U.K. vet forum said that exotic pets are a top priority.
The issue of exotic pets was chosen as a top animal welfare priority by delegates who attended the recent British Veterinary Association Animal Welfare Foundation Discussion Forum. Attendees included veterinary surgeons, representatives from animal welfare organizations, and representatives in the industry, academics and government sectors.
Delegates were asked to vote for the most important animal welfare priorities that the new Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs ministerial team should focus on. The top three welfare issues were:
- Exotic pets: the lack of understanding regarding their care needs, the abandonment of fashionable pets and the disease risk of importing exotics to the United Kingdom
- Welfare education and labeling information: the need for impartial expert information for consumers on farm animal welfare, as well as food and farming education in schools
- Welfare surveillance and prioritization: the need for a welfare surveillance system that will allow the government to better prioritize welfare issues
The BVA’s Ethics and Welfare Group will now consider how to best take these issues forward in the next parliament, said Bill Reilly, president of the BVA and trustee of the BVA Animal Welfare Foundation.
The annual forum is held to identify and debate important welfare-related topics with a view to influencing future BVA welfare policy.