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Glasgow scientist recognised for work to improve farm animal welfare
Dr Dorothy McKeegan received her award at the Humane Slaughter Association's conference.

Dr Dorothy McKeegan receives the 2019 Humane Slaughter Award

A senior lecturer in animal welfare and ethics has been given a special award for her research to improve the welfare of farm animals.

Dr Dorothy McKeegan from the University of Glasgow received the 2019 Humane Slaughter Award for her groundbreaking work into the welfare impacts of controlled atmosphere stunning (CAS), as well as her contribution to protecting animal welfare at slaughter.

She received the award on Wednesday (9 October) at the Humane Slaughter Association’s (HSA) conference, during which she presented a paper on Low Atmospheric Pressure Stunning (LAPS) for poultry in pigs.

Professor Malcolm Mitchell, who nominated Dr McKeegan for the award, said: “She is an inspirational scientist, in a demanding area of research, motivating and training the next generation of scientists to work in this challenging field.”

Dr Robert Hubrecht, chief executive and scientific director of HSA added: “Collectively, Dr McKeegan’s work represents an outstanding and sustained contribution to the field of animal welfare at the time of killing. Her research has had significant real-world impacts, with ongoing influence both practically and in policy development.”

Dr McKeegan’s extensive research career has focussed on welfare at slaughter or killing, combining behavioural approaches with physiological and neurophysiological techniques.

She pioneered the first comprehensive research into the welfare impacts of CAS and her findings had a substantial and international influence on poultry welfare. Indeed, they directly informed the choice of permitted gas mixtures for the killing of poultry in the EU.

More recently, Dr McKeegan was invited to lead an international research team carrying out a welfare assessment on LAPS and was instrumental in producing an application to the European Commission to allow its use in poultry. 

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AWF Student Grant open for submissions

News Story 1
 Applications are open for the Animal Welfare Foundation (AWF) Student Grant Scheme for innovative research projects designed to impact animal welfare.

Undergraduate and postgraduate students of veterinary science, veterinary nursing, agriculture studies and animal welfare are invited to submit their proposals to undertake research projects next year.

Grants are decided based on the project’s innovation, relevance to topical animal welfare issues and ability to contribute towards raising animal welfare standards. For more information visit  

Click here for more...
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SPANA film highlights plight of working animals overseas

Animal welfare charity SPANA (The Society for the Protection of Animals Abroad) has teamed up with Brian Blessed and other famous voices to highlight the plight of working animals overseas.

In a new animated film, the celebrities raise awareness by showing the solidarity of the UK's own working animals on strike. A sniffer dog (Brian Blessed), police horse (Peter Egan) and sheepdog (Deborah Meaden) are shown ignoring their duties and protesting in solidarity with animals in developing countries.

SPANA chef executive Geoffrey Dennis said: "We are so grateful to Deborah, Peter and Brian for lending their voices to our new film, and for speaking up for millions of working animals overseas. SPANA believes that a life of work should not mean a life of suffering, and it is only thanks to people’s generosity and support that we can continue our vital work improving the lives of these animals."