Gail Golab, head of the American Veterinary Medical Association Animal Welfare Division, is America's first veterinarian to receive animal welfare credentials.

Golab earned her membership level credential in the Australian College of Veterinary Scientists' animal welfare chapter. Australia is the only country that offers an animal welfare certification for veterinarians.

"We've long recognized and valued Dr. Golab's expertise and national recognition in animal welfare," says Ron DeHaven, chief executive officer of the AVMA. "This new certification from Australia adds international recognition and reflects positively on her as well as the overall level of expertise of the AVMA staff. We are very fortunate to have Gail, as well as other very talented and dedicated staff members at the AVMA."

Golab is the only American member of the ACVSc, as well as being the only American veterinarian within its animal welfare chapter. Earning the membership involved more than two years of study and successful completion of written and oral exams. The written exam was conducted in the United States and the oral exam in Australia.

"I'd considered attempting to obtain this credential for some time and finally decided it was time to pursue it,” says Golab. “Certainly there was hard work involved, but I've benefitted immensely from the experience.”.

"My work at the AVMA was a real asset to my studies, because as head of the Animal Welfare Division I'm constantly exposed to and researching animal care practices affecting a variety of species across a range of uses," Golab adds. "I look forward to using the additional knowledge to assist the AVMA in continuing to formulate rational and effective approaches to these complex issues."

Golab said her studies have not only broadened her understanding of the scientific and ethical theory associated with animal welfare decisions, but have also created strong links with colleagues in the international veterinary and animal welfare communities.

Source: AVMA