Study’s insights may help expedite Addison’s disease diagnosis

Researchers at the University of Saskatchewan (USask) have identified some unique characteristics that most dogs show when they’re critically ill due to Addison’s disease — insights that may help veterinarians identify severe cases more quickly.

‘There’s so much about a dog that touches people’s hearts’

Volunteering with the PAWS Your Stress program is ‘very rewarding’ for USask graduate Doreen Stumborg (BA’09, MFA’20) and her dog, Laddie

Banned rodenticide still endangers pets’ lives

It’s been a year since Saskatchewan banned the use of strychnine to control rodents, but a University of Saskatchewan (USask) veterinary toxicologist is warning that the highly toxic poison continues to threaten the lives of animals in the province.

USask mourns the passing of Dr. Leslie Dubé

The Saskatoon philanthropist, who died on March 13, 2024, at the age of 91, was bestowed with an honorary degree in 2007 for his many contributions to the University of Saskatchewan and to organizations across the province.

Acts of love and generosity support Milo's miracle

On Valentine’s Day in February 2023, Abi Bashorun made a connection that proved to be her perfect match.

Art exhibition springs from USask dog-human relationship research

An art exhibition featuring representations of the bond between dogs and humans, and based on work led by a University of Saskatchewan (USask) researcher, will be unveiled at Wanuskewin before touring the province for two years.

USask veterinary researchers build tumour bank to advance cancer research

Everyone knows the deadly disease that is cancer, but ironically, what makes cancer so deadly is how little is known about it.

Partnership will expand USask veterinary outreach program’s impact

A new funding partnership with PetSmart Charities of Canada will help a University of Saskatchewan (USask) veterinary outreach program expand its impact in northern Saskatchewan communities where animal owners have little or no access to animal health services.

Public needs to be aware of risks associated with newly approved rodenticide

Animal owners and veterinary staff need to be aware that zinc phosphide, a highly toxic chemical compound, is now approved for use as a rodenticide in Saskatchewan.

A summer to remember: from labs to limelight in ophthalmology research

Last summer, I had the chance to delve into the fascinating world of veterinary ophthalmology research while investigating the microbiome — or community of microorganisms — that’s found on the corneas of dogs.

New diagnostic tools protect dogs and humans from deadly parasite

An emerging parasite known as Echinococcus multilocularis has been increasingly appearing in coyotes in Western Canada as well as in new regions of North America in recent years.

A rare reaction for a rare cat

My cat Bart is my best friend. When I’m sad, he jumps to where I am and lies down for pets and cuddles. He goes crazy for chicken liver cat treats. And when I come home from a long day at university, he greets me at the door.

WCVM veterinarians and alumni earn national honours

The Canadian Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA) has recognized three veterinarians from the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) for their exceptional achievements in improving health care for livestock and companion animals in Canada.

USask clinician recognized for work in remote veterinary care

Dr. Jordan Woodsworth, a veterinarian and alumna of the University of Saskatchewan (USask), has received the 2023 Canadian Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA) Humane Award for her dedication to animal welfare in Canada.

USask veterinary anesthesiologist awarded for advancing small animal medicine

University of Saskatchewan (USask) professor Dr. Barbara Ambros has earned the 2023 Canadian Veterinary Medical Association’s (CVMA) Small Animal Practitioner Award in recognition of her significant contributions to the advancement of small animal medicine and small animal practice.

WCVM’s newest veterinary oncologist finds home in Saskatoon

Growing up around dogs, cats, turtles and chickens at his family’s home in Japan, Dr. Arata Matsuyama (DVM, PhD) knew from a very early age that he wanted to work with animals in veterinary medicine.

Fund invests in pet health research and training

An investment of more than $150,000 from the Western College of Veterinary Medicine’s (WCVM) Companion Animal Health Fund (CAHF) will benefit scientists and graduate students whose research work focuses on improving pet health.

Functional assessments give insight to puppy breeders

When puppies come to see Dr. Kira Penney at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) Veterinary Medical Centre (VMC), her keen eyes notice more than their cuteness.

USask vet hospital’s training day highlights health of canine cops

Committed to a life of fighting crime, a group of dogs at the Saskatoon Police Service (SPS) is anything but ordinary.

