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New sheep and cattle group to tackle endemic diseases across UK
The RHWG will be an independent industry group, set up under the AHDB umbrella to minimise operating costs.

Industry-wide group will drive coordinated approach to health and welfare

A new UK-wide ruminant industry group is being established with the aim of advancing progress against endemic disease and reputational challenges in the sheep and cattle sectors.

The new Ruminant Health and Welfare Group (RHWG) will be formed on 1 April.

The creation of the group follows an industry consultation, facilitated by the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB) along with meat and livestock groups from Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

All responders agreed that discussions on how to accelerate work to control endemic diseases were positive, with many believing that the creation of this new group will speed up work to control conditions like liver fluke, mastitis and lameness.

AHDB chief technical officer Rebecca Geraghty said: “Despite a number of worthwhile initiatives and significant progress in some areas to date, endemic diseases in ruminants continue to have a major impact on our industry’s performance and profitability.

“We are in unprecedented times. Due to Brexit and potential changes to both our operating environment and consumer preferences, we face challenges and opportunities which can be better managed by a robust ruminant industry with world-leading health and welfare.

“The broad agreement from discussions with government, devolved administrations and industry over the past 18 months is that the time is right for a clear, united UK-wide industry voice. This would act as a welcome driver for a simpler, more co-ordinated and more widely committed approach to ruminant health and welfare across all parts of the UK.”

Recruitment for a chair for RHWG started on 22 January. The closing date for applications is 20 February.

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New 'DoggyLottery' to raise funds for rescue centres

News Story 1
 A new 'DoggyLottery' to raise funds for dog rescue centres in the UK will launch on Saturday (4 July). Every four weeks, five different rescue centres will be connected to the lottery, providing much-needed funds - particularly during COVID-19 - and providing vital online exposure.

A weekly game costs £1.50 and entrants will have the chance of being one of 20 guaranteed winners. A massive 60 per cent of the raised funds will go towards the dog rescue centres, more than double that donated by leading lottery companies to charitable causes.

To find out more and play the lottery, visit www.doggylottery.co.uk  

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News Shorts
International Cat Care appoints new head of veterinary division

International Cat Care (ICC) has announced the appointment of Nathalie Dowgray as head of the charity's veterinary division.

Nathalie, who is an RCVS advanced practitioner in feline medicine, will lead the International Society of Feline Medicine (ISFM) and a play key role in advancing knowledge and research in feline medicine.

Claire Bessant, iCatCare's chief executive said: "We're absolutely delighted to be welcoming Nathalie to the charity. She brings a depth and breadth of feline expertise and understanding which fits perfectly with the charity's work and development, and her enthusiasm for cats is infectious."