Editable...

Advances in the Profession

 

Educational Focus Changes

In the 150 years since the founding of the Ontario Veterinary College, the veterinary profession in Canada has advanced from a group of poorly trained horse doctors in the second half of the 19th century to the highly skilled, sophisticated profession of today, with its members engaged not only in clinical practice but in such diverse fields as public health, including food safety, ecosystem health, animal behavior and medical research. 
This evolution has been supported by sequential changes in veterinary education from the initial private schools through provincially operated colleges to the present day university faculties which enjoy accreditation by the American and Canadian Veterinary Medical Associations. The only francophone veterinary school in North America is in the province of Quebec. The veterinary schools have become increasingly involved in research and graduate studies, producing specialists in a wide range of disciplines.



Professional Recognition

As veterinarians became better educated, veterinary medicine achieved professional recognition. Like other professions, veterinary medicine is provincially regulated.  This recognition started as early as the late 19th century in Manitoba, but not before 1920 in Ontario. The profession has a separate governing body in each province, and several provinces also have their own veterinary associations that support their members. An important advance was the founding in 1948 of the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association, which provides leadership on national issues and animal welfare advocacy, together with the publication of two journals, the organization of an annual conference, and the operation of the National Examining Board which has an important role in setting a national standard for the licensure of veterinarians in Canada.




Infectious Diseases

Major advances have been made in Canada in the control and eradication of infectious animal diseases, particularly of diseases that can spread from animal to humans. The lead role in this endeavor has been taken by the federal Ministry of Agriculture, and the efforts of their veterinary staff over the years have led to the control or eradication of bovine tuberculosis, bovine brucellosis, dourine, glanders, hog cholera, rabies, foot-and-mouth disease and bovine spongiform encephalopathy. The federal government also established a meat inspection program as early as 1907, which today is one of the activities of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.




Changing Role of Veterinarians

Clinical veterinary practice in Canada has changed considerably over the years. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, veterinary medicine was essentially an urban profession for the treatment of horses. By 1920, the horse was being replaced by motorized transport, and the emphasis of the veterinary profession changed from the horse to farm livestock, with an increasing focus on preventive medicine. This change was reflected in the relocation of the Ontario Veterinary College from Toronto to Guelph in 1922, and the move of l'École de Médecine Vétérinaire de l'Université de Montréal from Montreal to Oka in 1928.
As the 20th century progressed, the emphasis in clinical practice changed again - from farm livestock to companion animals, which is now the predominant type of veterinarian practice in Canada. Accompanying this change has been an increasing role for women in veterinary medicine, and in recent years the enrolment of women in the Canadian veterinary schools has been in the region of 80%. The first woman graduate of OVC was in 1928.

In the 150 years since the founding of the Ontario Veterinary College, the veterinary profession in Canada has advanced from a group of poorly trained horse doctors in the second half of the 19th century to the highly skilled, sophisticated profession of today, with its members engaged not only in clinical practice but in such diverse fields as public health, including food safety, ecosystem health, animal behavior and medical research. This evolution has been supported by sequential changes in veterinary education from the initial private schools through provincially operated colleges to the present day university faculties which enjoy accreditation by the American and Canadian Veterinary Medical Associations. The only francophone veterinary school in North America is in the province of Quebec. The veterinary schools have become increasingly involved in research and graduate studies, producing specialists in a wide range of disciplines.

As veterinarians became better educated, veterinary medicine achieved professional recognition. Like the other professions, veterinary medicine is provincially regulated, and this recognition was obtained as early as the late 19th century in Manitoba, but not before 1920 in Ontario. The profession has a separate governing body in each province, and several provinces also have their own veterinary associations which support their members. An important advance was the founding in 1948 of the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association, which provides leadership on national issues and animal welfare advocacy, together with the publication of two journals, the organization of an annual conference, and the operation of the National Examining Board which has an important role in setting a national standard for the licensure of veterinarians in Canada.

Major advances have been made in Canada in the control and eradication of infectious animal diseases, particularly of diseases which can spread from animal to humans. The lead role in this endeavor has been taken by the federal Ministry of Agriculture, and the efforts of their veterinary staff over the years have led to the control or eradication of bovine tuberculosis, bovine brucellosis, dourine, glanders, hog cholera, rabies, foot-and-mouth disease and bovine spongiform encephalopathy. The federal government also established a meat inspection program as early as 1907, operated today as one of the activities of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.

Clinical veterinary practice in Canada has changed considerably over the years. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, veterinary medicine was essentially an urban profession for the treatment of horses. By 1920, the horse was being replaced by motorized transport, and the emphasis of the veterinary profession changed from the horse to farm livestock, with an increasing focus on preventive medicine. This change was reflected in the relocation of the Ontario Veterinary College from Toronto to Guelph in 1922, and the move of l'École de Médecine Vétérinaire de l'Université de Montréal from Montreal to Oka in 1928. As the 20th century progressed the emphasis in clinical practice changed again - from farm livestock to companion animals, which is now the predominant type of practice in Canada. Accompanying this change has been an increasing role for women in veterinary medicine, and in recent years the enrolment of women in the Canadian veterinary schools has been in the region of 80%. The first woman graduated in 1928.