WCVM scientist among USask's top research award recipients
Recipients of the University of Saskatchewan’s (USask) top honour of Distinguished Researchers for 2023 are Dr. Cheryl Waldner (DVM, PhD), and Dr. Wen Jun (Chris) Zhang (PhD), internationally recognized experts in their fields who have contributed their talents to USask for more than two decades.
VIDO scientists receive $1M to strengthen mpox preparedness
Scientists Drs. Alyson Kelvin (PhD) and Angela Rasmussen (PhD) from the University of Saskatchewan’s (USask) Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization (VIDO) have received $1-million in total funding to study mpox (formerly known as monkeypox) from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR).
WCVM researchers earn awards at USask Life and Health Sciences Research Expo
Members of the Western College of Veterinary Medicine’s (WCVM) research community earned awards for their showings at the University of Saskatchewan (USask) 2023 Life and Health Sciences Research Expo on May 4.
‘Long Lyme’ is a growing health conundrum
Lyme disease is rarely fatal in people, but for some, this perplexing bacterial disease can have an impact on the rest of their lives.
USask food science graduate investigates healthier pet food
Yikai Ren’s thesis research focused on low-glycemic pet food made with Saskatchewan pulse crops.
How low can pathogen’s infective dose go before pigs get sick?
An old infectious agent — usually considered harmless — is responsible for the sudden deaths of pigs in North America.
Hard to swallow: USask veterinary team helps pup with feeding issue
When her four-month-old puppy named King began regularly spitting up his food after eating, Angela Seymour knew her little American French bulldog needed help from a veterinarian.
The view from inside: one cell’s harrowing experience with lung disease
I am a lung cell, and I am instrumental to the function of every other organ in the body. My job is to oversee the exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide between the air sacs and the blood vessels. Without me, everything else in the body shuts down.
Manitoba student first recipient of ‘Guy Hobman Award’ at WCVM
Animals of all shapes and sizes were a vital part of Nyssa Guilbert’s life in her family’s home in Anola, Man., a small town located 25 kilometres east of Winnipeg.
WCVM graduate students take three minutes ‘to win it’ at USask competition
Narsimha Pujari and Hemlata Gautam, both graduate students based at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM), took top honours at the annual 3MT (Three-minute Thesis) Finals held at the University of Saskatchewan (USask) on April 11.
Veterinarians trade horse expertise through Global Ambassador program
A University of Saskatchewan (USask) program that fosters collaboration between educators around the world helped to transport large animal surgical specialist Dr. James Carmalt to South America for two weeks in January 2023.
Protein from roundworm may unlock a cellular ‘fountain of youth’
A one-millimetre-long worm and its genome may be key to understanding how human and animal cells age, according to new research from the University of Saskatchewan (USask) published in the journal Aging Cell.
USask veterinarians successfully perform surgery on filly with ‘wry nose’
On the morning of June 30, 2022, Scot Gannon went out to the barn on his farm, Nejd Arabians, just west of Edmonton, Alta. He was happy to see that one of his Arabian mares, Nejds’ Bint Sabbah, had given birth overnight to a black filly.
Changing my tune: from mezzo-soprano to student scientist
Two years ago, I traded in my evening gowns for a lab coat.
Scientists work toward goal of saving bison, one problem at a time
How can a bison cow have a calf sired by a bull from the opposite side of North America? The collection, disinfection and freezing of semen using novel technologies can make this former pipe dream a reality, and it may be our best chance of saving the North American bison species.
VIDO and VFI collaborate to strengthen pandemic preparedness
The Vaccine Formulation Institute (VFI) and the Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization (VIDO) at the University of Saskatchewan (USask) have signed a collaborative research agreement to help drive joint vaccine development.
VIDO scientists receive leadership awards for excellence in vaccine research
Scientists at the University of Saskatchewan’s (USask) Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization (VIDO) have been recognized by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) for their international leadership in vaccine research for infectious diseases.
Celebrate World Book Day with WCVM authors
It’s World Book Day on April 23, 2023, and if you’re on the hunt for a good book, here are some options that have been written by Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) alumni and faculty.
USask veterinary students involved in rare lambing of sextuplets
A group of fourth-year veterinary students at the University of Saskatchewan (USask) had an exciting surprise on March 21 when they discovered that one of the ewes in their care had delivered six healthy lambs.
Horse Health Lines (Spring 2023) now online
The Spring 2023 issue of Horse Health Lines, news publication for the Western College of Veterinary Medicine’s (WCVM) Townsend Equine Health Research Fund, is now online.
