News briefs: Week of May 14
AVMA: Antimicrobial research is a priority
Antimicrobial resistance is a global threat that requires the development of new drugs to protect people and animals, according to the American Veterinary Medical Association. The organization’s revised research priorities, passed by the board of directors, added language describing the threat of antimicrobial resistance and the need for antimicrobial agent development. Research also is needed on how changes in antimicrobial use affect farm animal welfare, the AVMA reported. The training of veterinarians for research work is another priority.
Survey shows a need for education about pet parasites
A study conducted on behalf of Merck Animal Health found that U.S. pet owners have knowledge gaps when it comes to identifying, preventing and treating fleas and ticks. The survey of more than 1,300 owners of cats or dogs discovered that 33 percent do not provide regular flea/tick preventives and that nearly half, 48 percent, don’t bring their pets to a veterinarian for a routine exam. Sixty-one percent described themselves as “very knowledgeable” about fleas and ticks, but 2 in 5 could not correctly identify at least one symptom commonly associated with Lyme disease.
Banfield Foundation assists with disaster preparedness
A 2018 survey revealed that 91 percent of pet owners are not prepared for a natural disaster, so the Banfield Foundation is doing something about it. Through Sept. 30, every $45 donation made at www.BanfieldFoundation.org/kit will lead to a pet disaster preparedness kit being given to a pet owner living in a high-risk state. The waterproof bags contain critical supplies such as a blanket, treats, stress-relief products, water and food calculation charts as well as tips and checklists. All donations support the Banfield Foundation’s Disaster Relief Grant program.
Texas Tech on track to open Amarillo vet school
According to Feedstuffs, the Amarillo, Texas, City Council approved an amendment to a $69 million agreement between the Texas Tech University System and the Amarillo Economic Development Corp. to ensure the construction of the Texas Tech University School of Veterinary Medicine. Along with addressing a shortage of rural veterinarians, the Amarillo school will be housed alongside a pharmacy school and a medical school, expanding the opportunities for combined research into both human and animal health. Texas Tech is working on a plan to enroll the first veterinary class in fall 2021.
Salmonella outbreaks have experts concerned
According to Dairy Herd Management, veterinary and human medicine epidemiologists continue to be concerned about periodic outbreaks of Salmonella Heidelberg. At the Dairy Calf and Heifer Association annual conference, veterinary epidemiologist Jason Lombard, DVM, MS, updated attendees on the latest outbreak, which infected dairy calves as well as 56 people in 15 states. Some patients reported contact with dairy calves or other cattle.