$30M gift aids Cornell Canine Health Center
A $30 million donation will hasten expansion of the Canine Health Center at Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine.
The research-focused center will now be known as the Cornell Margaret and Richard Riney Canine Health Center in honor of the donors. University officials said in an announcement they hope the center will become a trusted source of public information on canine health.
“The gift positions the Cornell Riney Canine Health Center to become a leading source of research-based information about dogs,” the announcement states. “The funding will initially endow a significant internal grants program for canine health–related research, with particular emphasis on studying cancer, genetics and genomics, infectious diseases and immunology—building on Cornell’s current program strengths.”
Dr. Alexander Travis, professor of reproductive biology and director of the Master of Public Health Program, is the center’s founding chair.
Dr. Lorin D. Warnick, dean of the Cornell veterinary college, said he and others within the university started the groundwork on the canine health center in 2019, and a foundational gift in 2020 from Dr. Don and Rita Powell helped spur the center’s development.
Dr. Warnick said the $30 million gift from the Riney family is a game changer in terms of expanding canine research at Cornell.
The veterinary college also hosts the Cornell Feline Health Center, and university information indicates the feline health center produces research on diseases of cats, provides outreach when diseases emerge, and educates veterinary professionals, cat owners, cat breeders, and conservationists on feline health and feline issues.
Survey probes how veterinary oncology is practiced globally
The most common tumor types seen in veterinary practice worldwide are mammary tumors (81%), followed by skin tumors (75%), abdominal tumors (40%), malignant lymphomas (39%), and other tumors (5%). The results come from a survey from the newly formed Oncology Working Group of the World Small Animal Veterinary Association. Respondents were almost 2,000 veterinary professionals from around the globe, 95% of them veterinarians, who completed the survey in 10 languages during September and October 2021.
Because limited numbers of North American, African, and Oceanic veterinary professionals participated in the survey, the results do not fully reflect regional differences. For instance, the incidence of mammary tumors is lower in the U.S. because of a culture of early spaying and neutering.
Surgery was the most common treatment for tumors used in private practice, at 55% of cases, followed by surgery and adjuvant therapy in 30% of cases, chemotherapy in 7%, and palliative care in 4%. Immediate euthanasia was recommended in 1% of cases.
When respondents were asked which educational resources would be most valuable to them, 82% requested chemotherapy protocols.
The results will help the working group prioritize its efforts to educate and support WSAVA members globally in raising standards of care for veterinary oncology patients. The WSAVA Oncology Working Group was established in 2021 under chairmanship of Dr. Martin Soberano, a veterinary oncologist working in Mexico City. Resources for practitioners and more information about the working group are available at wsava.org/committees/oncology-working-group.
Honeybee medicine catching on with veterinarians
Veterinarians, beekeepers slowly warming to idea of working together
By R. Scott Nolen
Five years ago, when the Food and Drug Administration began requiring veterinary oversight of antimicrobials used in food-producing animals that also are important in human medicine, the agency essentially created a new field of veterinary practice: honeybee medicine.
Prior to the implementation of veterinary feed directives in 2017, beekeepers bought antimicrobials for bee colonies over the counter. Now an antimicrobial order from a veterinarian is needed. That drug order must be issued within the context of a veterinarian-client-patient relationship. The prescribing veterinarian should know honeybee behavior, biology, and diseases.
Given their training in comparative medicine, veterinarians can diagnose and treat a wide range of animal diseases. But American and European foulbrood? Colony collapse disorder? Varroa mites? Most U.S. veterinary curricula don’t cover these major threats to honeybees.
That’s beginning to change, however.
For the past four years, Meghan Milbrath, PhD, has taught honeybee medicine to fourth-year veterinary students at Michigan State University. The three-week elective is designed so students who have completed the course have the skills and knowledge to conduct hive inspections on their own, said Dr. Milbrath, an assistant professor in the Department of Entomology and faculty adviser for the veterinary college’s honeybee medicine club.
“I really try to elevate honeybees so we’re giving them the same moral and ethical considerations that we give to other animals,” she said.
