Friday, 12 September 2014

Working with the Indian Veterinary Profession for improved animal health and welfare


International concern for animal health and welfare continues to grow with increasing demand for measures to protect animals and improve animal quality of life.  

The University of Edinburgh has a longstanding interest in animal health and welfare education. Integrated within the R(D)SVS the Jeanne Marchig International Centre for Animal Welfare Education (JMICAWE), is a venture with ambitious objectives committed to improving the health and welfare of animals through education, training and research and by influencing policy at the highest level. The JMICAWE not only promotes the need for education in animal welfare science and ethics but also emphasizes the important role future veterinarians have in promoting subjects of international concern such as animal welfare along with the job of protecting animal and public health.

India is already the highest milk producing country and with increasing demands for meat, eggs and milk, Indian farming enterprises are rapidly becoming larger and animals more intensively managed, often associated with challenging consequences for animal health and welfare and indirectly increased risks for food safety and, ultimately human health. Understanding the issues and finding new ways of enhancing animal health and welfare is clearly a complex and important area for the veterinary community in India. The most defining characteristic of any profession must be their ability to constantly improve, and most importantly to be able to disseminate new knowledge gained through high quality research.

 Recent projects, initiatives and collaborations with academic partners in India have involved the development and delivery of a number of successful workshops with the support of collaborating Indian Universities, Governmental bodies and Wildlife institutes such as the Kerala Veterinary and Animal Science University, the Karnataka veterinary, animal science and fisheries University, the National Wildlife Institute in Bangalore, and the Indian Council of Agricultural Research, as well as influential professional organisations, such as the Veterinary Council of India and the Commonwealth Veterinary Association. The aim of these collaborative workshops and meetings has been to aid in the development of innovative methods for delivery of a future focused veterinary curriculum at both undergraduate and postgraduate level.

In November a team from JMICAWE will be going out to Kerala in India to develop further our partnership there with a series of collaborative workshops with themes focusing on Production Animal Health, Animal Welfare, Companion Animal Nursing and Welfare and Wildlife.  

‘The links between animal health, animal welfare and human welfare are becoming increasingly recognised, alongside an awareness of the importance of educating our veterinarians so that they are well equipped to take a leadership role in tackling globally important issues such as the overuse of anti-microbials, animal welfare concerns and understand the concept of ‘One Health’.”  ~ Professor Natalie Waran, Jeanne Marchig Professor of Animal Welfare, University of Edinburgh.

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For further information about the JMICAWE, please visit:




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