Tuesday, 27 May 2014

Animal behaviour and welfare a focus for vets in Beijing

In May the Federation of Asian Small Animal Veterinary Associations (FASAVA) held it’s regional conference in Beijing.

The conference attracts thousands of vets from all over the Australasia region, and Heather Bacon of the JMICAWE was delighted to attend to deliver presentations on ‘animal welfare in the veterinary clinic’ and ‘surgical and analgesic management of the small animal patient’. Vicki Elliot of the Animals Asia Foundation also collaborated with Hayley Walters of the JMICAWE to deliver a presentation on Animal behaviour in the veterinary clinic, and the project was supported by Animals Asia.

The inclusion of the animal welfare stream, in addition to sessions on clinical animal behaviour delivered by Dr Kirsti Seksel, demonstrates the increasing importance of animal behaviour and welfare across the region.

The visit also provided an opportunity for Heather to visit the China Agricultural University to exchange information on ‘outcome-based curriculum development’ and ‘advances in veterinary teaching’ with a group of enthusiastic lecturers.

 “The growing interest in animal behaviour and welfare across the Asia region is representative of the importance of these subjects within the veterinary curriculum”, said Heather “it is essential that veterinarians are skilled in these subjects as many of the clinical challenges we face have aetiologies that include behavioural or welfare problems”


Monday, 26 May 2014

Animal Welfare Indicators (AWIN) Third Annual Conference a Success

The biggest Animal Welfare project in Europe –Animal Welfare Indicators (AWIN) held its third annual conference between the 13th and 15th of May 2014 to discuss the science and dissemination behind the animal welfare assessment protocols developed so far.


Dr Fritha Langford, from JMICAWE and leader of the education work package of AWIN presented the latest learning materials and outreach to animal welfare stakeholders present at the conference. All of the AWIN learning materials will be hosted on the Animal Welfare Science Hub (www.animalwelfarehub.com) and available to view and download for free.
There are a series of learning materials on the subject of animal pain in general and assessing pain in horses in particular. At the conference AWIN launched a smartphone app produced for horse owners and equine clinicians to learn about, train with and use the Horse Grimace Scale (HGS), a pain scoring system using facial expression in horses. The HGS App is now available to download for Android systems from the Animal Welfare Science Hub or directly from Google Play.

Over the coming months more learning materials and smartphone apps will be launched and available to use or download for use in teaching and learning from the Animal Welfare Science Hub. However, the Hub is not just a place for AWIN materials, stakeholders are encouraged to share or link to their own educational material to enable wider access to animal welfare education for all.



Horse Grimace Scale

Wednesday, 21 May 2014


Here is Jill MacKay reporting on our latest adventures, filming content for our MOOC.  

Our team has been hard at work, and we thought we would give you another sneak preview behind the scenes, so you can see what they have been up to.  We hope you enjoy it, and if you haven't already, don't forget to sign up!

To sign up for our MOOC, please go to: https://www.coursera.org/course/animal
Prof Natalie Waran and Tim Askew recording in the great outdoors

Calves enjoying the filming! They were very curious.

EU regional animal welfare training continues


Poland became the most recent country to host the European Commission’s training workshop on ‘Animal Welfare for the Veterinary Practitioner’.

These courses are held in partnership with the Federation of Veterinarians of Europe and Heather of the JMICAWE has collaborated for the last two years to deliver training in captive wildlife welfare to veterinarians in Spain, Latvia, and Romania.

In cooperation with the Plock Zoo and colleagues, animal welfare education was delivered to 62 delegates from Poland and the surrounding region. Feedback surveys indicate that almost 90% of delegates found the workshop useful or very useful. As zoos across the EU come under increasing scrutiny, it is essential that animal welfare is a priority for them.


Tuesday, 6 May 2014


It’s an exciting and busy time here in JMICAWE.  The Animal Welfare Team have been busy filming for our forthcoming MOOC (Massive Open Online Course).  We thought we might give you an exclusive look behind the scenes.

Mind you, it’s not Hollywood glamour. Our team are hard at work filming, editing, writing and creating a top class course, with quality content - Animal Welfare Education being the priority.

Have a look at our ‘behind the scenes’ video with Jill MacKay from SRUC:

Prof Natalie Waran and Fanta on set, with Tim Askew on Camera

Jasmine preparing for her scene


 More updates will follow, so watch this space!
 To sign up for our MOOC, please go to: https://www.coursera.org/course/animal