Latest News

 2017-01-11 
 
                                                          IMPORTANT NOTICE

                                                       Re: 2017 ANNUAL DUES

THE DEADLINE FOR PAYMENT WAS:     December 31, 2016

For recent changes to the fee structure please refer to

the current Schedule C posted at

https://www.cvbc.ca/CVBC2/Law-Policies/B__BYLAWS_PART1.aspx


You can pay your Dues:

  • On-line by signing into our website and entering your username and password to pay by VISA or MasterCard.  

  • Send in the cheque. 

  • Call the office at 604 929-7090 with your VISA or MasterCard number.

         Late payments (post December 31, 2016) will result in penalties and potential suspension
         of registration (as per CVBC Bylaws Section 1.90 and Schedule C).

 

SELF ASSESSMENT REMINDER

  • Your annual Facility Self-Assessment  in its entirety is due on or before January 31, 2017.
  • Failure to complete and submit the Self-Assessment by the Due Date (January 31, 2017) will result in a 25% penalty and may require a re-inspection of your Facility at a cost of $850 plus GST.

 Please contact the CVBC at 604 929-7090 if you have any questions regarding your payment of Dues or
 the submission of your Self-Assessment
.

________________________________________________________


 2016-11-28 
 

There are no pending Office Closures at this time.

________________________________________________________





 2016-11-08 
 

PRESS RELEASE
 
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 
Contact:  Ruth-Anne Eisler
Communications, College of Veterinarians of British Columbia
Phone:  778-552-3314
email:  reisler@cvbc.ca
 
November 8, 2016
 

Veterinarians of British Columbia ban tail docking and alteration of dogs, horses and cattle

 
NORTH VANCOUVER, British Columbia, November 8, 2016 -- After an unprecedented voter response from the registrants of the College of Veterinarians of British Columbia (CVBC), 91.5 percent of those who voted cast their ballots in favour of banning the cosmetic tail docking of dogs, horses and cattle, and tail alteration in horses. The decision brings British Columbia in line with a majority of provinces across Canada and supports the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association’s (CVMA) position on the practices.
 
“Veterinarians in B.C. have advanced animal welfare in the province through this vote,” says College President Dr. Brendan Matthews. “B.C. now joins the four Atlantic provinces, and Quebec, on banning these cosmetic procedures.”
 
No scientific evidence supports a welfare or medical benefit for tail docking or alteration, but evidence does show a detrimental effect on behaviour and animal communication, as well as the risk for infection and phantom pain.
 
Some breed associations continue to resist bans because of historical practices. However, Matthews points out, “veterinarians have an ethical responsibility to the animals they treat and tail docking goes against that responsibility. We ask other provinces to follow suit and for breed associations to recognize the changing times.” In addition to cosmetic tail docking and tail alteration, ear cropping is banned in B.C.
 
The ban makes the practice of tail docking and alteration, along with ear cropping, an unethical practice of veterinary medicine, and veterinarians found continuing the practice will face disciplinary action from the CVBC. The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act authorizes the BC SPCA to investigate and recommend charges against any person, veterinarian or otherwise, believed to be carrying out such procedures.
 
For more information, contact the College of Veterinarians of British Columbia (CVBC) at 604-929-7090. Learn more about the CVBC at http://www.cvbc.ca
 
 

###

 
 
Background Information

Tail docking is a necessary procedure only when carried out in cases of injury or for medical reasons (i.e. surgery to remove cancerous tissue). Some owners and some veterinarians assert that tail docking provides a benefit to the animal. However, there is no scientific evidence to support this claim except to some degree for pigs and sheep given the current North American production systems that are widely in use. There is strong evidence to support a detrimental effect on behaviour and communication, and risks of phantom pain and other serious complications with tail docking.

Tail alterations in horses include tail nicking and tail blocking. Tail nicking involves cutting the tail muscle for the purpose of achieving a high tail carriage for the show ring. Horses then require the need of a tail brace and the use of their tails is greatly compromised throughout the remainder of their life. Tail blocking involves injecting the major nerves of the tail with a substance that affects the horse’s ability to move the tail. Tail docking involves the removal of part of the tailbone. In horses, tail docking and alteration limits the ability of tail swishing and thus impairs fly control and communication with other horses. All of these procedures can be associated with serious health risks and complications.

Long-standing customs are not necessarily in the best interests of the animal. Veterinarians have an ethical responsibility and must act within the best interests of the animals that they treat. Tail docking or any procedure done solely for historical reasons without supporting evidence to continue the practice goes against the CVMA’s veterinary oath, which states that veterinarians have a responsibility to promote animal health and welfare.

