April 15, 2014

A recent study in the Journal of Wildlife Diseases details a new method for euthanizing stranded whales with no chance of survival. “It is a gut-wrenching experience to see a live whale on a beach, irreparably compromised, and not have a good means to relieve suffering,” says Dr. Craig Harms, part of the team of veterinarians and marine mammal experts who created the humane and environmentally safe technique.

AVMA

Thousands of people have visited a free traveling exhibition that showcases veterinary medicine in a celebration of the human-animal bond. “Animal Connections: Our Journey Together” debuted in July 2013 at the AVMA Annual Convention in Chicago and has been touring the country ever since.

Issues

The Tennessee Walking Horse industry remains at odds over what changes need to take place regarding the practice of soring. Two competing bills on Capitol Hill seek to address the issue in very different ways. The Prevent All Soring Tactics Act (H.R. 1518/S. 1406), which would do away with chains and pads that are used to sore horses, has received widespread support, including from a number of former walking horse industry leaders. Alternatively, the Horse Protection Amendments Act (H.R. 4098) doesn’t make soring illegal and doesn’t address the use of action devices.

Practice

A recent study on the horse-owning population by Brakke Consulting Inc. confirms what most equine veterinarians already know—owners are growing older and becoming less active in equine competitions and activities. The proportion of horse owners ages 18 to 34 has declined from 24 percent in 2006 to 15 percent in 2009 to 11 percent in 2013, according to the study.

Community

More than 14,000 attendees, including some 6,000 veterinarians, attended the Western Veterinary Conference in Las Vegas this February. Attendees had the opportunity to earn up to 50 continuing education hours in 12 program areas.