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2019 Animal Welfare in Practice conference focuses on dairy cow welfare

Ensuring the health and welfare of dairy cows
| Atlantic Veterinary College
Dr. Kathryn Proudfoot
Dr. Kathryn Proudfoot

The Sir James Dunn Animal Welfare Centre’s fifteenth annual Animal Welfare in Practice conference, scheduled for September 20–21, will focus on dairy cow welfare assessment.

Among the experts who will share their knowledge about dairy cow welfare will be keynote speaker Dr. Kathryn Proudfoot, incoming director of the SJDAWC at the Atlantic Veterinary College. An animal welfare scientist, Dr. Proudfoot will give a talk titled “On-farm welfare assessment: How do we know if dairy cows have good welfare?” on Friday, September 20, at 7 pm, AVC Lecture Theatre A. Her presentation is open to the general public. 

Dr. Proudfoot’s research focuses on themes related to maternal behaviour in dairy cattle, veal calf health and welfare, and measuring stress in animals. Her current appointment at Ohio State College of Veterinary Medicine is split between research, extension and service, and teaching animal behaviour and welfare to veterinary students. She will begin her position as director of the SJDAWC and as an associate professor in the departments of Companion Animals and Health Management on October 1.

On Saturday, September 21, the conference features sessions on various aspects of dairy cow welfare. Nancy Douglas, proAction coordinator, Dairy Farmers of PEI, will speak about proAction, a national program through which farmers demonstrate their commitment to the health and welfare of their animals and to ensuring milk quality and safety. Dr. Shawn McKenna, associate professor and Farm Service chief at AVC, will speak about the National Farm Animal Care Council’s dairy code. Dr. Proudfoot will give presentations on reducing the risk of lameness and hock lesions by improving cow comfort and on special needs housing from the cow’s perspective. The conference will wrap up with an interactive session, involving all three presenters, on improving dairy welfare after an on-farm assessment. 

Registration is required to attend the sessions on Saturday, which are open to producers and others involved in the dairy industry, veterinarians, veterinary students, and animal health technicians. The deadline to register is September 17. 

The Animal Welfare in Practice conference is co-hosted by the Sir James Dunn Animal Welfare Centre, the AVC Bovine Club, and the AVC Animal Welfare Club with support from the Animal Welfare Foundation of Canada.

Click here for more information and to register. 


Dr. Alice Crook
Sir James Dunn Animal Welfare Centre
(902) 628-4360

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