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VETERINARY WORKERS EXPLORE FORMING A UNION

Organizers focusing efforts on larger practices

By Malinda Larkin

Preparations for a national union organizing campaign within the veterinary profession have started to take shape this year. The fledgling National Veterinary Professionals Union began quietly coordinating efforts among primarily small animal clinics this past summer in the hopes of eventually holding union elections.

Union steering committee members say they want to stem the tide of veterinary technicians and others “leaving the profession in droves” because of low pay and lack of professional recognition. But some leaders in the profession contend unionizing doesn't necessarily guarantee better pay and benefits for employees or improved patient care and may drive up prices for clients.

Organizers say they're not limiting their efforts to credentialed veterinary technicians but also hope to include associate veterinarians as well as assistants and other unlicensed assistive personnel. They're looking to join forces with a larger union, potentially the Service Employees International Union, which has around 2 million members and represents a broad spectrum of workers, including nurses, nurse's aides, and home health care workers.

GETTING STARTED

Unions haven't previously taken hold in veterinary medicine largely because of the small number of employees per clinic. Brakke Consulting estimates that 27,000 to 30,000 veterinary practices operate in the U.S. A majority are individually owned, and those are largely one- or two-doctor practices. Still, a limited number of unions exist among veterinary personnel at some veterinary teaching hospitals, county or municipal shelters, and research laboratories, generally because employees there can join unions with other government workers.

That said, the veterinary landscape has changed in the past decade as the corporate consolidation trend has ramped up. Mars Inc., owner of Banfield Pet Hospital and its more than 975 hospitals, on Sept. 12 announced its successful acquisition of VCA Inc. and its 800 veterinary hospitals in the U.S. and Canada in a deal valued at $9.1 billion. The acquisition was announced in January, and Mars received Federal Trade Commission approval to move forward in late August. The FTC required Mars to divest seven BluePearl emergency and referral centers and five VCA hospitals from its portfolio of just under 2,000 practices in the U.S. and Canada. That is about two-thirds of all corporately owned practices.

Liz Hughston, a relief technician in the San Francisco Bay Area and communications director for the NVPU, said, “I think that acquisition was a catalyst that made people recognize that we don't have enough input or power in our industry. As we see more consolidation, we'll see more employees who are feeling very squeezed with what they are expected to do in practice every day.”

Morgan VanFleet, a veterinary technician in Seattle, formerly worked at a BluePearl clinic but now goes to nursing school. After hearing of the proposed merger, she felt inspired to have veterinary employees “band together so we can have a more powerful voice at the table.” In March, VanFleet created a private Facebook page for what started as the Pacific Veterinary Professionals Union to centralize union efforts among employees of corporately owned practices in the Pacific Northwest. Despite having no budget and relying solely on word of mouth, the effort quickly gained traction, with more than 2,000 people joining the group by July. Also during that time, a 20-member steering committee formed, and the group changed its name to reflect its national ambitions.

“We've been really pleased that this has resonated with so many people. Across the industry, people know we're struggling. Even managers are having a hard time because it doesn't benefit anyone to lose staff left and right,” said VanFleet, who is operations director of the NVPU. She noted that at one of the practices where she did relief work, the entire reception team turned over during the year she was there.

There has been a known shortage of credentialed veterinary technicians since 2016, and the difficulty in finding qualified personnel to fill positions is a major complaint from veterinary practices, according to the 2016 National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America demographic survey. “Measures to continue driving interest in the field are needed. Attracting and retaining qualified individuals is critical to the growth of the profession,” according to authors of the survey, which is conducted every four or five years to give a glimpse of the state of technicians in practice.

Results also indicated that most veterinary technicians work 30–40 hours per week (43 percent), followed by 40–50 hours per week (37.6 percent). Full-time technicians report a salary of $15–$20 per hour (44 percent), or $31,200 to $41,600 for an annual salary at 40 hours a week, whereas part-time technicians indicate $14-$16 per hour (29 percent), or $14,560 to $16,640 for an annual salary at 20 hours a week. In comparison, the poverty line in the U.S. for a family of four is $24,300. That means well-paid veterinary technicians are only slightly above the poverty line once income taxes are considered, the study's authors wrote.

Hughston said the loss of staff is a huge issue for the profession that also affects veterinarians and their ability to do their jobs. She believes a union can help decrease turnover by negotiating and enforcing payment of a living wage for veterinary staff.

Other goals of the union are as follows:

  • • Establish realistic staff-to-patient ratios to ensure both staff and patient safety.

  • • Create workplaces free from bullying and harassment by fellow staff, management, and clients.

  • • Negotiate for benefits to ensure staff health and well-being.

  • • Advocate for patients and the provision of gold-standard care.

  • • Educate the public, legislators, and others about the roles of various staff members in veterinary practice.

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Liz Hughston (photo at left) and Morgan VanFleet (photo above, third from the left), along with Dr. David Gill (not shown), are leading an effort to create a union representing veterinary staff. The initiative is in the planning stage. (Photos courtesy of Liz Hughston and Morgan VanFleet)

Citation: Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association 251, 9; 10.2460/javma.251.9.980

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Liz Hughston (photo at left) and Morgan VanFleet (photo above, third from the left), along with Dr. David Gill (not shown), are leading an effort to create a union representing veterinary staff. The initiative is in the planning stage. (Photos courtesy of Liz Hughston and Morgan VanFleet)

Citation: Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association 251, 9; 10.2460/javma.251.9.980

Dr. Jennifer Welser, chief medical officer for BluePearl Veterinary Partners, said in a statement, “We care deeply about all associates and recognize we couldn't deliver on our promise of compassionate, advanced care for pets without their valuable skills and knowledge. As always, we are working to better understand the concerns of all of our associates and remain committed to the industry, our associates, and to quality care for our patients.”

UNINTENDED CONSEQUENCES

Not everyone agrees unionization will keep employees from leaving the profession. Julie Legred, executive director of NAVTA, said while both her organization and union organizers have the same interest at hand, which is veterinary employees, “We want them to have all the facts.”

She continued, “We're hoping veterinary employees are not rushing into it thinking they will make tons more money. It's kind of a give-and-take thing (with collective bargaining). Unionizing is not necessarily cheap for them and doesn't guarantee anything,” in reference to the dues members would have to pay. Organizers say the unions they're looking at as models have dues set at 2 to 3 percent of employees' wages.

Legred said she also worries that if unionized veterinary employees ever went on strike, it could have a negative impact on patients' health and care.

Another concern is that unions could negatively affect the industry by raising client prices to offset the potentially higher wages. Mark Cushing is a lobbyist with the Animal Policy Group, which works on behalf of various animal health, veterinary, and educational interests, including Banfield Pet Hospital. He predicts that if unionization efforts succeed in the veterinary market in a meaningful way, practices will have to adjust.

