Drug could offer single-shot solution to breeding issues

Breeding horses is often a numbers game: owners and veterinarians alike want improved success rates at lower costs, but some mares have more trouble than others.

Dr. Charlotte Williams: a passion for pets and people

Growing up in North Battleford, Dr. Charlotte Williams (DVM) always had animals.

USask veterinary student exemplifies balance and perseverance

A passion for animals and a thirst for knowledge are at the heart of Coral Williams’ mission to succeed.

Research chair targets better health, productivity in beef herds

With $2.35 million from the federal government and the Beef Cattle Research Council (BCRC), veterinary researcher Dr. Cheryl Waldner will undertake a major five-year research program to advance beef cattle health and productivity, helping to sustain the profitability and competitiveness of Canada’s $17-billion-a-year beef industry.

USask livestock researchers awarded nearly $7 million

Twenty University of Saskatchewan (USask) projects have been awarded nearly $7 million through a joint federal-provincial government funding program to advance cattle, swine and poultry research.

New reproductive tool may help meet consumer demand for ‘natural’ food

Today’s consumers want more from their food, and the beef and dairy industries are constantly striving to meet these demands. As more companies market their food as “natural” — raised without additional use of hormones, steroids, and antibiotics — concerns regarding steroid use in food production have multiplied.

USask’s VIDO-InterVac approved to work on Wuhan coronavirus

University of Saskatchewan researchers have received permission from the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) to start working on a vaccine for the coronavirus recently discovered in China, and they hope to have first candidates for testing in an animal model in six to eight weeks.

'No bad horse'

Unlike many who spend their careers working with horses, Dr. Sue McDonnell wasn’t always so keen on the equine species.

This worm may be a dog’s best friend

Most pet owners want nothing but the best for their furry mates. They go to great lengths to make sure their pets are living happy and healthy lives. But good intentions do not always protect pets from unknown ingredients in pet food.

New parasite species found in northern wildlife

University of Saskatchewan researchers are part of an international team that has discovered a new species of a parasite, nicknamed “Oddball,” in northern Canada’s wolverines.                  

Every breath we take

Our lungs face a never-ending battle. With every breath, we inhale millions of airborne particles, including many that are potentially harmful. Our bodies must be prepared to defend us from these invaders.

Tiny parasite could lead to big health problems

A tiny parasite with a long name has the potential to cause some very big health problems for Canadians and their pets in the future.

Purebred bison revival

WCVM researcher Dr. Gregg Adams is part of the research team that is featured in a Globe and Mail article on reviving the purebred bison population. Adams' reproductive research studies are taking place at the University of Saskatchewan's new Livestock and Forage Centre of Excellence.

VIDO-InterVac to conduct African swine fever research

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has announced that the University of Saskatchewan’s Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization-International Vaccine Centre (VIDO-InterVac) will work with African swine fever (ASF). This move further supports Canada’s preparedness strategy by increasing the country's research capacity.

EHV-1 confirmed in Saskatoon horse

Diagnostic tests have confirmed that a Saskatoon-area horse with neurologic disease is a positive case of equine herpes virus 1 (EHV-1) — a common virus that causes respiratory disease as well as outbreaks of neurologic disease and abortions in horse populations worldwide.

Watch for holiday dangers to family pets

While the holidays are a joyous time for many people, the extra hustle and bustle of large gatherings can make it easy for household pets to get into trouble unnoticed.

WCVM Today’s most-read links of 2019

As the calendar year draws to a close at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM), we’re celebrating the holiday season by highlighting some of the most-read college articles posted on WCVM Today in 2019.

Dowling masters the art of change

It may seem unusual to walk away questioning your own judgments and biases after a conversation with a veterinary pharmacologist, but this is exactly the type of deep thinking Dr. Trish Dowling inspires.

Potentially toxic chemicals from LCDs in nearly half of household dust samples tested: USask-led study

Chemicals commonly used in smartphone, television, and computer displays were found to be potentially toxic and present in nearly half of dozens of samples of household dust collected by a team of toxicologists led by the University of Saskatchewan (USask).

‘Vet for a day’ led to student’s career choice

Emmalyn Elgersma can still pinpoint the actual day in Grade 9 when she knew veterinary medicine was the right career for her.

