Weekly News Roundup 4/13 – 4/20


Congress approaches animal welfare with bipartisanship

In the few months since the 115th Congress was sworn in, the House and Senate have introduced more than a dozen bipartisan bills on animal welfare. People are becoming more vocal about their support for protecting animals, which has driven their representatives to address new issues. Some of the bills currently being considered include an act that would provide grants to domestic violence shelters to allow women to bring their pets into shelters and an act that would outlaw “soring” on horses’ legs and hooves.

April the giraffe finally gives birth

April, a giraffe at the Animal Adventure Park in New York, gave birth on livestream to an audience of 1.2 million. The zoo began livestreaming April’s enclosure in February and she soon gained a following of increasingly impatient viewers. April gave birth to the male calf on Saturday, April 15, her fourth. April has her own website, and the zoo has started a contest to name the calf—one vote costs $1 and proceeds will be split between the Giraffe Conservation Foundation, Ava’s Little Heroes, a group that helps families with unexpected medical expenses, and improvements to Animal Adventure Park. You can vote at April's website.

Study looks at mental health issues facing veterinarians

Researchers at Murdoch University are looking for veterinarians registered in Australia to take an anonymous survey that will help them understand veterinarians’ mental wellbeing and their client relationships. The researchers are interested in looking at how stressful environments and interactions with their colleagues and clients affects veterinarians’ mental health. They hope the study results will guide the structure of suicide prevention strategies and improve staff training and focus on healthy interactions.

University of Missouri seeks patients for clinical trials

The University of Missouri’s Veterinary Health Center is looking for dogs with cancer to run clinical tests of a drug that could improve their quality of life. The medication targets cachexia, a wasting syndrome that develops in late stages of cancer, causing loss of appetite and sometimes leading to organ failure. The aim of the drug is to improve end-of-life quality for the dogs. Those interested in enrolling a dog can contact the Center’s Small Animal Hospital.

Photo credit: © iStock/carenas1

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