Submitted by: Breanne Barber, RVT, SAVT President

I hope everyone enjoyed my Instagram takeover last month while I was in Toronto, Ontario attending the World Small Animal Veterinary Congress (WSAVA) and the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA) annual conference. Didn’t see it?! Check out the SAVT Instagram (saskvettechs).

The WSAVA Congress has been hosted by Canada three times, 1987 in Montreal, 2001 in Vancouver and lastly 2019 in Toronto. This year was their 60th Anniversary! WSAVA was created in 1961, following a decision by the then International Association of Small Animal Specialists (IASAS) to rename itself as the World Small Animal Veterinary Association. Today they have 110 veterinary association members globally and represent more than 200,000 companion animal veterinarians. Initial progress was slow but, with each World Congress, more associations joined, attendance increased, and the committees became more effective. The Journal of Small Animal Practice, which had become the WSAVA’s official publication, helped to share information between countries.

I was invited to attend a socialization meet and greet hosted by the Registered Veterinary Technologists and Technicians of Canada (RVTTC) Board of Directors which was held on Tuesday night. I was able to introduce myself to other province’s RVTTC representatives, meet local Registered Veterinary Technologists (RVT) and Veterinarians and I also had a great conversation with a representative from Association des Techniciens en Santé Animale du Quebec (ATSAQ). I attended the RVTTC annual general meeting which had very enlightening information that I look forward to using to help our association grow.

I also attended the CVMA’s annual general meeting which included the transfer of presidency. Congratulations to Dr. Melanie Hicks! I look forward to seeing what the CVMA can accomplish in the next year for the veterinary community. I was thankful to see RVTs recognized at the highest veterinary level in Canada as an important member of the team by not only all of the CVMA representatives I met but also the CVMA council members. RVTs have a voice and it is starting to be heard! Also, congratulations to the Canadian RVT of the year Ivana Novosel, RVT. She is creator of IMLocum, IMThriving, RVTTC Alberta Representative and so much more. Well deserved! 

I took in some continuing education that WSAVA/CVMA had to offer. The speakers and talks I attended were very informative and knowledgeable. I was able to take information I learned and bring it back to my practice to initiate the best patient care for our small animal clients and patients.  We all want what is best for our patients and going to events like this is how we can do that! Continuing education is not only something you do to get enough credits to keep you registered in your province, it allows you to grow as an RVT and bring the best medicine and care back to your clients and patients. 

The congress was hosted by the Metro Convention Centre which just happened to be located in downtown Toronto right next to the CN Tower (which was my view outside my window all week), Rogers Centre (Blue Jays were on the road…), Ripley’s Aquarium, a local brewery (Steam Whistle) and just a short walk away you can visit a few local markets, BMO field (and again the Argos were out of town) and catch the ferry to Toronto Island!

I enjoyed all of my time in Toronto whether it was attending a social event, sitting in on a meeting, creating new connections for the SAVT, checking out all the booths at the trade fair, talking to a DVM student from the Netherlands, or discussing the lack of RVTs with a Veterinarian from Sri Lanka. I was appreciative to attend this event as not only a SAVT representative but also an RVT that is learning what the gold standard of care for all of the patients I love and care for everyday! #ProudlyRVT

Pictured left to right: Lois Ridgway, RVT; Darlene Ford, RVT; Carolyn Cartwright, RVT-VTS (Anesthesia & Analgesia), and Breanne Barber, RVT

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