Early-Bird ticket prices until September 20


Small Animal

Wildlife Medicine

Nicki Rosenhagen, DVM, DAVBP

This lecture series will provide information for veterinarians new to the field of wildlife medicine. Included will be an overview of common presentations and differential diagnoses of wildlife, followed by an introduction to avian radiology, pathophysiology and management strategies for capture myopathy and finally a review of pain management options for wildlife.

Common Presentations in Wildlife Rehabilitation: This presentation is aimed at practitioners with minimal wildlife experience looking to improve their practice. It will provide a brief overview of the importance of patient signalment and history, review red herrings in the field and then break down general presenting complaints using the DAMNITV differential scheme. By the end of the presentation, viewers should be able to provide a list of differentials for a wild animal presenting for care and, perhaps most importantly, have an idea of the patient prognosis based on this information.

Avian Radiology: Radiology of wild birds is often quite different from that of pet birds, from the positioning to the interpretation. This presentation will provide an overview of useful patient positioning, including a few tips and tricks for isolating difficult to visualize areas, review normal avian anatomy and then delve into an in-depth review of cases to highlight both common and uncommon lesions in wildlife medicine.

Capture Myopathy: Capture myopathy is a condition associated with the capture, restraint and/or transportation of animals and is not an uncommon condition in free-living wildlife presenting for care. This lecture will provide an overview of the pathophysiology of the disease as well as predisposing factors, clinical signs and treatment options to help the practitioner quickly identify and manage the condition in wildlife patients.

Pain Management in Wildlife Species: As in any field of medicine, pain management is a critical component to successful case management in wildlife patients. This lecture will provide an overview of what we know of analgesia in wild animals based on current literature and offer options for providing pain relief, both pharmaceutical and other, to the diverse array of species that may present for care to the private practitioner.

Passerine Medicine

Tracy Bennett, DVM, DAVBP
Bird and Exotic Clinic of Seattle

A summary of pet passerine husbandry and management. The attendee should be familiar with pet passerine management and medicine. The first segment will review breeds, basic anatomy and physiology, the second segment will review husbandry and management and the third section will review common medical problems, diagnosis and treatment.

Small Mammals and Exotics

Cathy Jonhson-Delany, DVM
NW Zoological Supply

Urogenital Tract Disorders of Small Mammals: Urogenital tract problems are fairly common in rabbits, rodents, sugar gliders, hedgehogs, and ferrets. It may be difficult to differentiate between the urinary tract rather than the reproductive, since the animal size is small. Diagnostic testing and treatment options will be discussed as well as important anatomical and physiological features of the different species.

Reality of Health of Exotic Animals in the Pet Trade: Puppy mills get all the press, but the health and status of exotic animals in the pet trade is of great concern. Mortality due to poor nutrition, husbandry practices and disease is high. Conditions found include cestodiasis, dermatophytosis, Clostridium perfringens, Chlamydia caviae, Bordetellosis, and other pathogens. Veterinarians should take an active role in addressing these problems.

Gene Editing in Small Animals

Julie Mathieu, PhD
University of Washington

Genereation of Transgenic Animals with CRISPR: The learning objective of the presentation is to gain knowledge regarding genome editing strategies in animals, understand the basics of CRISPR/Cas9 technology and know how it can be used to model human diseases in animals.  The presentation will start with an introduction to the concept of transgenic animals and an overview of genome editing techniques available to generate such animals. The attendees will then learn the history as well as the biology and principles of CRISPR/Cas9. The various methods of delivery of CRISPR components into mouse embryonic stem cells and zygotes will be presented. Both the advantages and limitations of CRISPR will also be discussed. The presentation will then review the possible applications of this technology with concrete examples of the usage of CRISPR to model human diseases in animals. Lastly, a case study will be presented in order to explain the workflow of generating a mutated animal using CRISPR/Cas9. At the end of the presentation the attendees should be familiar with all the steps important in the process of making precise genetic modification in animals, from the design of the CRISPR strategy to the generation of the transgenic animal.

Dog Aging Project

Daniel Promislow, A.B., D.Phil
University of Washington

The Dog Aging Project – How Genes and Environmental Shape Health Lifespan: Dr. Promislow’s seminar will describe the recently launched Dog Aging Project, a nationwide citizen science study of aging in companion dogs. This study of tens of thousands of dogs combines survey data, gene sequencing, biological samples, veterinary EMRs and environmental data to understand the determinants of healthy aging.

Biomedical Research

Ken Gordon, BSocSC, GradDip Bus. Std., PGDip Pub. Pol.
The Northwest Association for Biomedical Research

A Word Without Biomedical Research – A Potential Reality: This session will outline the importance of biomedical research for both animal and human health, and the necessity to now rebuild a coalition of support for this undertaking.

Feline Liver Disease

Margie Scherk, DVM, DAVBP

Sponsored by:

Optimizing Care for Your Feline Patient with Liver Disease: Whether lipidosis or cholangitis or yet a different hepatopathy, there are some basics that help us to understand what the process is and choose appropriate therapeutics to aid in the recovery of our feline patients.