Sights set on genetic test for eye disease

Researchers hope to extend the golden years for beloved pets by addressing a condition causing blindness in senior dogs.

Partnership provides primary healthcare experience

WCVM student Jennifer Michaud was the first student to complete the Hill's Scholar program at Ontario Veterinary College (OVC), an external rotation available at the college's Primary Healthcare Centre (PHC).

From ‘wallflower cats’ to racehorses, Fong cares for them all

The American Kennel Club’s Breed Identification Guide isn’t a common bestseller in the kids’ book section, but for Kiran Fong, memorizing the guide’s contents was something that occupied her for hours while growing up in Calgary, Alta.

Study focuses on bee world’s royalty

Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) researchers have welcomed female royalty onto campus. But their brush with the upper crust is in a much different class than Meghan Markle or Kate Middleton.

Mild Zika infection in fetuses may cause brain abnormalities

Using a relevant animal model (pigs), University of Saskatchewan (USask) researchers have shown that mild Zika virus infection in fetuses can cause abnormal brain development in apparently healthy young animals.

Agribition pledges $100,000 to Livestock and Forage Centre of Excellence

Canadian Western Agribition (CWA) has announced a contribution of $100,000 over the next decade to the University of Saskatchewan’s Livestock and Forage Centre of Excellence (LFCE), the largest and most comprehensive centre of its kind in Canada.

Blanket exercise builds understanding at the WCVM

Two hours can make a big difference in one’s understanding of the role all Canadians play in building reconciliation with Indigenous people in Canada.

Veterinary pursuit

While growing up in Calgary, Alta., Angela Murray spent a lot of time playing with animals — whether it was her friends’ pets, her own menagerie of animals, or strays she had brought home.

‘Why wait?’ researchers work toward bison biobank

The day begins beautifully. The sun is shining and the vivid blue sky stretches out over the never-ending prairies. I’m at the Native Hoofstock Centre — part of the University of Saskatchewan’s Livestock and Forage Centre of Excellence (Goodale Farm). Believe it or not, I’m helping to shift a sedated, 550-kilogram bison cow into a better position to collect her eggs (oocytes).

Unique agriculture collaboration founded on four legs

If you’ve never had the chance to see or assist in a calving, the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) and the Canadian Western Agribition (CWA) are hoping to change that.

Vet career encompasses what Streeter loves best

Horses have always been an integral part of Michelle Streeter’s life. In addition to her mother’s services as a horse trainer and riding instructor, the family’s equestrian facility near Oakbank, Man., also offered a horse-drawn wagon and carriage service.

Yont’s younger self had it figured out

Tory Yont can think of no better place to grow up than the southern Saskatchewan farming community of Langenburg whose residents supported her in everything that she did.

Scientists probe cannabis’ potential as anti-vomiting therapy for pets

Cannabis products are rapidly increasing in popularity for treatment of every sort of ailment in people, and many dedicated users say they can help treat your pet, too. But are these claims valid?

2019 Fall Convocation award recipients

More than 900 degrees, diplomas and certificates will be awarded to University of Saskatchewan (USask) students at the annual Fall Convocation ceremonies on Wednesday, Nov. 13 at Merlis Belsher Place.

Vet students share tips for acing that admissions interview – and life in vet school

Gaining admission to the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) is a highly competitive process, but who better to give advice on how to get into — and through — veterinary school than WCVM vet students themselves?

Therapy dogs give One Health benefits

Meet Womble. He’s part of the “PAWS Your Stress” therapy dog program at the University of Saskatchewan (USask).

International experience gives One Health perspective

Carina Beeksma of Edmonton, Alta., has worked in the veterinary profession for nearly 10 years, but she didn’t realize she was also working in One Health until she started studying at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) three years ago.

Master’s student finds One Health links in equine research

Samantha Steinke’s academic career is the perfect example of how embracing the links between human and animal health can lead to unexpected opportunities.

Celebrating RVT month at the WCVM

October is national Registered Veterinary Technologist and Technician (RVT) month in Canada.