SHRF supports USask study targeting dog-human interactions in remote communities

Over $149,000 in funding from the Saskatchewan Health Research Foundation (SHRF) is helping University of Saskatchewan (USask) researchers from multiple disciplines provide support to Saskatchewan communities that are experiencing challenges with dogs.

USask food science graduate investigates healthier pet food

Yikai Ren’s thesis research focused on low-glycemic pet food made with Saskatchewan pulse crops.

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. 

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

USask team plans unique facility to develop, test alternative fish food

A University of Saskatchewan (USask) research team is partnering with an array of industry groups to establish a “globally unique” facility on campus to develop and test plant- and insect-derived proteins to replace the fishmeal that has no great substitute in aquaculture feed today.

ATIM MASKIHKIY exhibit shares ‘dog medicine’ with community

Veterinary researcher Dr. Jordan Woodsworth (DVM) has taken a novel approach to presenting her research findings — engaging with the communities she’s working with through art.

Veterinarians and students team up to support community health  

Veterinarian Dr. Dayle Borchardt (DVM) has seen firsthand how pet ownership can change lives. 

Five questions with Dr. Candace Lowe

For Candace Lowe, DVM, MVetSci., Dipl. AVDC, hard work, determination, and a life-long adoration of animals were all essential to the foundation of her career in veterinary dentistry.

WCVM graduate students excel at research expo

Members of the Western College of Veterinary Medicine’s (WCVM) community excelled at the 2022 Life and Health Sciences Research Expo — an annual event at the University of Saskatchewan (USask).

Canine patients hold key to new bone cancer therapies for dogs and people

You share more things in common with your dog than you think, and these similarities are the focus of research at the University of Saskatchewan (USask) that’s aimed at investigating osteosarcoma, a type of bone cancer found in dogs and humans.

Animal behaviour deciphered

Dr. Karen Machin has studied stress and behaviour in wildlife for many years, but in her spare time, the veterinarian and researcher enjoys training and competing with her dog.

Saving Ooma Girl

When Allan and Maureen Zaleski arrived at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) at 2 a.m. one morning in July 2021, they were ready to do whatever it took to save their dog.

Researchers piece together feline diabetes puzzle

Kevin the cat has faced a roller-coaster of health problems during his five years of life.

Vet Topics (Spring 2022) now online

The Spring 2022 issue of Vet Topics, news publication for the veterinary college's Companion Animal Health Fund, is now available online. 

Emergency needs increase with pet ownership boom

As the only 24-hour veterinary hospital in Saskatoon and area, the Western College of Veterinary Medicine’s (WCVM) Veterinary Medical Centre (VMC) is experiencing increased demand for its services.

Inquisitive anesthesiologist leaves 30-year legacy

In 1999, Dr. Tanya Duke-Novakovski travelled to Leipzig, Germany, for a one-year sabbatical leave from her role at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM).

How to avoid holiday pet emergencies

There are a handful of common causes for end-of-year pet emergencies, so here’s an annual reminder from the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) to help keep your pets safe over the busy holiday season.

Our five favourite articles of 2021

As 2021 wraps up, the WCVM Today team has reviewed the past year’s content from the Western College of Veterinary Medicine’s news archives and selected a handful of favourite stories for our readers. Enjoy!

USask veterinarian’s vision revives German anatomy textbook

When Dr. Monique Mayer (DVM) began studying the dog’s lymphatic system as part of her work as a cancer researcher, she relied on an unlikely assistant: her mother.

WCVM remote clinic in Île-à-la-Crosse a community affair

Students and faculty from the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) at the University of Saskatchewan (USask), along with a team of veterinary volunteers, recently travelled to the northern village of Île-à-la-Crosse for a remote spay and neuter clinic.

Good samaritan fund is ace in the hand for WCVM clinicians

Life is coming up aces for a dog given a chance at a pain-free life thanks to support from the Western College of Veterinary Medicine’s (WCVM) Les and Irene Dubé Good Samaritan Fund.

Copper shines after life-threatening health crisis

During his young life, Copper has gained a reputation for being a friendly and energetic dog. But in early 2021 the young male goldendoodle dog wasn’t acting like himself — and that caused his family to worry.

Pets find a foe in foxtail grasses

An overgrowth of foxtail grasses can cause problems for pet owners during the summer months.

Vet Topics (Summer 2021) now online

The Summer 2021 issue of Vet Topics is now available online. 

