Last week the JMICAWE team headed for China once more to support the Animal Welfare session a t the 4th China Veterinary Conference. Accompanied by international colleagues, we shared a range of practical and research experiences relating to both the development of animal welfare in veterinary education and practice and, the influence of evidence-based research on livestock husbandry, transport and food safety, an issue that is currently of enormous importance in China. The conference was supported by the Animals Asia Foundation and WSPA, and attended by colleagues from the SRUC, the World Veterinary Association, the Federation of Vets of Europe, and the OIE.
By linking Animal Welfare to its practical benefits, such as improved health, improved productivity, improved food safety and improved research and education outcomes, even those with little interest in the subject may be inspired to develop better practices that benefit animals around China. But that is not to say that there is no interest in developing better practises simply for the sake of the animals – the Chinese Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA) has recently been working with the Ministry of Education to integrate Animal Welfare into the National Veterinary Exam – making it a core subject for all veterinarians in China.
Over the next year the JMICAWE will be working with the CVMA to develop successful teaching practises and integrate animal welfare throughout the Chinese Veterinary curriculum.