Topics covered in Dr. Milbrath’s course include honeybee biology, the beekeeping industry, disease diagnostics, and treatment recommendations. “My main motivation is the fact that beekeepers really struggle to find veterinarians willing to work with them,” she said.
JOIN THE CLUB
The same year that veterinary feed directives went into effect, a small group of veterinarians came together to form the Honey Bee Veterinary Consortium, a nonprofit organization with the purpose of training veterinarians in honeybee medicine.
Dr. Terry Ryan Kane, one of the HBVC board members, said other livestock producers expected the VFD ruling, but many beekeepers didn’t anticipate being included in the FDA rule. “And because there were so few veterinarian beekeepers, we knew we had our work cut out for us,” said Dr. Kane, co-editor of the textbook “Honey Bee Medicine for the Veterinary Practitioner,” published in 2021.
Membership in the HBVC has climbed to just over 320; mostly they are veterinarians, but the consortium also includes students, researchers, and apiarists, or beekeepers. The organization has hosted annual conferences, and a number of veterinary colleges have HBVC student chapters with faculty advisers. Additionally, the consortium is developing a certification course for veterinarians that will require 150 hours of training in honeybee medicine.
Consortium members speak at veterinary conferences, and, increasingly, they are being invited to talk to beekeeper clubs. Dr. Britteny Kyle, a former HBVC president, says beekeepers are slowly coming to terms with having to involve veterinarians in their apiaries. Most see veterinarians as a means to acquiring antimicrobials for their hives, but some are starting to recognize that veterinarians offer more than just a prescription. Veterinarians are beginning to recognize this, too.
The profit margin within the honey industry is slim, so large-scale operators must be convinced that veterinarians add value to their business. “Some members of the industry understand that veterinarians are trained in biosecurity, disease management, herd health, and toxicology, and we can help improve the health of their colonies,” Dr. Kyle said.
On the other end of the beekeeper spectrum are the hobbyists, or “backyarders,” with two or three hives. “They’re more like pet owners,” Dr. Kyle said. “They’re not trying to make money but just enjoy keeping bees. They think of their bees as a pet, and they may be more receptive to a veterinarian helping keep their colonies healthy.”
SPECIES IN CRISIS
One of the more compelling reasons why veterinarians should take a more active role in honeybee medicine is that so many things depend on bee pollination.
Honeybees are essential to pollinating flowering plants that in turn produce the vegetables, fruits, nuts, and seeds that humans, wildlife, and farm animals depend on. “The importance of honeybee pollination to our food security cannot be overstated,” said Dr. Kristen Obbink, a public health veterinarian and beekeeper.
“Without honeybees, the fruit and vegetable sections at your grocery store would be largely empty,” she explained.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates pollination by managed honeybee colonies adds at least $15 billion to the value of U.S. agriculture annually through increased yields and high-quality harvests.
And yet honeybees are being decimated by pests, pesticides, disease, habitat loss, and climate change. The USDA estimates the number of managed honeybee colonies plunged from 5 million during the 1940s to approximately 2.6 million today.
The lack of veterinarians willing to work in honeybee medicine is a serious problem, said Dr. Milbrath. “If we had a similar crisis with any other animal species, like if 30% of dogs died or 30% of cattle died every year, people would care.
“The fact is, bees are dying at the same rate, many from bacterial diseases, and it’s deeply concerning that more veterinarians are not stepping up.”
A growing number of resources are becoming available to veterinarians interested in learning about honeybee medicine. In addition to the HBVC website, at HBVC.org, and the AVMA’s guide to honeybee health at jav.ma/PDF, there are textbooks, scientific articles, and continuing education sessions. And many agricultural colleges have extension specialists who work with beekeepers.
Dr. Kane recommends veterinarians learn more about bees by joining a local bee club or starting a few hives of their own. “The only way we veterinarians really get to know an animal is by working with it, and few animals are more fascinating than—or as essential as—the honeybee.”
