WSAVA Targets Welfare with Release of First Global Guidelines for Companion Animal Practitioners

AW GuidelinesThe World Small Animal Veterinary Association (WSAVA) has highlighted the key role of veterinarians as advocates for animal welfare with the launch of its Animal Welfare Global Guidelines for Companion Animal Practitioners and the Veterinary Team.

The Guidelines, launched during WSAVA World Congress 2018 in Singapore, aim to bridge differing perceptions of welfare around the world and help veterinarians to tackle the ethical questions and moral issues which impact welfare. They also offer guidance to ensure that, in addition to providing physical health advice and therapy to their patients, veterinarians can advocate for their psychological, social and environmental wellbeing. The WSAVA already offers Global Guidelines in key areas of veterinary practice, including pain management, vaccination, nutrition and dentistry.

shane ryanDr Shane Ryan, incoming President of the WSAVA and former Chair of the WSAVA Animal Wellness and Welfare Committee, said: “As veterinarians, our responsibility extends far beyond the physical health of our patients. Animal welfare as a science is a new and rapidly developing discipline and veterinarians need current, evidence-based information to enable them to maintain the highest welfare standards and to provide knowledgeable, accurate advice for pet owners and communities.

“Our new Guidelines provide recommendations, checklists and other tools to promote optimal levels of welfare throughout the veterinary visit. They also offer guidance on increasing welfare beyond the doors of the clinic through outreach activities.”

He continued: “As levels of pet ownership increase in many regions of the world, including Asia, it is essential that veterinarians champion animal welfare and the WSAVA hopes that these new Guidelines will encourage our members to adopt best practice and set the highest standards.

“I would like to thank the members of the Animal Welfare Guidelines team, who worked so hard to create them and, of course, our sponsor, Waltham®, whose constant support was instrumental in enabling us to deliver them.”

The WSAVA has called on its members to develop an animal welfare charter for their members and to adopt the Guidelines into daily practice. 32 WSAVA member associations have already endorsed the Guidelines with more expected to follow shortly.  During 2018-19, the WSAVA will develop relevant continuing education (CE) and provide additional tools and translations of the Guidelines text.

The Animal Welfare Global Guidelines for Companion Animal Practitioners and the Veterinary Team are available for free download at: https://bit.ly/2D3RAoc

The WSAVA aims to advance the health and welfare of companion animals worldwide through creating an educated, committed and collaborative global community of veterinary peers.  It represents more than 200,000 veterinarians through 110 member associations.

 

WSAVA World Congress 2018 is being attended by more than 3,000 veterinarians from around the world and brings together globally respected experts to offer cutting edge thinking on all aspects of companion animal veterinary care.  WSAVA World Congress 2019 takes place in Toronto, Canada, from 16-19 July.

Ilinca Zarinschi, our tech vet, and Learn and Travel with Vets on The Balkans

38912475_442896726119256_1830507085800931328_nIlinca Zarinschi, a tech vet from Cluj, Romania has done her externship at Clinica Veterinara Lago Maggiore, Italy with Dr Luca Formaggini and his amazing team. She will tell us more about this experience:

 

“How it all started
I had the pleasure to meet Dr. Luba Gancheva for the first time at the Feline Medicine Congress in Bucharest, talking about her amazing project, Vets on the Balkans. I was so impressed I decided to approach her and find out more.
She explained to me that, as veterinary technician, I could improve my knowledge and skills by signing up for her amazing programme and she thought the best option for me might be Clinica Veterinara Lago Maggiore from Dormeletto, Italy.
So, two months later, I was finding myself flying over the Italian Alps not knowing what to expect from this new adventure.

39008939_498327340608678_2724608909053526016_nGetting there
I took off from Cluj-Napoca, Romania on the 1st of August.
After a long flight and many delays, I landed on Malpensa Airport. Alberto, one of the nicest vet techs I’ve ever met, was waiting for me. He drove me to the Clinic and then to the Crazy Pub where Dr. Luca, Dr. Sara, Dr. Marta and Dr. Giulia and Dr. Cecilia were waiting for me, with arms wide open. It was such a lovely evening, I could hardly wait for the next day to start!

38997000_1870135039950117_1318943628642484224_nThe clinic and the team
My first impression was that the clinic is well equipped and highly organized. Everyone was really eager to explain and share their knowledge with me, even though there were certain subjects I was not familiar with (like operating the Radiology and CT units).
I was very impressed with the surgical ward, Dr. Luca being one of those doctors that you can learn a lot from, having both the patience and experience to share from.
One thing that I am very grateful for is that they taught me how to preform and epidural, something I don’t get to do everyday.
We had various discussions about protocols regarding anaesthesia, vaccinations, post-op therapy and I learned a lot of useful information, which I already passed on to my colleagues.

