Veterinary student Kirstie Oswald gives a demonstration on bandaging to young horse enthusiasts. Photo: Christina Weese.

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.

Based on a partnership between Saskatoon's Prairieland Park, Saskatchewan Horse Federation (SHF) and the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM), the Saskatchewan Equine Expo has delivered a range of attractions and experiences to horse owners and enthusiasts of all ages for 10 years.

But what’s made this annual event stand out from similar expositions is its core focus on education — a critical point for the WCVM. As Western Canada’s regional veterinary college, part of the WCVM’s mandate is to share evidence-based animal health information with its stakeholders, including members of the horse community.

Expo is the ideal venue to do just that: each year, WCVM faculty, staff and students offer talks, demonstrations and other educational activities targeting horse health.

Most of these efforts happen in the equine education area — a learning space created by the SHF and the WCVM. Horse enthusiasts of all ages can stop by to learn more about everything from horse breeds, farriery and performance sports to equine dentistry, core vaccinations and the five freedoms of animal welfare.

Another offering is the WCVM’s keynote presentation featuring a well-known specialist in the equine field. In previous years, the WCVM EquineED Talks has featured specialists in dentistry, biosecurity and behaviour/reproduction. The 2022 presenter is Dr. Steve O’Grady, who is internationally recognized for his dual expertise in veterinary medicine and farriery. Click here to register for this special presentation (registration closes Oct. 21). 

The WCVM also helps to organize equine health presentations for the Expo Information Theatre. This year's EquineED Talks line-up includes sessions on the human-animal bond, health care for mares and foals, equine anatomy, and a student's personal journey to a veterinary career. Click here to view the full schedule.  

Being part of the Saskatchewan Equine Expo organization has provided the WCVM many chances to connect with horse enthusiasts and to share knowledge about equine health. In return, the annual event has helped to raise nearly $120,000 in support of vital horse health activities at the college — a wonderful legacy that will have a positive impact on equine health and welfare for years to come.

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