A private practice teams up with the USDA to study drug use, resistance
Collaborators to analyze data from client farms
By Greg Cima
Veterinarians are tracking antimicrobial administration and drug resistance in millions of pigs in a first-of-its-kind collaboration between the federal government and a private veterinary practice.
Veterinarian and researcher Dr. Scott Dee said the data collection from swine herds is for a long-term project to understand the role of antimicrobial administration in selection for drug resistance. Dr. Dee is director of applied research for Pipestone, which is a veterinary services, research, and farm management company based in Pipestone, Minnesota. The farms participating in the collaborative project are Pipestone clients, which are providing access to data from 160 sites housing swine.
Dr. Dee said Pipestone is helping fund the project, and he and his colleagues intend to publish and share the results.
“Our duty as veterinarians is to go out and scientifically collect good data and make good conclusions to really start evaluating the relationship of use and resistance,” Dr. Dee said. “That’s just being a good steward of antibiotics.”
The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced the partnership Nov. 30, 2021, hailing the collaboration as a potential model for future studies to monitor antimicrobial use and resistance. The announcement indicates Pipestone is collecting and sharing anonymized data with the USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service’s National Animal Health Monitoring System.
APHIS officials hope to publish initial results sometime in 2022.
In response to questions, APHIS spokesperson Joelle R. Hayden provided a written statement from APHIS leaders on the project. They wrote that the project is a unique collaboration among APHIS, the private veterinary clinic of Pipestone Veterinary Services, and South Dakota State University’s Animal Disease Research and Diagnostic Laboratory, with financial support from the National Pork Board and the antimicrobial stewardship consortium within the Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research.
“This is the first time that the federal government, producers and veterinarians, and the swine industry have partnered on addressing antimicrobial resistance,” APHIS officials said. “This is exciting because it provides valuable context to the discussion on use and resistance.”
The project has already shown that monitoring antimicrobial use and resistance on a farm requires ample resources and expertise, APHIS officials said.
“Outcomes of this study will hopefully identify key pieces of information to monitor for the swine industry,” they said.
Dr. Dee said he hopes the study will last at least five years, which would give time to collect and analyze enough data to measure changes in antimicrobial administration and antimicrobial resistance.
The APHIS officials noted that, while the agency is on an annual funding cycle, the project collaborators were in their second year of data collection, and they had funding for the third. The project also aligns with previous commitments to understand development of antimicrobial resistance and prolong the effective use of antimicrobials, they said, citing the Antimicrobial Resistance Action Plan published by APHIS in 2014.
In October 2021, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine published a report containing a series of recommendations for combating antimicrobial resistance to protect human, animal, and environmental health. The authors—from the Committee on the Long-Term Health and Economic Effects of Antimicrobial Resistance in the United States—called for a global response that is modeled on the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, which they noted is a program that has invested $85 billion toward fighting the HIV epidemic since 2003.
The report also contains recommendations that the Food and Drug Administration Center for Veterinary Medicine determine how to track antimicrobial administration to animals and produce data that could support stewardship programs. The authors also recommend that agency officials convene experts who can help coordinate development of testing breakpoints for whether pathogens in animals are susceptible to antimicrobials and identify priority animal, drug, and pathogen combinations.
Further, the report notes that vaccines could reduce demand for antimicrobials in animal agriculture. It notes that the AVMA has identified pathogens of concern in animal species raised as pets or food, and the World Organisation for Animal Health has identified priority diseases and pathogens in poultry, swine, and fish.
“These lists are a good starting point for research and development efforts in animal vaccines,” the report states.
Antimicrobial sales on farms remained down in 2020
The amount of antimicrobials sold for use on farms remains down in the four years since federal regulators added limits on access to drugs and how they are used.
At the start of 2017, Food and Drug Administration officials implemented restrictions on antimicrobials that are administered to animals in feed or water and are considered “medically important” because they are in drug classes shared with human medicine. The agency did so in a series of agreements with drug companies to modify drug approvals to remove over-the-counter access to those products and remove approvals for production uses, such as growth promotion.
