We’ve all had those days. It’s 4 pm, you’re setting up IV fluids for a patient and the pump will just not cooperate. From low battery warnings to error messages, we have all had dreams of throwing that one fluid pump straight out the window. Don’t you wish you had known about some of those key features before you made that purchase? Don’t you wish you could trade that old annoying pump in for one that does what it says and makes your job easier?

If there’s one thing every veterinary professional can agree on, it’s that a great fluid pump can make your efficiency and patient care top-notch. I am sure we have all dealt with fluid pumps that have a confusing interface that seems to slow us down in crucial moments. Fluid therapy is used on a variety of patients from surgical patients to patients hospitalized for supportive care. Accurately and safely delivering IV fluids can play a key role in a patient’s recovery. So, let’s kick back, have a conversation, and explore the key things to consider when selecting a fluid pump that fits our unique veterinary practice. Ready? Let’s dive in!

  1. All right, we all want a fluid pump we can count on, right? Picture this: a pump with a battery that lasts longer than a marathon. That’s what we need! Dependable pumps keep the fluids flowing without any hiccups, ensuring uninterrupted care for our patients. We don’t want any surprises during critical moments, so let’s choose one that won’t let us down. While battery life is important, universal, and interchangeable charging cords are also something to consider. Some fluid pumps have a wall cord that is hard-wired into the back of the machine. This can be difficult to position on a fluid pole in the operating room or even the cage side. Also, if your fluid pump does not run on battery and always needs to be plugged into an outlet, consider where your outlets are in your treatment area and operating rooms.
  2. Here’s the deal: we want a fluid pump that’s as flexible as a yoga instructor. Look for pumps that can handle various fluid sets and sizes. Whether it’s macro or micro drip sets from different manufacturers, we want a pump that can handle it all.
    Unfortunately, some fluid pumps require specialized lines that can be difficult (and more expensive) to source. Plus, let’s not forget
    about portability! We need a pump that’s easy to move around our hospital, so we can provide fluid therapy wherever it’s needed. Most people do not look at the weight of a fluid pump but there are a variety and believe me, it makes a difference if you are carrying this thing between cages and rooms. Favorites in our O.R. are the sleek and portable versions from Heska and Mindray (1.1 and 1.4kg, respectively)
  3. Precision is the name of the game when it comes to fluid delivery. We want a fluid pump that’s as accurate as a sharpshooter. So, let’s go for pumps made by reputable manufacturers. With a reliable pump, we can give our patients the right volume of fluids every time, avoiding any guesswork. And remember for small delivery volumes, it is best to invest in a syringe pump for accurate dosing of constant rate infusions of drugs such as analgesics.
  4. When we make a purchase, it’s great to have support, right? Look for companies that go the extra mile and offer educational resources and training materials. We want to be experts in using our fluid pump! And hey, technical support and troubleshooting assistance are lifesavers when things get tricky. So, let’s choose a manufacturer that’s always there for us when we need a helping hand. It is important to train staff on how to appropriately use any new fluid pump that enters your hospital. This will help to reduce the number of errors, especially fluid overload.
  5. Money matters, my friend. We want a fantastic fluid pump that won’t break the bank. Quality and reliability are vital, but let’s find a pump that fits our budget too. Take your time to research different options and compare prices. We’ll find that sweet spot where functionality and affordability meet, allowing us to invest wisely without draining our veterinary practice funds.

So, fellow veterinary professionals, choosing the perfect fluid pump is no small task. Remember, we want dependability, flexibility, reliability, support, and affordability. By keeping these factors in mind, we can make an informed decision that benefits both our patients and our practice. With a reliable and versatile fluid pump by our side, we’ll administer fluids accurately and provide the best care possible. Let’s find that perfect pump and give our furry friends the treatment they deserve!