1st Edition

Pregnancy and Postpartum Considerations for the Veterinary Team

By Emily Singler Copyright 2024
    232 Pages 28 Color & 12 B/W Illustrations
    by CRC Press

    232 Pages 28 Color & 12 B/W Illustrations
    by CRC Press

    232 Pages 28 Color & 12 B/W Illustrations
    by CRC Press

    Precautions often apply to pregnancy in any workplace, but being a vet in practice presents additional specific risks. There are concerns and uncertainty about potential hazards, from radiation and inhalant anesthesia exposure, to zoonoses, and the additional mental stress in a profession that already carries high suicide risk.

    This book reviews considerations for professionals in clinical veterinary medicine (large and small animal) while pregnant and after giving birth. Veterinarian and veterinary writer, consultant, and mentor Dr Emily Singler speaks directly to veterinary team members (veterinarians, technicians, CSRs, assistants, students) who are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. She delivers scientific information on the specific risks to the mother and baby that may be encountered during pregnancy while working in veterinary medicine, with some of her own and others’ experiences to add perspective and humor.

    The book also covers topics related to mental health challenges, announcing a pregnancy and planning for parental leave, navigating the fourth trimester, and returning to work. We hope that having read this book, veterinary professionals – whether pregnant or working with pregnant colleagues – will feel better supported and empowered to make informed decisions.

    Introduction/Preface. 1. Radiation. 2. Anesthesia. 3. Infectious Diseases. 4. Drugs and Chemicals. 5. Injuries and Ergonomic Hazards. 6. Stress and Fatigue. 7. Trying to Conceive, Assistive Reproductive Techniques, and Pregnancy Loss. 8. Announcing Pregnancy at Work. 9. Planning Parental Leave. 10. The Fourth Trimester/Maternity Leave. 11. Postpartum Depression, Anxiety and Other Mental Health Concerns. 12. Going Back to Work, Childcare, Pumping at Work, Being a Working Parent.


    Emily Singler, VMD, is a veterinarian, a veterinary writer and consultant, a mentor, and a mother of 4 children. She writes for both animal owners and veterinary professionals, including for the American Animal Hospital Association, DVM 360, and on her own website at www.vetmedbaby.com. She is Adjunct Professor of Practice at the University of Arizona College of Veterinary Medicine, USA.

    "This book is amazing – I wish I had something like this when I was having my kids! Dr. Emily Singler has written a comprehensive guide for any veterinary professional thinking about having a family. For every part of navigating pregnancy and the postpartum period, her book offers facts sprinkled with real life experiences from mothers with a range of experiences and from all parts of the veterinary profession. My personal experience was trying to piece these things together and figuring it out as I went and mostly on my own. Dr Singler has distilled so much useful information, advice, references, and recommendations - this is an essential resource for every veterinary practice and people navigating parenting in the veterinary profession." 

    Annie Wayne DVM, MPH, DACVECC and mother of three

    This is a must-have resource for every veterinary professional considering pregnancy or becoming a parent. The information here offers clarity and compassion to women and families at a time of much uncertainty. I will be referencing it frequently as a childbirth educator who exclusively works with veterinarians and advocates for all parents within the veterinary industry.

    Emily Taylor Yunker, DVM, VMRT, CVH, doula (The Veterinarian Doula)

    Dr. Singler has written an authoritative, first-of-its-kind book on pregnancy in veterinary medicine. The information is well-researched, and each chapter is complemented by true stories from veterinarians and veterinary technicians. This book should be read by anyone in the veterinary field who plans on getting pregnant or is pregnant, and by anyone who works with or manages pregnant team members. Most definitely a tremendous and much-needed resource in the veterinary field. 

    Lori Teller, DVM, DABVP (canine/feline), CVJ

    Dr. Singler’s book is a much-needed, practical and relatable reference on occupational health and safety issues surrounding pregnancy and the postpartum period for veterinary professionals.  With the trends in the profession toward a predominantly female workforce, this guide provides useful resources not only to those concerned about how their own maternal health risks, but it is also helpful for those implementing workplace policies.  While there are still many knowledge gaps in this field, this guide is a comprehensive and easy-to-follow reference for the veterinary profession. 

    Erin Luley, VMD, MPH, DACVP

    When I began creating the field of parental leave consulting and coaching support in 2006, I dreamed that one day there would be specialty experts to provide targeted guidance to those in need. With this groundbreaking book Dr. Singler has made this dream a reality, and in doing so has given us a way to transform the veterinary field’s approach to parenthood and careers. Whether you're a veterinary professional contemplating or planning for parenthood, an employer or practice owner, a grad student, intern, resident, or simply someone managing individuals becoming parents in the veterinary profession, this book is your essential companion.

    In this comprehensive guide, Dr. Singler walks you through every aspect of this intricate timeframe. From practical insights on casemaking to ensure leave benefits the entire team, to concise summaries of relevant laws based on your location, this invaluable resource empowers employees and employers (of all sizes) to implement and strategize around parental leave. Beyond the professional realm, this book delves into deeply personal considerations and offers a roadmap to navigate the often challenging terrain of infertility and loss with expert guidance, and gives insight on recognizing and resourcing perinatal mood and anxiety disorders. Buy this book today and gift yourself, and a generation of veterinarians, with the practical and emotional tools needed to embark on the journey to parenthood while nurturing a flourishing veterinary career. Pregnancy and Postpartum Considerations for the Veterinary Team is the transformative handbook you've been waiting for.

    Amy Beacom, Ed.D, Founder and CEO, Center for Parental Leave Leadership