News from the Maryland Veterinary Medical Association                                                  Fall 2013

Canine Influenza in Maryland

The recent outbreak of canine influenza in Maryland had dog owners across the state on heightened alert and veterinarians uncertain what to tell their clients.

Canine influenza is not currently a reportable disease so the Maryland Department of Agriculture (MDA) cannot give exact numbers on how many dogs or practices were affected; however, we are the agency most likely to hear from veterinarians and local animal health officials when such a contagious disease presents. According to our best information, the canine influenza outbreak was limited to Montgomery County where 21 dogs contracted the virus and two died from it. In addition, we believe that all of the dogs who came down with the influenza contracted it from the same place. MORE

FDA Continues Investigation into Jerky Pet Treats

The FDA has issued an open letter to veterinarians requesting assistance with their investigation of  reports of illnesses in pets associated with the consumption of jerky pet treats beginning in 2007. As of September 24, 2013, FDA has received approximately 3000 reports of pet illnesses which may be related to consumption of the jerky treats. The reports involve more than 3600 dogs, 10 cats and include more than 580 deaths. The causative agent has not been elucidated, as yet, and potential new cases are still being reported. Most complaints about the treats focus on gastrointestinal signs of vomiting or diarrhea, but some include liver or kidney changes, with acquired Fanconi syndrome as a possible finding.

The letter, which is found in the link below, asks veterinarians to provide samples and information on suspected cases through the Veterinary Laboratory Investigation and Response Network (Vet-LIRN); to notify clients of ongoing concerns about these treats; and to report any suspected pet food borne illness through the FDA Safety Reporting Portal.

Click here for more information.

The MVMA encourages veterinarians to acquaint themselves with this ongoing concern!

Backyard Poultry aka Urban Chickens
by Richard P. Streett, Jr., VMD, AVMA Delegate, Member Maryland Agricultural Commission

Because of the growing popularity of “backyard poultry” or “urban chickens” veterinarians should have some basic information available if there are inquiries about the chickens. In addition to this featured article from the Maryland Department of Agriculture there is also a very informative article in the JAVMA August 15, 2013 issue. The article is also available with links at:

Some General Information for Veterinarians Treating Poultry for the First Time

In the last few years, there has been an uptick in the number of Maryland residents who have
decided to keep chickens and backyard flocks as pets or for private use of their eggs. We are also beginning to hear a little more from veterinarians who treat companion animals that they are facing clients with sick chickens.

The Maryland Department of Agriculture (MDA) Animal Health Section works to prevent and
control infectious and contagious diseases in livestock and poultry, with particular emphasis on those diseases that threaten public health, endanger food supplies or threaten the economic security of the animal industries. Ensuring avian health is a large part of what we do. Maryland is the 7th largest broiler (meat-chicken) producing state in the nation, and poultry is our single largest agricultural commodity, accounting for 35 percent of the state's farm income. We would like to provide our colleagues who specialize in companion animals with some general information about the laws regarding poultry ownership that may be helpful. MORE


Time to Book Your Hotel/Travel Arrangements for MVMA's Winter CE Adventure

It's time to make your travel arrangements for MVMA's Winter CE Adventure. Set for March 12-15, 2014 in Jackson Hole, WY, the Winter CE Adventure combines top-notch CE with a host of winter activities Jackson Hole has to offer. It's important to make your travel arrangements early, so do so today.

Click here for details.

Thank You to the Suppliers that Supported MVMA's 2013 Fall Conference











CPCVM Hosts Career Transition Workshop
by Gary Vroegindwewy, DVM, MSS, Diplomate ACVPM

The Center for Public and Corporate Veterinary Medicine (CPCVM) hosted its 5th Career Transition Workshop September 27-28. Sixteen veterinarians from seven states including Maryland were provided with career guidance and background from a variety of corporate and public practice perspectives.

Veterinarians from the USDA-APHIS, USDA-FSIS, FDA, US Army, Maryland State, corporate veterinary medicine, Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges, the American Veterinary Medical Association, AVMA Congressional Fellows and others outlined their personal career paths and the opportunities existing within the profession and their organizations. CPCVM faculty presented on the processes involved in career transition and directed hands-on exercises including self assessment, resume writing and career mapping.

