WCVM scientists develop vaccine for lethal poultry virus

Researchers at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) have developed a vaccine that can prevent inclusion body hepatitis (IBH), a particularly lethal virus that affects the poultry industry by causing sudden death to young broilers — chickens that are bred and raised for meat production.

Lambs and calves help prepare students for practice

Fourth-year veterinary students at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) have many different options when choosing their clinical rotations, and with each rotation, they gain valuable hands-on experience. But WCVM reproduction specialists Drs. Colin Palmer and Dinesh Dadarwal thought something was missing from the list: a neonatal rotation focusing on ruminants.

Playtime for piglets

It’s playtime for piglets at the Prairie Swine Centre (PSC), where Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) researcher Dr. Yolande Seddon hopes to find out whether piglets that play are better able to cope with life’s stresses.

Do female pigs want to get fit or full?

Do stall-housed sows want to exercise? Or are they happy staying put and eating more? That’s one question swine ethologist Dr. Yolande Seddon and a team of researchers are working to answer.

U of S researcher awarded $2 million to study swine welfare

University of Saskatchewan researcher Yolande Seddon, working with 14 industry partners, has been awarded a Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) of Canada Industrial Research Chair (IRC) in swine welfare worth nearly $2 million in total.

Scientists strive to revive Canada’s wood bison herds

Straddling the boundary between northern Alberta and the southernmost tip of the Northwest Territories lies Wood Buffalo National Park, the widest-reaching patch of federally-protected wilderness in all of Canada.

Moya targets better welfare, productivity balance for beef cattle

In early January, the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) welcomed its new beef cattle ethologist — Dr. Diego Moya — to the college’s team of large animal specialists.

The world’s most expensive pig disease

For pig producers around the world, porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV) is one of the most economically devastating and dreaded diseases.

Moving forward with sheep dewormer resistance

What will sheep farmers do when the dewormers they’ve been using for years are no longer working?

Could brushes give clues to cattle health?

Could the grooming behaviours of dairy cows be used to tip off the farmer that a cow's not feeling well?

Farm-to-fork link changes face of dairy

Growing up on a mixed farm outside of Regina, Sask. inspired a passion for agriculture in Janna Moats at an early age.

Preg-checking may boost producer's profit

Record high cattle prices. A declining Canadian dollar. Drought across Alberta and Saskatchewan. While these headlines might not grab the attention of veterinarians at first, there are very good reasons for them to pick up a paper. All of these issues have a huge impact on a cow-calf producer's bottom line.

Scientists seek definitive ergot diagnostics

Every summer a vast mosaic of grain crops blossoms across the Canadian prairies. But once they begin flowering, these plants become susceptible to Claviceps spp., fungi that are the source of major problems for the agriculture industry and the focus of a Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) research study.

Cause of bovine digital dermatitis elusive

For more than four decades, a painful disease has plagued dairy cattle – and a team of Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) researchers are rethinking the causative agent.

Pig proponent joins U of S

Early in her academic career Yolande Seddon realized she'd need to specialize if she wanted to make a difference.

Talking turkey with poultry researcher

Karen Schwean-Lardner never thought she would become a poultry researcher. Raised on a pig farm, she was not very fond of chickens.

Study targets ergot’s subclinical effects

When a cow's hoofs fall off, it's a tell-tale sign of a serious ergot toxicity problem on a farm.

New WCVM professor brings bovine expertise

When Dr. Fabienne Uehlinger set her sights on becoming a veterinarian, it wasn't to treat pets or companion animals such as horses. Instead, she chose cattle.

Dairy study could help unite industry players

There is a hint of colour in the eastern sky as I run to the van parked on the curb. Just as I did in my childhood, I'm heading to the dairy farm to work.

New funds kickstart livestock research centre

An innovative new centre focused on all aspects of beef cattle and forage production is on the horizon at the University of Saskatchewan.

Producers must stay alert for anthrax

Government officials warn Saskatchewan livestock producers to stay on high alert for anthrax in animals after confirming a second outbreak of the disease in Saskatchewan this month.

Researchers hatch immunity boosting idea

The same trait that made canaries an effective indicator of danger in coal mines could help improve production outcomes for poultry farmers.

