World Small Animal Veterinary Association

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Dr. Haggstrom
Dr. Jens Haggstrom
Dr. Hansen
Dr. Mogens Hansen
Dr. Kirpensteijn
Dr. Jolle Kirpensteijn
Dr. Ingwersen
Dr. Walt Ingwersen


Dr. Chunekamrai
Dr. Siraya Chunekamrai

Event: 42nd World Small Animal Veterinary Association Congress, Sept. 25-28, 2017, Copenhagen, Denmark
Program: The congress attracted almost 3,000 attendees. More than 100 speakers presented lectures. Also on offer were master classes and workshops and a scientific program featuring several simultaneous streams. Responsible breeding of dogs and cats was a key theme at the congress.
Awards: WSAVA International Award for Scientific Achievement: Dr. Jens Haggstrom, Uppsala, Sweden, for his contributions to companion animal medicine. Dr. Haggstrom serves as a professor of small animal internal medicine and section head of medicine and surgery, companion animals, in the Department of Clinical Sciences at Uppsala University. His research on myxomatous mitral valve disease in dogs confirmed its status as an inherited condition and led to the development of a breeding program aimed at reducing the prevalence of the disease in affected breeds, including Cavalier King Charles Spaniels. Dr. Haggstrom has played an important role in the European Union–funded project Lupa, aimed at unraveling complex disorders in dogs. He is a diplomate of the European College of Veterinary Internal Medicine. WSAVA Global One Health Award: Blue Dog Programme. Founded by Dr. Tiny de Keuster, a visiting professor at the University of Ghent in Belgium, the program is an educational initiative to help children interact safely with dogs. It offers educational resources for children, parents, and teachers, including a website, fact sheets, and a DVD and accompanying booklet for parents. The program also provides information on selecting the right dog and the benefits to a family of owning a dog, and offers guidance on where to get a dog and on responsible dog ownership. WSAVA Meritorious Service Award: Dr. Bojan Zorko, Ljubljana, Slovenia, for his role in developing the veterinary profession in Slovenia. Dr. Zorko serves as a professor of veterinary radiology at the University of Ljubljana and is director of the International Veterinary Radiology Association for central and eastern Europe. Dr. Zorko is a past president of the Slovenian Small Animal Veterinary Association and a former regional director for the Federation of European Companion Animal Veterinary Associations. WSAVA Henry Schein Cares Award for International Community Service: Dr. Mogens Hansen, Elsinore, Denmark, for his involvement in animal welfare efforts in developing countries. Dr. Hansen owns a small animal practice in Elsinore. In 2006, he founded what is now known as Vets Beyond Borders Denmark. Dr. Hansen has coordinated and participated in more than 15 spay-neuter and rabies vaccination programs for stray dogs in India and Thailand, and supported several animal welfare projects in central America, Africa, eastern Europe, and Asia. He is a co-founder of a website for animal health, WSAVA Hill’s Next Generation Award: Dr. Luba Gancheva, Bucharest, Romania, won this award, recognizing the work of a veterinarian who has graduated within the past 10 years and has contributed substantially to the betterment of companion animals, the veterinary profession, and society at large. Dr. Gancheva practices small animal medicine at the Cabinet Filip Veterinarul Animal Hospital in Bucharest. In 2015, she established Vets on the Balkans, an online veterinary journal, aiming to help regional veterinarians work in collaboration with each other. A year later, Dr. Gancheva launched Learn and Travel with Vets in The Balkans, an initiative and program that enables veterinarians to work in clinics in neighboring countries. WSAVA President’s Award: Dr. Jolle Kirpensteijn, Lawrence, Kansas, for his service to the association. A past president of the WSAVA, Dr. Kirpensteijn serves as chief professional relations officer for Hill’s Pet Nutrition in Topeka, Kansas. During his tenure as WSAVA president, he worked toward enhancing the effectiveness of the association’s operations, focusing on strong continuing education initiatives and better communication, and established clear strategies to ensure that the association became a global entity.
Business: The WSAVA launched the first set of Global Guidelines for Veterinary Dentistry to assist veterinarians worldwide in improving recognition of dental disease and providing a higher standard of dental care. The association announced that membership had increased to 105 associations and that Global Guidelines for Animal Welfare would be launched at the 2018 congress. Several meetings were held during the congress, including an expert panel discussion on brachycephalic syndrome in dogs.
Officials: Drs. Walt Ingwersen, Dundas, Canada, president; Siraya Chunekamrai, Bangkok, president-elect; Shane Ryan, Singapore, vice president; Colin Burrows, Gainesville, Florida, immediate past president; Ellen Van Nierop, Quito, Ecuador, honorary treasurer; Renee Hoynck, Den Helder, Netherlands, honorary secretary; and board members—Drs. Nicola Neumann, Bray, Ireland, and Michael Day, Cheddar, England