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  • Author or Editor: Ronald F. DiGiacomo x
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Objective—To determine the extent to which practicing veterinarians in King County, Washington, engaged in commonly recommended practices for the prevention of zoonotic diseases.

Design—Cross-sectional survey.

Sample Population—Licensed veterinarians practicing clinical medicine in King County, Washington.

Procedures—A survey was sent between September and November 2006 to 454 licensed veterinarians practicing clinical medicine in King County.

Results—370 valid responses were received. A high proportion (280/362 [77%]) of respondents agreed that it was very important for veterinarians to educate clients on zoonotic disease prevention, but only 43% (158/367) reported that they had initiated discussions about zoonotic diseases with clients on a daily basis, and only 57% (203/356) indicated that they had client educational materials on zoonotic diseases available in their practices. Thirty-one percent (112/360) of respondents indicated that there were no written infection-control guidelines for staff members in the practice, and 28% (105/371) reported having been infected with a zoonotic disease in practice.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results illustrated that veterinarians recognize their important role in zoonotic disease prevention and suggested that veterinarians would welcome stronger partnerships with public health agencies and other health professionals in this endeavor. Methods to increase veterinarians' involvement in zoonotic disease prevention include discussing zoonotic diseases more frequently with clients, physicians, and public health agencies; encouraging higher risk individuals to discuss zoonotic diseases; having educational materials on zoonotic diseases available for clients; improving infection-control practices; and ensuring that continuing education courses on zoonotic diseases are regularly available.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association


Objective—To identify dietary and environmental risk factors for hyperthyroidism in cats.

Design—Case-control study.

Animals—100 cats with hyperthyroidism and 163 control cats.

Procedure—Medical records were examined, and owners completed a mailed questionnaire. Data collected included information regarding demographic variables, environmental exposures, and diet, including preferred flavors of canned cat food.

Results—Case cats were significantly less likely to have been born recently than control cats. Housing; exposure to fertilizers, herbicides, or plant pesticides; regular use of flea products; and presence of a smoker in the home were not significantly associated with an increased risk of disease, but cats that preferred fish or liver and giblets flavors of canned cat food had an increased risk.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggest that cats that prefer to eat certain flavors of canned cat food may have a significantly increased risk of hyperthyroidism. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2000; 217:853–856)

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association