Cow-calf study uncovers key health trends

What does two years of data from a comprehensive cow-calf survey of Western Canada look like? Like a lot of information.

Brachyspira strains not fitting the mold

It's 8 a.m. We enter the Level 2 disease containment area of the Western College of Veterinary Medicine's Animal Care Unit (ACU), ready to work with our research study's pigs. To our right are two shower rooms and a locker area; ahead of us is a bathroom. To our left is a hallway lined with doors leading to anterooms — small rooms where we gear up — that lead to the rooms housing our research project's pigs.

WCVM faculty part of PEDv research effort

Two Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) faculty members are among three groups of Canadian researchers who received a total of $650,000 to investigate porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDv).

Saskatchewan supports agriculture research

Scientists at the University of Saskatchewan (U of S) have received more than $1.4 million from the Saskatchewan Agriculture Development Fund (ADF) to conduct a variety of studies focusing on livestock and forage research.

Livestock disease research gains funding

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's AgriInnovation Program has allocated $260,000 to the Saskatchewan Pork Development Board (Sask Pork) to help control two diseases that threaten swine and beef herds in Canada.

A night with Temple Grandin: March 11

The Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) at the University of Saskatchewan is hosting a special evening with Temple Grandin at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, March 11, in Saskatoon.

Stookey receives bovine welfare award

WCVM professor Dr. Joe Stookey has received the 2014 Metacam® 20 Bovine Welfare Award in recognition of his outstanding efforts to advance the welfare of cattle in Canada and the U.S.

WCVM researchers saving the bacon

I rub my hand over my tired eyes that are aching after spending hours staring at my computer screen. Yet another unsolved case of pigs with bloody diarrhea, and we can't find the culprit … or can we?

Survey gives personal view of cattle farming

I'm driving through lush pasture on a Saskatchewan cow-calf farm, chatting with a producer about his beef cows that dot the green hillside. As we park, the animals wake from their mid-morning snooze and amble single file toward us — eager for treats and a scratch.

Brachyspira research: linking diarrhea to DNA

How do you get a pathologist, a physiologist, a microbiologist and a large animal clinician to work together?

Ukrainian-Canadian vets YouTube sensations

It started with an online friendship between two cattle veterinarians, and blossomed into a worldwide, viral campaign.

Unique table tilts cows' world

It's October and veterinarian Dr. Chris Clark is looking forward to tipping cows again. But he's not planning any Hallowe'en pranks. The associate professor at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) is talking about regaining the use of the tilt table — a highly efficient piece of equipment that was recently refurbished and re-installed in the WCVM Veterinary Medical Centre's Large Animal Clinic.

Low ergot levels may still cause health issues

What do the European Middle Ages, the Salem Witch Trials and LSD have in common?

Study to portray state of cow-calf sector

A team of researchers at the University of Saskatchewan and University of Calgary have received a $1.06-million grant from the Beef Cattle Research Council (BCRC) to conduct a five-year longitudinal study of the western Canadian cow-calf industry.

U of S beef cattle research facility to move

Fundraising can now begin in earnest for a new $14 million, 2,000-head beef cattle research facility to be located south of Clavet thanks to approval from the U of S board of governors and a $1-million donation from the Saskatchewan Cattlemens' Association (SCA).

Will pooled samples work for vibrio testing?

Sexual health is not just for humans: bulls are known to carry sexually transmitted diseases that can infect cows and heifers during natural breeding.

Canada's pig code of practice released

The Canadian Pork Council (CPC) and the National Farm Animal Care Council (NFACC) have released the new Code of Practice for the Care and Handling of Pigs.

Saskatchewan funds livestock research

Ten research teams from the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) have received more than $950,000 in funding from Saskatchewan Agriculture for livestock-related research projects.

Real-time PCR undergoes real world testing

Have you ever watched dollar signs disappear before your eyes? That's what an owner of a cow-calf operation sees when his pregnancy rate decreases and too few calves are born.

