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Current Research Studied by Dairy Veterinarians
June 10, 2015

Dairy industry sustainability, including cow and calf welfare, lameness treatments and antimicrobial resistance updates, were on the agenda for dairy veterinarians at the Ontario Veterinary College last week.

More than 40 veterinarians from across Canada joined OVC faculty, grad students and sponsors at the two-and-a-half day annual Dairy Health Management Certificate Program update meeting.

Consumers are increasingly tuned into topics such as welfare and antimicrobial resistance, making them timely topics for this year’s conference, said meeting organizer Dr. Stephen LeBlanc, Associate Professor in OVC’s Population Medicine department. Veterinarians can provide evidence-based solutions to these issues.

Speakers from the Universities of Minnesota, Wisconsin, Guelph and British Columbia, as well as the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, outlined recent research into lameness treatments, calf welfare, hoof care assessment and prevention, as well as antimicrobial resistance.

Veterinarians were put to work, splitting into study groups to discuss current questions on dairy cattle welfare and antimicrobial use and present the approaches they would take home to their practices.

Now in its 20th year, the annual conference provides continuing education for dairy practitioners, updates on current research as well as networking opportunities with other practitioners, faculty and guest lecturers, says LeBlanc. The program, originally developed by Dr. Ken Leslie has provided a model for similar programs around the world.

Veterinarians have strong relationships with farmers and play an important role in providing training for farm personnel and developing herd health plans, as well as protocols, said Dr. Pamela Ruegg, University of Wisconsin.

Dr. David Kelton, Professor in OVC’s Population Medicine department, echoed this advice noting veterinarians have a tremendous opportunity to work with programs that move the whole industry forward, such as the Canadian dairy industry’s proAction initiative which encompasses milk quality, animal care, livestock traceability, biosecurity and environment, and establishes national standards in these areas.

 

Source – Ontario Veterinary College



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