Researchers snap, share the beauty of USask research
From ecosystems in peril to the intense gaze of an Arctic fox, winners in the 2023 University of Saskatchewan’s (USask) Images of Research competition celebrated the art and artistry of research, scholarly, and artistic work at USask.
Are off-leash dog parks a ‘ticking’ time bomb?
For many dog owners, warmer weather means that trips to the local off-leash dog park are a regular occurrence. But more time at the park may mean a higher chance of picking up a few passengers on the way — including ticks.
Northern veterinary students earn $10,000 scholarships
Two Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) students from Canada’s North have each received $10,000 scholarships from Veterinarians Without Borders-Vétérinaires Sans Frontières Canada (VWB/VSF).
Eequine-focused graduate students at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) recently participated in a “lightning rounds” session — part of the college’s annual EquineED Talks series.
Renowned virologist at USask leads pandemic fight
She is one of the world’s most recognized virologists, recruited to serve on the front lines of the pandemic and preparing for the next global threat.
Award-winning Indigenous artist donates bison artwork to USask
Award-winning Siksika artist Adrian Stimson (MFA’06) is gifting artwork to the University of Saskatchewan (USask).
USask launches new University of Saskatchewan Insect Research Facility
Today the University of Saskatchewan (USask) launched the University of Saskatchewan Insect Research Facility (USIRF), the first insect research facility with quarantine capabilities in a western Canadian university. Research conducted in the new facility will boost Canadian agriculture, protect the environment, reduce risk to food security, and provide fundamental insight into insect ecology.
Saskatchewan invests in chronic wasting disease research at USask
The Government of Saskatchewan announced a $90,000 grant to support innovative University of Saskatchewan (USask) research that studies the spread of chronic wasting disease (CWD) and meningeal worm in woodland caribou and other boreal species.
Understanding the genetics behind antimicrobial resistance in beef cattle
Researchers at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) are investigating antimicrobial resistance by establishing relationships between antimicrobial resistance genes in beef cattle and examining the impact of various exposure events on patterns of antimicrobial resistance.
WCVM researcher uses ultrasound images to explore alpacas’ reproductive patterns
As a professor and prolific researcher at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM), Dr. Jaswant Singh has explored the reproductive physiology of cattle, bison and a variety of other mammals.
Does blueberry pollen diet make honey bees more prone to disease?
Did you know that honey bees and humans face similar challenges when it comes to diet and health? Just as people require proper nutrition to stay healthy, bees also need an ample supply of their primary food and protein source — flower-collected pollen.
B.C. continues expanded support of WCVM and student seats at USask
The Government of British Columbia is permanently doubling the number of subsidized seats for B.C. veterinary students attending the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) at the University of Saskatchewan (USask).
It’s a gut feeling: measuring stress in waterfowl
Just like people, waterfowl can experience feelings of stress that affect their gut microbiome — the trillions of microorganisms living inside their digestive system.
Vet students gain sled dog medicine experience at Canadian Challenge
One of Emmalyn Elgersma’s favourite memories of the 2023 Canadian Challenge International Sled Dog Race took place around midnight while she and other volunteers waited for the first sled dog teams to arrive at the checkpoint in Missinipe — more than 150 kilometres (km) north of Prince Albert, Sask.
USask alumnus Dr. Hugh Townsend to be inducted into equine hall of fame
A lifetime of working to enhance the health and welfare of horses across Canada has earned a place of honour in the Saskatchewan Horse Federation’s (SHF) Hall of Fame for University of Saskatchewan (USask) alumnus and professor emeritus Dr. Hugh Townsend.
USask scientists study space and sickness in feedlot cattle
As researchers at the University of Saskatchewan (USask) and Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) study the impact of stocking density and feed bunk space allowance on the health of beef cattle, they’re pondering the age-old question: “Is less really more?”
Why studying microbiology will make me a better veterinarian
When I tell people that I spent a summer working with bacteria rather than animals, I get puzzled looks and they often ask, “What does that have to do with being a vet?” The answer is simple: everything.
From small-town kid to Vanier Scholar
When Cody Koloski graduated from high school in Rossburn, Man., he headed for university with dreams of becoming a doctor — buoyed by his teachers’ enthusiasm for biology, chemistry and physics.
Cattle producers and scientists 'rub shoulders' at research forum
Livestock and forage scientists at the University of Saskatchewan (USask) seeking to refine their research met with producers and industry leaders at the sixth annual Beef and Forage Research Forum.
