Tasks performed by veterinary nurses and veterinary nursing assistants

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Information and advice for veterinary jobseekers and employers from VetNurse Jobs.

Tasks performed by veterinary nurses and veterinary nursing assistants

This page has been created to try and build and exhaustive list of the tasks carried out by registered veterinary nurses AND veterinary nursing assistants.

Inclusion on this list does NOT imply that the task can be legally performed by a nurse or veterinary nursing assistant, it is currently just a list of things that might be. 

In due course, we will categorise the list here according to whether they are Schedule 3 tasks (ie only allowed to be performed by a registered veterinary nurse).

What should be added to the list, please add your suggestion and the category BELOW THE LINE!


  • Caring for hospitalised animals
  • Planning nursing care
  • Administration of medication
  • Dispensing of medication to clients
  • Placement of feeding tubes
  • Placement of catheters, intravenous
  • Placement of catheters, urinary
  • Setting up & administration of intravenous fluids
  • Administration of vaccinations (Primary/boosters)
  • Administration of medicines by subcutaneous injection
  • Administration of medicines by intravenous injection
  • Administration of medicines by intramuscular injection
  • Dispensing of medications to clients
  • Administration of other preventative POM-Vs
  • Dental hygiene work
  • Clinical cleaning
  • Taking blood samples
  • Removal of sutures
  • Tick removal
  • Nail clipping
  • Anal gland/sac emptying
  • Post-op checks
  • ear flush
  • Teaching students
  • Visiting clients
  • Reception work
  • Practice Admin
  • General domestic cleaning
  • Microchipping
  • Enemas
  • CPR
  • Physiotherapy


  • Nutritional advice/counselling
  • Behaviour consultations
  • Nurse clinic (general health)/counselling
  • Parasite advice/counselling
  • Geriatric clinics
  • Weight clinics
  • Dental check ups
  • Puppy parties
  • Adolescent health check
  • Exotic pet clinics

Minor Surgery

  • Lump removal
  • Wound suturing & management 
  • Tail amputation
  • Dew claw removal
  • Amputation (toe)
  • Castration (cat)
  • Biopsy
  • Aural haematoma
  • Performing dental extractions
  • Castration (calf)
  • Disbudding (calf)
  • Supernumary teat removal
  • Lance/flush/drain abscesses
  • Placing central lines 
  • Skin closure after procedure
  • Dressing changes/removal
  • Subcutaneous drain placement


  • Administration of anaesthetic pre-medication
  • Administering local anaesthesia
  • Induction of anaesthesia by increment or by set dose
  • Monitoring of anaesthesia
  • Phlebotomy 
  • Placement of intravenous line


  • Laboratory test performing and interpreting e.g. in house cytology and blood smears
  • Taking radiographs
  • Processing radiographs
  • Ultrasound (assisting?)
  • Endoscopy (assisting?)
  • TB testing
  • Performing CT Scans
  • Performing ECG


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  • So in my daily tasks as an imaging nurse. I will perform radiographs on a variety of patients. Assist with ultrasound providers, hopefully being trading to undertake FAST scans looking for Free Abdominal Fluid in the future. Undertake CT Scand as requested by veterinary surgeons.  Monitor a variety of sedition’s and anaesthetics for a variety of procedures including routine procedures to those that are either acutely or chronically ill. This maybe for diagnostic procedures as well as surgical procedures. Placing IV lines in a variety of patients as previously stated. Obtaining blood samples on a variety of patients. Obtaining ECGs on patients as per the VS request. Using a variety of monitoring equipment and having the ability to notice trends and acting on these irregularities. I shall come up for air at this point. But may add to this

  •  thanks - I've added CT and ECG which weren't on the list.

  • Something in their about educating the wider a public. I frequently visit schools, clubs and host stands at shows. These are all in the name of educating about animal care and improving welfare. Also, careeer days

    I’m going to ream off things I do/ have done, not sure if they are already there but scrolling up on a phone is a pain! Of course disregard if they are already on and reword them as you see fit, I’m just typing them as they spill from my brain


    Laser therapy

    Hydro therapy

    Exercising patients in general

    Social media


    Ambulance driver

    An ear for a colleague

    An ear for a client

    Championing wellness in staff

    Practice hygiene

    Lab technician

  • I am in the process of setting up my own kitty kindergarten classes (socialization) it is now believed that this is just as important as puppy classes, should reduce the amount of stressed fearful cats coming into practice and hopefully through owner education and early socialization, reduce the amount of cats being rehomed/euthanised due to aggression and undesirable behavior. I have after many years of pleading, finally convinced my practice that this is financially beneficial and will bond cat owners to the practice! Hopefully this will become commonplace and other practices throughout the UK.