Objectives: Upon completion of this session, the participant should be able to:

  • Differentiate between hepatic lipidosis and cholangitis
  • Implement the appropriate treatment plan for each condition
  • Understand prognostic outlook for each condition

Emergency Critical Care

Beth Davidow, DVM, DACVECC
The Veterinary Idealist

Case Based Approach to Fluid Therapy: The goal of this lecture is to review the physiology of fluid compartments and balance within the body. We will use this understanding to explain fluid treatment choices in terms of tonicity, electrolyte balance, and acid-base balance. We will use cases to present fluid choice and administration in different scenarios

Rational Use of Antibiotics for Emergency Patients: Antibiotics are both life saving but overuse can lead to resistance. This presentation will use cases to explain when to start antibiotics quickly. We will look at the evidence available to help choose antibiotic type, dose, and length of treatment for common emergency conditions.

Basics of Transfusion Medicine: Transfusions can be lifesaving but do have risks. We will present components of blood and their appropriate use, calculating blood products dosages, and safe administration of blood.

Practice Management


John Payne, MBA
Compassion-First Pet Hospitals

Sponsored by:

The Rise of Corporatization in Veterinary Practice: Learn the latest in the changing market of veterinary practice ownership and the growth of corporations in the delivery of veterinary medicine. Hear about the mergers and acquisitions and the opportunities to exist on the playing field, including the tools that allow practices to succeed. There’s a place for everyone whether it’s in a large incorporation of practices, a small or mid-sized local or regional corporate group, or a well-run private practice.

Recruiting and Hiring

Andrew Cowley, BA
People, Pets & Vets

Sponsored by:

Andrew’s presentation covers the importance of talent acquisition in a successful business. This presentation includes topics, such as how to build a talent acquisition team from nothing, what an effective recruiting and hiring process looks like, why you need to be 100% transparent during your recruiting process, and how to build the future of your business through recruiting.

How to Build a Talent Acquisition Program from the Ground Up: “Talent Acquisition” is people recruitment. To have a high-performing practice, you need high-performing people. Every practice needs a talent acquisition program because the future of your practice depends on the people running and managing it. This means all current employees are a conduit to all future employees. During this Session, you will learn how to successfully recruit employees for a high-performing veterinary practice. Additionally, you will learn how to build a program that attracts high-performing professionals and establishes a framework for the “people side” of your business. Don’t know where to start? No problem! You will learn how to build a successful talent acquisition program whether you are a practice owner or hospital manager. A high performing practice cannot function without high-performing employees. A good talent acquisition program will establish a process that virtually guarantees a high-functioning team. A good talent acquisition program needs to be repeatable and reliable. Having just “one or two” high-performing team members is not enough—you need all employees to be high performing! With a good talent acquisition program in-place, you will have an established system that runs like a well-oiled machine—just follow the process for the results you want!

The Recruiting Experience – How to Build the Future of Your Business: Your veterinary practice is a “people business” built on relationships and community. Anyone can build a hospital, stock it full of equipment, and light-up the “Open” sign every day. However, a high-performing hospital fully depends on the people in it! Having good people working in your hospital not only makes the day-to-day business easier, it shows your clients that you care. After all, what’s better than amazing customer service? It all starts with recruiting! During this Session, you will learn how to build a system that attracts, recruits, and hire the best people out there and you will learn the connection between employees and client satisfaction. The future of your business depends on it! Employees shape the future and success of your practice. “One bad apple can ruin the bunch.” This is true for your hospital—one bad employee can cause irreparable harm to your practice and to your clients. Solve this potential pitfall by recruiting and hiring the best people every time. By establishing time tested tactics to create a good recruiting and hiring process, you can “build-in” a good experience for your employees and clients alike! The importance of recruiting for practice success—everyone in your practice plays a part! The practice owner or hospital manager are not the only people that should be involved in recruiting and hiring—all your employees need to play a part! Why? Because “first impressions” last a lifetime and the experience you give to those you are recruiting will reflect on how you treat them after they start working for you—your employees reflect hospital leadership. If your employees have an amazing experience from day one, you can be sure that your clients will too! A “good experience” is contagious!


Shlomo Freiman, DVM

Sponsored by:

Embracing Telehealth at Your Practice: To compete successfully in today’s on-demand economy, especially during COVID-19, veterinarians must embrace telehealth. Dr. Shlomo Freiman, DVM shares his experience integrating telehealth into his practice and offers insight into how it has been an engine of growth; improving patient outcomes, enriching client experience, and significantly increasing practice revenue.

Technicians & Assistants

Nursing Best Practices

Liza Rudolph, BAS, RVT, VTS (CP-CF, SAIM)
East Coast Veterinary Education

Venipuncture & Vascular Access: The indications, types, and methods of vascular access will be discussed. This includes venipuncture techniques, peripheral vs central venous access, catheter types, placement, and proper maintenance. Aseptic technique will be stressed.

