Book Reviews

Click on author name to view affiliation information

Books for Veterinarians

Veterinary Practice Management

Catherine R. Coates

181 pages. 2012. CABI. ISBN 978-1-84593-980-9. Price $70.00

Although there is no shortage of books about the topic, Veterinary Practice Management provides refreshing perspectives and some new ideas on the challenges of managing a veterinary practice. The author is from and the book was published in the United Kingdom; consequently, the text contains some curious British linguistic variations. That aside, the book is written from a largely nontechnical perspective, which makes it suitable for veterinarian-managers, yet it contains enough detail and information to make it useful for administrative professionals as well. I found the author's discussion of building a practice-client relationship, in which clients develop loyalty to the practice rather than to a specific veterinarian, particularly interesting. The author provides a detailed program for an open day (more commonly referred to as a program for an open house in the United States) to market a new practice as a unique example for building a practice-client relationship. The book contains a useful section on the recruitment, induction (ie, orientation), and training of veterinary nurses, a job label that is currently not used but probably should be in the US veterinary profession. Additionally, the chapters on the financial nuts and bolts of running a practice are excellent and include topics such as budgeting, managing inventory, and setting fees as well as some sample forms. The section on accounting ratios and financial performance indicators is very understandable for someone without a financing or accounting background. In general, this book is concise and very well written and will make an excellent addition to any veterinary practice owner's or manager's library.

Reviewed by Jon Geller, DVM, DABVP, CVPM, CVJ

Fort Collins Veterinary Emergency & Rehabilitation Hospital, Fort Collins, Colo

Shelter Medicine for Veterinarians and Staff (2nd edition)

Lila Miller & Stephen Zawistowski

717 pages. 2013. Wiley-Blackwell. ISBN 978-0-8138-1993-8. Price $84.99.

Shelter Medicine for Veterinarians and Staff is a superb reference for all who have contact with animal shelters. The editors have compiled 51 chapters written by experts in the field. The second edition is completely updated and contains expanded coverage of behavior, forensics, hoarding, enrichment, population management, and more. This edition is more comprehensive than the first edition, and it is also more concise. The readability of the book is improved, and the extensive use of color brings the information to life. A complete index and extensive cross-referencing make navigation among chapters easy and effective. Finally, it is very reasonably priced.

In recent years, shelter medicine has turned the corner. This remarkable book provides a comprehensive resource for every matter of importance to animal shelters and covers nearly every species seen at shelters. The sections on inoculation theory and protocols and husbandry are refreshingly current. Unique philosophies on population control and herd health for managing disease are also included.

The second edition of Shelter Medicine for Veterinarians and Staff fulfills its stated mission “to introduce newcomers to the field to the vast array of knowledge necessary to provide appropriate and humane care for shelter animals, to provide new research and update the information provided in the first edition….” I would add that the information provided in this book is valuable to all levels of shelter care. Each chapter is written by an expert or experts who are obviously passionate about their work.

This book is an essential resource for all who are interested in this rapidly advancing field. I wore out my copy of the first edition, and I expect to do the same with this wonderfully updated book. This book belongs in the libraries of all animal shelters as well those of veterinarians, veterinary technicians, and veterinary students who have an interest in shelter medicine.

Reviewed by Daniel F. Simpson, DVM

West Bay Animal Hospital, Warwick, RI

Dog Breeding, Whelping and Puppy Care

Gary England

340 pages. 2013. Wiley-Blackwell. ISBN 978-0-470-67313-3. Price $49.99.

Dog Breeding, Whelping and Puppy Care is meant to serve as a guide for breeders, veterinary students, and veterinarians, and the author does an excellent job of providing the subject matter in a manner that is useful to anyone involved in canine reproduction. This book contains an excellent review of canine reproductive anatomy, physiology, and endocrinology provided in a manner suitable for veterinarians and veterinary students as well as breeders who are seeking a better understanding of canine reproduction. Additionally, both veterinarians and breeders will find the sections on mating, optimal breeding times, care of the pregnant bitch, whelping, and neonatal puppy care very informative.

