September 15, 2016

Dr. Janet Donlin returns to the AVMA in September, this time in the Association’s top staff leadership spot, to succeed Dr. Ron DeHaven, who’s retiring after nine years as CEO.

AVMA

The American Veterinary Medical Foundation has been under new leadership for a year and already has seen big changes. Debborah Harp, executive director of the AVMF, along with the Foundation’s board of directors is steering the charity toward a greater focus on what it does well—helping veterinarians help animals.

Issues

The Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service announced proposed changes July 26 to strengthen enforcement of the Horse Protection Act. The goal is to end soring by placing USDA APHIS in charge of enforcing the law and eliminating action devices, pads, and foreign substances that may be used to sore horses. The AVMA and American Association of Equine Practitioners have previously called for these two actions.

Practice

Cases of vesicular swine disease appeared to be increasing this summer, according to an organization that monitors swine health. The vesicular disease caused by the Seneca Valley virus, also known as Senecavirus A, produces clinical signs similar to those seen with foot-and-mouth disease. Slaughter plants that find unexplained lesions on pigs have to treat those pigs as potential carriers for FMD, shutting down a plant for investigation, according to information from the Swine Health Information Center.

Community

An animal shelter organization breaks ground in September on a new facility on Louisiana State University’s campus in Baton Rouge. Christel C. Slaughter, PhD, chair of the board of directors for Companion Animal Alliance of Baton Rouge, said construction of the 31,000-square-foot facility should be completed between June and September 2017. The alliance will lease about 7 acres of LSU land off Gourrier Avenue, near campus athletic facilities and the School of Veterinary Medicine, she said.