Street medicine: caring for pets of the homeless

Source: JAVMA

(January 14, 2022) There are 580,000 homeless individuals in the US as indicated by an annual count done in 2020, but other estimates put the number much higher. According to general observations and intermittent counts, approximately 10% of people experiencing homelessness have pets. Based on this estimate, 58,000 to 140,000 pets likely exist in the US that belong to owners who have no funds for veterinary care. The exact number is hard to ascertain because pet owners constitute a hidden subpopulation of those experiencing homelessness, oftentimes due to concerns about their pets being taken from them...Read more»


Vaccine Hesitancy Comes for Pet Parents

Source: The New York Times

(January 21, 2022) study published in The Canadian Veterinary Journal last year found an association between the organized movement against mandatory vaccines for children and vaccine-resistant pet owners. “The anti-vaccination movement was a cause for concern before Covid,” said Lori Kogan, one of the study’s authors and a professor at Colorado State University who studies human-animal interactions. “It’s certainly a cause for concern now.” Kogan is also conducting a follow-up study exploring pet vaccine hesitancy in the wake of Covid-19, with data due within the next few months...Read more»



How to keep veterinary technicians? Better pay and benefits

Source: VIN News Service

(January 17, 2022) We enter veterinary medicine because we love working with animals, helping clients care for their furry family members and the camaraderie of a team dedicated to making our patients' lives better. But I have seen many great veterinary technicians quit because they are spent. They are tired not just of the long hours or lack of adequate time off. They are tired of the veterinary profession sacrificing their basic needs in the quest for profit. The profession is going through a crisis. A shortage of veterinarians and veterinary technicians is putting too much work on too few shoulders. This, of course, has been exacerbated by the pandemic and the shutdown of veterinary clinics early on, but it was on the horizon before COVID-19...Read more»


Is criticizing ventilation shutdown harmful to veterinarians?

Source: VIN News Service

(January 10, 2022) I have been reluctant to raise the subject of ventilation shutdown — a technique used in crisis situations for mass killing livestock through heatstroke — because I have seen conversations become adversarial and even hostile, resulting in a fracturing of the veterinary profession. But this topic is so important that I cannot be silent. I hope we can discuss it and avoid personal attacks by focusing on solutions...Read more»




We Will Look Back on This Age of Cruelty to Animals in Horror

Source: The New York Times

(December 16, 2021) It’s hard to know where your charitable dollars will do the most good. This year, I’ll focus most of my giving on GiveDirectly, which does exactly what it promises: Gives money to the world’s poorest people, without attaching strings, conditions or complexity. But about 10 percent of my donations every year goes to easing, or ending, the suffering of factory farmed animals, which is mind-melting in its scale. The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization estimates that about 80 billion — yes, billion — land animals are slaughtered each year for food, and, according to some estimates, between 51 billion and 160 billion farmed fish join them. The overwhelming majority of these animals are raised and killed in conditions with no analogue in history, and they suffer terribly...Read more»


Most Dog Breeds Are Highly Inbred - and Unhealthy

Source: HealthDay

(December 7, 2021) Traits particular to certain dog breeds — the distinctive spots of a dalmatian or the stubby legs of a dachshund — are often achieved through inbreeding. But most breeds are now highly inbred, increasing a dog's risk of health problems, a new study confirms.  "It's amazing how inbreeding seems to matter to health," study leader Danika Bannasch said. Her genetic analysis of 227 breeds found an average inbreeding rate of 25%. That's the equivalent of sharing the same genetic material with a full sibling...Read more»


Risk Factors Associated with Increased Ethically Challenging Situations Encountered by Veterinary Team Members During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Source: Frontiers in Veterinary Science

(October 25, 2021) Ethically challenging situations (ECS) are commonly encountered in veterinary settings. The number of ECS encountered by some veterinary team members may increase during a crisis, such as the COVID-19 pandemic. This study aimed to determine the risk factors for experiencing an increase in the frequency of ECS in the months following the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, utilizing data from a global survey of veterinarians, veterinary nurses and animal health technicians collected from May to July 2020. In this study, descriptive analyses were performed to characterize veterinary team members who responded to the survey (n = 540)...Read more»


Spectrum of care: more than treatment options

Source: JAVMA 

(October 1, 2021) The past several decades have seen substantial advances in clinical veterinary medicine, including widespread specialization, access to more complex diagnostic testing and imaging methods, and increased availability of advanced treatments. However, these advances, in conjunction with the increasing costs of veterinary education, medical equipment, and general practice operations, mean that veterinary care can be financially out of reach for many pet owners. A recent survey of pet owners in the United States found that 28% had experienced a barrier to veterinary care in the previous 2 years and that the overwhelming barrier, for all types of care, was financial...Read more»

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