no idea what the day would bring, their only clue was a cryptic riddle… which lead them first to Pinot’s Pallet! We broke the ice with a pet painting and most everyone took creative liberties from the initial direction. Not surprising, since those creative minds are part of what put these individuals in leadership positions. 

Our next stop via Spot’s party bus transportation was AVI sea bar inside the historic Broadview hotel. The Ghost Tours of Kansas kicked off lunch with a spooky tale of the spirit of Clarence, who is believed to still haunt the hotel after a murder/suicide back in 1929. Eek!

During lunch our hospital Director, Dr. Lofgreen reinforced our hospital mission with the team. “Our mission is to provide the highest level of specialty and 24-hour emergency care with compassionate treatment tailored to the client and their pet. We partner with area practitioners to deliver advanced veterinary diagnostics and services that are not otherwise available in our community.”

Next, our Director of Business Development, Lisa Hall, went through workbook exercises from John Maxwell’s The Law of the Lid. Basically, this law states that how well you lead determines how effective you are. The lower your ability to lead, the lower the lid on your potential. The higher your ability to lead, the higher the lid on your potential. By focusing on our employee’s, we increase our organization’s effectiveness and continue to strive toward excellence in every aspect of our veterinary practice. 

With training complete, we ended our team building extravaganza with rolled ice-cream from Wichita’s new 8degree’s below creamery. We thank our shift leaders and our entire staff for living our mission statement and demonstrating its core values 24 hours, every day. 

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At Veterinary Emergency & Specialty Hospital of Wichita we’re always striving for excellence in the quality our patient care. We’re honored to announce eight of our Registered Veterinary Technicians have completed advanced training and are now certified in CPR Basic Life Support and Advanced Life Support from the American College of Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care through Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine. 

The Reassessment Campaign on Veterinary Resuscitation, or RECOVER, is a collaborative effort of the American College of Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care and the Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Society. They discovered that less than 6 percent of dogs and cats who suffered cardiac arrest in hospital return to their owners. This shocking statistic led the arrival of the first evidence-based recommendations to resuscitate dogs and cats in cardiac arrest.

Our technicians completed 8.5 hours of RACE C.E. Credits in a series of 5 modules to:
1. Review the fundamental aspects of cardiopulmonary structure and function to help  understand the basic mechanisms they employ to do chest compressions and ventilation in patients experiencing cardiopulmonary arrest (CPA).
2. Learn how to diagnose CPA rapidly in any unresponsive patient using a standardized airway-breathing assessment.
3. Choose the best approach to chest compressions in a dog or cat based on the patient's size and chest conformation.
4. Learn how to ventilate a patient during CPR using either the mouth-to-snout technique or continuous ventilation in an intubated patient.
5. Explore techniques for improving communication and team dynamics when treating an emergent case such as a patient in CPA.

According to the American College of Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care, when CPR is done according to established guidelines, survival to discharge can be as high as 50% in some populations of dogs and cats in CPA with acute, reversible disease. This course was a giant step to preparing our team to maximize outcomes in patients with CPA.

Our highly trained technicians are now trained to:
• Rapidly recognize patients with cardiopulmonary arrest
• Properly administer high-quality chest compressions using the most up-to-date approaches in dogs and cats
• Provide mouth-to-snout or intubated ventilation according to current evidence-based guidelines
• Utilize effective communication and team skills that will improve our ability to manage emergent and critically ill patients
• Choose the most useful monitoring devices for patients in cardiopulmonary arrest
• Read and interpret the data from the various monitoring devices
• Rapidly diagnose the arrest ECG rhythm to help choose the best ALS therapies for the patient
• Administer the most effective drugs and other adjunctive therapies for patients with cardiopulmonary arrest
• Perform life-saving procedures such as venous cutdowns, intraosseous catheter placement, use of defibrillator, and open chest CPR

We’re proud of the accomplishments of our team!  Take a look at some hands-on training.


• Perform 100-120 chest compressions per minute of one-third to one-half of the chest width, with the animal lying on its side.
• Ventilate intubated dogs and cats at a rate of 10 breaths per minute, or at a compression to ventilation ratio of 30 to 2 for mouth-to-snout ventilation.
• Perform CPR in 2-minute cycles, switching the “compressor” each cycle.
• Administer vasopressors every 3–5 minutes during CPR.
• Using the defibrillator at 2-4 joules/kg for advanced life support.

Other guidelines pertain to how clinicians should be trained, how to perform CPR on dogs of different breeds and sizes, what drugs to give when and what follow-up care to provide.


Our certified team (from left, top row first):  Chris Decker, Courtney Keazer, Lauren Greene, Tori Wilson, Cheryl Thornton (hospital Director: Brock Lofgreen, DVM), Josie Englert, Amanda Johnson, Sophie Snow.



Veterinary Emergency & Specialty Hospital of Wichita had the privilege of delivering a special educational seminar to the Kansas Police Dog Association, an organization that represents law enforcement from across the State of Kansas. Their training focuses on patrol, detection, tracking/trailing, and search and rescue. The KPDA aims provide top quality training for K-9 teams including an annual five-day certification. This year more than 37 full-time K-9 handers attended the certification course in Independence, KS.

Veterinary Emergency & Specialty Hospital of Wichita has a strong commitment to the community, including the K-9 teams who serve and protect. Several of our talented doctors and technicians volunteered to educate the handlers on emergency health and safety issues that are common in the police dog line of work. 

Dr. Holly Smith began with a discussion on recognizing pain, which can hinder a working dogs ability to perform. Veterinary technician, Sophie Snow, explained basic anatomy, structure, and function of the heart along with canine CPR and essential life support techniques. Shannon Jacobs provided officers with quick reference emergency contacts, vital signs and instructions for treating common working K-9 injuries. The session ended with Dr. Douglas Winter, a specialist in dentistry and oral surgery. He stressed the importance of proper oral health in working K-9’s, whose bite work is an essential job function. He offered preventative care information and even performed a couple of consultations.

An open floor Q&A session allowed officers to receive quality feedback regarding specific “what if” scenarios they may encounter in the field. We hope to continue to provide educational services to working canines throughout the area. For more information on educational opportunities, please contact us! 

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