ASPCA launches Shelter Medicine residency program

November 13, 2020
dvm360 Staff
dvm360, dvm360 December 2020, Volume 51, Issue 12

Officials with the ASPCA have announced they are launching the Julie Morris Shelter Medicine Residency to provide a 3-year training program for licensed veterinarians interested in developing expertise in Shelter Medicine Practice to meet the unique health and behavior needs of homeless animals.

Officials with the ASPCA have announced they are launching the Julie Morris Shelter Medicine Residency to provide a 3-year training program for licensed veterinarians interested in developing expertise in Shelter Medicine Practice to meet the unique health and behavior needs of homeless animals.

The new program, which has been approved by the American Board of Veterinary Practitioners (ABVP) and launches in 2021, will provide trainees with advanced knowledge and skills in all aspects of shelter medicine, including clinical medicine and surgery, shelter operations, population management, high-quality, high-volume spay/neuter surgery, community outreach, cruelty investigations and forensics, and disaster response.

“The role of animal shelters in communities continues to expand, with animal welfare organizations supporting not just homeless animals but owned pets and pet owners alike. There is an unprecedented demand for skilled veterinarians to design and oversee comprehensive programs that support community and shelter animal health and wellbeing, and the Julie Morris Shelter Medicine Residency Program will help meet this need by training the next generation of Shelter Medicine Practice specialists,” Stephanie Janeczko, DVM, MS, DABVP, CAWA, Vice President of ASPCA Shelter Medicine Services said in a press release.

Residents will receive training in all aspects of Shelter Medicine Practice during the program. They will be directly mentored and supported by the ASPCA Shelter Medicine Services team, which includes 5 veterinarians board-certified in Shelter Medicine Practice. Residents will gain hands-on clinical experience through time spent at the Animal Care Centers of NYC (ACC), one of the largest open-admission animal welfare agencies in the country, and a close and long-standing partner of the ASPCA. Residents will learn from and augment the support provided by the ASPCA to external sheltering organizations across the country through direct consultative work, research, and teaching.

Shelter Medicine Practice was formally recognized by the American Veterinary Medical Association as a veterinary specialty in 2014, an acknowledgement that veterinarians who work with or for shelters require unique knowledge and skills to design and oversee comprehensive programs that support animals in shelters and at risk of homelessness.

The new residency program is named after former ASPCA Senior Vice President of Strategic Animal Welfare Partnerships and animal welfare visionary, Julie Morris, who played a pivotal role in the field of animal sheltering for more than 30 years. Through the ASPCA Julie Morris Shelter Medicine Residency program, her legacy as a mentor and pioneer will continue to positively impact the lives of animals.

For more information on the ASPCA’s efforts to help shelter animals, please visit www.aspca.org.

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