University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine Wildlife & Exotics Medicine & Surgery Rotation

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U of I Wildlife and Exotic Animal Medicine and Surgery Rotation (WEAMS): Clinical Zoological Medicine including exotic pet medicine, wildlife medicine, zoo medicine
The purpose of this rotation is to provide opportunities for students to observe or learn a variety of clinical and technical skills related to the care and treatment of zoo, exotic and free-living wildlife. Veterinary students completing this rotation will observe or perform restraint, handling, and physical exam of a variety of zoological species including but not limited to birds, reptiles, and small mammals. Students will become familiar with biochemical parameters pertaining to zoological species and will demonstrate a working knowledge of the natural history and husbandry of many zoological species maintained in captivity. Upon completion of this course, veterinary students will have observed or performed sample collection, diagnostic testing, diagnosis and basic care of zoological species under normal circumstances.
Highly skilled, experienced faculty with zoo and avian board certifications. Full service access to medical and surgical specialists.
The Zoo Med service is an integral component of the clinical training at the University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine.
  • The WEAMS rotation offers VM3‐4 professional students a variety of experiences in zoological medicine, working with exotic pets, free‐living wildlife, and zoo animals.
  • Emphasis is placed on individual animal care. Students learn principles of natural history, husbandry, handling, restraint, nutrition, medicine, surgery, emerging and infectious disease, and zoonotic disease as they apply to zoological species.
  • Students work closely with the Zoological Medicine faculty, house officers, and staff to provide care for pet exotic patients of the UIVTH, free‐living wildlife presented to the Wildlife Medical Clinic, and zoological species maintained in the collections of local AZA accredited zoos.
  • Rotation activities include receiving of cases, performance of physical examinations and diagnostic tests, interpretation of clinical data, medical care of hospitalized patients, medical record‐keeping, and communication with pet owners, referring veterinarians, and in‐house colleagues.
  • Students on the WEAMS rotation have after‐hours duties to receive emergent patients through the UIVTH Emergency Service and are responsible for participating in the care of hospitalized patients of the Zoological Medicine service.
  • Students on this rotation are also responsible for preparing and delivering a topic presentation and for participating in daily case rounds discussions.
Students are under direct faculty or house officer supervision at all times while on clinical service. The student:clinician ratio is approximately 6:2. Clinical services are in operation M-F from 7 AM-6 PM with some variablity from day to day.
University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine
1008 W. Hazelwood Dr.
Urbana, IL 61802
mazindar [at] illinois [dot] edu
Julia Whittington, DVM
Posted: 02/14/14