Extrapolation of general animal reproductive knowledge to dogs is not appropriate because the reproductive cycle of bitches has several unique characteristics. I believe the greatest strength of this book is its excellent description of the uniqueness of the reproductive cycle of bitches and how that information is used to make breeding management decisions. The explanations of the fertilization period and fertile period, 2 periods that are critical to the breeding management of dogs, are comprehensive and understandable.

This book is not a technique guide. Veterinarians looking for detailed explanations and illustrations of canine reproductive procedures, techniques, and surgeries should seek another resource. Many of the reproductive techniques and procedures that are mentioned in this book are not extensively illustrated. Instead, this book focuses on providing an explanation of canine reproductive concepts. I believe that the author has made a major contribution to the veterinary literature with this book. It is a useful, one-of-a-kind clinical handbook that is well worth the price and should be on the shelf of any veterinarian, veterinary student, or breeder who is involved or interested in the reproductive management of dogs.

Reviewed by Noel Thomas, DVM, DABVP, DACT

Westside Vet Services, Murray, Ky

The Behaviour of the Domestic Cat (2nd edition)

John W. S. Bradshaw, Rachel A. Casey, & Sarah L. Brown

251 pages. 2012. CABI. ISBN 978-1-84593-992-2. 2012. Price $70.00.

The second edition of The Behaviour of the Domestic Cat provides readers with current information about the behavior of cats and consists of 12 comprehensive and well-referenced chapters about topics such as feline domestication, biology, development, feeding and hunting, communication, and social behavior. The information in this edition is expanded from that provided in the first edition, and the authors’ interpretations are made on the basis of results of a plethora of studies conducted by themselves and other respected researchers to elucidate the development of behavior problems in cats. This book contains over 400 scientific references and numerous tables, figures, and detailed ink and wash sketches of kittens and cats to clarify important points. The context of the book is appropriate for anyone interested in feral or domestic cat behavior. I found chapter 9, which discusses various aspects of the cat and human relationship, and chapter 10, which discusses feline welfare including the housing of cats in animal shelters, to be particularly informative. This book is a welcome addition to the feline behavior literature and will be of use to many, including veterinarians, veterinary students, feline biologists and behaviorists, as well as educated cat owners.

Reviewed by Jeannine M. Berger, DVM, DACVB

Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, San Francisco, Calif

Feline Behaviour and Welfare

Andrew F. Fraser

198 pages. 2012. CABI. ISBN 978-1-84593-927-4. Price $72.00.

Because scholarly texts on feline behavior are lacking, Feline Behaviour and Welfare is a helpful addition to the literature; however, it is not a stand-alone resource on the topic. The strengths of this book are the information provided regarding comparative behavior among wild and domestic cats and welfare-related issues. Weaknesses of the book include the use of terms that are likely to be unfamiliar to international readers (although a glossary is provided) and a lack of citations, which makes it difficult for the reader to distinguish substantiated findings from anecdotal reports. Additionally, and perhaps most importantly from a feline practitioner's standpoint, in some instances, the information about clinical behavior problems is outdated. For example, olfactory tractotomy is included as a treatment option for cats with inappropriate urine spraying behavior without a citation to support its use and despite the fact that this treatment is no longer recommended. The use of drugs to treat behavioral problems in cats is discussed only briefly, and this discussion is inaccurate (ie, the name of 1 drug is misspelled) and incomplete (eg, it is stated that benzodiazepines are commonly used to treat cats with behavioral problems; however, the authors fail to cite that use of benzodiazepines can result in hepatic toxicosis). Spraying a cat with water to stop unwanted behavior, particularly aggressive behavior, is recommended multiple times and is described as a nonaversive training technique. Unfortunately, spraying a cat with water might increase rather than reduce aggressive behavior; and the assertion that it is a nonaversive training technique is questionable.

This book is worth reading for its colorful descriptions of feline social behavior, information about the behavior of wild cats, and a sensitive and much-needed section on feline welfare; however, it is probably best described as a supplementary text about the general ethology of cats. Compared with other available resources, this book contains a relatively incomplete review of clinical behavior problems in cats and the treatment of those problems. Turner and Bateson's The Domestic Cat: The Biology of Its Behavior is a more thorough text on feline ethology, and Houpt's Domestic Animal Behavior for Veterinarians and Scientists contains an exhaustively cited and comprehensive review of feline developmental, ingestive, reproductive, and other behavior topics.