The FDA’s most recent data show that the volume of those drugs, by weight, sold for use in food-producing animals dropped about 28% from 2016-20, and that includes a 3% decline from 2019-20, according to an agency report published in December. The sales volume for antimicrobials considered medically unimportant—primarily ionophores—also declined about 22% during that time, and most of that difference was from a 16% drop from 2019-20.
The FDA Center for Veterinary Medicine outlines the changes in the 2020 Summary Report on Antimicrobials Sold or Distributed for Use in Food-Producing Animals, which contains sales data since 2011.
The report indicates that, of the medically important drugs, about 41% of the volume was intended for administration to cattle, another 41% to swine, 12% to turkeys, 2% to chickens, and 4% to other or unknown species. The volumes sold in 2020 were about 13 million pounds of medically important antimicrobials and 10 million pounds of medically unimportant antimicrobials.
The data have some limitations. They show, for example, volumes sold but not the volumes administered. And the report notes that the potency of antimicrobials can vary substantially.
Greater surveillance called for after finding potential deer reservoirs for SARS-CoV-2
By R. Scott Nolen
Wild and captive white-tailed deer in Iowa, separated by hundreds of miles, tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 RNA, a finding that “strongly suggests” the occurrence of multiple human-to-animal spillover events and deer-to-deer transmission, according to new research.
The discovery indicates SARS-CoV-2 will likely remain in the environment after the pandemic recedes, spreading among white-tailed deer populations common throughout North and Central America.
“This has profound implications for the trajectory of the pandemic,” said Dr. Suresh Kuchipudi, lead author of the study published Nov. 6, 2021, in the online non–peer-reviewed pre-print server bioRxiv.
While there is no evidence that white-tailed deer are spreading SARS-CoV-2 to humans or other animals, Dr. Kuchipudi worries that, with enough time, that could be a possibility.
“The direct threat isn’t from eating infected deer,” explained Dr. Kuchipudi, a professor of emerging infectious diseases at Pennsylvania State University and associate director of the university’s Animal Diagnostic Laboratory. “The threat is deer could serve as a reservoir for a virus that could conceivably mutate into a novel variant capable of leaping to other species, including humans.”
The study builds on earlier research by the U.S. Department of Agriculture that found SARS-CoV-2 antibodies in 40% of 152 samples from wild white-tailed deer in Illinois, Michigan, New York, and Pennsylvania. Initially published online in July 2021, the study was republished in the Nov. 23, 2021, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
The study authors don’t know how the deer were exposed to the coronavirus, and they speculate transmission could have occurred through people, the environment, or another animal species. The authors go on to say the results emphasize the need for continued and expanded wildlife surveillance to determine the significance of SARS-CoV-2 in free-ranging deer.
“We also recommend SARS-CoV-2 surveillance of susceptible predators and scavengers that interact with deer. Future wildlife surveillance should be designed to detect, isolate, and genetically characterize SARS-CoV-2 and to identify potential variants, as well as other endemic coronaviruses. These methods are needed to shed light on how zoonotic pathogen spillback into novel wildlife reservoirs may affect pathogen adaptation, evolution, and transmission.”
There are no reports of deer infected with SARS-CoV-2 showing signs of illness, according to the USDA.
Several animal species have been experimentally infected with SARS-CoV-2, and some animals can be naturally infected through contact with infected people, including pet cats and dogs, captive large cats, and farmed mink. And although there were early reports out of Europe of rare transmission of SARS-CoV-2 from farmed mink to farmworkers, particularly prior to initiating strict on-farm biosecurity measures, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says the risk of animal-to-human transmission is low.
Dr. Kuchipudi and his colleagues believe their research shows humans are, in fact, spreading the virus to deer. They tested 283 retropharyngeal lymph node samples collected by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources from 151 free-living and 132 captive deer in Iowa from April through December 2020 for the presence of SARS-CoV-2 RNA.
