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(L-R): Andrea Brocklebank (BCRC executive director), Ryan Beierbach (BCRC chair and cattle producer near Whitewood, Sask.), Eugene Janzen, Bob Lowe (owner of Bear Trap Feeders near Nanton, Alta.), and Reynold Bergen (BCRC science director). Supplied photo.

WCVM alumnus receives beef industry award

A leader in beef cattle production and medicine and an alumnus of the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) has been awarded the 2018 Canadian Beef Industry Award for Outstanding Research and Innovation. Dr. Eugene Janzen was recently honoured for his work at the 2018 Canadian Beef Industry Conference, held in London, Ont.

Janzen, who received his Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) from the WCVM in 1972, is a professor and researcher at the University of Calgary College of Veterinary Medicine (UCVM). His most recent research interests include effective pain control in beef cattle, toe-tip necrosis syndrome in feedlot animals, and livestock welfare during transport.

As a veterinarian and scientist, Janzen has made substantial contributions to the competitiveness and sustainability of the Canadian beef industry. "His passion and dedication to cattle health and his close collaborations with producers are a treasure. He continually aligns his interests with those of the industry and works diligently to understand producers’ difficulties then meshes academic knowledge with the realities of the farm," stated the BCRC news release.

Janzen has contributed to a number of cattle health and welfare issues, including diseases and pathology of feedlot cattle, including bovine respiratory disease, neurological conditions and Mycoplasma bovis, diseases and pathology of cow-calf operations, Johne’s disease, bovine viral diarrhea, lameness, herd health and treatment protocols, epidemiology, antimicrobial use and resistance, sexually-transmitted diseases, health effects of feedlot feeding programs, remote necropsy, pain management and disease surveillance and diagnostics.

In addition, Dr. Janzen was instrumental in developing the disease outbreak investigation programs at both the WCVM and UCVM.

“There are few people with a broader or more prolonged impact on the beef industry than Dr. Eugene Janzen,” said Ryan Beierbach, chair of the Beef Cattle Research Council (BCRC) and a producer near Whitewood, Sask. “His work on disease management and accurate diagnosis has been extremely valuable and continues to help the industry to better understand, treat and prevent issues in cattle health and welfare.”

Janzen is considered one of the pioneers that worked to understand the health challenges in feedlot cattle. His research underpins many of today’s feedlot health protocols, including the role of vaccines, antimicrobials and biosecurity measures. For example, Janzen was one of the first to characterize histophilosis in Western Canada and was the early driver of many of the related prevention and control measures that are now in use.

“Over the course of his career Dr. Janzen has been a teacher and mentor to hundreds of veterinarians, students and producers across Canada,” added Matt Bowman, vice-chair of the BCRC and a producer from Thornloe, Ont. “It’s been said that he is on a first-name basis with virtually every mixed-animal or food-animal veterinary practitioner in Western Canada and his cell number is on the barn wall or in the phone directory of literally hundreds of beef producers and their veterinarians.”

Janzen’s publication record includes more than 110 peer-reviewed publications, and he's frequently called upon to speak at or help organize conferences and events because of his talent and commitment to delivering relevant information to producers in understandable ways.

View the original BCRC news release

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