“They will have two choices: raising prices, which pet owners will respond to negatively, and my fear is, they'll vote with their feet and forego care. Or the alternative will be to lay off staff.”

He continued, “(Unions) will not just impact veterinary practice ownership or team dynamics, all of which are important, but we really have to pay attention to the fact that this undermines the broader goal to attract more pet owners to access care. The price just goes up.”

Instead, Legred encourages veterinary practices to listen to employees and respond to their needs. She points to NAVTA's Veterinary Nurse Initiative as an alternative that addresses many of the issues that union organizers cite but on a scale that would affect all veterinary technicians, not just those who unionize, although not other practice staff.

The association's Veterinary Nurse Initiative Coalition is pursuing legislative changes nationally to establish the credential of registered veterinary nurse, starting with Indiana, Michigan, and Ohio this year. It would replace the titles of registered veterinary technician, licensed veterinary technician, certified veterinary technician, or licensed veterinary medical technician. The aim is to unite the profession under a single title, set of credentialing requirements, and scope of practice. The standardization and public awareness of the registered veterinary nurse credential, the coalition says, will result in better recognition and mobility for veterinary technicians, and, in turn, better patient care and consumer protection.

“Two factors animate a union: compensation, first and foremost, which is probably the case here, and respect, whether bargaining or political or organizational,” said Cushing, who is a consultant to NAVTA for this initiative. “The Veterinary Nurse Initiative addresses both and in a way that is meaningful and will lead to more and significantly better health care. The initiative will cause pet owners to have more awareness and respect for what key professionals do and will drive compensation through greater practice revenues. Unionization does just the opposite. I think that someone who is looking at both options and chooses the veterinary nurse door, there will be much less interest to form a union.”

He cautions practices to take this effort seriously despite the lack of information available (The union's Facebook page is private, so only members may see it, and the NVPU website, www.natvpu.org, is sparsely populated).

WHAT HAPPENS NEXT?

Currently, NVPU officials are establishing contact with employees at various practices to determine whether enough of them are interested in the union to make a campaign worthwhile, who would lead an organizing campaign, and which workplace policies and practices might affect such an effort.

Hughston said, “Because we are still in the planning phase, we don't want to telegraph too much of what's going on. There's already been efforts from larger corporate practices to curtail our organizing efforts, so we need to be careful about the information we share in this arena.”

According to the National Labor Relations Board, if a majority of employees at a workplace want to form a union, they can select a union in one of two ways. First, if at least 30 percent of employees sign authorization cards or a petition saying they want a union, the NLRB will conduct an election. However, most organizers wait to announce that the union represents a majority of the employees until at least 50 percent sign but usually until 60 percent to 80 percent sign. If a majority of those who vote choose the union, the NLRB will certify the union as the representative for collective bargaining.

An election is one way a union can become the exclusive bargaining unit at a workplace. The second way, according to the NLRB, is that the employer may voluntarily recognize a union on the basis of evidence—typically, signed union-authorization cards—that a majority of employees want it to represent them. Once a union has been certified or recognized, the employer is required to bargain over terms and conditions of employment with the union representative.

“Mostly, I believe that this is going to impact larger practices because most smaller practices do a good job of taking care of employees, and they have a voice in smaller practices. It's easier to participate in those discussions,” Hughston said.

The AVMA has not adopted a position regarding the potential impact of unionizing employees at privately owned veterinary clinics; however, it reminds owners that the desire for a union may be diminished if veterinary employers effectively communicate with employees and address their needs.

The AVMA does advise that any owner of a veterinary clinic that is the target of a union organizing campaign should promptly seek expert legal advice, given the complicated nature of the laws that apply to such campaigns and how an employer may respond. For example, the National Labor Relations Act says employers cannot interfere with the unionization process once it's begun. A full list of employer and union obligations is available at http://jav.ma/NRLAregs.

Already, union organizers have undertaken a wage transparency project among clinics. They approached a handful of practices earlier this year and asked employees to tell them how much they earn, how many years they've worked, and their position. Then they published that information for everyone in the practice to see.

Dr. David Gill, an NVPU steering committee member and an emergency and critical care veterinarian, said, “That opened a lot of people's eyes. People working for years were not getting paid as much as someone who doesn't have the same credentials as them. Some got angry, and rightfully so. In fact, management had to come in and do some pacifying.”

At press time, NAVTA leaders and union organizers planned to meet at the end of September to discuss their perspectives and goals.

Hughston maintains that the unionization efforts dovetail with the Veterinary Nurse Initiative.

“We both want to educate as many people in and out of the industry about what it is that we do, the care we provide, and how we're taking care of our people in our industry,” she said.

VanFleet added, “We want our employers and the profession to be successful. We want to support practices financially and for them to be medically successful. To do that, we need to retain talent and keep people in the field. To accomplish that, we feel it's necessary that industry takes better care of its most vital asset, which is human resources.”

AVMA seeks volunteers to make a difference

The AVMA is seeking volunteers to make a difference for the profession by serving as a leader of the Association or in a council, committee, or trust position.

Dr. Sandy Willis, Washington state delegate to the AVMA House of Delegates, has found volunteering for the AVMA to be a personally rewarding experience. She said: “I have the opportunity to work with so many amazing people, from veterinarians to AVMA staff, that I would never have an opportunity to meet otherwise. We work collaboratively, and we have fun.

“Volunteering opens my eyes to aspects of my profession with which I am unfamiliar—I am a small animal internist—and gives me the tools and knowledge to address challenges and create solutions for the profession. I feel I make a difference for my colleagues and the animals we serve. As an AVMA volunteer, I help ensure that our profession thrives in a changing environment for generations of veterinarians to come.”

Dr. Willis is chair of the AVMA Task Force on Volunteer Engagement, which is looking at how the AVMA can most effectively use volunteers' talents and time in support of member priorities while ensuring a fulfilling volunteer experience.

The AVMA currently seeks candidates for the office of president-elect and two seats on the Board of Directors as well as nominations or applications for numerous council, committee, and trust positions. Details and forms are available by visiting http://jav.ma/AVMAvolunteers or emailing OfficeEVP@avma.org.

President-elect, Board of Directors

The AVMA is calling for candidates to run for president-elect for the August 2019-August 2020 Association year. While the Association will accept applications through summer 2019, candidates who submit materials by April 1, 2018, can participate in the Candidates' Introductory Breakfast in conjunction with AVMA Convention 2018.

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The AVMA Task Force on Volunteer Engagement meeting Sept. 20–21 at Association headquarters

Citation: Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association 251, 9; 10.2460/javma.251.9.980

Candidates will then have a full year to campaign. Election by the AVMA House of Delegates will take place at its regular annual session just prior to the 2019 convention. The president-elect will serve as president from August 2020-August 2021.