They discovered that one-third of the sampled deer had SARS-CoV-2 nucleic acid in their lymph nodes. Genomic sequencing revealed the coronavirus genomes represented multiple lineages that corresponded to viral genotypes circulating among humans at the same time. The authors say that, in the aggregate, the results are consistent with a model of multiple independent human-to-deer transmission events and deer-to-deer transmission.
“Our findings raise the possibility of reverse zoonoses, especially in exurban areas with high deer density,” Dr. Kuchipudi said. “The study also highlights the potential risks and considerable knowledge gaps associated with the continued evolution of SARS-CoV-2 in animal hosts and calls for the implementation of enhanced surveillance programs to identify potential reservoir species at the animal-human interface.”
The USDA and Penn State studies are available at jav.ma/USdeer and jav.ma/Penndeer, respectively.
Specialty organization proposed in veterinary education
By Katie Burns
Teaching touches every veterinarian, yet learning how to teach well is neglected in the field of higher education, according to the organizing committee of the proposed American College of Veterinary Medical Education.
The organizing committee has petitioned the AVMA American Board of Veterinary Specialties for recognition of the American College of Veterinary Medical Education as a veterinary specialty organization. In compliance with ABVS procedures, the board is seeking comment from the public and the profession regarding the proposed specialty organization.
“The proposed specialty college would recognize veterinarians with credentials and experience in veterinary medical education who are uniquely qualified to teach veterinary students, interns, and residents—the next generation of veterinarians responsible for providing exceptional animal care,” said Dr. Julie Hunt, associate dean for clinical sciences at Lincoln Memorial University-College of Veterinary Medicine and a member of the organizing committee. “Establishing the American College of Veterinary Medical Education would do more than recognize existing experts in veterinary education; it would drive future veterinary educators to obtain the training and expertise to become tomorrow’s exceptional educators.”
According to the organizing committee’s one-page summary of the proposed specialty organization, there is no education specialty within higher education broadly or any professional education field specifically. The committee concludes, “This is a remarkable opportunity for veterinarians to lead rather than follow in the health professions education space.”
All AVMA-recognized specialty organizations and specialties must comply with recognition guidelines outlined in the ABVS Policies and Procedures manual, which is available at jav.ma/ABVSpolicies. Commenters should refer to those guidelines when developing feedback regarding the proposed specialty organization.
A link to the one-page summary submitted by the proposed specialty organization can be found on the ABVS website at avma.org/specialties. Send comments regarding consideration of recognition of the American College of Veterinary Medical Education as a veterinary specialty organization to ABVS@avma.org. Comments must be signed and received no later than Feb. 28.
Bovine practitioners publish vaccine guidance
A guidance document from the American Association of Bovine Practitioners can help veterinarians decide when and how to administer vaccines.
The document includes details on how to stay safe while administering vaccines, identify and report any adverse events in the animals, and understand vaccine labels. Dr. Justin Kieffer, chair of the Vaccine Guidelines subcommittee of the AABP Committee on Pharmaceuticals and Biologics, said in an announcement the guidelines would give AABP members a foundational document for vaccine administration in cattle.
“We felt it was critical to outline answers to vaccine-related questions frequently asked by bovine practitioners in a readily available format, based upon the available science,” he said in the announcement. “It was also important to point out the gaps in knowledge on vaccine issues and to list references for the material we included.”
Some other veterinary organizations also provide guidance on vaccinating animals. The American Animal Hospital Association, for example, provides species-specific vaccination guidelines for dogs and, with the American Association of Feline Practitioners, gives guidance for vaccinations in cats. The American Association of Equine Practitioners provides guidelines for products intended for use in horses.
The AVMA also has a policy that outlines basic vaccination principles that apply across animal species.
The 32-page document published in November by the AABP states that it was produced with a combination of insights from peer-reviewed literature and expertise from veterinarians and scientists in industry, government, and private practice. It details the advantages and disadvantages for categories of vaccines—such as modified-live vaccines and autogenous vaccines—as well as specific disease indications for vaccines administered to cattle.