Detection and prevention can keep periodontal disease at bay

“Dental disease” includes many oral-dental conditions in pets, but the most common one is periodontal disease — a type of bacterial infection that can greatly affect an animal’s general health and well-being if left untreated.

A new way to look at dental disease

Everyone knows that going to the dentist is an important part of keeping our teeth healthy, but did you know that your pets also need regular dental checkups?

Clinical team maintains critical veterinary services

As the only 24-hour veterinary emergency and critical care service available in Saskatoon, the clinical team at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine’s Veterinary Medical Centre (VMC) cares for some of the most ill or injured animals in the area.

Pet and equine funds invest nearly $270,000 in research and training

Two longtime research funds at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) are investing nearly $270,000 for supporting equine and companion animal health research, education and training for the 2021-22 academic year.

Surveillance project identifies pathogens in dogs on Prairies

A new research project at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) aims to identify disease-causing organisms among dogs — an overlooked population on the Canadian Prairies.

Vets help to make difference in tackling cat overpopulation issue

Cats — or more precisely, homeless cats — helped me decide to change my career plans and go into veterinary medicine.

WCVM Veterinary Medical Centre accepting emergency cases only

As of April 28, the Western College of Veterinary Medicine’s Veterinary Medical Centre (VMC) at the University of Saskatchewan (USask) is accepting emergency cases only for its small animal and large animal clinical services until further notice.

Communicating in an animal's world

Animals have many ways to communicate with humans, but it’s not always easy to understand what they are trying to say.

Study reveals bacteria on eye's surface not all the same

A pioneering study led by University of Saskatchewan (USask) veterinary ophthalmologist Dr. Marina Leis (DVM, DACVO) shows that bacterial communities vary on different parts of the eye surface — a finding that significantly alters understanding of the mechanisms of eye disease and can lead to developing new treatments.

Brushing 'gold standard' for pet dental health

Bad doggy breath is no one’s best friend. It is also one of the most common signs of periodontal disease in pets.

A second chance for Zeke

Instead of celebrating his first birthday at home on July 2, 2020, Zeke was in Saskatoon receiving emergency care from veterinarians at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM).

Collaboration key in USask oncology research

A career in research and academia wasn’t what Dr. Monique Mayer (DVM) envisioned for herself when she graduated from the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) in 1995.

Total hip replacement option for dogs now available at WCVM

Twelve weeks after receiving a total hip replacement, Bryan is doing well and back to his usual, energetic self.

Escaped black cat missing on USask campus

The Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) is asking for the public’s assistance in finding a black cat named “George” that escaped from his owner’s arms outside of the college’s Veterinary Medical Centre on Tuesday, Dec. 15.  

A man's best friend

We all know someone with a beloved family dog, right? The four-legged furry friend that’s treated as good as any member of the family. We also know the heartache felt when it’s time to make the difficult decision to humanely euthanize a pet.

Cancer therapies connect dogs and people

Dogs may hold the key to uncovering novel cancer therapy targets and treatments that will benefit domestic animals and their owners, as well as human cancer patients.

Bruce’s happy before and after

Dennis Fehr brought his dog Bruce to the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) Veterinary Medical Centre (VMC) in December 2018 because of a clunking noise in his pet’s hip.

Top award for Takada

Dr. Kanae Takada, a small animal internal medicine resident and graduate student at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM), is the first recipient of the Dr. Michael Powell Award of Excellence.

Can your pet get sunburned?

As summer continues, people and pets alike flock outdoors to enjoy the warm weather and sunshine. We take along sunscreen, hats, sunglasses and clothes to protect our skin from the damaging ultraviolet (UV) light of the sun — but what do we do to protect our pets?

One lucky kitty

Eight months ago, luck had run out for a severely injured kitten found crawling outside a group home in Nipawin, Sask.

‘Good samaritans’ give $1 million to animal care fund

Leslie (Les) and Irene Dubé will have an enduring effect on the lives of many pets and people, thanks to their gift of $1 million to the Good Samaritan Fund at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM).

Sask. Health and USask scientists launch online tick surveillance program

The arrival of spring brings warmer weather and longer days, but also increased risk of tick bites for humans and animals.

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.

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.

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.

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?

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).

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

Veterinarians warn caution around wildlife

Veterinarians advise pet owners to be careful when around wildlife with their pets, as injuries caused by wildlife attacks can be severe and life threatening.

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.

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?

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.

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.