On the hunt for mastitis-causing bacteria

Dressed in coveralls and rubber boots, I carefully collect milk samples from the udders of Holstein cows at a dairy farm near Saskatoon, Sask. Besides the 5 a.m. start time, my biggest challenge is preventing the cows from knocking any manure or debris into the tiny test vials.

Federal funds target heel wart research

A $50,000 investment from the federal government will help Saskatchewan dairy producers and researchers at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) develop a vaccine to prevent a debilitating disease in diary cattle.

Behaviour test pinpoints piglet pain

My fondness for pigs took root in 2011 while I was volunteering at the Prairie Swine Centre (PSC) near Saskatoon, Sask.

U of S Rayner dairy facility officially opens

The University of Saskatchewan officially opened its new Rayner Dairy Research and Teaching Facility October 15 with the daughter of its namesake on hand to cut the ribbon.

Step forward for toe tip necrosis

When I began my summer research work at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM), the last thing I thought I'd be doing was acting as a cameraman at a photo shoot.

U of S awarded $3.6-million poultry chair

University of Saskatchewan researcher Hank Classen will lead a five-year $3.6-million research program aimed at helping the poultry industry meet its biggest challenges: feed costs, bird health and welfare, and food safety.

New dairy facility opens at U of S

Early on the morning of July 22, a stock trailer backed up to the Rayner Dairy Research and Teaching Facility. The trailer door swung open and, under the watchful eye of dairy unit manager Marlene Fehr and her staff, the first dozen of the university's 70-plus dairy cows stepped tentatively into their new home.

Vaccines, community pastures make good fit

Producers who vaccinate community pasture-bound cattle for bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV) and infectious bovine rhinotracheitis (IBR) have seen improvements in pregnancy and abortion rates, says a researcher at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM).

Mapletoft a "victim of serendipity"

Around the world, generations of cattle have been born in the past 40 years — thanks to a career choice that Dr. Reuben Mapletoft made when he was seven years old.

Barth: bull development starts young

Management of nutrition during the development of breeding bulls can be a controversial topic, and nearly all of the discussion focuses on management of bull calves after they're weaned.

Clean barns incentive for potty-training cows

The key to potty-training a child is finding the right ways to motivate them and the same may be true for dairy cattle, according to research being conducted by PhD candidate Alison Vaughan at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM).

Steady weight best for reproducing cows

Cows that maintain an average body condition score year round are more likely to get pregnant, have minimal calving difficulties and produce live calves, says large animal professor and researcher Dr. Cheryl Waldner of the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM).

WCVM vet team pitches in at Agribition

Interested in learning how to keep your pets healthy? Want to find out more about animal health? Ever wondered about the key role that veterinarians play in support of agriculture and livestock production?

Symposium spotlights beef cattle welfare

Canadian organizers successfully hosted this week's Third International Symposium on Beef Cattle Welfare that drew more than 450 in-person and online participants from around the world to Saskatoon, Sask., June 5 to 7.

Dairy medicine is veterinary student's passion

Brittany Wheler felt a mix of emotions the moment she learned that she had been accepted to the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM).

Bovine immunity expert part of conference

Dr. Amelia Woolums will give three presentations on different aspects of bovine respiratory disease (BRD) at the 2012 June Conference, June 7-9, in Saskatoon, Sask.

Ergot rears its ugly head on the Prairies

A fungus that's linked to human poisoning in the Middle Ages and even the 17th century Salem witch trials is affecting cattle in Western Canada today.

Bovine case earns award for WCVM student

Patty Tulloch, a third-year veterinary student at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM), won the Student Case Presentation Award during the Western Canadian Association of Bovine Practitioners' (WCABP) annual conference in January 2012.

Disease investigation unit's funding renewed

Renewed support from the Saskatchewan government will allow a team of people at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) to continue investigating unusual outbreaks of disease among the province's livestock herds until 2015.

Webcasts expand symposium's audience

The Third International Symposium on Beef Cattle Welfare, a three-day event from June 5 to 7, is expected to attract more than 250 people to Saskatoon, Sask.

Reproductive research captures top spot

A unique bovine reproduction research study earned top spot for a Western College of Veterinary Medicine graduate student at a prominent embryo transfer meeting in early January.