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Vets to debate whether pets can fit into modern life
The panel will explore how the increase in urban living is impacting on pet welfare.

Discussion Forum will explore challenging welfare issues

Vets and animal welfare organisations are set to gather in London next month to debate whether our fast-paced world is compatible with pet ownership.

The Animal Welfare Foundation Discussion Forum (5 June) is expected to attract delegates from an array of fields and presents the chance to discuss and share knowledge on challenging welfare issues.

This year, a three-strong panel of experts will explore how the increase in urban living is impacting pet welfare, including the issue of separation anxiety and whether modern pets are less able to fulfil their welfare needs.

The panel includes BVA president Gudrun Ravetz, International Cat Care’s Dr Sarah Ellis and Dogs Trust’s head of canine behaviour, Dr Rachel Casey.

RSPCA chief veterinary officer James Yeates, who will introduce the discussion, commented: “Vets often deal with immediate, specific issues as they are presented, but we can also use our knowledge and experience to look at the bigger questions. I am definitely not saying pets are incompatible with modern life, but there are aspects of modern life that create challenges for me and other pet owners.”

The Discussion Forum will also be holding a session exploring the relationship between vets and horse welfare and will introduce a new ‘On the Pulse’ discussion to debate a topical issue. Furthermore, delegates will have the opportunity to hear about the work of AWF and how the organisation turns donations into actions for animal welfare.

“We’re proud of AWF’s commitment to finding practical solutions to the welfare problems of all animals,” said Chris Laurence, AWF chair of trustees.

“Education and discussion are key to our work and we invite all those interested in improving animal welfare to join the debate this year. With its emphasis on audience participation I’m sure that delegates will leave this unique event inspired to do what they can to bring about positive change.”

A limited number of tickets for the AWF Discussion Forum are still available, which includes an exclusive drinks reception on the evening of 5 June. For more information visit www.bva-awf.org.uk
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Scheme to protect wildlife and reduce flooding

News Story 1
 Natural England has announced a new scheme to improve flood protection, boost wildlife and create 160 hectares of new saltmarsh. The £6 million scheme in Lancashire will effectively unite the RSPB’s Hesketh Out Marsh Reserve and Natural England’s Ribble Estuary National Nature Reserve. The completed reserve will be the largest site of its kind in the north of England. 

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Welfare event to discuss ethical dilemmas faced by vets

Students and ethics experts will host an event on the difficult moral challenges facing vets. Ethical issues, such as euthanasia and breeding animals for certain physical traits, will be discussed by prominent speakers including TV vet Emma Milne and RSPCA chief vet James Yeates. Other topics will include how to tackle suspected animal abuse and the extent of surgical intervention.

The conference will look at how these dilemmas affect the wellbeing of vets, and explore how to better prepare veterinary students for work. It will be held at the University of Edinburgh’s Easter Bush Campus from 30 September - 1 October 2017. Tickets can be purchased here.