The AVMA also will continue to accept nominations for 2018–2019 president-elect until July 10, 2018, and for 2018–2020 vice president until July 9, 2018. Election by the House will take place immediately prior to the 2018 convention.

The Association is distributing a letter to AVMA voting members in districts VII and IX to invite nominations for a representative from each district to serve on the Board of Directors for a six-year term starting in July 2018. District VII comprises Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, and South Dakota. District IX comprises Arizona, Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Utah.

The AVMA will accept nominations from a state VMA in each district or by petition of 50 AVMA voting members in each district. Feb. 1, 2018, is the deadline for receipt of nominations. If a district has more than one nominee, the Association will distribute a ballot to each voting member in the district.

Councils, committees, trusts

In May 2018, the Council on Education Selection Committee will select three new members for the AVMA Council on Education. The committee will post a call for applications in late December for COE members to represent private food animal practice and private clinical practice and for a COE member at large. The deadline is Feb. 15, 2018.

The AVMA House of Delegates will elect members of councils other than the COE in July 2018 during its regular annual session preceding AVMA Convention 2018. The House fills vacancies on the Council on Biologic and Therapeutic Agents, Council on Public Health and Regulatory Veterinary Medicine, Council on Research, Council on Veterinary Service, and Judicial Council.

The AVMA will accept nominations for positions on these councils from organizations in the House or by petition of 10 AVMA voting members. The deadline is April 1, 2018.

The AVMA Board of Directors will fill a number of committee, trust, and liaison positions in April 2018. The vacancies include positions on the two AVMA insurance trusts and on committees addressing subjects ranging from animal welfare to antimicrobials to veterinary economics.

For many of these vacancies, AVMA members can apply on their own behalf or make a nomination on another member's behalf. For other vacancies, nominations must be made by a specific organization to be represented by the nominee or as otherwise stated in the vacancy description. The deadline is March 8, 2018.

Nominations open for AVMA Excellence Awards

The nomination period for the following AVMA Excellence Awards is now open. The awards program recognizes contributions by veterinarians and nonveterinarians to the veterinary profession and animal health and welfare.

The AVMA Award

The Association's pre-eminent award recognizes an AVMA member who has contributed to the advancement of veterinary medicine in its organizational aspects.

AVMA Meritorious Service Award

This award recognizes an AVMA member who has brought honor and distinction to the veterinary profession through personal, professional, or community service activities outside organized veterinary medicine and research.

AVMA Advocacy Award

This award recognizes an AVMA member or nonveterinarian for advancing the AVMA legislative agenda and advocating on behalf of the veterinary profession.

AVMA Animal Welfare Award

This award recognizes an AVMA member for accomplishments in the field of animal welfare in leadership, public service, education, research or product development, or advocacy.

AVMA Career Achievement Award in Canine Research

This award honors an AVMA member's long-term contribution to the field of canine research.

AVMA Clinical Research Award

This award recognizes an AVMA member's achievements in patient-oriented research.

AVMA Humane Award

This award recognizes a nonveterinarian for accomplishments in the field of animal welfare in leadership, public service, education, research or product development, or advocacy.

AVMA Lifetime Excellence in Research Award

This award recognizes a veterinarian for lifetime achievements in basic, applied, or clinical research.

AVMA Public Service Award

This award recognizes an AVMA member for outstanding public service while an employee of a government agency or for education of veterinarians in public service activities.

AVMA XIIth International Veterinary Congress Prize

This award recognizes an AVMA member who has contributed to international understanding of veterinary medicine.

AVMF/Winn Feline Foundation Research Award

The American Veterinary Medical Foundation and Winn Feline Foundation established this award to honor a recipient's contribution to advancing feline health through research.

Bustad Companion Animal Veterinarian of the Year Award

This award recognizes the outstanding work of an AVMA member in preserving and protecting the human-animal bond.

Nominations

The deadline for all award nominations is Feb. 15, 2018. Award information and nomination forms are available by visiting www.avma.org/awards, emailing avma-awards@avma.org, or calling 800-248-2862.

Study describes pet cat personality

The Feline Five: neuroticism, extraversion, dominance, impulsiveness, and agreeableness

By R. Scott Nolen

Researchers in South Australia and New Zealand have identified five distinct personality types in domestic cats by applying a model commonly used to describe personality traits in people. A better understanding of cat personality through assessment can enhance animal health and welfare by tailoring management strategies to suit the temperament of individual cats, according to the researchers.

“‘The ‘Feline Five': An exploration of personality in pet cats (Felis catus)” was published by the online journal PLOS One on Aug. 23 (http://jav.ma/catpersonalities). The study details the findings of researchers from the University of South Australia and University of Wellington in New Zealand who sought to determine the number of reliable, interpretable factors depicting personality in pet cats.

Relatively little is known about typical domestic cat behavior, the researchers observe, as most behavioral studies are conducted in laboratories, at shelters, or on free-ranging feral cat colonies. “This gap in knowledge is problematic since the typical environment for domestic cats is arguably the home, with tens of millions of pet cats, some kept exclusively indoors,” they wrote.

“Cat owners, veterinarians, animal behaviorists, and scientists often focus on the behavioral problems of stressed cats rather than on the behavior of psychologically healthy cats and their inter- and intra-species interactions,” the researchers continued. “Development of an accurate standardized ethogram (inventory of species-specific behaviors) for pet cats would facilitate creation of standards for optimal housing and welfare, like the Five Freedoms for captive animals.”

Their study relied on a model used in human personality research known as the Five-Factor Model, or the Big Five, which uses common language, rather than neuropsychological data, to describe personality. The thinking behind the FFM is human personality can be described by five broad factors: openness to experience, conscientious- ness, extraversion, agreeableness, and neuroticism. Each factor comprises several correlated and specific factors. Extraversion, for example, is said to include the related qualities of gregariousness, warmth, and assertiveness.

The personalities of 2,802 pet cats from South Australia and New Zealand were rated by their owners, using a survey measuring 52 personality traits. It is the first study of its kind to use so large a transnational sample, according to the researchers, and builds on investigations of other researchers to fill in a number of methodological gaps.

Analysis of cat owner responses suggests there are five reliable factors that depict domestic cat personality: neuroticism, extraversion, dominance, impulsiveness, and agreeableness. Researchers dubbed these personality factors the Feline Five.

Neuroticism, the study explains, reflects the traits of insecurity, anxiousness, fearfulness of people, suspiciousness, and shyness. Dominance includes bullying as well as the characteristics of dominance and aggressiveness toward other cats. Impulsiveness traits include erraticism and recklessness. Agreeableness traits include affectionateness, friendliness to people, and gentleness. Extraversion traits include being active, vigilant, curious, inquisitive, inventive, and smart.

The personality of an individual cat is determined by where the animal exists along each factor's continuum, between low and high scores.