Reviewed by Ilana Reisner, DVM, PhD, DACVB

Reisner Veterinary Behavior & Consulting Services, LLC Media, Pa

Muller & Kirk's Small Animal Dermatology (7th edition)

William H. Miller Jr, Craig E. Griffin, & Karen L. Campbell

938 pages. 2013. Elsevier. ISBN 978-1-4160-0028-0. Price $179.00.

The seventh edition of Muller and Kirk's Small Animal Dermatology was a long time in coming, but it was well worth the wait. The book, which contains numerous high-quality, glossy color photographs of dermatologic lesions, is an absolute steal for the price. The basics of dermatology concerning structure and function have been updated and are frequently summarized in tables. This improves the readability of the book; general practitioners will appreciate the concise text without the inclusion of excessive minutia, whereas dermatology residents and specialists will appreciate the comprehensive details that are provided in the tables. The tables are well organized throughout the book. In the diagnostic methods section, the tables and updated color photographs of various dermatologic lesions are particularly superb. New to this edition are sections on problem-based differential diagnoses complete with flow charts and holistic treatment of dermatologic diseases. The revamped and updated reference lists are appropriate but sometimes lengthy because of excessive references to previous editions of this book. Finally, the addition of colored tabs that contain the chapter number and title along the outer edge of each right-hand page makes it easy to browse through the book.

This book provides comprehensive information on dermatologic diseases of small animals. For diseases that have been recently reclassified, discussions outlining the reasons for those reclassifications are provided. The treatments discussed for various diseases are current and relevant. A table that summarizes adverse drug reactions is particularly helpful because all of that information can now be found in 1 place.

The faults I found with this book are minor. An appendix that included a list of drug doses by indication would have been useful, although I realize that such a list would have required the addition of many pages. The table with doses for injectable long-acting glucocorticoids should have been omitted because, in my opinion, supplying dosing information for those drugs makes it easier for practitioners to indiscriminately use them, despite explicit warnings regarding the contraindications for their use.

Overall, I give the seventh edition an A+. It is a book that should be in the library of every small animal practitioner.

Reviewed by Sandra R. Merchant, DVM, DACVD

Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, La

Small Animal Regional Anesthesia and Analgesia

Luis Campoy & Matt R. Read

288 pages. 2013. Wiley-Blackwell. ISBN 978-0-8138-1994-5. Price $124.99.

The use of local and regional anesthetic and analgesic techniques is currently receiving renewed interest by small animal veterinary practitioners. Small Animal Regional Anesthesia and Analgesia is written in an outline format with procedural checklists and extensive figures, colored photographs, and diagrams to help readers understand the techniques described. The stated goal of this book was “to put a large body of information in one place for the first time,” and in that regard, it is the first textbook committed entirely to small animal locoregional anesthesia. In addition to providing readers with good clinical information, this book contains an extensive review of the literature for each technique described.

Although the target audience for this book is veterinarians in all levels of practice, the majority of its content seems to be written for veterinary anesthesiology diplomats or residents. Occasionally, the authors provide a detailed discussion of rather infrequently used and complicated local and regional anesthetic procedures such as thoracic paravertebral and psoas compartmental blocks, and omit discussion of more commonly used and clinically applicable anesthetic procedures such as distal limb (ring), auriculotemporal, and great auricular nerve blocks. Nonetheless, general veterinary practitioners and veterinary anesthesia diplomats alike will find this textbook extremely informative.

The availability of this hardcover book is timely, and it will make an excellent addition to any veterinarian's book collection. Large portions of the information provided in this book can found to varying extents in other textbooks such as Lumb and Jones’ Veterinary Anesthesia and the second editions of BSAVA Manual of Canine and Feline Anaesthesia and Analgesia and Essentials of Small Animal Anesthesia and Analgesia. However, none of those books are as concise, thorough, and dedicated to local and regional anesthesia of small animal patients as is this book.

Reviewed by Andrew K. Claude, DVM, DACVA

Mississippi State University, Mississippi State, Miss

Small Animal Anesthesia and Pain Management: A Color Handbook

Jeff Ko

336 pages. 2012. Manson Publishing. ISBN 978-1-84076-179-5. Price $54.95.

