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Vets React To Post Brexit Immigration Rules

With the growing problem of the lack of veterinarians in the UK, vets across the country are starting to worry about the Government’s new immigration system. Starting in January 2021, an employer-led points-based system will be in effect, which will require businesses to sponsor recruits from outside the UK. However, more points will be given to those on the Shortage Occupation List, on which the British Veterinary Association (BVA), the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS) and others successfully campaigned to have veterinary surgeons included.

BVA president Daniella Dos Santos said: “The UK veterinary profession is hugely reliant on overseas vets to deliver animal health and welfare, safeguard public health, and ensure the UK can trade animals and animal products. The Government’s blueprint for trade will require a massive boost to the veterinary workforce to deliver veterinary certification – not only for exports, but, as announced last week, also for imports. This new immigration system leaves a big question mark over whether we’ll be able to fill the workforce gap created by the end of free movement when we are already struggling to recruit and retain vets. We’re pleased our campaign to secure vets on to the Shortage Occupation List will be rewarded under the new system and we’re delighted post-study work visas will be available for vets who graduate from our world-class vet schools. But we don’t know if this will be enough, and remain concerned an employer-led system places a significant financial and bureaucratic burden on vet practices – many of which are small and medium-sized enterprises. We’re keen to work with Defra and the Home Office to do all we can to support vets to get ready for the introduction of the new system.”

This Veterinarian Has Spent 9 Years Wandering the California Coast Treating Homeless People’s Pets for Free

Dr. Kwane Stewart has spent a lot of his spare time since 2011 helping homeless people’s pets for free. He first started when he was shocked to see the number of animals being surrendered to his veterinary clinic by those who could not afford the care that their pets needed. It is said that Dr. Stewart has helped over 400 animals across the California coast. He has since started a GoFundMe page and received around $78,000 in donations to continue his work.

Dr Stewart told GoFundMe: “About 25% of our homeless population own a pet, and I knew that if I set up a table at a soup kitchen I could help a small group of animals. So that’s what I did. I called over anyone who was holding their pet and told them I’d take a look and vaccinate or treat their pet if I could.”

To see more of Dr. Kwane Stewarts story, check out his GoFundMe page here:

Research finds PFAS in dog poop

A research team from the New York State Department of Health have found that cats and dogs excrete some Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in their faeces at levels that suggest exposures above the minimum risk level, which could also have implications for the pets’ owners. Research has shown that exposure to this substance can have potential adverse health impacts including liver damage, thyroid disease, decreased fertility, high cholesterol, obesity, hormone suppression and cancer. PFAS are used in a wide range of consumer products such as food packaging and even carpets. The researchers said that because pets share homes with people, they could be used to monitor human exposure to PFAS.

Vets use AI to help diagnose Addison’s disease

A team from the University of California, Davis School of Veterinary Medicine have discovered a way to use AI to help diagnose Addison’s disease in dogs. Addison’s disease, which has been previously hard to detect as it has similar symptoms of other health issues can now be diagnosed more confidently by vets. 

Dr Krystle Reagan said: “Veterinarians need a safety net to prevent dogs with Addison’s from falling through the cracks. This AI program is now that safety net. It has the potential to revolutionise the detection of Addison’s and save many dogs’ lives.”

Emergency veterinary hospital opens in Bucharest

The University of Agronomic Sciences and Veterinary Medicine in Bucharest will be opening its own 24/7 emergency hospital today (28th Feb 2020). This has been an ongoing project since 2009 and has required the investment of €4.8m from both the university itself and the Education and Research Ministry.

Sorin Mihai Cîmpeanu, the provost of USAMVB, said: “The need for an emergency university hospital at the Veterinary Medicine Faculty stemmed from the wish to offer students, the academic body and patients the most modern and complete endowments, integrating all specialities and services available in the area of veterinary medicine”.

Ceva Animal Health (UK) launches Pet Anxiety Month in March 

Ceva Animal Health is preparing to launch a Pet Anxiety Month in March which will help raise awareness of pets dealing with anxiety and help give tips to vets and owners to help them through this. The company will run a marketing campaign on social media to raise awareness along with releasing short videos. They will also be encouraging pet owners to share the stories of their pet’s anxiety.

Abigail King, senior product manager for ADAPTIL and FELIWAY at Ceva said: “It is widely known that humans suffer from anxieties, but pets do too with 82 percent of dogs and 89 percent of cats reported to be scared of something. It is therefore important that we educate pet owners on the signs of stress and the help and support that they can give to their pets. Pet Anxiety Month will get people talking and we want people to know that there are products out there to support pets and that help is at hand to get the right advice, which is extremely important.”

Animal Oxygen Masks Donated To The Most Vulnerable

Last month, PetSafe Australia donated free oxygen masks designed for pets to pet hospitals, rescue centres and care facilities across Australia to help them following the bushfires. These oxygen masks fit on all types of wildlife including wombats, kangaroos and koalas. 

Zarqa Ali from PetSafe Australia said: “When they found out about the devastation across Australia and the effect it was having on our wildlife, working together we managed to distribute masks to numerous sanctuaries and animal hospitals across the country”.

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