The research team believes the Feline Five has the potential to improve the welfare of pet cats through personalized management strategies. “Highly Impulsive cats for example, may be reacting to something stressful in their environment, whereas cats with low Agreeableness scores, showing irritability may indicate underlying pain or illness. Thus, the need for a systematic and holistic approach to personality that includes both the individual pet cat and its environment is recommended, and opens the door to future interdisciplinary intervention,” they wrote.

Project intended to improve working dog breeding

By Greg Cima

Half of dogs that enter training to serve people with disabilities become service dogs.

Fewer than half of high-performance scent detection dogs succeed.

Information from the Theriogenology Foundation, a nonprofit organization that supports education and research into animal reproduction, indicates those figures show a need for collaborative research that could accelerate selective breeding for working dogs.

Dr. Charles F. Franz, executive director of the foundation, estimates the multimillion-dollar Working Dog Project started by the organization this fall will last about seven years. The project is starting as a collaborative effort with the Broad Institute of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard University to identify genetic loci associated with scenting and retrieval behaviors.

“What we would like to have is a genetic test that can look at the DNA of a puppy and be able to direct that puppy into the proper training route,” Dr. Franz said.

That could also involve exclusion of a puppy from training programs, he said.

A white paper and video from the foundation indicate failures in dog training programs waste money, increase the prices of trained dogs, and delay delivery of needed service animals. These problems endure despite decades of pedigree analysis and selective breeding.

Understanding the genetics of behavior will require examining DNA of tens of thousands of dogs, foundation information states. Developing a test will require collaboration among working dog organizations, use of the open science model pioneered in human genetics, and DNA sequencing and analysis tools tailored to working dog characteristics.

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A dog in a training session at Auburn University follows the scent of a moving object. Auburn, through its Canine Performance Sciences program, is among organizations providing genetic and performance information for the Theriogenology Foundation's Working Dog Project. (Courtesy of Auburn University)

Citation: Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association 251, 9; 10.2460/javma.251.9.980

The results will be available to all.

The project's first efforts will involve saliva sample analyses and behavioral assessments for 100 assistance dogs that are trained or are in training by the nonprofit National Education for Assistance Dog Services, DNA and performance evaluations for 140 dogs listed in a databank for the Canine Performance Sciences group at Auburn University, and genotype data for 600 dogs with owner-reported behavioral phenotypes in the Darwin's Dogs citizen science project.

The Working Dog Project will involve conducting full genome sequencing for all 840 dogs. Those sequences will be analyzed along with the professional and owner evaluations in efforts to find causal relationships between genetic variations and behaviors.

“Through this project, we will also seek to identify the first genetic variants significantly associated with working dog performance,” the paper states. “However, this project alone will not yield a working toolset for predicting behavioral outcomes in dogs.”

Dr. James Floyd, former director of and current adviser to the Auburn program, said identifying repeatable and measurable phenotypes will be the biggest challenge. And he said a dog's ability to fill working roles still will depend on a mix of training and genetic potential.

Dr. Floyd is a member of the Theriogenology Foundation Board of Directors.

The foundation has planned for three more pieces of the Working Dog Project: assembling a consortium to build a dog behavioral genomics databank, developing predictive tests for dog performance, and creating software, genomic tools, or both for working dog breeders.

AAHA releases new guidelines on canine vaccination

By Katie Burns

The American Animal Hospital Association announced Sept. 5 that it has released new guidelines on canine vaccination.

According to the announcement, the 2017 AAHA Canine Vaccination Guidelines were developed to support veterinary teams in determining vaccination protocols for individual patients on the basis of risk factors, life stage, and lifestyle.

The guidelines appeared in the September-October edition of the Journal of the American Animal Hospital Association and are available online in a mobile-ready version at www.aaha.org/caninevaccinationguidelines. They offer updates to the 2011 AAHA Canine Vaccination Guidelines to help practicing veterinarians meet patient and client needs in a complex environment of infectious diseases. They provide expert insight on frequency, dosing, scheduling, and duration of immunity for vaccines.

The content of the guidelines has just about doubled, said Dr. Richard Ford, lead editor and an emeritus professor of internal medicine at North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine. The large amount of material impacts veterinarians in general practice and shelter medicine, providing guidance on the selection and use of vaccines. The online version offers 16 menu options, with a succinct discussion of each subject.

Following the summary page are vaccination recommendations for general practice. The core vaccines are a combination vaccine against canine distemper virus, adenovirus-2, and parvovirus, with or without parainfluenza virus, and a vaccine against rabies virus. Noncore vaccines are against Bordetella bronchiseptica and canine parainfluenza virus, B bronchiseptica, Leptospira, Borrelia burgdorferi, canine influenza virus-H3N8, canine influenza virus-H3N2, and Crotalus atrox, the western diamondback rattlesnake.

Next up are the frequently asked questions. Dr. Ford said, “These have been completely revised and rewritten to address some of the very key issues that veterinarians confront—and I guess we could say key issues and controversies—regarding vaccines and vaccination in practice.”

The new guidelines include the Lifestyle-Based Vaccine Calculator, an interactive tool designed to support the veterinary team's vaccination recommendations on the basis of risk factors and lifestyle. Another section covers antibody testing versus vaccination, with algorithms to help veterinarians interpret test results, depending on the test indication.

Dr. Ford emphasized that rabies vaccination is required by law in most states. The section and FAQ subsection on rabies vaccination offer information on laws, exemptions, and other topics.

Under the heading Overdue for Vaccination are subheadings for dogs 6 to 20 weeks of age and dogs more than 20 weeks of age, with recommendations for how to handle individual vaccines. The section on adverse reactions covers categories of adverse events and how to report a known or suspected adverse reaction.

The vaccination recommendations for shelter-housed dogs are quite distinct from the recommendations for general practice, Dr. Ford said. Vaccines recommended on intake are a combination vaccine against canine distemper virus, adenovirus-2, and parvovirus and a combination vaccine against B bronchiseptica and canine parainfluenza virus. Depending on circumstances, rabies vaccination is recommended at intake or release. Optional vaccines are against B bronchiseptica, canine influenza virus-H3N8, and canine influenza virus-H3N2.

The guidelines cover vaccine licensing, vaccine storage and handling, the vaccine label, vaccine types, therapeutic biologics, legal considerations, resources, and references.

Dr. Ford reiterated that the AAHA Canine Vaccination Guidelines are recommendations, not requirements. He said, “These are simply intended to give veterinarians a current per- spective on the latest thinking as well as the products.”

AAFP takes strong position against declawing, offers resources

The American Association of Feline Practitioners announced Sept. 6 that it has revised its 2015 position statement on declawing to strongly oppose declawing, or onychectomy, as an elective procedure.

Scratching is a normal feline behavior, according to the announcement, and it is the obligation of veterinarians to provide cat owners with education on normal scratching behaviors and options for cats to engage in appropriate scratching behavior in the home. According to the AAFP, veterinary teams need to educate cat caregivers, as many are unaware that declawing is a surgical amputation of the third phalanx, or “toe bone.”