Cow-calf survey shows successful move to spring calving

Results of the Western Canadian Cow-Calf Surveillance Network study led by researchers at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) have shown producers are increasingly moving to a later calving season as a means of expanding herds.

Switch in career gears works for Yukon vet student

Savannah Fuller was born and raised in Whitehorse, Yukon, where outdoor recreation is a big part of the lifestyle. She spent her younger years camping, fishing and riding horses, dirt bikes and snowmobiles, and she believes that growing up in the Yukon was a major influence in her life.

Multi-disciplinary intervention critical for animal hoarding cases

There are potentially two million hoarders in Canada, and while scientists have gained a better understanding of people who excessively collect objects, research and awareness of animal hoarding is still limited.

A researcher's curiosity

The Green & White asked three top USask researchers to recall that special eureka moment when they knew where their career path was taking them.

Ducks Unlimited Canada and USask partner to advance wetland and waterfowl conservation in Canada

SASKATOON – Today, Ducks Unlimited Canada (DUC) and the University of Saskatchewan (USask) announced a partnership to create the Ducks Unlimited Canada Endowed Chair in Wetland and Waterfowl Conservation—the first of its kind in Canada.

Manitoba student aims for rural vet career

Beau Bridgeman has always known that he wanted to be a veterinarian. He grew up on his family’s equine ranching operation in Rivers, Man., where his father raised purebred appaloosa, paint and quarter horses — up to 150 mares and foals each spring. He spent hours helping his dad and then his uncle with the animals on their farms.

Iodine important ingredient for equine fetus

Paddocks at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) are full of frisky foals and watchful mothers during the spring foaling and breeding season. While most of these mares and foals are thriving, some foals born on the Canadian Prairies aren’t so lucky.

Autumn awards celebrate excellence

The Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) honoured outstanding students and faculty at its annual fall awards banquet on Sept. 20.

Variety spice of life for Alyssa Vickers

Milking a water buffalo is just one of the skills that Alyssa Vickers has mastered over the past few years.

Ducks Unlimited Canada and USask partner to advance wetland and waterfowl conservation in Canada

Today, Ducks Unlimited Canada (DUC) and the University of Saskatchewan (USask) announced a partnership to create the Ducks Unlimited Canada Endowed Chair in Wetland and Waterfowl Conservation—the first of its kind in Canada.

Injured owl flies free

After months of rehabilitation, a great horned owl named Newman is enjoying a second chance at life in the wild — thanks to the hard work of a dedicated team of clinicians, students and staff at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM).

The effects of climate change on waterfowl

Stressed-out ducks have the potential to give University of Saskatchewan (USask) researchers a glimpse of the destructive effects of climate change on wetlands — the primary habitat for ducks and other waterfowl.

Let’s talk veterinary medicine

First-year University of Saskatchewan (USask) veterinary student Madison Audeau was completely obsessed with animals when she was a child, and her mother nurtured that passion by letting her have dogs, cats, rabbits, hamsters, mice, gerbils, fish, frogs and salamanders.

'One tough horse'

It was one of those mystery injuries every horse owner dreads: Glenda Giles found the one-month-old colt, out of her favourite Standardbred mare, with a badly scraped hind leg. Since her husband, Clayton Braybrook, was away harness racing in Manitoba, it was up to Giles to take care of the injured foal named Sonny.

Vetavision brings veterinary medicine to the community

On Sept. 27 and 28 the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) opened its doors to thousands of visitors during its popular student-run open house.

Student’s adventure continues at vet school

Jack Krone was working as a summer research student at Prairie Swine Centre (PSC) when he found out in early June that he’d been accepted to the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM).

‘Mom, the Vet’

First-year veterinary student Charlene (Charlie) Swain grew up in a family that surrounded themselves with animals, so a job with Fort McMurray’s SPCA seemed like a good fit for her after high school.

Seasonal link to ‘urinary blockage’ in cats?

Veterinary researchers at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) are investigating whether the time of year affects feline urethral obstruction (UO) in Saskatchewan’s cat population.

Revelling in research: poster day celebrates undergraduate program

From disease in honey bees to pain management in beef calves, the research topics on display at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine’s (WCVM) annual undergraduate research poster day spanned species big and small.