The document describes how to store, transport, handle, and administer vaccines, as well as gives details on the injury risks for people administering vaccines. The authors included recommendations that veterinarians teach their clients about vaccines and encourage realistic expectations.
Vaccines are one aspect of disease prevention, and they alone cannot prevent infectious disease, the document states.
“Management strategies that can minimize pathogen exposure and enhance innate immune function are as important as any vaccination protocol,” the document states. “Disease prevention strategies should be customized for each cattle operation since challenges and management options will vary from one farm to the next.”
The AABP Vaccination Guidelines are available at aabp.org, although only to members. The AVMA policy “Vaccination Principles” is available at jav.ma/AVMAvaccination.
Applications open soon for research on health of senior dogs
The Morris Animal Foundation is seeking applicants for its Mark L. Morris Jr. Investigator Award starting Feb. 2. The award provides funding of up to $200,000 per year for up to three years. The aim of this award is to satisfy an urgent and unmet need in canine or feline veterinary science where there is a realistic expectation of making rapid and meaningful progress. The foundation has chosen senior dog health as the topic for this year’s award on the basis of survey data and expert opinion.
Senior dogs are plagued by a litany of poorly studied but significant diseases and conditions that, for whatever reason, have been largely neglected in terms of research, according to the foundation.
The suggestions for relevant research topics are nutrition, including weight management; cognitive decline and other neurological conditions; mobility; frailty; inflammaging and immunosenescence; owner and veterinarian awareness of specific needs, including screening tools; and end-of-life care.
Meaningful research for senior dogs must concretely address their needs, those of their owners, and those of their veterinarians. Studies should account for the sizes and breeds of dogs involved in terms of life stages and aging. Research might also focus on subphases for seniors, that is, early, midphase when they are experiencing clinical problems, and end-of-life care. Collaborative projects with the potential to rapidly translate to the clinic are preferred. More information is available at www.morrisanimalfoundation.org.
Guidelines, regulations target contagious equine metritis
The American Association of Equine Practitioners has published guidelines to assist veterinarians with identification, diagnosis, and control of contagious equine metritis. And the U.S. Department of Agriculture has proposed amendments to regulations for the importation of horses, including changes to rules relating to CEM.
CEM is a nonsystemic venereal disease of horses caused by the bacterium Taylor equigenitalis that results in short-term infertility in mares and rare abortion. The United States is considered to be free of CEM, but six outbreaks have occurred in the U.S. in the past 15 years, including a 2008-10 outbreak during which over 1,000 exposed horses in 48 states were required to be tested, resulting in 23 contaminated stallions and five infected mares being identified and treated.
“Outbreaks in the U.S. have demonstrated the risk of incursions and the need for surveillance in the active breeding population to identify cases early and limit disease spread,” said guidelines co-author Dr. Abby Sage, Richmond staff veterinarian for the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, in a Nov. 18, 2021, AAEP announcement about the new guidelines. “Several of these outbreaks also demonstrated significant stallion-to-stallion spread of Taylor equigenitalis via fomites and inadequate biosecurity during semen collection and stallion handling.”
Dr. Sage and co-author Dr. Peter Timoney, chair in equine veterinary science at the University of Kentucky’s Gluck Equine Research Center, advises equine practitioners and stallion owners or managers to follow stringent biosecurity protocols when collecting semen and handling stallions and to consider implementation of annual testing of active breeding stallions prior to breeding season as an ongoing assurance of disease freedom.
The AAEP guidelines on CEM are available at aaep.org/document/contagious-equine-metritis.
On Nov. 26, 2021, the USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service announced proposed amendments to its import regulations for horses to better align APHIS regulations with international standards and to allow APHIS and the equine industry more flexibility for permitted imports, while continuing to mitigate the risk of bringing equine diseases such as CEM into the United States. The proposed regulations also provide APHIS with more regulatory authority to enforce standards for transporting horses.
Among the proposed changes are increasing the amount of time allowed for horses to be in a CEM-affected region without testing upon their return to the United States, from 60 to 90 days, and requiring an import permit for horses transiting through CEM-affected regions.