38750936_433439873818272_1938692870990987264_nA little piece of Italian heaven

During the 12 days I was there, I got the chance to experience a bit of the Italian lifestyle, I travelled to Milan and explored the surrounding area. I fell in love with Italian cuisine and warm summer nights spent with the girls, we shared stories and experiences and the most important part, I got the chance of rediscovering myself and what I was capable of.
Saying goodbye
I was really sad I had to leave, it was the best experience I’ve had abroad, I would love to be able to go back one day and I highly recommend it to everyone who is willing to broaden their horizons.
A big special THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart to Luba, who encourages and empowers me everyday, to Dr. Luca and his lovely, amazing team, to Giulia – who is also the best room-mate that anyone could want , to Marta, Sara, Mariangela, Cecilia, Anna, Chiara, and Alberto (Nayra and Nina too). And a big thanks to Pamas Trading, for making this happen, of course. 12814393_1673705086236432_1339900710371625092_n
Also, I would love to remind you, guys, again, that we have better cannulas but you have prettier pink alcohol, haha.
My best regards and warmest hugs,

Ilinca, “the hybrid” vet tech

39017847_235779323940471_323580860395683840_n 39020903_1823190841099828_7740281119005736960_n 39095656_505572619865056_8953206293150040064_n 39096436_1326484624154769_2308858991083520000_n

WSAVA Endorses FVE/FECAVA Position Paper on Healthy Breeding Global companion animal veterinary association warns of the health and welfare risks of extreme breeding

 

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The World Small Animal Veterinary Association (WSAVA) is the latest veterinary association to highlight concerns about the impact of extreme breeding in dogs by supporting a Position Paper launched in June 2018 by the Federation of Veterinarians of Europe (FVE) and the Federation of European Companion Animal Veterinary Associations (FECAVA).

The FVE/FECAVA Position Paper is a response to the explosion in popularity of dog breeds with exaggerated traits or genetic disorders and, in particular, those with extreme brachycephalic conformation, such as French and English bulldogs and pugs. While these breeds are increasingly popular with owners, they can suffer severe health and welfare issues.  The Position Paper calls for health and welfare to be given priority over looks and offers detailed recommendations to address both the rising demand for these dogs and the increase in supply. They include:

Measures to reduce demand

  • Addressing demand for brachycephalic and other affected breeds through educating owners about the health issues they face
  • Working with influencers, such as media and celebrities, to encourage owners to choose a healthy, high welfare dog which is suitable for their life style.

Measures to reduce supply

  • Introducing the mandatory registration of breeders, pre-breeding screening programs and the sharing of data on conformation-altering surgeries and caesarean sections
  • Educating stakeholders and revising breeding standards and practices to put the health and welfare of dogs first.

FVE and FECAVA have also produced an infographic explaining the causes and consequences of extreme breeding and listing a number of recommendations.

“Extreme breeding is a global concern with our members seeing the results of brachycephalic conformation in practice on a regular basis. The suffering it causes is beyond dispute,” said Dr Walt Ingwersen, President of the WSAVA.

“Following detailed review by our Hereditary Disease Committee, our Animal Wellness and Welfare Committee and the WSAVA’s Executive Board, we are delighted to endorse the joint FVE/FECAVA Position Paper and congratulate both associations on highlighting the issue and setting out a clear strategy to tackle it.  It builds on momentum established by the Brachycephalic Working Group (BWG), an initiative which brings together all of the major stakeholders in dog welfare in the UK to improve the welfare of brachycephalic dogs.”

Dr Ingwersen continued: “Lasting change requires commitment and collaboration between veterinarians, breeder associations and other stakeholders on a global basis.  We are ready to play our part and look forward to working with our colleagues in the FVE and FECAVA and our member associations to deliver on the recommendations made in the Position Paper.”

Dr Wolfgang Dohne, FECAVA President, commented: “We’re delighted that the WSAVA has offered its support to the joint FVE/FECAVA Position Paper. It is important for veterinarians to speak up on this important welfare issue and together we are stronger.”

The WSAVA aims to advance the health and welfare of companion animals worldwide through creating an educated, committed and collaborative global community of veterinary peers.  It represents more than 200,000 veterinarians through 104 member associations.  Its annual World Congress brings together globally respected experts to offer cutting edge thinking on all aspects of companion animal veterinary care.

 

Notes to editors:

 

The Federation of Veterinarians of Europe (FVE) is an umbrella organisation of 44 veterinary organisations from 38 European countries, representing a total of around 240 000 veterinarians. The FVE strives to promote animal health, animal welfare and public health across Europe.

The Federation of European Companion Animal Veterinary Associations (FECAVA) is the platform for the promotion of the professional development and representation of companion animal veterinarians in Europe. Founded in 1990, it currently has 40 national member associations and 13 associate member associations. FECAVA represents over 25,000 companion animal practitioners throughout Europe