AVMA backgrounders are science-based, peer-reviewed literature summaries of select topics relevant to animal health and welfare. They are written by AVMA professional staff in response to a demonstrated need for summary information. They may also include attention to the issue’s legislative, legal, economic, ethical, and social components, as well as implications for veterinary practice. AVMA backgrounders are not AVMA policy, and generally do not draw conclusions; they simply report what we know from the literature or other verifiable data about a given topic. Peer-reviewers for AVMA backgrounders are selected by staff from among recognized experts in their field, after reviewing related peer-reviewed published works and seeking input from those working on the topic of interest. Recognizing that even science is not value-free, in addition to ensuring we involve the needed experts, we attempt to balance reviewers’ backgrounds and perspectives when soliciting comments. Peer-review for backgrounders is similar to peer-review used for publication of articles in scientific and other professional journals.

AVMA welcomes new information that will improve the content of its backgrounders. Please share any comments or suggestions you have on our backgrounders by sending them, with supporting documentation (e.g., scientific articles, verifiable data), to