Small Animal Anesthesia and Pain Management: A Color Handbook aims to be a ready reference for veterinary students, technicians, and practitioners. The book is packed with color photographs, useful charts and diagrams, and handy practice tips, and I think the book achieves its goal. The text is quite comprehensive with a detailed chapter on anesthetic equipment as well as several chapters that address various aspects of anesthesia, including anesthetic drugs and protocols, patient management and monitoring, and management of acute and chronic pain. Additionally, this book has several unique chapters, such as a chapter devoted to injectable sedative and analgesic drug combinations, which has an exhaustive list of drug doses and combinations and other valuable information resulting from the author's extensive research in this area; a chapter about providing anesthesia to animals in a high-quality, highvolume shelter setting; and a chapter on euthanasia with useful suggestions for pre-euthanasia sedation and other pearls of wisdom regarding the euthanasia process, which are topics not often addressed in veterinary anesthesia textbooks. In the preface to the book, the author discusses the art versus science of veterinary anesthesia, and I think the text pays homage to that theme. Although not all explanations in the book are supported by evidence-based data, there are many useful and practical suggestions for anesthetizing small animal patients that I do not think can be found anywhere else.

The faults in this book are minor. For me, the small font size of the text is problematic; however, for most people, the advantage of the small size of the book probably outweighs the small font size. Some sections of the book are in need of updating. For example, the chapter on CPR is out-of-date now that new consensus guidelines have been published, and the chapter on fluid therapy contains a section about oxyglobin, which is no longer available in the United States. In the chapter on anesthesia equipment, it is obvious that all of the photographs were obtained at a veterinary teaching hospital; most of the anesthesia machines are intended for use in human patients and may seem unfamiliar to the average veterinarian in private practice. Some photographs of the most common anesthesia machines used for veterinary patients would have made the book more user-friendly. Nevertheless, I think this is an extremely useful book that will be consulted often at many veterinary hospitals. I will certainly recommend it to my staff and students.

Reviewed by Emily McCobb, DVM, MS, DACVA

Tufts University, North Grafton, Mass

Small Animal Toxicology (3rd edition)

Michael E. Peterson & Patricia A. Talcott

911 pages. 2013. Elsevier. ISBN 978-1-4557-0717-1. Price $99.95.

The third edition of Small Animal Toxicology is an excellent and reasonably priced toxicology reference for practicing veterinarians and veterinary students. The book is organized perfectly for classroom or clinical use and contains good photographs and useful charts. I found the print a little small for easy reading, but the small font makes it possible for all of the information to be included in 1 volume without the book becoming too large. The list of information resources is quite extensive, but lacked 1 valuable resource, Beasley's Veterinary Toxicology, which is available online at The inside covers of the book contain a listing of toxins by organ system affected and conversion charts that are helpful and easy to access. All chapters retained from the second edition have been updated, and 8 new chapters have been added, making the third edition a must-have book and an essential replacement for the second edition.

Reviewed by Sandra Morgan, DVM, MS, DABVT

Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, Okla

Withrow & MacEwen's Small Animal Clinical Oncology (5th edition)

Stephen J. Withrow, David M. Vail, & Rodney L. Page

750 pages. 2013. Elsevier. ISBN 978-1-4377-2362-5. Price $135.00.

The fifth edition of Withrow & MacEwen's Small Animal Clinical Oncology builds on a tradition of being an accurate, concise, and complete veterinary oncology reference for the practicing veterinarian. In this edition, many chapters have been updated to reflect advances in clinical oncology, oncogenetics, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, and surgical oncology. The authors (the list of which now includes more than 65 veterinary oncologists, pathologists, surgeons, and researchers) consistently focus on an evidence-based approach to veterinary oncology, and each section contains an updated list of references. The chapters on melanoma, lymphoma, histiocytic and mast cell tumors, and skeletal, endocrine, mammary, urinary, and CNS tumors have been revised to provide information about cancer causation and diagnostic strategies as well as various novel treatments that are currently accepted in veterinary oncology practice. Compared with the fourth edition, the content and scope of this edition have increased for sections on epidemiology, tumor imaging, molecular diagnostics, stereotactic radiosurgery, and metronomic and antiangiogenic treatments. New to this edition is a chapter on clinical trials, which describes an innovative approach used to develop cancer treatment modalities and how that approach is benefiting both the veterinary and comparative oncology fields.

