Skip to Primary Content

Virginia Veterinary Centers

CPR: Certified Pet Rescue

Three staff members performing CPR on a fake animal

At Virginia Veterinary Centers, the best care happens when advanced training meets true compassion. Just look at Fredericksburg’s very own Dr. Margret Donahue. An Emergency & Critical Care Specialist, Dr. Donahue teamed up with RECOVER to become a CPR: Certified Pet Rescue Instructor and Basic Life Support and Advance Life Support Certified Instructor.


The RECOVER Initiative is a non-profit, volunteer-based program within ACVECC and VECCS dedicated to conducting high-quality education, evidence search, and guideline creation for veterinary CPR. Their three main goals are:

  • Guidelines: Develop and update evidence-based, consensus veterinary-certified pet rescue guidelines through an exhaustive review of the primary CPR literature.

  • Education: Provide the only standardized CPR training to veterinary professionals and pet owners offering CPR certification through the American College of Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care (ACVECC) and endorsed by the Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Society (VECCS).

  • Research: Inform and support scientific research to improve our approach to certified pet rescue in animals.


Applicants must pass an online course before qualifying for in-person certification. As a certified instructor, Dr. Donahue can certify veterinary professionals to perform correct CPR techniques. Dr. Donahue and Fredericksburg’s clinical manager, Kelia, recently visited Acredale Animal Hospital in Virginia Beach to teach a certification class. In total that day, 22 veterinary professionals were certified.


At Virginia Veterinary Centers, our intense training and education allow us to provide high-quality medicine to our patients. As a result, our board-certified specialists, emergency doctors, and team of support staff collaborate on cases to ensure that our patients receive the best care available.

Recently, Dr. Donahue put her new certification into action and ran a group RECOVER training with the team at VVC Fredericksburg. Together, our team prepared themselves for the ultimate emergency, utilizing the knowledge and skills required to give their patients the best chance of survival through certified pet rescue.

Are you a DVM interested in attending a RECOVER education course? Contact us to discuss training opportunities with Dr. Donahue.


No one wants to see a pet struggling. But if it happens, our highly trained and experienced criticalists are here for you. Our team will provide the very best care for patients with life-threatening conditions, working hard for the best possible results.


  • Artificial organ support (oxygen therapy, ventilator therapy, specialized fluid support)

  • Blood transfusion therapy

  • Arterial Blood Gas

  • Status Epilepticus Treatments

  • Vasopressor Therapy

  • Multimodal Analgesia

  • Polytrauma Management

  • Emergency Airway Management

  • Parenteral Nutrition

  • Continuous Chest Drainage

  • Critically Ill Patient Post-Op Management

  • Diagnostic Procedures

  • Diagnostic Imaging

  • Mechanical Ventilation

  • Treatment for Life-Threatening Toxicitiestical Care

With extensive hours and three locations, we’ll be here when you and your pet need us. Our Critical Care department operates within our Fredericksburg and Richmond hospitals. Should you have any questions please contact us for more information.