Collaborative research team teases out significance of stressors found in pigs’ hair
Stress. We’ve all been there — those moments of acute stress when we’re stuck in traffic or those periods of chronic stress when life seems to chuck all the lemons at us. But did you know that all of this stress information gets stored in your hair?
USask researchers devise strategies for faster disease detection in honey bees
While the rise in antimicrobial resistant pathogens is an issue affecting all species, a team of University of Saskatchewan (USask) researchers are focusing their efforts on honey bees — investigating how they can reduce the use of antibiotic drugs for managing disease in the pollinator species.
USask scientists find antimicrobial resistance gene linked to livestock treatment
Researchers at the University of Saskatchewan (USask) have discovered how a previously overlooked gene is involved in antimicrobial resistance — a growing global issue that threatens the health and welfare of both humans and animals.
Baseline for hormone levels in western Canadian horses takes shape
As the percentage of older horses in Western Canada grows, so does the number of animals that are diagnosed with endocrine disorders such as pituitary pars intermedia dysfunction (PPID) and equine metabolic syndrome (EMS).
Llamas and alpacas: potential animal models for reproductive research?
A study at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) promises not only to provide important information about llama and alpaca reproduction but also to determine if the camelid species could become animal models for reproductive research.
Blood on the double
Dogs can donate life-saving blood to other dogs, just like people can give blood to their fellow humans. But veterinarians are still unsure about the best way to deliver blood from dog donors to the canine patients that urgently need it.
WCVM employee honoured for dedication to USask graduate students
When University of Saskatchewan (USask) graduate students first enter the Western College of Veterinary Medicine’s (WCVM) Department of Veterinary Microbiology, one of the first to greet them is Linda Nemeth — the department’s graduate programs co-ordinator and assistant.
USask researchers probe drug’s potential ability to block pre-term labour
How can we decrease the occurrence of pre-term births in women? Can a cancer research drug help us find a solution? These are questions facing reproductive scientist Dr. Daniel MacPhee (PhD) and his research team at the University of Saskatchewan (USask).
Beloved cat inspires teen's pet health research gift
Percy Jackson was an affectionate, snuggly kitten who immediately bonded with his new owner Charlie Hoffman. The ragdoll cat was an important support for Hoffman, a 14-year-old high school student, who needed support to deal with anxiety and symptoms of attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
Vet Topics (Winter 2023) now online
The Winter 2023 issue of Vet Topics, news publication for the veterinary college's Companion Animal Health Fund, is now available online.
A passion for pets
Growing up in the French countryside, Dr. Mathieu Paulin was always surrounded by pets of all kinds including dogs, a goat and many ducks.
USask research team explores protein’s role in herpesvirus infections
Herpesviruses are nothing new, but what’s surprising are their sheer number: 130 species of herpesviruses infect and cause disease in a wide variety of species — including people.
Supporting pet cancer patients, one toy at a time
Getting a diagnosis of pet cancer isn’t easy for pet owners, but an organization called Kali’s Wish Cancer Foundation is offering to help with something that no dog can resist: toys.
Range to research: how ranch lessons aid my research job
At first glance, sitting on the back of a horse watching cattle graze seems a whole world apart from extracting DNA at a pristine lab bench. But my experiences in research and ranching have shown me that both disciplines share common principles.
WCABP names WCVM graduate bovine vet of the year
Dr. Calvin Booker of Okotoks, Alta., a Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) graduate, is the 2023 recipient of the Veterinarian of the Year Award — an honour supported by the Western Canadian Association of Bovine Practitioners (WCABP) and Boehringer Ingelheim Canada.
A quarter century of service at USask
Let’s turn back time 25 years to 1997, when Jean Chrétien was re-elected prime minister, the blockbuster movie Titanic premiered in theatres, Tiger Woods became the youngest golfer to win the Masters at age 21, and the first book in the soon-to-be wildly successful Harry Potter series was published.
USask scientists receive provincial honours
Dr. Volker Gerdts (DVM, PhD), director and CEO of the Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization (VIDO) and professor in the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) at the University of Saskatchewan (USask), has been recognized with an Achievement Award by the Saskatchewan Health Research Foundation (SHRF).
Saskatchewan ag research funding includes over $2.3 million for WCVM scientists
University of Saskatchewan (USask) researchers based at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) received over $2.3 million from Saskatchewan’s Agriculture Development Fund (ADF) for livestock research.
Improving livestock health overall aim of WCVM research studies
Detecting infectious poultry diseases more quickly and developing regional influenza vaccines for pigs are among 28 innovative livestock and forage research projects at the University of Saskatchewan (USask) that will receive funding through the Saskatchewan’s Agriculture Development Fund (ADF) in 2023.
