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VetFest 2021
VetFest 2021 Virtual Conference
VetFest 2021
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This session brought to you by Troy Animal Healthcare
 
Pet cats prey on wildlife and may transmit disease to wildlife populations, but whether this causes declines in wildlife populations is contested. Given the uncertainty, we argue for applying the precautionary principle in consultation with veterinarians, wildlife biologists, animal welfare professionals, cat owners, concerned citizens and local government officers. Applying the precautionary principle to the issue of impacts of pet cats on wildlife from an Australian perspective, we draw on evidence from the published literature. This shows that 70% or more of Australian cat owners are willing to desex their pets, use collars and ID tags, accept limits on numbers of cats per household, and apply night curfews if required. These measures contribute to wildlife protection as well as to cat welfare, with evidence suggesting that pet welfare and owner convenience are convincing arguments for owners to take action. Veterinarians have a vital role in encouraging owner compliance. 
The impacts of cats on the conservation of Australian biodiversity have been comprehensively researched and documented. A major report describing the significant detrimental impacts of cats on Australian wildlife, and providing recommendations for improvement, was published in 1996. 25 years later, there has been much knowledge gained but limited progress in strengthening the management framework for cats in Australia – and Australia’s extinction list continues to grow. While there has been a significant growth in community awareness about cat impacts, the mechanisms for cat management, where they exist, are weak, ad-hoc and ineffective. 
 
Cats are one of many interacting and confounding threats driving declines in Australia’s biodiversity. This complex problem needs broad-based and interdisciplinary solutions, including though better integration of veterinary science and conservation science and the development of effective mechanisms for communication, collaboration and cooperation between the two sectors. In terms of cat management, veterinarians have an integral role as trusted sources of information for pet owners. In this presentation, we briefly outline recent research findings and the implications for the veterinary sector. We also present recommendations for improving the management framework for cats in Australia, with a focus on the specific ways veterinarians can support improved conservation of Australia’s unique wildlife.
Eleanor reflects on the challenges the profession is facing, how it has changed in recent years, the public’s perception of vets and how universities might better-prepare their undergraduates for life in the industry.  She utilises her experience from her current studies as a nursing student at the university of Canberra to suggest considerations universities might consider to help prolong longevity of first opinion practitioners.  
 
In this talk, Eleanor reflects on the mental, physical and emotional health of vets in practice, and individuals’ and clinic responsibilities in terms of maintaining and promoting wellbeing.  Again, she makes parallels with her experience as both a veterinary and nursing student, and looks at what the veterinary industry might learn from human healthcare.  
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Room 3 - Industry
Industry - Room 3
Development and implementation of in vitro assays as replacements of lethal animal tests in the release of veterinary vaccines. 
DermaCann, a proprietary blend of plant based compounds containing cannabidiol (CBD) is in development for anti-inflammatory and immune support for dogs with dermatological conditions. It was tested in a cohort of dogs with Canine Atopic Dermatitis (CAD) in a double blind, randomised, placebo controlled study 2 DermaCann formulations. The study included 13 eligible dogs with CAD. 8 dogs were allocated to DermaCann treatments and 5 received placebo. All dogs were dosed twice daily for 56 days. CADESI-4 scoring, skin and coat assessments and blood sampling for inflammatory biomarker and clinical chemistry were completed at day 0, 28 and 56 of treatment. The dog owners completed pruritus and quality of life scoring every 2 weeks. A 51%, significant average reduction in CADESI-4 scores was seen for DermaCann treated dogs.  This result was similar between DermaCann formulations and compared with no improvement in CADESI-4 scores for the placebo treated dogs. This clinical reduction in inflammation was also supported by IL-8 and CCL2 increases in the placebo treated dogs, while these chemokines were decreased in the DermaCann treated dogs after 56 days. There was no significant difference between treatment groups for pruritus. DermaCann was well tolerated by dogs, with few adverse events and it is expected that long term use of DermaCann will be safe in dogs. The combination of these ingredients with CBD provides a unique, well tolerated, plant based nutraceutical to include in the management of inflammation in dermatological conditions such as CAD.
This session brought to you by Troy Animal Healthcare
Through the medium of a case study we will explore assessing cases using logical clinical problem solving (LCPS) approach and discuss several diagnostic dilemmas 
Through the medium of a case study we will explore assessing cases using logical clinical problem solving (LCPS) approach and discuss several diagnostic dilemmas 
Every mixed practitioner has had the call. The call to go and see a camel client. Assumptions are made by both owners and the vets that this will be just like treating a large horse or a pet cow. Then you arrive and the reality is very different. 
 
Adequate restraint is crucial to a thorough exam and potential treatment protocol.
There are some basic tools available to us all to safely restrain and examine these large sometimes difficult animals.
 
Preventative medicine regimens (vaccines), skin issues, endoparasite control and testing form the backbone of any herd health visit. Most mixed practitioners also have to deal with reproductive health of pet camels and with the Camel Industry being identified as an Emerging Industry, domestic camel numbers are increasing in Australia .
There is also a need for some Go-To sedation and anaesthetic protocols specific for these large camelids to allow for a safe and effective veterinary visit.
 
Which is better? Recumbent surgery or standing sedation?
Camel injections sites.
Which samples to take when.
Which wormers are safe in camels, and what is a good protocol?
Can you use all the same antibiotics as cattle?
What is the best technique for a camel castration?
What to do with a sick camel calf.
How do I handle these animals?
 
Being able to answer these questions will instil confidence in the consulting veterinarian and allow for a professional assessment and exam and turn that camel client into a valuable part of the practice. This discussion will provide practical, simple, hands on information for all vets who will encounter a camel in the future.
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Room 3 - Equine
Equine - Room 3
The world equine population is estimated to be at least 112 million (including horses, donkeys and mules), and the majority of the world’s equids are working equids, residing in low-income countries. Population numbers reported by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) have shown that although the number of working equids are decreasing in many parts of the world, they are increasing on the African continent. These working equids have a direct impact on the lives of their owners by reducing the transport burdens, transporting people and for agricultural purposes.  
 
However the health, welfare and productivity of working equids is negatively impacted by prevalent parasitic and infectious diseases, and problems associated with management practices and the challenging environments they work in. 
 
This talk will detail some of  the major diseases affecting working equids and describe our work in Sub-Saharan Africa to prioritise diseases. I will present results from research on particular diseases of importance, such as the fungal disease Epizootic Lymphangitis.   Finally I will briefly describe options for working/volunteering in working equine programs in low and middle income countries and describe some of our undergraduate and postgraduate experiences of these activities.