Animal welfare is a complex multifaceted international and domestic public policy issue that veterinarians are increasingly looked to for leadership. The emphasis placed on animal welfare by veterinary medical institutions is done so in the context of local, state, and national policy initiatives that are rapidly defining the landscape of modern animal welfare law and regulation.
- The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) 20/20 Vision Commission Report cited animal welfare as a strategic inflection point in veterinary medicine that will alter our thinking and actions as a profession.
- The Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges commissioned Foresight Project report recognized veterinarians’ link to animal welfare as a component of their societal success.
- The World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) has addressed the minimum competencies expected of veterinary graduates to assure delivery of high quality “national veterinary services” promotion of animal and public health as well as animal welfare.
Additionally, animal welfare legislative efforts are becoming commonplace. As legislation is introduced that dictates the care and use of animals it is increasingly important for veterinarians to become well versed in the principles necessary to effectively communicate on animal welfare issues.
The 20/20 Vision Commission Report stated that “veterinarians more and more will need to combine their excellent technical skills and competencies with improved interpersonal skills, communication expertise, and business acumen.” To achieve meaningful dialogue, to resolve conflicts, and to address important animal welfare issues, the profession must develop a knowledge base and leadership capacity among its members.
Dr. Babcock has developed unique expertise on a wide range of animal welfare issues including the development of veterinary educational tools on animal welfare, animal cruelty and neglect, animals in disasters, dog rescue and importation, and international trade. Contact us to learn more.