USask scientist looks at link between zoonotic diseases and imported dogs
A veterinary researcher at the University of Saskatchewan (USask) is hoping to connect with pet owners or canine rescue organizations that have recently imported dogs into Canada or plan to bring animals into the country.
USask research income growth leads Canada’s medical universities
Canada’s Top 50 Research Universities rankings for 2022 published Wednesday place the University of Saskatchewan (USask) first among the country’s tier of 16 medical universities for research income growth from all grants, contracts, and contributions.
USask study aims to gain understanding of finishing diets for bison
A team of researchers from the University of Saskatchewan (USask) are gearing up to explore the impact of starch concentration in the finishing diets of bison — a specialized livestock species in Canada.
Pollinators, canola and pesticides targeted in USask study
Researchers at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) are evaluating the effects of pesticides on honey bees and other pollinators that subsist on the pollen of canola — Saskatchewan’s top crop.
USask study finds bulls’ breeding soundness unaffected by ergot-contaminated feed
A study conducted by a team of University of Saskatchewan (USask) researchers confirms that bulls can eat feed contaminated with ergot alkaloids — toxic compounds produced by a plant fungus — for multiple weeks without affecting breeding soundness.
Creatures from land, sea and sky part of vet student’s adventures
Marine animals have always intrigued Zihan Li. While growing up in Bejing, China, she enjoyed numerous visits to aquariums and countless hours of watching marine life documentaries while caring for her collection of marine animal plushies.
WCVM plays key role in addressing national veterinary shortage
Six decades ago, the University of Saskatchewan’s (USask) selection as the future home of a veterinary college serving Western Canada made the front page of The Saskatoon Star Phoenix — welcome news for a region suffering from a critical lack of veterinarians.
WCVM Today’s half-dozen favourite stories of 2022
As 2022 wraps up, here are six favourite WCVM Today stories from our archives. Enjoy!
Guide aims to help put the welcome mat out for pets
A team of researchers at the University of Saskatchewan (USask) and the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) are part of an initiative to explore the benefits of welcoming companion animals in places where they wouldn’t normally be allowed.
Veterinary career combines all of student’s One Health passions
From the time that she completed a Doctor of Medicine (MD) degree and a residency in family medicine in 2005, Dr. Pamela Thompson dedicated herself to a fulfilling career in human health that encompassed clinical work, teaching and community collaborations.
Translated USask dog anatomy textbook one of Pressbooks’ 2022 favourites
A German textbook translated by a team of University of Saskatchewan (USask) students and faculty made the “2022 favourites” list of Pressbooks, an international open-source publishing platform.
SREDA study estimates VIDO’s economic impact over half a billion dollars
The Saskatoon Regional Economic Development Authority (SREDA) released key findings from its Economic Impact Study conducted on the University of Saskatchewan’s (USask) Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization (VIDO).
St. Hilaire’s ‘career rollback’ leads to veterinary medicine
For years, champion and All-American reiner Diandra St. Hilaire spent hours with her horse perfecting spins, stops and rollbacks — a complete change in direction that’s accomplished by horse and rider in one fluid motion.
WCVM offers CE series geared for mixed animal veterinarians
Covering everything from dogs and horses to honey bees and bulls, the Western College of Veterinary Medicine's (WCVM) new online continuing education (CE) series for winter 2023 offers a variety pack of seminars for veterinarians and veterinary professionals in all types of practices.
Delving deeper into swine dysentery
As you wander down the meat aisle and view the variety of available pork cuts, you’re probably not thinking about the people and the work behind getting the meat to the supermarket.
Hurricane Maria prepared vet student for life’s challenges
While Francisco Gomez Cruz was growing up in Caguas, a city and municipality of around 130,000 people on the island of Puerto Rico, he was a frequent visitor at his grandparents’ farm located only a few minutes away.
Four new USask Vanier Scholars demonstrate excellence in research and leadership
Four University of Saskatchewan (USask) doctoral students — including a Western College of Veterinary Medicine-based graduate student — have been named 2022 Vanier Scholars.
Veterinary professor at USask launches bovine health podcast
A University of Saskatchewan (USask) beef cattle specialist at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) has launched a new podcast that gives listeners a Canadian perspective on beef cattle health and nutrition.
