The National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America, Inc. (NAVTA) has proclaimed October 15 - 21, 2017 to be National Veterinary Technician Week. This annual event recognizes veterinary technicians for their contributions in the best possible care for all animals. Veterinary technicians are educated in the latest medical advances and skilled at working alongside veterinarians to give animals the best medical care possible.
Interested in what it takes to become a Veterinary Technician? Read NAVTA’s guide to becoming a Veterinary Technician.
Here at Nashville Zoo, we have a wonderful Veterinary Technician on our Veterinary team. Learn a little more about our vet tech Sandy Skeba, LVMT!
Why did you choose to become a Vet Tech?
“I always wanted to work with animals, and especially enjoyed the wild and exotic critters.When I was growing up, I wasn't afraid to pick up any kind of animals - spiders, snakes, you name it! When my neighbor called me one night to help get a fish hook out of her cat's mouth, I knew I wanted to work with animals.”
What is your favorite part of your job?
“Every day is different! One day you could be examining a newborn baby giraffe, then doing x-rays on a hellbender, then taking blood from an anteater. Of course, some days are filled with paperwork! I really enjoy being part of the conservation work here as well. The Zoo does so much to help animals in the wild, including extensive projects with local species, such as Hellbenders. But we are part of conservation missions globally, too.”
What has been your most memorable moment during your zoo career?
“Several times I have been instrumental in helping revive an animal that was dying or clinically dead. It’s so amazing to bring something back to life! When our baby Tapir Felix was born (not the current one!), his mother failed to open his amniotic sac, and he was suffocating. With the keeper's help we separated mom, then rushed in to resuscitate him. He went from having a slow, faint heartbeat to squealing for his mother in about 10 minutes!”
What do you do outside of animal care?
“I love to bird watch and garden. I enjoy teaching, and have published several veterinary articles and book chapters. I also brew my own beer at home. I love to go hiking and birdwatching, and enjoy gardening and cooking. Getting to be outside part of the day is a definite perk of working at the Zoo!”
Please join the Zoo in thanking our Veterinary Technician for all she does to care for our animal collection!