The AAFP supports a path of change that focuses on educating veterinary teams and cat caregivers to make an impact that sees lasting results. Veterinary teams will be supplied with a toolkit of resources to assist them in educating cat caregivers about why cats have claws, why cats scratch inanimate objects, best practices for living alongside a cat with claws, ideal scratching surfaces, training cats to scratch appropriately, and troubleshooting inappropriate scratching in the home.

These materials are being made available to all veterinary practices, including those without AAFP members, to download at www.catvets.com/scratching. This information is also available to cat caregivers via the AAFP consumer website, The Cat Community, at www.catfriendly.com/scratching.

Dr. Nancy Suska, co-author of the revised position statement, said in the announcement, “With proper client education from the initial veterinary visit and onward, our clients will be able to provide their kittens and cats with the essential means to exhibit this natural feline function.”

Other changes to the previous statement include additional resources. The revised position statement is available in its entirety at www.catvets.com/guidelines/position-statements/declawing.

Society for Theriogenology

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Dr. Clifford Shipley

Citation: Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association 251, 9; 10.2460/javma.251.9.980

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Dr. Anita Migday

Citation: Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association 251, 9; 10.2460/javma.251.9.980

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Dr. Isaac Bott

Citation: Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association 251, 9; 10.2460/javma.251.9.980

Event: Society for Theriogenology annual conference, Aug. 2–5 in Fort Collins, Colorado

Program: The plenary sessions were “Non-surgical methods for reproductive management of captive and free-ranging wildlife populations” by Cheryl Asa, PhD, sponsored by the American College of Theriogenologists, and “Mongolia Project: Effects of progress upon endangered species” by Dr. Kevin Fitzgerald. An educator's forum, sponsored by the Theriogenology Foundation, provided sessions on “Theriogenology curriculum for every veterinary student: How to determine what's important?” by Dr. Hilari French and “Theriogenology curriculum: Proper item writing” by Dr. John Dascanio. Forty-five scientific abstracts and 48 poster presentations as well as six case presentations by veterinary students were provided during various sessions at the conference.

Awards: David Bartlett Honorary Address: Dr. Clifford Shipley, Urbana, Illinois, presented the address. Dr. Shipley was recognized for his expertise in teaching and research on reproduction. Dr. Shipley is renowned for his clinical expertise in reproduction of pigs, sheep and goats, and cervidae. Dr. John Steiner Award for Excellence in Practice: Dr. Anita Migday, Framingham, Massachusetts. Dr. Migday was recognized for her clinical expertise in reproduction of dogs and cats. She has been a guest expert on companion animal reproduction for numerous radio shows. Dr. Jerry Rains Memorial Abstract Competition, sponsored by Merck Animal Health: Dr. Tessa Fiamengo, Columbus, Ohio, for “Evaluation of biofilm production by Escherichia coli isolated from clinical cases of canine pyometra,” first place ($1,000); Dr. Jamie Stewart, Urbana, Illinois, “Exogenous nerve growth factor-β improves corpus luteum function and enhances conceptus development in cattle,” second place ($750); Bryan Blawut, Columbus, Ohio, “Use of hypertonic extender to cryopreserve sauger (Sander canadensis) spermatozoa,” third place ($500); and Dr. Raphael Malbrue, Baton Rouge, Louisiana, “Pharmacokinetics of oral micronized progesterone and intravaginal progesterone administration in the bitch,” fourth place ($250). Veterinary Student Case Presentation Competition: Chun Kuen Mak, National Taiwan University, for “Reproductive failure asso- ciated with the co-infection of porcine circovirus type 2 and porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus,” first place ($650); Kaitlyn McCombs, Auburn University, “Surgical resolution of a papyraceous mummified fetus in a 5-year-old Brahman cow,” second place ($525); Brittany Shumack, Auburn University, “Management of a high-risk pregnancy in a Portuguese Water Dog,” third place ($450); Jenna Ward, Texas A&M University, “Azoospermia in a stallion caused by a sperm granuloma,” fourth place ($375); Sarah Jacobs, University of California-Davis, “Successful medical management of long-term pyometra in a Boston Terrier bitch,” fifth place ($300); and Christina Thompson, University of California-Davis, “Nocardioform placentitis in three Thoroughbred mares in Kentucky,” sixth place ($200). Student Chapter of the Year Award: University of California-Davis, first place ($1,000 and a banner); Auburn University, second place ($500); and University of Illinois, third place. T-shirt Design Contest, sponsored by Bovine Services: Auburn University, first place ($300), and Washington State University, second place ($100). Student Quiz Bowl, sponsored by Merck Animal Health: Oklahoma State University, first place ($300), and Lincoln Memorial University, second place ($100).

Business: The board of directors revisited the strategic plan; efforts will continue to help grow the SFT, with a focus on members and veterinary students. Society for Theriogenology representatives to the AVMA House of Delegates provided valuable insights during discussion prior to adoption of a new AVMA policy, “Inherited Disorders in Responsible Breeding of Companion Animals.” The Theriogenology Foundation is continuing its efforts to support veterinary students and residency positions at veterinary colleges. In addition, the Theriogenology Foundation is commencing a collaborative effort on canine genomics, the Working Dog Project, with the Broad Institute of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard University (see story, page 989).

Officials: Drs. Isaac Bott, Elk Ridge, Utah, president; Robyn Wilborn, Lafayette, Alabama, president-elect; Colin Palmer, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, vice president; Peter Sheerin, New Freedom, Pennsylvania, immediate past president; and Jill Colloton, Edgar, Wisconsin, secretary-treasurer. Newly elected members of the board of directors are Drs. Kristina Baltutis, Reedsville, North Carolina; Dan Tracy, Fort Collins, Colorado; and Misty Edmondson, Auburn, Alabama. Dr. Andrew Lovelady, Notasulga, Alabama, was appointed to finish the director term of Dr. Colloton.

American College of Theriogenologists

Event: American College of Theriogenologists business meeting, Aug. 3 in Fort Collins, Colorado

Awards: Theriogenologist of the Year Award, sponsored by Merck Animal Health: Dr. Patrick McCue, Fort Collins, Colorado, for excellence in teaching and research on reproduction of horses. Dr. McCue is known for his extensive record of publication on equine embryo transfer, ovarian diseases, and endocrinology of mares.

Business: The ACT implemented a fully computerized certification examination. The ACT continues to support the Theriogenology Foundation, especially with regard to the Working Dog Project (see story, page 989). The ACT will create a new committee charged with review of materials sub- mitted by diplomates for maintenance of certification.