Other proposed changes add requirements for health certifications; remove the requirement that horses permanently imported from Canada undergo inspection at the port of entry; require that horses that have been in Central America or the West Indies comply with the same regulations that apply to horses directly imported from these regions, given the greater risk of equine diseases of concern from these areas; and add requirements for shipping containers, including disinfection requirements and measures to ensure horses are transported safely.
This proposed rule is on display in the Federal Register at jav.ma/cem. APHIS is accepting comments through Jan. 28.
American College of Veterinary Anesthesia and Analgesia
The American College of Veterinary Anesthesia and Analgesia held a virtual meeting on Sept. 25, 2021.
Discussions were held on the financial status of the ACVAA and the ACVAA Foundation and on the issues and challenges of preparation and administration of the ACVAA certifying examination.
New diplomates were recognized. The new officials are Drs. Colin Dunlop, North Ryde, Australia, president; Berit Fischer, Lebanon, New Jersey, chair, board of directors; Kurt Grimm, Conifer, Colorado, president-elect; Lynne Kushner, Portsmouth, Rhode Island, executive secretary; and Christine Egger, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, immediate past president.
American College of Veterinary Ophthalmologists
The American College of Veterinary Ophthalmologists’ annual meeting took place Sept. 29-Oct. 2, 2021, in Indianapolis.
New diplomates were recognized. The new officials are Drs. Dineli Bras, San Juan, Puerto Rico, president; Anne Metzler, Columbus, Ohio, vice president; Sandra van der Woerdt, New York City, secretary-treasurer; Wendy Townsend, West Lafayette, Indiana, immediate past president; and regents—Drs. William Miller, Flowood, Mississippi; David Ramsey, Williamston, Michigan; and Kathy Good, Davis, California.
Association of avian veterinarians
The Association of Avian Veterinarians participated in ExoticsCon 2021, held Aug. 28-Sept. 2, 2021, in Nashville, Tennessee.
New officials were seated. They are Drs. Byron De La Navarre, Chicago, president; Anna Osofsky, Carrollton, Texas, president-elect; Len Donato, Wayne, Pennsylvania, treasurer; and Ashley Zehnder, Newark, California, immediate past president and conference chair.
Washington State VMA
The Washington State VMA held the Pacific Northwest Veterinary Conference virtually from Oct. 1-3, 2021.
For the upcoming year, the association will focus on assisting members with workforce and pandemic issues. Work will continue on developing diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives; increasing member engagement; educating the public on responsible pet ownership; and improving access to care for pet owners in the state.
New officials are Dr. Jennifer Bennett, Seattle, president; Dr. Blair de Vries, Richland, vice president; Dr. Sally Thompson-Iritani, Seattle, secretary; Dr. Michael Kiefer, Olympia, treasurer; Dr. Richard DeBowes, Pullman, immediate past president and director; Dr. Diana Thomé, Richland, AVMA delegate; Dr. Gary Marshall, Mercer Island, director and AVMA alternate delegate; Dr. Eddie Haigh, Shelton, director; and Candace Joy, Port Ludlow, chief executive officer.
West Virginia VMA
The West Virginia VMA held its annual meeting from Nov. 12-14, 2021, in White Sulphur Springs.
Dr. Danny Montgomery, president of the WVVMA, presided over the event. He noted that the past year has been a busy and challenging time for the veterinary profession and commended members for rising to the occasion. Dr. Vanessa Harper, a U.S. Department of Agriculture veterinary medical officer for West Virginia, provided information on emerging diseases relevant to the state’s livestock and wildlife.
New officials are Drs. Montgomery, Princeton, president; Susan Harper, Shepherdstown, president-elect; Robert Stenger, Lost Creek, secretary; J.D. Cunningham, Parkersburg, treasurer; and George Seiler, Morgantown, immediate past president.