‘Agnes’ and animal health highlights of WCVM exhibit at 2022 Agribition
This week, Canadian Western Agnes — “Agnes” for short — and her team from the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) will be back at the 2022 Canadian Western Agribition in Regina, Sask., following a two-year gap due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The importance of iodine in pregnant mares’ diets
When it comes to bringing new horses into the world, mare care and particularly mare nutrition should be a top priority for horse owners — a mother’s diet during pregnancy can drastically impact the health of her foal.
From teacher to vet student: ‘I finally feel like I’m in the right room’
When Kree Byrne of Abbotsford, B.C., completed his Bachelor of Education degree at the University of the Fraser Valley in 2018, he envisioned a future that included teaching school, playing and coaching soccer, and pursuing his passions for travel and adventure.
$8.1M investment will help VIDO become CL4 facility
The University of Saskatchewan’s (USask) Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization (VIDO) has received a significant investment from the Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI) to establish containment Level 4 (CL4) capacity — the highest level of containment.
He or she: what will it be?
“Boy or girl?” Expectant mothers hear that question a lot, and thanks to ultrasound technology, many human parents have the option of finding out the answer long before their baby is born.
USask researcher asks public to report cougar evidence
A University of Saskatchewan (USask) researcher is building a database to uncover the whereabouts of the secretive and elusive prairie cougar.
Eye surgery gives stray cat a new outlook on life
Two years ago, a stray grey tabby cat showed up in a neighbourhood in south Regina, Sask. Since then, “George” has stolen the hearts of many people there — including Christine Holzer.
Ranching, science and ski hills along student’s veterinary trail
Quin Bateman grew up on a cattle ranch in southwest Alberta’s Porcupine Hills, and from an early age, he was riding horses and helping his dad with the ranch chores — most of them involving animals.
Veterinarian earns PhD degree and $10,000 prize for equine research
Through hard work and perseverance, equine surgical specialist Dr. Michelle Tucker has earned her PhD degree as well as a $10,000 prize for her research achievements at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM).
WCVM graduates part of USask Fall Convocation celebrations
A group of students pursuing higher education at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) will receive their graduate degrees and certificates during the University of Saskatchewan’s Fall Convocation ceremonies on Nov. 9.
Pigs and performing in perfect harmony for Manitoba student
Samantha Nixon of Ste. Anne, Man., had wrapped up two years of undergraduate studies at the University of Manitoba when she decided to switch to a Bachelor of Science (Agriculture) — Animal Systems degree program and pursue a future in veterinary medicine.
New season of 'EquineED Talks' begins in November
The Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) has organized a third season of its very popular “EquineED Talks” series for horse owners across Western Canada and around the world.
New online course prepares therapy dog handlers
University of Saskatchewan (USask) researcher Dr. Colleen Dell (PhD) and her team have partnered with St. John Ambulance in Saskatchewan to offer a first-of-its-kind online certificate course to improve the abilities of therapy dog handlers to prepare and support their interactions with the program’s participants.
Education focus makes Expo a natural fit for vet college
If you own or enjoy horses, you'll want to check out the 10th edition of the Saskatchewan Equine Expo — an educational event that has been bringing together people from all equine disciplines and geographic locations since 2012.
Vaccines key to preventing canine parvovirus
Canine parvovirus 2 (CPV-2), more commonly known as “parvo,” is a highly contagious virus that attacks a dog’s gastrointestinal tract. Unvaccinated puppies younger than four months are in the “high risk” category for this often-fatal disease.
Manitoba government reserves seats for ag-focused students
The Government of Manitoba announced on Oct. 7 that the province’s five additional seats at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) will be aimed at students with rural backgrounds who plan on returning to rural veterinary practice and supporting livestock and poultry industries.
All of Karlynn Dzik’s childhood experiences — the books she read, the videos she watched, the camps she attended — revolved around her desire to study and interact with animals.
'Helping the horse': combining veterinary medicine and farriery
Dr. Steve O’Grady, who is internationally known for his dual expertise as a farrier and a veterinarian, is the Western College of Veterinary Medicine’s featured “EquineED Talk” speaker at the 2022 Saskatchewan Equine Expo on Friday, Oct. 28.
Life after laminitis
If you call Bob Wood, you’ll likely hear birds singing in the background. Before his mare Jessie got sick, Wood could usually be found out in his pasture with his two horses, two dogs and one cat by his side.
Horse Health Lines (Fall 2022) now online
The Fall 2022 issue of Horse Health Lines, news publication for the Western College of Veterinary Medicine’s (WCVM) Townsend Equine Health Research Fund, is now online.
USask honours faculty members named distinguished professors
The University of Saskatchewan (USask) honours professors from across campus for their exceptional achievements in research, scholarly or artistic work.