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8 November 2012
Following last year's landmark report the British Veterinary Association (BVA) welcomes the second PDSA Animal Wellbeing (PAW) Report which exposes a serious lack of understanding and provision of basic levels of care for millions of the UK's pets. Revealing alarming levels of problem behaviour in dogs and highlighting the consequences of an obesity epidemic in dogs, cats and rabbits, the report also draws attention to the number of pets not registered with a vet and therefore at risk of disease due to not being vaccinated or neutered.
The BVA urges vets in practice to read the report which identifies where owners are misinformed or unaware and highlights areas that vets in practice can work on with their clients to help achieve better wellbeing for pets.
Commenting, Peter Jones, President of the BVA, said:
“This is another excellent report from the PDSA offering real insight into clients' motivations. Understanding what drives owners' attitudes, as well as helping them to understand key health and welfare issues, should help us to clarify misconceptions in the consulting room and hopefully change behaviour at home.
“On the positive side, with pet obesity ever rising it is good to see that there is a slight increase in the proportion of owners starting to recognise obesity in their pets. This is, no doubt, in part due to the tireless work of charities like the PDSA and the veterinary profession as a whole.
“Sadly, despite most owners' awareness of the ill effect that bad nutrition has on their pet this has not led to them cutting out pet treats. The fact that few can identify a healthy body shape shows that much remains to be done.
“The section on preventive healthcare remains worrying with many owners seemingly not believing in the concepts of microchipping, neutering and vaccination. Vets have a real responsibility to help communicate these issues to the pet owning public for the benefit of both clients and their animals.
“The report very clearly identifies where owners are misinformed or unaware and highlights areas that vets in practice can work on with their clients to help achieve better wellbeing for pets.
“The report is very clearly laid out and well worth a read. We would encourage all vets to take a look and identify any new educational resources to promote in the practice, in newsletters and on websites in addition to the ones they already make available to clients. The AWF leaflets, the PDSA's own website, and the Education Alliance are all good starting points.”