Beverley J. Frommert-Kallet
Dr. Frommert-Kallet (Michigan State ’64), 83, Ann Arbor, Michigan, died Aug. 12, 2021. She was the founder of Brookeside Veterinary Hospital and Brookedale Boarding & Grooming in Ann Arbor. Dr. Frommert-Kallet also helped establish the Animal Emergency Clinic of Washtenaw County. She served on the Michigan Board of Veterinary Medicine and was a member of the Michigan, Southeastern Michigan, and Washtenaw County VMAs. Dr. Frommert-Kallet is survived by her son and a grandson. Memorials may be made to the Best Friends Animal Society, 5001 Angel Canyon Road, Kanab, UT 84741, support.bestfriends.org.
Thomas R. Kasari
Dr. Kasari (Colorado State ’79), 68, Fort Collins, Colorado, died May 17, 2021. Following graduation, he practiced mixed animal medicine in western Nebraska and southeastern Oregon. Dr. Kasari subsequently completed a residency in internal medicine at the University of Saskatchewan Western College of Veterinary Medicine and taught at Oregon State University College of Veterinary Medicine. He then served almost 20 years on the veterinary faculty of Texas A&M University, later working as an epidemiologist for Veterinary Services within the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.
Dr. Kasari was a diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine and American College of Veterinary Preventive Medicine. He is survived by his wife, Ellen; his mother; and two sisters and a brother. Memorials may be made to the Sarcoma Foundation of America, 9899 Main St. #204, Damascus, MD 20872.
James F. Kelty
Dr. Kelty (Texas A&M ’47), 97, Clarksville, Texas, died July 9, 2021. Following graduation, he went into practice with his father, Dr. Dennis F. Kelty, in Clarksville. Dr. James Kelty retired in 1988.
He was an Army veteran of World War II and received several honors for his service, including the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal and the Philippine Liberation Ribbon. Active in his community, Dr. Kelty was a member of the Clarksville Kiwanis Club for more than 20 years and was a Paul Harris Fellow. He was also a member of the Positive Regeneration In Developing Economy Association in Clarksville. The Clarksville Chamber of Commerce honored him with a Pioneer Business Award.
Dr. Kelty’s three daughters, a son, 13 grandchildren, 20 great-grandchildren, and two great-great-grandchildren survive him. Memorials may be made to the PRIDE Association, P.O. Box 402, Clarksville, TX 75426, or to the St. Joseph Catholic Cemetery Fund, 406 E. Broadway St., Clarksville, TX 75426.
Regina M. Robbins
Dr. Robbins (Cornell ’88), 70, Plymouth, Massachusetts, died July 10, 2021. During her career in veterinary medicine, she owned a small animal practice in the Syracuse area of New York state and established a veterinary supply business. Dr. Robbins previously served for more than 10 years as a state trooper with the New York State Police, attaining the rank of sergeant. She is survived by a brother.
Roger Gary Roop
Dr. Roop (Georgia ’55), 90, Westminster, Maryland, died May 21, 2021. He was a partner at Lynn Animal Hospital in Riverdale, Maryland, for almost 40 years prior to retirement. Earlier in his career, Dr. Roop practiced in Cumberland, Maryland, and served in the Army Veterinary Corps. He later served in the Army Reserve with the rank of major.
Dr. Roop was a past president of the Maryland and District of Columbia VMAs and the DC Academy of Veterinary Medicine. In 2003, he received the MDVMA Presidential Lifetime Achievement Award. Dr. Roop’s two sons, two grandchildren, and a brother survive him.
Robert J. Weadick
Dr. Weadick (Ohio State ’58), 88, Cincinnati, died June 27, 2021. A small animal veterinarian, he owned Western Hills Animal Hospital in Cincinnati for 40 years. Dr. Weadick is survived by his wife, Jean; four daughters and two sons; 10 grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; and a brother. Memorials may be made to Father Flanagan’s Boys’ Home, 13940 Gutowski Road, Boys Town, NE 68010, boystown.org/give, or The Ohio State University Athletic Advancement Fund #307676, c/o OSU Buckeye Club, 2400 Olentangy River Road, 8th Floor, Columbus, OH 43210.