The AVMA supports the Prevent All Soring Tactics Act, a bill designed to prohibit soring -- the use of chains, chemicals and other devices on horses' legs to promote a certain gait -- in part by making the devices used in soring illegal. Today, Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., will introduce a measure designed as a companion to an industry-supported bill that does not outlaw the devices. Opponents of the approach say if the devices are allowed in any form, soring will continue.
AVMA's Animal Connections exhibit, a joint project with the Smithsonian Institution and Zoetis, was designed to educate the public about the many crucial roles veterinarians fill and to stimulate interest in a career in veterinary medicine among young visitors. AVMA CEO Dr. Ron DeHaven says the exhibit emphasizes veterinarians' roles in food safety, care of lab animals and wildlife in addition to their prominent role in safeguarding the health of pets.
Dr. Clark Fobian of Sedalia, Mo., has started his term as the AVMA's president. Dr. Fobian previously served in the leadership of the Missouri Veterinary Medical Association, as chairman of the American Veterinary Medical Foundation and as a member of the AVMA Executive Board.
Veterinarians' work focuses on more than simply the health of animals, and events at the AVMA's annual convention cast a spotlight on the principles of One Health. The Susan M. Roman Veterinary Scholarship Award Dinner raised money for ovarian cancer awareness and drew many notable names in veterinary medicine and public health, including Dr. Roger Mahr of the One Health Commission, who is also past president of the AVMA.
Scientists have identified a coronavirus that is more genetically similar to the deadly new Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus than any current virus. They found the new virus in the feces of a South African bat. MERS has killed about 50 of the 90 people known to be infected so far, and scientists think the virus moved from bats to an intermediate animal species and then to humans.