AAHA yearly conference to support local Tampa charity Hounds 4 Heroes

Miguel Cruz, Navy veteran, with his service dog, Harris

Helping animals? Helping people? AAHA is dedicated to doing both. That’s why, each year, the AAHA conference promotes a local charity that strengthens the human-animal bond by helping both animals and people.

This year’s charity, Hounds 4 Heroes, is a Tampa Bay charity that provides fully trained service dogs to assist military veterans suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and other disabling conditions. The organization is unique because it specializes in rescuing retired greyhounds from the racetrack to train as service dogs. AAHA will match up to $5,000 of the money raised for Hounds 4 Heroes at AAHA Tampa 2015.

AAHA’s annual conference, which runs March 12-15 at the Tampa Convention Center, is a gathering of the veterinary profession and offers educational sessions, networking opportunities, social gatherings, and special events. Vendors and industry partners will also be demonstrating the latest products, services, and technologies. 

New to this year’s conference are expert-led education sessions in veterinary mental health, backyard poultry, team-taught cardiology and radiology sessions, and basic and advanced dental labs. Additionally, most technical sessions will be taught by veterinary technician specialists (VTS).

Other conference highlights include:

  • More details about AAHA and NAVC’s VetFolio, including VetFolio’s collaboration with LifeLearn Sofie, powered by IBM Watson (Thursday).
  • Announcement of this year’s AAHA-Accredited Practice of the Year Award winners (Thursday).
  • Unique session on pain management to complement the new AAHA/AAFP Pain Management Guidelines, released in the Journal of the American Animal Hospital Association in March 2015 (Friday).
  • The release of the 2015 AAHA State of the Industry. The 2015 data combines industry research with a pet owner survey to produce insights into how pet owner perceptions are affecting veterinary practices (Friday).
  • A special night at the Tampa Lowry Park Zoo, the first zoo in the United States to be accredited by the American Animal Hospital Association. The zoo was also named the #1 zoo in the U.S. by Parents & Child Magazine in 2009 (Saturday).
  • The passing of the gavel at the AAHA-Accredited Practice Breakfast as new AAHA President Dr. Tracey Jensen takes the helm for 2015 (Sunday).

AAHA’s mission is to raise the standard of veterinary care by accrediting animal hospitals. (Not all animal hospitals are accredited.) AAHA-accredited veterinary hospitals hold themselves to a high standard of care and strive to deliver excellent care for pets.

Photo courtesy of Hounds 4 Heroes