Given the ever-evolving diversity and volume of veterinary oncology literature, it can be challenging for practicing veterinarians to maintain current knowledge of novel treatment and surgical options for patients with cancer. I strongly encourage those veterinarians and others wishing to stay up-to-date with current topics in veterinary oncology to consider adding this book to their libraries. It provides a thorough, concise summary of the literature and advances in veterinary oncology since the release of the fourth edition and will be a worthwhile addition to the library of any practitioner who treats small animal cancer patients.

Reviewed by Kristine E. Burgess, DVM, MS, DACVIM

Tufts University, North Grafton, Mass

Color Atlas of Veterinary Histology (3rd edition)

William J. Bacha Jr & Linda M. Bacha

342 pages. 2012. Wiley-Blackwell. ISBN 978-0-4709-5851-3. Price $104.99.

The third edition of Color Atlas of Veterinary Histology continues to provide a systematic set of quality, color photomicrographs of tissues and organ systems of domestic animals of veterinary importance in North America. Veterinary students and technicians, veterinarians, and biomedical research scientists will find it a useful reference. This edition is 24 pages longer than the second edition; included in these pages are a few additional helpful hints and tables and figure legends that are expanded from those in the second edition along with some new figures. Text has been added to the beginning of each chapter, most notably for the chapters on general principles of histology and the basic tissues. The text is generally clear and concise, and the tone of the text remains conversational and descriptive. There are approximately twenty 2- and 3-dimensional pen and ink drawings of various structures and tissues. The photomicrographs of chicken organs are inclusive, instructive, and of high quality. The photomicrographs of specimens range from mesentery whole mounts and blood smears, to developing teeth and claws, to skeletal myocytes. Photomicrographs with large-format images (eg, metaphysis, insertion of a skeletal myocyte, compound hair follicle, pyloroduodenal junction, and tapetum lucidum) are often superb, but a few photomicrographs of images under low magnification lack resolvable detail. All photomicrographs are labeled with the final magnification rather than with a standard reference bar within the image. For future editions, I recommend that the publisher remove the cream-colored background to improve the quality of the images. The precision of the text and figure legends would have been improved had the Anglicized version of international histologic nomenclature been used. Furthermore, the glossary is antiquated for readers who can access definitions electronically by means of the Internet or software such as OneNote, and the bibliography needs to be updated. Despite those deficiencies, the book is fairly priced and is a one-of-a-kind English-language, educational resource.

Reviewed by Ronald L. Hullinger, DVM, PhD

Purdue University, West Lafayette, Ind

PCR Detection of Microbial Pathogens (Methods in Molecular Biology Series) (2nd edition)

Mark Wilks

317 pages. 2013. Humana Press. ISBN 978-1-60327-352-7. Price $119.00.

PCR Detection of Microbial Pathogens is about the use of PCR methods for the detection of human microbial pathogens. As stated in the preface, this book provides a discussion on generic PCR issues and protocols for specific conditions or pathogens. Each chapter is written as if it were a separate journal article, with considerable focus on the description of the materials and methods used and highly detailed overviews of PCR and related techniques.

The primary target audience for this book is human medicine researchers and diagnosticians who are reasonably familiar with PCR methods, particularly real-time or quantitative PCR protocols. Despite the fact that this book focuses specifically on the use of PCR methods for the detection of human pathogens, some of the information provided could cross over to veterinary medicine; zoonotic pathogens (eg, methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus) and general sampling, DNA purification, and PCR techniques are discussed. Veterinarians interested in purchasing this book would most likely be involved in microbial research in a comparative medicine or public health capacity. From a research veterinarian's perspective, I found the discussions on PCR inhibition and troubleshooting suggestions of particular interest and potentially useful. Specific techniques and an unusually placed chapter on quality assurance, although insightful, are not as beneficial.

