In 2003, the AVMA will not participate in National Pet Week, but the Auxiliary to the AVMA has yet to determine whether it will sustain the event until it reemerges with a new look.
To give the Pet Week partners an opportunity to reorganize and develop a new format, the Executive Board in April approved a recommendation to cancel AVMA's participation in the event for the year 2003.
The Budget and Financial Review Committee, which made the recommendation, believes that a one-year hiatus would allow sufficient time for the Pet Week partners to chart the future course for the promotional activity.
The Executive Board approved a motion to apply to register National Pet Week as an AVMA trademark, but first, staff is consulting with the Auxiliary.
Pet Week started out as an Auxiliary project, then the AVMA joined as a partner. Currently there are two other partners—the American Animal Hospital Association and the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America (formerly, North American Veterinary Technicians Association).
In February, the AVMA Council on Public Relations reviewed the cost and effectiveness of Pet Week, as directed by the board and the House of Delegates. Council members expressed conviction in the value of National Pet Week and discussed possible enhancements and promotional strategies.
As Auxiliary vice president for public relations, JoAnn Ostwald, Fort Morgan, Colo., sits in on meetings of the AVMA's PR council. Her personal hope is that the Auxiliary can, on its own or with help, continue with Pet Week in 2003. But that will be decided at the Auxiliary Executive Board meeting in July.
Even without AVMA participation, the event will be listed in Chase's Calendar of Events. Pet Week activities conducted by groups such as state and local veterinary associations and humane societies may continue in 2003. The Auxiliary has already chosen the 2003 theme—"Pets Make the Difference." Ostwald said the Auxiliary is especially pleased with the 2003 poster, a colorful rendition of animals by an Illinois man with Down syndrome.