The World Veterinary Association encourages veterinarians to celebrate World Veterinary Day on Saturday, April 28.
"World Veterinary Day celebrates and showcases the vast contributions that veterinarians make to the health and welfare of both people and pets," said Dr. Leon H. Russell, president of the WVA and former AVMA president.
"People know and understand that we care for pets and food animals, but we need to show the world how diverse we are as a profession," he continued. "Veterinarians do so much more."
Dr. Russell encourages practitioners to host an open house, visit school programs, and make this one day a time to showcase how veterinarians touch the lives of many every day.
"This is our opportunity to educate the global society about how veterinarians care for every aspect of the animal kingdom," Dr. Russell said.
"Not everyone knows that members of our profession are in Asia combating avian influenza and working to help make sure that it does not become a pandemic," he continued. "Veterinary researchers around the world are investigating clues to unlocking the secret to various diseases in human and animal health and, right here at home, veterinarians are protecting our country from (bioterrorism) and agroterrorism."
In past years, veterinary organizations and clinics from countries including England, India, Japan, Namibia, New Zealand, Slovenia, Tunisia, Turkey, and the United States have celebrated the day in various ways. These include holding ceremonies, hosting seminars, and providing free veterinary care to the needy.
The AVMA is helping to promote the day by distributing press releases that can be viewed at www.avma.org/press/.
To learn more about World Veterinary Day, visit www.worldvet.org and click on "World Veterinary Day" at the top of the left-hand column. From this site, one will find useful resources, including reports of activities during previous celebrations.