As 2018 is drawing to a close, FECAVA and the European Small Animal Veterinary Community is looking back at another 12 months of ongoing activities with important matters affecting veterinarians all over Europe, at a range of new initiatives aimed to improve the understanding and the communication of all members of our profession and of course at another fabulous and extremely well attended FECAVA EuroCongress.
Throughout the year FECAVA and individual national member associations have continued to raise awareness about Brachycephalic Obstructive Airway Syndrome (BOAS) and about problems associated with “extreme breeding” of companion animals in general . This was highlighted in various public and often televised events in individual countries and eventually culminated with the launch of a set of Infographics and a well-publicised event in cooperation with FVE and the EU Cat and Dog Alliance at the European Parliament, organised among others by our Past President Monique Megens and by Karin de Lange.
Hygiene in Practice and the responsible use of antimicrobials remains an important issue for all members not just of our own profession. This summer saw the launch of a reviewed second edition of FECAVA’s hygiene posters. These valuable documents produced in a range of different languages and designed to be displayed in veterinary clinics all over Europe, were arrange by a working group under the leadership of Danny Holmes and FECAVA is extremely grateful to Elizabeth Mueller and Laboklin for supporting the translation, printing and the distribution of the posters.
Another set of very helpful posters on Canine Vector Borne Diseases (CVBDs), arranged under the chairmanship of our Serbian colleague Nenad Milojkovic, was launch at the Southern European Veterinary Congress in Madrid in October. CVBDs will also be the subject of the FECAVA Symposium at next year’s EuroCongress in St. Petersburg.
The FECAVA Laboklin Travel Scholarship, enabling practicing companion animal practitioners to visit colleagues in other parts of Europe, saw a group of Scottish colleagues travelling to Mallorca with a return visit due to happen within the next few months.
The undisputed highlight of 2018 was the FECAVA EuroCongress in Tallinn, which was perfectly organised by our colleagues of the Estonian Small Animal Veterinary Association under the leadership of ESAVA President Ingrid Hang. The congress saw a five-fold increase of delegate figures compared to the regular annual national congress. The combination of an outstanding scientific programme, the unique venues - all in walking distance to the city centre - the breath-taking social events and – of course - the phantastic weather and the Estonian hospitality made this an unforgettable experience to all delegates.
At the congress the Didier Noel Carlotti Award, FECAVA’s highest accolade, was presented to Tiina Toomet and the event saw also the start of FECAVA’s Student Scholarship programme in cooperation with IVSA, the International Veterinary Student Association, which allowed a group of ten final year students from different European faculties to attend the event.
The World Small Animal Veterinary Congress in Singapore attended on behalf of FECAVA by our Past President Jerzy Gawor and myself gave our organisation the unique opportunity to hold a first joint meeting with representatives of FSAVA, our Asian sister organisation and it is planned to intensify this contact in the forthcoming years.
2019 will, with a range of old and new challenges, like the illegal puppy trade, the availability of veterinary pharmaceuticals, the impact of corporate structures on our profession or the effect of Brexit on our British colleagues to name just a few, give ample opportunities for lively debates and actions and FECAVA will continue to further the communication of companion animal veterinarians in Europe and to highlight our concerns. European colleagues can support our efforts by joining their national small animal associations and by encouraging their representatives to raise their national issues within FECAVA and to play an active role within our organisation.
A great opportunity to experience by yourself the friendship and the scientific as well as the cultural exchange as part of the community of companion animal veterinarians in Europe, will be next year’s 25th FECAVA EuroCongress in St. Petersburg, where we will be the guests of RSAVA President Sergei Sereda and our colleagues of the Russian Small Animal Veterinary Association. Delegates will have the opportunity of combining a visit to one of Europe’s most enchanting cities with attending an outstanding scientific programme from 4 – 7th September 2019.
To mark this important event it was decided that Ivan Petrovich Pavlov, Russia’s first Nobel Prize laureate and an alumnus of the St. Petersburg University, will feature on the 2019 FECAVA membership card.
I like to close this Season’s greeting to wish all our colleagues on behalf of the FECAVA Board a peaceful and happy Christmas and a successful and exciting New Year.
With kind regards to you all
Dr.med.vet. Wolfgang Dohne MRCVS