WSAVA Monthly NEWs – September, 2005

WSAVA Activities and Committee Reports
WSAVA website statistics
Recently, WSAVA has been able to access traffic flow information about the WSAVA website with the following statistics of possible interest to readers:
2004 summary figures
• There were 841,655 hits averaging 70,140 per month and 2,300 per day.
• Traffic flow increased by 36% over the course of the year
• There were over 40,000 unique visitors to the website with many visiting on more than one occasion and spending an average of >10 minutes on the site equating to multiple page views
• Approximately 50% of visits originated from the United States with the remainder being predominantly from Europe and Asia
• Google was the most common referral search engine
• The 5 most popular pages/sections viewed were (in order of traffic flow): Homepage, congresses, Monthly News (primarily the news in Spanish – thanks Oscar Resburgo for your ongoing translation skills!), tail docking position statement, and the member association pages.
• For those with an interest in trivia – the most active day was December 8 and the least active day was April 12, 2004
August 2005 figures
• The number of hits will exceed 100,000 during the month of August averaging over 3,000 per day and boasting 6,000 unique visitors during the month.
• This represents a >50% increase in traffic flow over last year’s monthly average with nearly double the amount of unique visitors accessing the website on a monthly basis.
• The 5 most popular pages/sections viewed in order of traffic flow: Homepage, Monthly News, tail docking position statement, congresses, and the microchip committee pages.
All in all, these numbers indicate a clear increase of interest in the WSAVA and its various initiatives and member associations.
Ketamine Update: and the survey says….
As reported in the March and October, 2004 WSAVA Monthly News, the WSAVA provided support to our Russian veterinary colleagues in their efforts to retain the ability to use ketamine HCl as a companion animal anesthetic agent. Fearful of a growing drug culture and the potential for ketamine to be sought out and abused by these individuals, the Russian government enacted legislation to ban the availability of ketamine for veterinary use. As reported in the March 2004 News, this had a profound impact on animal welfare as ketamine was the only anesthetic agent available to Russian veterinarians for humanely performing elective procedures such as sterilization. A letter supporting calls for reconsideration was forwarded to the Russian government by then president Dr. Gabriel Varga, which, together with other lobbying efforts, saw the legislation repealed as reported in the October, 2004 issue of the WSAVA News. To support these WSAVA efforts, a survey of ketamine-specific use was sent to various member associations. Responses were received from 21 countries representing all continents (Europe 9, Asia 4, South America 3, North America 2, Africa 2, and Oceania 1). None reported restrictions in ketamine availability with 5 countries (Argentina, Australia, Estonia, Malaysia, and Taiwan) reporting legislation governing its use, including the need for record keeping and secure (locked) storage facilities (similar to narcotics). Switzerland expects similar legislation shortly whereas in Turkey, veterinarians need to use a special prescription to get access to the human version of ketamine.

WSAVA Member Association Updates
As reported by our President-Elect Dr. Brian Romberg, the South African Veterinary Council have stipulated that as of June 2007, tail docking will be considered as an unethical procedure and any veterinarian carrying out the procedure on an otherwise healthy dog after this implementation date, could be charged with unprofessional, improper, or disgraceful conduct. During the transition period to the June 2007 implementation date, the Council will actively engage with those breed societies still requiring tail docking as part of their breed standard to inform them of this decision and allow them time to alter their standards so as to better reflect what is happening internationally. The same protocol was used to implement an ear cropping ban and it worked very well in South Africa.

NEWS From Around the World
Animal Aid for Africa (Triple A), held their first pan-African Congress in Johannesburg at the end of July, bringing together veterinarians from 11 different countries and all walks of professional life, under the banner: One profession … one agenda … one Africa. The Congress covered two topics – ‘Production Animals and the Common Diseases which Affect Them’ and ‘Zoonoses’, with a line-up of world-class speakers presenting informal, interactive talks, designed to offer delegates immediate solutions to common problems. With translators on hand, the question and answer sections allowed for further elucidation on topics under review.
The traditional CE was followed by the Vet Africa Forum, where key role players in the future of veterinarians in Africa were invited to join the final session and present their organisations. Represented were the World Veterinary Association (Dr Anthony Erasmus); the World Small Animal Veterinary Association (Drs Brian Romberg and Lawson Cairns); the Commonwealth Veterinary Association (Prof Gareth Bath); the European Union (Prof Tito Fernandes); the South African Veterinary Association (Dr Gerhard Steenkamp); and Triple A. They joined a square table, chosen to emphasize unity and listened whilst a representative from each country presented their needs and aspirations. Greetings from WSAVA president Dr. Larry Dee were forwarded to the delegates by way of a letter of welcome prominently located in the congress agenda book and recognizing the WSAVA as a financial sponsor. Drs Romberg and Cairns also met with representatives from the veterinary school in Mozambique to discuss ways that WSAVA could support companion animal CE.
Triple A co-founders Jayne Janetzky and Dr. Larry van Niekerk commited to continuing their work of sharing practical knowledge, in-country, at grass roots level, and opening up supply channels for the availability of necessary drugs and medication. The task is however a huge one and, in inviting all major players here today, Triple A hopes to unify resources in order to more effectively and quickly assist. To this end they proposed the formation of Vet Africa Forum, which will bring all with a vested interest together in a spirit of mutual co-operation and combined goals. This proposal was quickly seconded and delegates were asked to return to their countries and/or organizations and nominate a person to serve on Vet Africa Forum.
Figure caption: Dr. Brian Romberg (centre), WSAVA President-Elect, meets with Prof Tito Fernandes (left), Honorary President of the European Association of Establishments for Veterinary education (EAEVE) and head of the Department of Animal Production and Food Safety, University of Lisbon and Dr. Frans van Gool from France.

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