Traveling from the West to the Far East, a Colorado State University veterinarian journeyed to Beijing in April to train Chinese veterinarians in specialty techniques to improve care for the country's booming pet population.
Dr. Ross Palmer, an Associate Professor specializing in small animal orthopaedic surgery at the James L. Voss Teaching Hospital, served as an instructor at the Orthopaedic, Oncology and Cytology Workshops in Beijing. Dr. Palmer and fellow veterinarians, Dr. Darcie Palmer of Fort Collins, and Dr. Alessandro Piras, a veterinary surgical specialist practicing in Northern Ireland, led an intensive workshop on orthopaedic surgery with an emphasis on basic fracture management and joint stabilization in small animals.
"I was amazed by the level of appreciation that the Chinese veterinarians had for the workshops," Dr. Palmer said. "They were like sponges. They wanted to learn everything we had to offer."
China has a long history of caring for agricultural animals. The recent rise in pet ownership has created an increased demand for veterinarians to offer more advanced health care for small animal pets.
The workshops, held at the Capital Medical University April 14-18, were sponsored by the European School for Advanced Veterinary Studies and were aimed at sharing expertise with the Chinese veterinary community. Nearly 60 veterinarians practicing throughout China, Singapore and Malaysia were in attendance. Workshops included sessions on orthopaedic surgical techniques as well as oncologic surgery and cytology techniques for the diagnosis and treatment of cancer.
Dr. Palmer, a diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Surgeons, is an expert in orthopaedic surgery with a specialty in treating dogs with dislocated kneecaps, which is a common cause of lameness in dogs and an increasing problem in large breeds.
"Teaching in China was a very rewarding experience, and I look forward to returning," said Dr. Palmer. "The need for orthopaedic care for small animals is only going to grow in China and other parts of Asia, and there is great potential for collaboration in the future."