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Exotic Tumor Database Training

About This Self-Paced Course


The Exotic Tumor Database Training Course, ETD101, is designed to train participants to correctly and efficiently enter clinical cancer cases into the Exotic Tumor Database, a project of the Exotic Species Cancer Research Alliance. This course is designed primarily for those with a medical background and training in common veterinary medical terminology. Our primary audience is veterinary technicians and veterinary students who are helping exotics vets and zoo vets enter their tumor cases into the Exotic Tumor Database. Pre-vet or pre-med undergraduate students who are working with a veterinarian on entering cases may also enroll. These students may need additional guidance and mentorship from their supervising veterinarian to ensure accurate data entry and interpretation of the medical records. We expect the course to take 2-3 hours to complete.


No prerequisites are required for this course.

Course Staff


Ashley Zehnder, DVM, PhD, Dipl. ABVP(Avian)

Ashley Zehnder graduated from the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine in 2005, completed a small animal medicine and surgery internship at the Animal Medical Center in New York City in 2006 and a 3-year residency in Companion Avian and Pet Exotic Medicine at the University of California-Davis, becoming boarded in Avian Medicine in 2009. She completed her Cancer Biology PhD in the Khavari Lab at Stanford in 2016 working on novel therapeutic strategies to target altered signaling pathways in epithelial cancers. Since beginning her research training at Stanford, she has pursued interests in cancer biology as well as comparative medicine by maintaining active research interests in both fields. She spearheaded the Zoobiquity Research Symposium held at Stanford in April 2014 and Stanford One Health symposium in 2016, which brought together veterinarians and human medical researchers to discuss research efforts in infectious diseases, cancer as well as novel animal models of disease. She is also on the Board of Advisors for Stanford One Health. More recently, she has founded a research alliance to bring together medical professionals to pursue research interests relating to cancer in non-domestic species to shed light on the biology of tumors in these potentially valuable animal models ( Her current research focuses on building resources and methods to improve sharing of veterinary clinical data across the US as well as development of a tumor database focused on non-domestic species to help identify potential novel models of cancer for human and animal research.


Tara Harrison, DVM, MPVM, Dipl. ACZM, Dipl. ACPVM

Dr. Tara Harrison graduated from Michigan State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine with her DVM degree. Afterward, she earned a Masters of Preventive Veterinary Medicine degree at the University of California-Davis, where she worked with Dr. Linda Munson as a post-doctoral fellow in the contraceptive advisory group. She did veterinary internships at Toledo Zoo and Wildlife Safari. She then spent ten years working as a veterinarian and curator at Potter Park Zoo and an additional year as the Director of Animal Health at Potter Park Zoo. Dr. Harrison was also an Assistant Professor at Michigan State University during that time. She then went back to UC Davis and was an Assistant Professor in UC Davis’ Department of Medicine and Epidemiology and a veterinarian at the Sacramento Zoo. She is currently a Clinical Assistant Professor at North Carolina State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine Exotic Animal Medicine Service. She is board certified in the American College of Zoological Medicine and the American College of Veterinary Preventive Medicine.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need to buy a textbook?

No, there is no required textbook for this course. Standard veterinary texts as well as references with disease information on exotic animals are helpful, but not required.

What do I need to do to become certified to enter cases?

1) Watch all of the lectures within the course, ETD101
2) Complete the small quizzes at the end of each lecture with a total score of >80% (averaged over the course)
3) Enter details from three training cases with a average score of >85% on the final examination

  1. Course Number

  2. Classes Start

  3. Estimated Effort

    2-3 hours (one time)
  4. Price