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Dr. Patrick McCue

Citation: Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association 251, 9; 10.2460/javma.251.9.980

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Dr. John Kastelic

Citation: Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association 251, 9; 10.2460/javma.251.9.980

New diplomates: The college welcomed 11 new diplomates following successful completion of the requirements: Drs. Morgan Agnew, Atglen, Pennsylvania; Kelli Beavers, Baton Rouge, Louisiana; Yehonatan Berkowic, Davis, California; Jenny Katrine Boye, Davis, California; Dinesh Dadarwal, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan; Gabriel Davolli, Baton Rouge, Louisiana; Jenna Dockweiler, Wheat Ridge, Colorado; B. Matt Dredge, Rexburg, Idaho; Jasmin Hyatt, Matamata, New Zealand; Jamie Stewart, Urbana, Illinois; and Stephanie Walbornn, Bryan, Texas.

Officials: Drs. John Kastelic, Calgary, Alberta, president; Reed Holyoak, Stillwater, Oklahoma, president-elect; Richard Hopper, Mississippi State, Mississippi, vice president; Leonardo Brito, Madison, Wisconsin, treasurer; Jack Smith, Mississippi State, Mississippi, secretary; and Ram Kasimanickam, Pullman, Washington, immediate past president. Dr. Herris Maxwell, Auburn, Alabama, was elected to the board of directors.

American Academy of Veterinary Nutrition

Event: 17th annual clinical nutrition and research symposium, June 7, National Harbor, Maryland

Program: The conference drew more than 165 attendees and featured oral and poster presentations. Dr. John Spink, East Lansing, Michigan, presented “Introducing Animal and Veterinary Product Fraud: Building Upon Food Fraud Prevention Concepts”; Dr. Dottie P. Laflamme, Floyd, Virginia, presented “A Slow Dance: Progress in Veterinary Nutrition”; and Dr. David Dzanis, Santa Clarita, California, presented “2017 Regulatory and Legislative Updates.” Dr. Nadine Pablack, Berlin, winner of the 2016 European Society of Veterinary and Comparative Nutrition/Waltham Student Award, presented her winning abstract “In Vitro Effects of Varying Amino Acid Concentrations on the Cytokine Secretion of the Feline Cell Line MYA-1.”

Awards: Case Report Competition, sponsored by Hill's Pet Nutrition: Moran Tal Gavriel, University of Guelph, for “Primary copper-associated chronic hepatitis in a Border Collie.” AAVN/Waltham Student Presenter Award: Celeste Alexander, University of Illinois, for “Effects of cholestyr- amine on nutrient digestibility and fecal characteristics and metabolites of healthy adult dogs.” Pet Nutrition Blog Writing Competition, sponsored by Hill's Pet Nutrition: First place—Amanda Santarossa, University of Guelph, for “Goldilocks and the body condition of the three Labradors”; second place—Sarah Dodd, University of Guelph, for “What's the beef with grains”; and third place—Lucy Rose, The Ohio State University, for “Start smart: 4 tips for feeding your new puppy.” Equine Nutrition Blog Writing Competition, sponsored by Buckeye Nutrition and Waltham: First place—Morghan Bowman, North Carolina State University, for “Your horse is an ecosystem”; second place—Jill Bobel, University of Florida, for “Carbohydrates in your horse's diet—Friend or enemy?”; and third place—Grace Jones, West Kentucky University for “Feeding the aged horse with Cushing's disease: Pituitary in trouble.”

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Dr. Martha G. Cline

Citation: Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association 251, 9; 10.2460/javma.251.9.980

Business: The immediate past treasurer of the academy, Dr. Sarah K. Abood, reported on the financial status of the academy and announced that all bank accounts were being transferred to the executive office in advance of the new treasurer taking over. As the new AAVN newsletter editor, she also discussed plans for the newly redesigned newsletter, which will include member, student chapter, university research group, training program, and Academy of Veterinary Nutrition Technicians spotlights and hot topic sections, and will feature winning blogs from blog writing competitions. The executive director of the academy, Dr. Wilbur Amand, provided the membership report, including details on new members. The immediate past president of the academy, Dr. Craig Datz, discussed the progress made on strategic plan initiatives, announcing the academy's goal of becoming the first choice for nutrition research in all species. Also, funding efforts will be doubled, the academy will work with sister organizations to promote credible and quality evidence-based advice, internal and external communications will be improved, and the academy will seek to increase member engagement by 25 percent over the next several years. The immediate past secretary of the academy, Dr. Jackie Parr, discussed the ongoing development of a new website, with which the North American Veterinary Community is assisting. The president of the academy, Dr. Martha G. Cline, reported on the work of a subcommittee that is reviewing and revising the constitution and developing a new set of bylaws. Once work is completed, the AAVN Executive Committee and legal counsel will review the results. Dr. Cline also reported on AAVN student chapter activity, noting there are currently nine chapters.

Officials: Drs. Martha G. Cline, Hazlet, New Jersey, president; Jessica Harris, Benson, North Carolina, vice president; Megan Sprinkle, Columbia, Missouri, secretary; Rebecca Mullis, Lawrence, Kansas, treasurer; Craig Datz, St. Charles, Missouri, immediate past president; Wilbur B. Amand, West Chester, Pennsylvania, executive director; and members-at-large—Drs. Amanda Ardente, Gainesville, Florida; Lindsey Bullen, Apex, North Carolina; and Pat Harris, Leicestershire, United Kingdom.

Obituaries AVMA member AVMA honor roll member Nonmember

Harold F. Albers

Dr. Albers (Colorado State ‘49), 90, St. Petersburg, Florida, died July 16, 2017. In 1971, he moved to St. Petersburg, where he established Northeast Animal Hospital, focusing on small animal and avian medicine. Prior to that, Dr. Albers practiced mixed animal medicine in Monroe, Iowa, for more than 20 years.

Dr. Albers was known for his expertise and work with endangered species and marine wildlife, including his efforts to detoxify waterfowl after accidental chemical spills. He also served as a consultant on polar bears. Dr. Albers helped establish the St. Petersburg Audubon Society Teachers Ecology Camp and what is now known as the Seaside Seabird Sanctuary, and was active with the Association of Avian Veterinarians, National Wildlife Rehabilitators Association, International Crane Foundation, and Boyd Hill Nature Preserve.

Florida Veterinarian of the Year in 1989, he was a past chair of the Florida VMA membership and wildlife committees, received the FVMA Gold Star Award in 1977 and 1978, and was honored with the FVMA Lifetime Achievement Award in 1995. He was also active with the Rotary Club of St. Petersburg.

Dr. Albers is survived by his son and daughter. Memorials, toward the Dr. Harold F. Albers Teachers Ecology Camp, may be made to St. Petersburg Audubon Society, 315 15th Ave. NE, St. Petersburg, FL 33704.

Donan R. Aldine

Dr. Aldine (California-Davis ‘68), 87, Ukiah, California, died April 25, 2017. A mixed animal veterinarian, he owned Ukiah Veterinary Hospital prior to retirement in 1995. Dr. Aldine's son and two daughters, six grandchildren, and a brother survive him.