Many countries of Europe, Australia and New Zealand prohibit or restrict tail docking. For years, veterinary regulators from Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia have had bylaws prohibiting their members from performing cosmetic surgeries including tail docking and tail alterations, and ear cropping. Newfoundland and Labrador has had, for many years, a legal prohibition against these practices. PEI’s legal prohibition came into effect in 2016. Quebec in 2017 will ban cosmetic surgeries including tail docking, and ear cropping. Ear cropping is also banned in Manitoba and Saskatchewan.

In Canada, the CVMA has communicated its concerns about cosmetic surgeries to the dog breeding community. The CVMA has consistently encouraged breed associations and kennel clubs to change breed standards and their stance on cosmetic alterations. One concern that breeders have is that unaltered dogs will not be able to compete against altered dogs in shows. Some breed associations have already made these changes, and we call upon all others to bring about changes to their standards as has been done in other countries.

Some individuals have expressed concerns that prohibiting veterinarians from performing cosmetic surgeries will lead to breeders or owners performing the surgery themselves. This, however, has not been seen to be the case in other jurisdictions that have passed similar bans in Canada. The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (PCA) Act of BC gives the BC SPCA the authority to investigate and recommend charges against any person who causes distress to an animal, as defined in the PCA Act. There is an exception for veterinarians who may cause distress to an animal by virtue of performing a medically necessary procedure in accordance with the standards of the profession. If tail docking and alteration is no longer considered an acceptable procedure in accordance with the standards of the profession, then any individual performing a cosmetic procedure could face charges under the PCA Act, including a veterinarian. Veterinarians are obligated to report any incidents of animal abuse and cruelty.

With the inclusion of the Code of Practice for the Care and Handling of Dairy Cattle into the PCA Act in July of 2015, which states that “dairy cattle must not be tail docked unless medically necessary,” it is illegal under the Act to dock the tail of dairy cattle in British Columbia. The Canadian National Codes of Practice state that tail docking and alteration is prohibited in beef cattle and in horses, and is acceptable only with strict guidelines for pigs and sheep. The Codes for all farm animals, such as beef cattle, sheep and pigs, as well as horses, contain the most up-to-date scientifically based information on husbandry standards, and should thus be followed. The PCA Act refers to “reasonable and generally accepted practices” when referring to prohibiting persons from causing or allowing an animal to be in distress.


References:

CVMA Position Statements

www.canadianveterinarians.net/documents/cosmetic-alteration

http://www.canadianveterinarians.net/documents/tail-alteration-of-horses

www.canadianveterinarians.net/documents/tail-docking-of-dairy-cattle

www.canadianveterinarians.net/documents/tail-docking-of-sheep

National Farm Animal Care Council Codes of Practice

www.nfacc.ca/pdfs/codes/equine_code_of_practice.pdf (page 46)

www.nfacc.ca/pdfs/codes/dairy_code_of_practice.pdf (page 34)

www.nfacc.ca/pdfs/codes/beef_code_of_practice.pdf (page 25)

www.nfacc.ca/pdfs/codes/sheep_code_of_practice.pdf (page 40-41)

www.nfacc.ca/pdfs/codes/pig_code_of_practice.pdf (page 34)

Prince Edward Island’s Animal Welfare Act

www.assembly.pe.ca/bills/pdf_first/65/1/bill-2.pdf (page 5 - 6. (2) a, b)

BC SPCA Summary of NFACC Code Guidelines

www.canadianveterinarians.net/documents/wcvspring2016 (page 32)

Other Resources

American Veterinary Medical Association:

www.avma.org/KB/Policies/Pages/Ear-Cropping-and-Tail-Docking-of-Dogs.aspx

www.avma.org/KB/Resources/LiteratureReviews/Documents/tail_docking_cattle_bgnd.pdf

www.avma.org/KB/Resources/LiteratureReviews/Documents/Horse%20Tail%20Modification.pdf

American Animal Hospital Association:

www.aahanet.org/Library/CropDock.aspx

World Small Animal Veterinary Association:

www.wsava.org/sites/default/files/WSAVA%20CodeOfConductManual_October2010.pdf



 2016-07-05 
 
B.C. Government to Adopt Regulation To Protect Dogs and Cats

The B.C. government will adopt a regulation under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act recognizing the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association’s Codes of Practice for both kennel and cattery operations as generally accepted management practices for cat and dog breeders in British Columbia. 

