Recognising the growing interest in the importance of pet nutrition from vets globally, the World Small Animal Veterinary Association (WSAVA) Global Nutrition Committee (GNC) confirmed it will continue to campaign for a nutritional assessment to be included in every veterinary visit.
It is also calling on veterinary schools to include more training on clinical nutrition.
The GNC aims to enhance awareness of the importance of nutrition in optimum pet health, and to advance the central role of veterinarians and veterinary nurses as the expert source of information to pet owners.
Co-chaired by Dr Gregg Takashima, owner of a veterinary hospital in Oregon, USA and Dr Marge Chandler, a consultant in veterinary nutrition and medicine based in Scotland, the GNC has created a set of Nutrition Assessment Guidelines, and a Nutrition Toolkit which contains a range of resources for free download and use in practice.
“Research shows that more than 90 per cent of pet owners would like nutritional advice yet fewer than 15 per cent feel they receive it. In some parts of the world, pet malnutrition remains a major challenge, while in many other countries, pet obesity is an increasing problem,” Dr Takashima said.
“The GNC Global Guidelines and Nutrition Toolkit help the veterinary healthcare team to address nutrition at every patient visit and to counter inaccurate and misleading information available online. We are delighted that our resources are now so widely used within the profession and that they are one of the most frequently downloaded resources on the WSAVA website.”