January 01, 2002


 AVMA board chair accepts high honors at Tufts Animal Expo

Posted Dec. 15, 2001

Dr. Bonnie V. Beaver, chair of the 2001-2002 AVMA Executive Board, was presented with the 2001 Leo K. Bustad Companion Animal Veterinarian of the Year Award at the second annual Tufts Animal Expo 2001, Oct. 10-13, at Boston's Hynes Convention Center. The AVMA, The Delta Society, and Hill's Pet Nutrition Inc. support the award.

Drs. Beaver and Howell
Dr. Bonnie Beaver accepts the 2001 Leo K. Bustad Companion Animal Veterinarian of the Year Award from Dr. Joe Howell, president-elect of the AVMA.

It is presented to a veterinarian whose devotion to the field helps keep alive Dr. Bustad's lifelong dedication, interest, teaching, and scientific studies about the human-animal bond. She received the award from Dr. Joe Howell, president-elect of the AVMA.

He shared an overview of Dr. Beaver's work in the human-animal bond arena.

"Dr. Beaver's worldwide reputation as a scientific researcher, academician, lecturer, author, and veterinary practitioner attests to her lifetime dedication, her accomplishments in the field of animal health and welfare, and her dedication to enhancing mankind's understanding of human-to-animal relationships. In 1974, she wrote one of the first articles that addressed this issue, "The Veterinarian's Role in Prescribing Pets," for people and their families. Dr. Beaver's expertise has reached far beyond the veterinary community, as she authored over 60 articles for lay publications that deal with the human-animal bond."

She has been a strong influence in shaping the fields of animal behavior, the human-animal bond, and grief counseling. She has authored seven books on animal behavior that are used for teaching at veterinary schools throughout the world.

Dr. Beaver is one of the founders and a charter member of the American College of Veterinary Behaviorists, as well as the American Society of Animal Behavior. She is a professor in the Department of Small Animal Medicine and Surgery at Texas A&M University College of Veterinary Medicine.

Her contributions have also earned her the AVMA's 1996 Animal Welfare Award.

"I am thrilled to receive the 2001 Bustad Award," Dr. Beaver said. "My daily interactions with students, clients, patients, and my own animals remind me of the importance of the relationship between pets and people.

"Dr. Bustad was a longtime friend and mentor who personified all that is good in veterinary medicine. That makes this recognition even more special to me."

Loyal to expo
Last fall's expo attracted more then 3,300 registrants, despite the reluctance to travel by many Americans.

Mark Dawson and ElvisFEMA USAR Canine Search Specialist Mark Dawson and Elvis, about to accept
a $5,000 donartion on behalf of the Massachusetts Canine Training Fund
for FEMA USAR teams.

"The willingness of so many individuals to attend Tufts Animal Expo demonstrated that it is our collective resilience and spirit that are this country's—and this region's—greatest strength," said Dr. Philip C. Kosch, dean of the Tufts University School of Veterinary Medicine.

The programmers reflected current events, adding educational sessions such as "The Role of Search and Rescue Dogs in New York City" into the conference. Dr. Nicholas Dodman also addressed post-traumatic stress disorder in animals. Sessions on bioterrorism, disaster medicine, and developments in emergency and critical care were also part of the 2001 program. New to the program was the "What's Hot" educational track, exploring topics such as soft-tissue surgery to animal-assisted behavior.

In addition to providing an environment to learn about the advances in animal health and welfare, last fall's expo was dedicated to the tireless involvement of the nation's search-and-rescue and security dogs, and their handlers, in the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks.

"We wanted to honor those animals and their partners, all of whom are true American heroes," said Dr. Kosch.

In appreciation for these efforts, Tufts Animal Expo organizers donated $5,000 to the Boston Police Bureau of Special Operations, K-9 Unit, and $5,000 to the Massachusetts Canine Training Fund for Federal Emergency Management Agency Urban Search-and-Rescue teams. James Hussey, superintendent-in-chief of the Boston Police Department, and FEMA USAR canine search specialist Mark Dawson accepted the donations.

Dawson, who also serves as a Greenwich, Conn., firefighter, and his black Labrador Retriever, Elvis, also received a commendation on behalf of the nation's search-and-rescue teams during the event's opening ceremonies. He and Elvis were among the first teams to arrive at ground zero in New York City.

Samuel B. Ross Jr., PhD, founder of the Green Chimneys School and Green Chimneys Children's Services of Brewster, N.Y., delivered the keynote speech during the plenary session on opening day. Green Chimneys has received international recognition for the use of animal-assisted activity/assisted therapy, and equestrian therapy.