Animal welfare = public health, the role of the veterinarian in society | series nine

The relationship between people and animals has a historical character, functional in some cases and emotional in the vast majority of them.

Over the years, the animals have been adopting different roles within society. For example, animals are associated with food production, therapeutic issues, and “work” (such as security forces or rescue dogs). Even the recognition of animals as sentient beings has changed and it is no longer strange to hear talk of animal welfare related to both companion animals and food production.

In any of the cases, veterinarians are companions and fighters for the health of animals. It is important to understand that animal welfare does not only mean that the dog or cat in question lives in a healthy way, or that good practices are controlled in livestock establishments, but also includes the prevention of zoonotic diseases; That is, it translates directly to public health, not just animal health.

The personality of the veterinarian in the community

The emergence of the One Health concept reinforces the multidisciplinary work of veterinarians, who are beginning to be seen as agents of public health and whose work is becoming increasingly important to prevent the emergence of new, potentially epidemic diseases.

In this context, it is worth noting the recent decree promoted by the Minister of National Health, Dr. Carla Vezzotti, which recognizes the veterinary profession as a health interest and veterinarians as public health workers.

“We are working on the prevention of zoonotic diseases and we have a very important role in the livestock chain along with producers and technicians. We must be aware that we are part of a team, which must work in this way to achieve the necessary standards, ”they affirm from the College of Veterinarians in Buenos Aires.

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This year’s World Veterinary Day is being celebrated under the theme “Promoting Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in the Veterinary Profession”. The organization that promotes this celebration aims to raise awareness about these three concepts, which are directly related to the well-being of every veterinary professional, something that gets better when these three ideas are promoted and put into practice.

Although the variety of each job added to the physical and mental load of the profession is high from the point of view of daily requirements, the veterinary profession is still a rewarding activity. Recently, in particular, new responsibilities have arisen that have brought the arduous and exhausting work of the responsible veterinarian, such as the wildfires on the Argentine coast at the beginning of last year or the recent outbreak of zoonotic diseases.

In conclusion, we must reflect on the celebration of Animal Day in Argentina and the importance of animal welfare, not only for dogs and cats, but also putting issues on the agenda such as responsible ownership, animal abuse, sustainable production, ecological care environment, good agricultural practices; Concepts that, without a doubt, require a greater commitment from all veterinary professionals who, with their contribution to public health, day by day are arranging the profession to a greater extent.

From the College of Veterinarians of the Province of Buenos Aires, we salute all veterinarians of their day, appreciating the professionalism and daily effort that are undoubtedly the attitudes that truly glorify our activism.

Aileen Morales

"Beer nerd. Food fanatic. Alcohol scholar. Tv practitioner. Writer. Troublemaker. Falls down a lot."

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