Although this book has multiple positive qualities, such as the promotion of molecular techniques for diagnostic purposes, detailed descriptions of the PCR process, and recommendations for troubleshooting problems with PCR assays, it also has some flaws. For example, there are deficiencies in the continuity among chapters, including variability in the extent of details provided, the use of nonstandardized acronyms, and occasional inattention to grammar (the title for chapter 21 is incomplete). Additionally, some important figures, particularly PCR gel results, are unfortunately of poor quality, whereas other figures (eg, the photograph of nasopharyngeal aspirate collection) seem unnecessary. Nevertheless, this is an interesting book that could be potentially useful for research veterinarians.

Reviewed by Kathryn E. Gibson, DVM, PhD

St. George's University, Grenada, West Indies

Helicobacter Species: Methods and Protocols (Methods in Molecular Biology Series)

JeanMarie Houghton

258 pages. 2012. Humana Press. ISBN 978-1-62703-005-2. Price $119.00.

Helicobacter Species: Methods and Protocols consists of 26 chapters written by 35 experts in the field and provides detailed methods and protocols derived from various studies of Helicobacter spp. Each protocol contains step-by-step experimental procedures, making this a very useful book for readers interested in Helicobacter spp research methods. Helicobacter pylori causes gastritis and peptic ulceration and is a risk factor for mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue (MALT) lymphoma and gastric adenocarcinoma in humans. More importantly from a veterinary perspective, Helicobacter infection may be zoonotic.

A minor drawback of the book is that various protocols involving species such as ferrets, cats, nonhuman primates, and gerbils are only briefly mentioned. Because Helicobacter infection in those species, particularly cats, is useful for studying the pathogenesis of Helicobacter spp, more detail would have been helpful. However, this is a minor deficiency because readers are provided an appropriate list of references for further study. Many of the illustrations would have benefited had they been printed in color. I highly recommend this book for those who conduct Helicobacter spp research, especially those who are new to the field, including graduate students, postdoctoral associates, and medical professionals.

Reviewed by Yung-Fu Chang, DVM, PhD, DACVM

Cornell University, Ithaca, NY

Advances in Equine Laparoscopy (Advances in Veterinary Surgery Series)

Claude A. Ragle

344 pages and Web access. 2012. Wiley-Blackwell. ISBN 978-0-4709-5877-3. Price $149.99.

Advances in Equine Laparoscopy is the first comprehensive review of equine laparoscopic procedures in over 10 years. This book will be of value to any large animal surgeon currently practicing equine laparoscopy or who is interested in learning about laparoscopy. Contributors to the content of this book include leading authorities in the development of new laparoscopic techniques and experienced laparoscopists, who provide valuable insight into the evolution of the techniques described, tips to avoid various technical pitfalls, and alternative perspectives on and experiences with established laparoscopic methods in equids. Information in the text is supplemented by a selection of videos that are available for viewing on a companion website.

The strengths of this textbook include the collective experience of the authors and the breadth of the procedures described. Chapters are organized consistently throughout the book, and for each procedure described, a list of instruments required, details regarding patient preparation and postoperative care, and potential complications associated with the procedure are provided. Numerous color photographs enhance the text. The information provided in each chapter represents current recommendations for the respective laparoscopic procedures complete with extensive references to published literature.

Weaknesses associated with this book are common to any text that attempts to detail a modality that is continuously evolving. New laparoscopic techniques have undoubtedly been developed or modified since the book was published. A handful of typographic errors and a couple of incompletely labeled figures detract, albeit minimally, from the quality of the information provided. The inclusion of line diagrams would have complemented some of the figures, and the website would have benefitted from additional videos and narrations.

This book does not include a detailed description of anatomic landmarks commonly used during laparoscopy, and aspiring laparoscopic surgeons will need to find this information elsewhere. However, this is a minor weakness, and it could be argued that a description of anatomic landmarks does not represent an advance in equine laparoscopy.

This book will be a valued addition to the library of anyone interested in equine laparoscopy. It complements older texts on equine laparoscopy and summarizes new information in a cohesive manner.

Reviewed by Julie E. Dechant, DVM, MS, DACVS, DACVECC

University of California, Davis, Calif

All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 72 0 0
Full Text Views 665 650 289
PDF Downloads 50 43 3