The codes provide clear direction to breeders, and sets clear expectations for breeders to respect the practices considered acceptable by government.

Premier Christy Clark is quoted as saying: “Animal cruelty is unacceptable.Today we’re taking another step towards stopping those cat and dog breeders who don’t provide adequate care. Together with the BC SPCA and key stakeholders, we will develop a system that supports responsible pet breeders in B.C., and targets the ones that aren’t.”

The Code of Practice includes areas such as housing, ventilation, food and water, care and supervision, record-keeping, behavioural needs, socialization and transportation, and specifically notes:
  • If a dog is sick, injured, in pain, or suffering, prompt and adequate veterinary care must be provided; and for cats, veterinary care is provided at the first indication that the animal is not well.
  • Cleaning and sanitizing should be carried out daily.
  • Minimal spacing for dogs and cats (1.1 to2.2 square metres depending on the dog’s size, and 1.5 square metres for cats)
  • Written procedures for care should be posted so that they are available to personnel at all times.
The B.C. government has also begun consultations with the BC SPCA and other key stakeholders to develop new laws that will assist the BC SPCA to monitor and take action against irresponsible breeders of dogs and cats.

The consultation will contribute ideas on: 
  • Required licensing and or registration to operate  as a breeder.
  • Possible proactive monitoring and enforcement of commercial cat and dog breeders.
  • Finding sources that could be used to support enhanced and more proactive enforcement by the BC SPCA.
The consultations will take place over spring 2016 with legislation anticipated in 2017.

Quick Facts:
B.C.’s Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act has the toughest provincial penalties in Canada.
Under B.C.’s Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, charges can be laid against a person who is convicted of causing distress to and animal in British Columbia.
The maximum penalties that can be levied under provincial legislation against a person who is convicted of causing distress to an animal is $75,000 and up to 24 months imprisonment.
The B.C. government encourages the reporting of any events which may be in contravention of those laws and regulations so they can be fully investigated.

Full story and photos at https://news.gov.bc.ca/releases/2016AGRI0007-000259



 2016-07-05 
 
Dairy Farm Charged with Animal Cruelty

The SPCA has announced a slew of charges against a Chilliwack cattle farm where activists captured shocking undercover video of alleged animal abuse two years ago. 

Crown counsel has approved 20 counts of animal cruelty against Chilliwack Cattle Sales Ltd. and seven of its employees, the SPCA revealed Tuesday.
Sixteen of the charges are under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act and involve offences against dairy cows, while the other four are under the Wildlife Act and involve the treatment of a pigeon.

The SPCA started investigating the farm after reviewing unsettling footage shot on the property in May and April 2014.

The video showed employees “using chains, canes, rakes, their booted feet and their fists to viciously whip, punch, kick and beat dairy cows, including downed and trapped cows who could not escape the abuse,” SPCA chief enforcement officer Marcie Moriarty said in a release.

Employees Travis Keefer, Jonathan Talbot, Jamie Visser, Chris Vandyke, Cody Larson and Brad Genereux are all charged with causing distress and failing to protect an animal from distress. Vandyke, Keefer and Visser are also charged with two other counts relating to kicking and hitting a cow.
A seventh worker, Lloyd Blackwell, is also charged, but the SPCA hasn’t revealed with which count or counts.

Moriarty said the investigation also marks the first time a B.C. company has been held accountable for acts of cruelty on a farm.
“We are extremely pleased that in addition to laying charges against the individual employees, Crown has also held the company and its directors accountable for this unacceptable treatment of the animals,” she said.

John Kooyman, Kenneth Kooyman, Wesley Kooyman, Jeffrey Kooyman and Bradley Kooyman are all charged with causing or permitting animals to be in distress and of another count, which requires people responsible for animals to protect them from circumstances likely to cause them distress.
The undercover video was shot by members of Mercy for Animal Canada, who worked at the farm undercover.

Its release and the resulting public outcry led to the B.C. government adopting new regulations to protect dairy cattle under the province’s Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act.

The SPCA said the B.C. Milk Marketing Board also incorporated generally accepted practices from the Dairy Code of Canada into its requirements for farms.  




 2016-07-05 
 

The Human Rights Tribunal Decision was released on October 8, 2015.

Download Acrobat Document

Summary of HRT Decision

For the full text of the HRT Decision please access the following link.             
http://www.bchrt.gov.bc.ca/decisions/2015/pdf/oct/151_CORRECTED_Brar_and_others_v_BC_Veterinary_Medical_Association_and_Osborne_No_22_2015_BCHRT_151.pdf

On December 8, 2015, the CVBC filed a Petition in the BC Supreme Court seeking a Judicial Review of the HRT Decision.             


