This week, the OAVT connected with Christina Miller, who will be presenting a 4-part exotic animal emergencies series at the upcoming OAVT Conference. We asked Christina a series of questions, inviting her to share more about her current role and past experiences.
Christina started working in the animal healthcare industry since 2004 while studying Animal Health Technology at Vanier College (Ville St-Laurent, QC), graduating in 2006 and passing the VTNE in 2007. Christina returned to teach topics in reptile and amphibian care and medicine at Vanier College for the following decade, while also working as an RLAT (status retired in 2014) and CAHT in clinical practice. She completed her Bachelor’s of Agricultural and Environmental Science majoring in applied zoology from McGill University (Montreal, QC) in 2011. Christina is the current Technician Committee Chair of the Association of Exotic Mammal Veterinarians. She is currently working as an RVT in general and occasionally in emergency practice in Nova Scotia, Canada. Christina received the Nova Scotia RVT of the Year title and is working towards her VTS in Clinical Practice (Exotic Companion Animal).
What do you think is the best part of your job?
I think that the best part of my job is seeing patients improve with treatment, and educating owners on the appropriate care and nutrition of these unique animals. We know more about exotic animal physiology and medicine now more than ever, so we have the tools and knowledge to help more patients go home alive, return them to good health, and keep them healthy long-term.
Can you brief a unique case that you handled?
I don’t have any specific cases to share, but I have been very fortunate to use the full extent of my clinical skills in my career and this has always been very rewarding and of course, helpful to my patients. From intravenous catheter placement in a Green Iguana, to intraosseous catheter placement in a Degu, airway lavage in a Budgerigar, and venipuncture in an Oscar fish, I’ve been involved in a number of really interesting cases!
What makes you special in the animal healthcare industry?
I have been fortunate to gain a lot of varied experiences with many taxa over my career, in a variety of settings from clinical practice, to laboratory animal medicine, to zoological collection management, to some work with wildlife. All of these work experiences have informed me on a clinical case at some point in my career in unique ways.