Frederick Earl Becker Jr.

Dr. Becker (Auburn ‘53), 87, Tallahassee, Florida, died July 19, 2017. Following graduation, he served as a captain in the Air Force Veterinary Corps during the Korean War. Dr. Becker subsequently moved to Miami and established the Bird Road Animal Hospital, a small animal practice. He also owned several other businesses in Florida, Maine, Texas, and Canada. Dr. Becker's wife, Barbara; three children; and a grandchild survive him. Memorials may be made to Canine Companions for Independence, 8150 Clarcona Ocoee Road, Orlando, FL 32818, or American Cancer Society, P.O. Box 22478, Oklahoma City, OK 73123.

Homer E. Dale

Dr. Dale (Iowa State ‘44), 95, Solon, Iowa, died July 22, 2017. He began his career as an assistant professor at the Texas A&M University College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences. Dr. Dale subsequently taught at the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Veterinary Medicine before joining the veterinary faculty at the University of Missouri in 1951. During his tenure at Missouri, he obtained his doctorate in physiology, served as a professor of veterinary anatomy and physiology, chaired the former Department of Veterinary Physiology and Pharmacology, and twice received what is now known as the Zoetis Distinguished Veterinary Teacher Award.

Dr. Dale retired as professor emeritus in 1985. He is survived by three daughters and a son, eight grandchildren and two stepgrandchildren, three great-grandchildren, and a sister.

Harold Lincoln Easterbrooks

Dr. Easterbrooks (Ohio State ‘48), 91, Gainesville, Georgia, died March 26, 2017. He retired in the early 1990s from Agri-Bio Corporation in Gainesville. During his time with the company, Dr. Easterbrooks was director of marketing and technical services and general manager.

Following graduation and until 1955, he served as an assistant professor of animal diseases at the University of Connecticut in Storrs. Dr. Easterbrooks subsequently conducted research for the American Cynamid Company, focusing on enzyme therapy in dairy cattle and poultry diseases. From 1957–1959, he served as an associate professor of veterinary medicine at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine. Dr. Easterbrooks then established a mixed animal practice in Oxford, Pennsylvania. In 1963, he began serving as a veterinary technical consultant for Agri-Tech Inc. in Oxford, eventually serving as director of research and development for the company. In 1965, Dr. Easterbrooks joined Merck and Company in Rahway, New Jersey, as a feed products technical specialist. He later worked for A.H. Robins pharmaceutical company and owned his own company, specializing in products for the poultry industry, before joining Agri-Bio Corporation.

Dr. Easterbrooks was active with the Jaycees, Elks, Boy Scouts of America, and 4-H Club. He was also a member of the Masonic Lodge. Dr. Easterbrooks served in the Army Reserve during World War II. His three daughters, four grandchildren, and five great-grandchildren survive him. Memorials may be made to Grace Church, 422 Brenau Ave., Gainesville, GA 30501, or Alzheimer's Association, 41 Perimeter Center E., Suite 550, Atlanta, GA 30346.

William R. Graf

Dr. Graf (Pennsylvania ‘54), 93, Lancaster, Pennsylvania, died April 8, 2017. He owned Manor Animal Hospital, a mixed animal practice in Lancaster, for more than 50 years. Dr. Graf was a Navy veteran of World War II. He is survived by his wife, Carol, and a son and a daughter.

Roger A. Grier

Dr. Grier (Ohio State ‘57), 85, Sylvania, Ohio, died June 1, 2017. He was the founder of Grier Animal Hospital in Toledo, Ohio, where he practiced small animal medicine until retirement. Dr. Grier was a past president of the Toledo VMA and a member of the Sylvania Rotary Club. He is survived by his wife, Peggy, and a daughter and a son. Memorials may be made to Toledo Area Humane Society, 827 Illinois Ave., Maumee, OH 43537.

David E. Harling

Dr. Harling (Cornell ‘55), 85, Greensboro, North Carolina, died June 11, 2017. A diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Ophthalmologists and American Board of Veterinary Practitioners, he worked as a clinician at Reidsville Veterinary Hospital in Reidsville, North Carolina, until retirement in 2015. Prior to that, Dr. Harling owned Battleground Veterinary Hospital in Greensboro for more than 30 years. In 1985, he was named North Carolina Veterinarian of the Year, and, in 1996, he was honored with the NCVMA Distinguished Veterinarian Award.

Following graduation, he served as a lieutenant in the Army Veterinary Corps and practiced small animal medicine in New York state before moving to Greensboro. Dr. Harling was active with the North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine, where he served as an adjunct assistant professor. He was a past president of the North Carolina and Guilford County VMAs and North Carolina Academy of Small Animal Medicine, and was a member of the American Animal Hospital Association. Active in his community, he was a member of the Summit Rotary Club and served on the board of directors of the Greensboro Natural Science Center.

Dr. Harling's wife, Helen; two sons and a daughter; three grandchildren; a great-grandchild; and a brother survive him. Memorials may be made to North Carolina Veterinary Medical Foundation, North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine, 1060 William Moore Drive, Raleigh, NC 27607, or Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research, P.O. Box 5014, Hagerstown, MD 21741.

Margaret R. Kern

Dr. Kern (Mississippi State ‘88), 60, Starkville, Mississippi, died May 11, 2017. She was a member of the faculty at Mississippi State University College of Veterinary Medicine until 2015. During her tenure, Dr. Kern served as a professor of small animal medicine, service chief of the small animal internal medicine section, curriculum coordinator, director of clinical education, assistant dean, and associate dean for academic affairs. Dr. Kern was a diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine and a member of the Mississippi VMA.

She is survived by two daughters and a son, eight grandchildren, and two sisters and a brother. Memorials may be made to the Dr. Margaret R. Kern Memorial Annual Scholarship, MSU Foundation, College of Veterinary Medicine, P.O. Box 6100, Mississippi State, MS 39762.

John C. Meyer

Dr. Meyer (Cornell ‘59), 82, Silver Spring, Maryland, died June 22, 2017. He practiced small animal medicine at Marymont Animal Hospital in Silver Spring prior to retirement. Earlier, Dr. Meyer served as a first lieutenant in the Army for two years. His wife, Elinor; two sons and a daughter; and seven grandchildren survive him.

Memorials may be made to WETA (public television and classical music for the greater Washington, D.C., area), 3939 Campbell Ave., Arlington, VA 22206, or Brookside Gardens, c/o Montgomery Parks Foundation, 9500 Brunett Ave., Silver Spring, MD 20901.