Understanding metabolic bone disease in reptiles

Today’s pet market offers more species of reptiles than ever before. But all too often, these popular pets are falling ill with completely preventable diseases such as metabolic bone disease (MBD) – a condition that often goes unnoticed until it’s too late.

Faba beans potential pet food ingredient?

Do you ever survey the vast options of pet foods and find yourself wondering which one your pet will enjoy?

Dachshund gait analyzed in new study

Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) student, Rachel McCann, spent her summer surrounded by small, wiggly canines.

WCVM researcher receives beef industry award

Dr. John Campbell, a leader in beef animal health and welfare, has been awarded the 2019 Canadian Beef Industry Award for Outstanding Research and Innovation. Campbell was honoured on August 14 during the 2019 Canadian Beef Industry Conference in Calgary, Alta.

Blood donation program for pets seeks volunteers

When Emma Thomson adopted Asha from a local shelter, she wasn’t expecting to come home with a dog that day — let alone one that would become a life-saving support for other animals.

Heart health’s potential link to early-life nutrition

While researchers are well versed in the cardiovascular risks associated with a bad diet, a lack of exercise, and smoking, they’re still learning about another possible risk factor that could lead to poor cardiac health: what you consume in the first few weeks of your life. 

WCVM researchers part of polar report

A federal science report describing field research in Canada’s Arctic features the work of veterinary parasitologist Dr. Emily Jenkins, a professor at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) and University of Saskatchewan (USask) researcher.

WCVM internship primes vet for large animal practice

Dr. Robin (Rob) Stevens had been a practicing physiotherapist for several years when he decided to adopt Cola, a rescue dog from Taiwan. Although Stevens knew he could provide a better life for Cola, he had no idea that his new pet would ultimately lead him to a new path in life as well.

Researcher inspired by memory of beloved horse

Samantha Steinke is a biomedical engineering master’s student, but her love for horses is what led her to apply her expertise to a research project at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM).

Watching for wild carriers of avian influenza

Most people who see a flock of wild ducks flying over a lake don’t automatically think about the diseases these birds could be carrying, but for many chicken and turkey producers, the threat of wild birds spreading disease to their flocks is all too real.

Panel updates guidelines for managing parasites in pets

As more problems related to ticks, worms and other parasites emerge in veterinary clinics across Canada, practitioners now have access to the latest guidelines on managing and treating these organisms in their patients.

This little piggy went to market

How well do weaned piglets cope with stress during transport? Western Canada exports large numbers of weaned piglets each year, but the effects of these transports on piglets’ health and welfare is poorly understood.

Ecologist’s work targets what makes Lyme disease tick

Dr. Maarten Voordouw and his wife Anne enjoy being outdoors, especially with their young daughters, Naia and Margot. But after any outing, particularly if the girls have been playing in the grass or leaves, the couple are diligent about checking for ticks.

WCVM researchers receive $5.6-million for advanced diagnostics research

The future of diagnostic testing for livestock disease could fit into the palm of your hand.

USask researcher recognized for work on predator-prey relationships

It’s a life she hadn’t imagined when she was a young student.

Understanding the “bacterial bond” between mother and baby

A collaborative study that includes researchers from the University of Saskatchewan (USask) and the University of British Columbia is focusing on an unusual but significant aspect of the relationship between a mother and her infant.

Bats waking up to viral reactivation

I feel like a predator. Only my target isn’t a blood meal – it is something far more precious.

Lack of research hinders help for animal hoarders

While reality television shows such as “Hoarding: Buried Alive” have brought attention to people who stash away piles of books, clothing and other objects, the issue of animal hoarding often goes unpublicized and unrecognized as a health concern.

Bacteria-killing molecules may be key to new mastitis therapy

A Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) researcher and his team are taking a molecular approach to finding a new way of treating a common health issue in the dairy industry.

Health plan prioritizes Indigenous-led agenda

Supporting Indigenous individuals and their communities to drive Indigenous health research is a key goal of the new five-year plan of the national Institute of Indigenous Peoples’ Health (IIPH), a Canadian Institutes of Health Research institute based at the University of Saskatchewan (USask).

Getting objective insight into your pet’s vision

Imagine this: you notice that your dog is bumping into corners and objects, and you begin to suspect that he’s starting to lose his sight.