 2016-07-05 
 

​​
The BC Centre for Disease Control is collaborating with BC health authorities, the Public Health Agency of Canada, and Health Canada to investigate an outbreak of Salmonella infections in British Columbia likely related to raw pet food. Raw pet food is food served to pets that contains raw animal proteins like meat, bones, organs, and eggs. 

Four British Columbians who feed their pets raw food diets have become infected with the same strain of Salmonella. The exact source of the Salmonella is unknown but investigations are ongoing. Infections can occur during handling of raw meat, including raw pet food, or from pets shedding the bacteria. Animals can carry Salmonella bacteria but show no signs of illness. 
Both raw pet food and raw meats often contain bacteria that can lead to illness in people. People are being reminded to wash their hands immediately after handling raw pet food or raw meat, and before touching anything else. Pet owners should also wash their hands after handling or cleaning up after their pet, especially prior to preparing their own food or eating.  Other ways to prevent Salmonella infections are to avoid contact between raw meats and other uncooked foods, to use separate cutting boards for raw meats, and to wash and sanitize items such as pet food bowls, cutting boards, utensils, counters, kitchen sinks and tap handles. 
Salmonella are bacteria that infect the intestinal tract and sometimes the blood, and are a common cause of diarrhea in B.C. and around the world. Symptoms of Salmonella typically start 6 to 72 hours after exposure to the organism and can include:  
  • stomach cramps
  • diarrhea 
  • fever
  • nausea
  • vomiting
  • dehydration, especially in infants and the elderly
Symptoms last 4 to 7 days and most people recover without treatment. People who experience severe symptoms, or who have underlying medical conditions, should contact their health-care providers if they suspect they have a Salmonella infection.
Information on the role of pets in human disease: http://www.healthlinkbc.ca/healthfiles/hfile61a.stm


 2016-07-05 
 

College reinstates Dr. Hakam Bhullar to the CVBC Register


Under the direction of the Registration Committee, the Registrar reinstated Dr. Hakam Bhullar to the Register of CVBC.
As of January 29, 2016 Dr. Bhullar holds an unrestricted licence in the private practice category.


 2016-07-05 
 

The CVBC Welcomes The Honourable Wally Oppal, Q.C.   

The College of Veterinarians of B.C. (CVBC) is very pleased to announce the appointment of The Honourable Wally Oppal, Q.C. as a public member of Council of the College. 

His extensive experience in public service and his reputation for fairness and for encouraging alternate dispute resolution are welcome attributes.

His fresh perspective and efforts to promote diversity will add value to the deliberations of the College's Council. 



​​

The BC Centre for Disease Control is collaborating with BC health authorities, the Public Health Agency of Canada, and Health Canada to investigate an outbreak of Salmonella infections in British Columbia likely related to raw pet food. Raw pet food is food served to pets that contains raw animal proteins like meat, bones, organs, and eggs. 

Four British Columbians who feed their pets raw food diets have become infected with the same strain of Salmonella. The exact source of the Salmonella is unknown but investigations are ongoing. Infections can occur during handling of raw meat, including raw pet food, or from pets shedding the bacteria. Animals can carry Salmonella bacteria but show no signs of illness. 

Both raw pet food and raw meats often contain bacteria that can lead to illness in people. People are being reminded to wash their hands immediately after handling raw pet food or raw meat, and before touching anything else. Pet owners should also wash their hands after handling or cleaning up after their pet, especially prior to preparing their own food or eating.  Other ways to prevent Salmonella infections are to avoid contact between raw meats and other uncooked foods, to use separate cutting boards for raw meats, and to wash and sanitize items such as pet food bowls, cutting boards, utensils, counters, kitchen sinks and tap handles. 

Salmonella are bacteria that infect the intestinal tract and sometimes the blood, and are a common cause of diarrhea in B.C. and around the world. Symptoms of Salmonella typically start 6 to 72 hours after exposure to the organism and can include:  
  • stomach cramps
  • diarrhea 
  • fever
  • nausea
  • vomiting
  • dehydration, especially in infants and the elderly
Symptoms last 4 to 7 days and most people recover without treatment. People who experience severe symptoms, or who have underlying medical conditions, should contact their health-care providers if they suspect they have a Salmonella infection.


Information on the role of pets in human disease: http://www.healthlinkbc.ca/healthfiles/hfile61a.stm