Nursing the Cat Flu Patient: Feline upper respiratory disease involves the mouth, nasal passages, sinuses, and/or upper airway of affected cats. Treatment is mainly supportive and feline patients have their own set of unique considerations. Patient advocacy from the nursing team is often required.

Tick-Borne Disease: It’s not all about Lyme Disease anymore. This lecture will focus on the foundation of common Tick Borne Diseases in the small animal patient and address the changing face of tick-borne disease in the US.

Interpretation of Blood Work, Diagnostic Testing, and Treatment of Disease in Small Animals

Saundra Willis, DVM, DACVIM
Phoenix Lab (now a part of Zoetis)

Sponsored by:

Hematology – Interpreting Slide Review: After a brief review of systematic smear evaluation and basic cell identification, abnormal RBC and WBC morphology and platelet estimate are discussed. The goal of this session is to familiarize attendees with RBC poikilocytosis including spherocytes, acanthocytes, schistocytes and eccentrocytes; neutrophil toxic change and bands, stimulated and atypical lymphocytes, eosinophilia and basophilia and mast cells; platelet clumping and slide estimation of platelet numbers. The emphasis is on canine and feline hematology although some information is provided on equine and bovine hematology

Urinalysis: This excellent review covers the gamut from sample collection to sediment evaluation. It is designed for the clinic doing in-house urinalysis, but is also beneficial for those using the reference laboratory. Topics include the four basic parts of the urinalysis, sample collection and handling, sediment preparation, examination and clinical significance. Identification of bacteria vs. artifact will be stressed, and technique for urine culture. The additional topics of indications and sample preparation for urine cytology, urine protein:creatinine and cortisol:creatinine ratios are addressed.

Parasitology: This talk is designed for the clinic doing its own in-house fecal exams, but the information is important for every clinic stressing fecal examination as an important element of ensuring pet wellness. Topics include sample collection and preparation, direct smear evaluation, flotation techniques, fecal centrifugation, parasite identification and clinical significance, pseudoparasites and artifacts, and additional specialized testing such as giardia IFA.

Optimize your Results Through Sample Submission: This talk will provide a general overview of how best to use an outside veterinary diagnostic laboratory alone or in conjunction with an in-clinic laboratory in the diagnosis of disease with focus on small animals. Topics will include sample collection and submission for studies in hematology, urinalysis, parasitology and chemistry; cytology and histopathology; culture including urine and tissue. Special testing, such as GI function panels, endocrine testing, and infectious disease testing will also be reviewed.


Ed Carlson, CVT, VTS (Nutrition)
Ethos Veterinary Health

Sponsored by:

Nutritional Approach to the Diabetic Patient : Nutrition is an important component of managing diabetic feline and canine patients. This lecture will explain how the proper diet can improve glycemic control potentially reducing or, in cats, possibly eliminating the need for exogenous insulin therapy. Veterinary technicians play an important role in providing nutritional education to the owners of diabetic patients; types of diets appropriate and importance of consistency will be discussed providing attendees an excellent basis to care for diabetic dogs and cats and educate their owners. Case examples are used to illustrate the theories presented.
Learning objectives:
1. Attendees will learn how diabetes mellitus differs in dogs and cats
2. The importance of client communication and follow up to improve client compliance will be covered.
3. Nutritional management strategies for both canine and feline diabetic patients will be discussed

Chronic Kidney Disease; Current Recommendations for Nutritional Management: Thoughts and recommendations on the nutritional management of chronic kidney disease (CKD) based on the latest literature are discussed in this lecture. Including the optimum time to recommend a therapeutic diet, the benefits of feeding tubes, and when a veterinary renal formula might be contraindicated. Understanding IRIS staging of these patients, critical to providing the appropriate diet for CKD management is discussed. The key nutritional factors and benefits of veterinary therapeutic diets are important for the veterinary technician to understand to provide excellent patient care and to educate clients on kidney disease will be covered.
Learning objectives:
1. An understanding of the importance of renal diets as well as when and how to introduce them to the renal patient
2. The importance of client education and tips for educating clients on renal diets
3. How the appropriate nutritional support of the renal patient may slow the clinical signs of the disease and improve quality of life

Nutrition for the Hospitalized Veterinary Patient: Nutrition is vitally important to the hospitalized patient. Unfortunately, the nutritional needs of hospitalized patients are sometimes overlooked. Nutrition concepts, with a focus on the in-hospital patient, are discussed in this lecture. Topics covered include; nutritional needs of ill patients, determining how much to feed, techniques to encourage patients to eat, assisted feeding, food aversions, and tips to be a great patient nutritional advocate.
Learning objectives:
1. How to determine the hospitalized patient’s caloric requirement will be taught.
2. Attendees will learn the importance of providing hospitalizes patients with appropriate nutrition.
3. Techniques for assisted feeding will be discussed