New 'pig code' has enhanced swine welfare

Canada’s swine sector has made a lot of progress in enhancing the welfare and well-being of pigs raised in this country, says Manitoba swine veterinarian Dr. Blaine Tully.

First veterinary class celebrates 50 years

Drs. Ernie Olfert and Peter Rempel were working at a fishing camp at Dore Lake, Sask., in 1965 when they received the letters that would change their lives.

Veterinarian looking at ways to manage TB in northern bison herd

A Parks Canada scientist is conducting research on bovine tuberculosis in bison to improve diagnosis of the disease and to develop better vaccines. This research is conducted in collaboration with the University of Saskatchewan and the Canadian Bison Association.

Playing ‘bee’ to study pesticide effects

Pretending to be a honey bee is a lot of work, but researchers at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) have proved they’re up for the challenge.

WCVM opens Canada’s first PET-CT unit for animals

Western Canada’s regional veterinary college, based on the University of Saskatchewan (USask) campus, is now home to Canada’s only PET-CT unit dedicated to clinical use in animals as well as for animal-human research studies.

First cases show potential of PET-CT unit’s diagnostic capacity

The new technology has only been operating for two months, but Canada’s only PET-CT unit dedicated to clinical use in animals is already improving the care of patients at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM).

Does Fido really need that antibiotic?

Most people know the dangers of taking antibiotic drugs for a flu or cold that doesn’t require treatment, but do pet owners understand that the same rules apply for their beloved dogs and cats?

Collaboration helps researchers solve real-world problems

Dr. Arinjay Banerjee (PhD) has always been a gifted student. However, as happens with many graduate students, the way Banerjee thought about his research was flawed at its core. It wasn’t until 2014, when he came to the University of Saskatchewan, that he realized it and changed.

Want your pet to go vegetarian? Be cautious, warns USask expert

As more vegetarian kibble shows up in pet stores, switching Fido and Fluffy to plant-based nutrition may seem like a good idea.

Dipping into mare’s milk

Milk samples are providing vital information about iodine levels in western Canadian brood mares — the focus of a recent study led by theriogenology specialist Dr. Claire Card of the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM).

Fund receives legacy gift from Saskatoon vet

The Companion Animal Health Fund (CAHF), a veterinary research fund at the University of Saskatchewan, has received a significant legacy gift from the estate of Dr. Michael Powell, a beloved small animal veterinarian who served the Saskatoon community for 35 years.

WCVM scientists awarded nearly $1.5 million in research funding

Researchers linked to the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) have been awarded $1,495,000 to address a wide range of issues including preventing pregnancy loss in horses, evaluating tick-borne diseases, and protecting pigs from influenza A infection.

Therapy may reduce muscle atrophy in spinal cord injury patients

A team of researchers at the University of Saskatchewan (USask) is investigating a therapy for spinal cord injuries that could potentially increase patients’ motor function and decrease muscle atrophy at the same time.

USask researchers awarded nearly $11 M in natural sciences, engineering grants

University of Saskatchewan (USask) researchers have been awarded nearly $11 million to tackle wide-ranging and critically important issues including cannabis, water quality, and swine flu.

Merck Animal Health announces $250K investment to advance livestock and forage research

The University of Saskatchewan today announced details of a 10-year, $250,000 investment from Merck Animal Health for its Livestock and Forage Centre of Excellence (LFCE) – a visionary research facility located southeast of Saskatoon.

Turning the tide for the bigmouth buffalo fish

The bigmouth buffalo fish, or Ictiobus cyprinellus, is one of 67 fish species found in Saskatchewan waters, but it is also one of the six fish species currently at risk of extirpation (gone from a once-populated area) in the province.

Imported spices and frozen vegetables tested for “superbugs”

A University of Saskatchewan research team has found that some food imported to Saskatoon from certain Asian countries has tested positive for “superbugs”—strains of antibiotic-resistant bacteria— but immediate health concerns are likely low.

Investigating tularemia on the Canadian Prairies

Between June 29 and July 19, 1978, a group of seven monkeys at Winnipeg’s Assiniboine Park Zoo mysteriously fell ill.