Ronald L. Persing

Dr. Persing (Washington State ‘54), 88, Springfield, Oregon, died July 28, 2017. He worked as a staff pathologist for Battelle Laboratory in Columbus, Ohio, prior to retirement in 1995. As part of the biomedical team of the laboratory, Dr. Persing participated in pathologic and toxicologic studies of chemicals and drugs. Earlier, he served in the Air Force Veterinary Corps for 20 years, retiring in 1975 as a lieutenant colonel. During that time, Dr. Persing worked at the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology in Washington, D.C.; the Air Force weapons laboratory in Albuquerque, New Mexico; and the biomedical division of the former United States Atomic Energy Commission in Germantown, Maryland.

His daughter and son, and six grandchildren survive him. Memorials may be made to Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicine, Pullman, WA 99164.

Richard W. Sasso

Dr. Sasso (Michigan State ‘60), 82, Warsaw, Indiana, died March 8, 2017. A mixed animal veterinarian, he was the founder of Sasso Veterinary Hospital in Warsaw. Dr. Sasso was a member of the Indiana VMA and the Rotary Club and Jaycees. His wife, Barbara; three sons and two daughters; 11 grandchildren; and a brother and a sister survive him. Memorials may be made to Winona Lake Grace Brethren Building Fund, 1200 Kings Highway, Winona Lake, IN 46590.

Herbert F. Schryver

Dr. Schryver (Cornell ‘54), 89, Ithaca, New York, died June 26, 2017. A charter diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Nutrition, he was professor emeritus at the Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine since 1990. During his tenure at Cornell, Dr. Schryver served as a professor of veterinary pathology and nutrition in the Department of Clinical Sciences in the College of Veterinary Medicine and in the Department of Animal Science in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. He was also a past director of the university's equine research program.

Dr. Schryver began his career at a practice in Cumberland, Rhode Island, serving farmers and small animal owners in the area. He joined the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine faculty in 1958 as an instructor of pathology. After earning his doctorate in experimental pathology from the university in 1964, he was appointed an assistant professor of veterinary pathology at the veterinary school. In 1966, Dr. Schryver moved to Cornell as an associate professor of pathology and director of the newly established equine research program. While at Cornell, he studied nutrition in horses, including aspects of their physiology that influence nutrition. He also conducted research on the biomechanics of locomotion, developing a mathematical model to calculate the physical forces on the lower forelimbs of horses at various gaits.

Dr. Schryver served as a visiting scientist in orthopedic surgery at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm from 1971–72, and was a fellow in biomechanics at Weill Cornell Medicine's Hospital for Special Surgery from 1979–80. He was a member of the American Institute of Nutrition and American Society of Animal Science. Active in his community, Dr. Schryver was a past president of the Ellis Hollow Community Association and volunteered at the Tompkins County Senior Citizens Center and with Habitat for Humanity. He is survived by his wife, Elisabeth; two sons; and two grandchildren.

Michael P. Stitzel

Dr. Stitzel (Auburn University ‘87), 57, Melbourne, Florida, died June 3, 2017. He owned Melbourne Animal Hospital, a small animal practice, from 1988–2000. Dr. Stitzel later served as a veterinary consultant

Dr. Stitzel is survived by his wife, Susan; two daughters; his parents; and two brothers. One of his daughters, Dr. Sarah R. Stitzel (Ross ‘16), is in veterinary practice in Newburg, New York. Memorials may be made to South Brevard Humane Society, 2600 Otter Creek Lane, Melbourne, FL 32940.

Paul A. Strong

Dr. Strong (Guelph ‘64), 76, Flushing, Michigan, died May 29, 2017. Following graduation, he practiced small animal medicine in Flint, Michigan, for several years before co-establishing Valley Animal Hospital in Flint in 1976. Dr. Strong retired in 2007.

His wife, Bente; three sons, a stepson, and three stepdaughters; 11 grandchildren; a great-grandchild; and a brother and a sister survive him. Memorials may be made to Heartland Hospice, 6211 Taylor Drive, Flint, MI 48507, or Humane Society of Genesee County, G-3325 S. Dort Highway, Burton, MI 48529.

Harold G. Temple

Dr. Temple (Georgia ‘58), 82, Dahlonega, Georgia, died June 26, 2017. Following graduation, he joined the Air Force, retiring as medical center director of veterinary services at Travis Air Force Base in California. As director, Dr. Temple supervised the care of all the military dogs, food service facilities, and subsistence inspections. He also served on the inspector general team and consulted on veterinary medicine with 22 Air Force installations. During his 21 years of military service, Dr. Temple earned a master's of public health from the University of North Carolina, became a diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Preventive Medicine, and attained the rank of lieutenant colonel.

His wife, Jacquelyn; two daughters and a son; 10 grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren survive him.

Daniel Weiner

Dr. Weiner (Pennsylvania ‘55), 88, Sarasota, Florida, died Aug. 12, 2017. He began his career working for the United States Public Health Service, first in Atlanta, and, later in Seattle. Dr. Weiner subsequently returned to Atlanta and established a small animal practice. In retirement, he moved to Sarasota, where he served as a relief veterinarian and volunteered at the Mote Marine Laboratory and the former Pelican Man's Bird Sanctuary.

Dr. Weiner is survived by his companion, Muriel Shindler; a daughter and a stepdaughter; a grandchild; and a brother. Memorials may be made to Temple Beth Shalom, 1050 S. Tuttle Ave., Sarasota, FL 34237, or Ryan Veterinary Hospital, University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine, 3800 Spruce St., Philadelphia, PA 19104.

Donald O. Wiersig

Dr. Wiersig (Iowa State ‘49), 91, Bryan, Texas, died July 18, 2017. He retired as professor emeritus from the Texas A&M University College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences in 1985.

Following graduation, Dr. Wiersig briefly worked in Prairie du Sac, Wisconsin. He subsequently moved to Colby, Wisconsin, where he established and owned a large animal practice and dairy farm for 10 years. Dr. Wiersig then taught at the University of Maryland for a few years, and, after earning his doctorate in veterinary physiology from Iowa State University in 1967, he joined the veterinary college faculty at Texas A&M. After retiring from Texas A&M, Dr. Wiersig taught two years at Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine.

His wife, Bonnie; three children; and three grandchildren survive him. Memorials, toward the Donald Wiersig Scholarship Fund, may be made to Texas A&M Foundation, TAMU Box 4461, College Station, TX 77843.

Andreas Wurzer

Dr. Wurzer (Ludwig Maximillan ‘52), 95, Olympia Fields, Illinois, died June 6, 2017. After earning his veterinary degree in Munich, he cared for military dogs of the United States armed forces stationed in Germany. Dr. Wurzer later moved to the U.S. and practiced small animal medicine for more than 50 years at Chicago Heights Animal Hospital in Chicago Heights, Illinois. He is survived by his daughter and son, and three grandchildren. Dr. Wurzer's daughter, Dr. Andrea Wurzer (Illinois ‘80), practices at Chicago Heights Animal Hospital.

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