“The recent AVMA workforce study and numerous other reports highlight the need to expand opportunities for students and graduate veterinarians. CPCVM is proud of the leadership role it has taken as a national resource to support the profession,” stated Dr. Valerie Ragan, Director, CPCVM. She also added, “The ultimate success of this program are the veterinarians who attend them.”

One veterinarian has already sent back a message of appreciation. “Thank you so much for the wonderful and inspirational Career Transitions workshop. I drove back home feeling positive and optimistic about my profession for the first time in years!”

by Dr. Jan Ginsky

We’ve had a busy fall with the Virginia Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine including September's White Coat Ceremony and Mentor Day in October. MORE

VMRCVM MVMA Student Chapter Update
by Eve G. Waters, President

The Fall 2013 kick off meeting for the MVMA Student Chapter was a clear success. Twenty-four new members were recruited which increased the membership to 68 students. Guest speakers scheduled for the up-coming semester are Dr. Allison Wack, VMRCVM Alumna and Baltimore Zoo Veterinarian, and Dr. Cindy Driscoll, Maryland State Wildlife Veterinarian. Officer elections are scheduled for late November. Members of the student chapter enjoyed the the recent Mentor Weekend October 17 and 18, which concluded with a reception for the group on Friday, October 18 at a local hotel.


DogFest 2013 Pawsitively Great!

Baltimore Humane Society’s DogFest was a great success with the biggest attendance ever for the no-kill shelter’s dog day extravaganza. Thousands of animal lovers came out to enjoy the day’s festivities, many of them often remarking how “they had no idea how huge this event was.” People came with and without their pooches, all leaving with big smiles on their faces despite the record heat. MORE


MVMA Mourns the Passing of Two Maryland Veterinarians

Two members of Maryland's veterinary community passed away recently, Drs. E. Edgar Ruebush and Thomas Wolfe. MORE

Have Your Updated MVMA's Contact Information?

MVMA hired a new management firm and now has new contact information. Please update your records to reflect the following:

MVMA Headquarters
P.O. Box 5407
Annapolis, MD 21403
Phone: 410-268-1311
Fax: 410-268-1322

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Don't Forget to List Your Externship with MVMA

MVMA is compiling a list of externship opportunities to support our relationship and communication with the students at VMRCVM. If you are a member and want to list your externship, click here.

Welcome New Members

MVMA welcomes the following members who have joined since our last newsletter was published.

Melanie Klein, DVM
Melissa Jones, VMD
Veronica Meer, CAE –Equine
Korrin Lucas, DVM
Cheryl Stiehl, DVM
Rick A. Ramirez, DVM

Holly D. Polf, DVM
Madeline Boles, DVM
Michael DeTora, DVM,DACVS
Erica O’Donnell, DVM
Kacie E. Schmitt, DVM

MVMA Classifieds

MVMA's most recent job listings and listings for practices and equipment for sale. Click here read them.


Coming Events

November 8-10, 2013

2013 Potomac Regional Veterinary Conference
The Greenbrier Resort

White Sulphur Springs, WV


March 12-15, 2014

2014 Winter CE Adventure
Spring Creek Ranch

Jackson Hole, WY

MVMA Leadership

Board of Directors

Executive Director

Lauren Michalski


MVMA Headquarters
PO Box 5407

Annapolis, MD 21403


Fax: 410-268-1322

Relief Veterinarians

Click here for MVMA's List of Relief Veterinarians


The Maryland Veterinarian is the quarterly publication of the Maryland Veterinary Medical Association.

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The opinions expressed by the authors published in The Maryland Veterinarian are not necessarily those of the MVMA, its officers, directors or members and should not be construed as legal advice, medical advice or a recommendation of conformity.

© 2013 Maryland Veterinary Medical Association

PO Box 5407 • Annapolis, MD 21403 • (410) 268-1311 • fax (410) 268-1322