Changes for Animal Welfare Symposium

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The timing and topic of the AVMA Animal Welfare Symposium initially planned for 2012 have changed.

The AVMA Executive Board approved a recommendation from the Panel on Euthanasia to postpone the symposium to 2013 and dedicate the meeting to a discussion on current and future approaches to animal euthanasia, depopulation, and humane slaughter.

The planned topic of the AVMA Animal Welfare Symposium had been the international harmonization of euthanasia approaches. But since the board approved the plan for the symposium in 2011, the Panel on Euthanasia has completed the latest version of the AVMA Guidelines on Euthanasia and has started developing separate guidance documents on depopulation and humane slaughter.

In its recommendation to the board, the panel explained how, during the development of the three documents, “it has become abundantly clear how much more information is available than a decade ago, but also that there are significant knowledge and performance gaps.”

The panel saw an opportunity to re-focus the event so that it would encompass the euthanasia guidelines as well as the depopulation and humane slaughter documents. With this new focus, the symposium would fulfill the needs of multiple audiences for in-depth information and still provide an opportunity to address the need for international harmonization of approved euthanasia practices.

AVMA board members approved the panel’s plan for the Association’s three-day symposium, which may be held in September 2013 in Chicago.