Commemorating International Day of Veterinary Medicine

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Every December 9th, veterinarians and organizations around the world are honored for their tremendous efforts to promote and protect the welfare of animals and humans alike.

Today is International Veterinary Day, which is celebrated on December 9th every year. This special occasion recognizes the tremendous efforts of veterinary professionals and organizations such as the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), whose mission is to promote a robust and consistent veterinary profession that protects animal and human health

From discovering the origins of this day to 3 reasons to celebrate its importance, here are some ways everyone can support and recognize the tremendous contributions made by veterinarians around the world.

The roots of veterinary medicine

The history of caring for animals and the prevention and treatment of diseases that affect them is long and can be traced back to the Neolithic. This period contains the first recorded evidence of a cow that had undergone trepanation (i.e., trepanation) – a type of skull surgery that involves drilling holes to treat pain and injury.1 Another practice, considered one of the first Organized veterinary medicine applies to professions that are emerging is the “equine doctor”, who was first introduced to the Arab world in the ninth century because of the economic and military value of horses. In addition, horseshoe makers (ie, farriers) based in London, England, were encouraged by the Lord Mayor in 1356 to form a “community” to improve their horse care practice

After the outbreak of rinderpest in cattle in France, the veterinarian Claude Bourgelat, who is considered the founder of scientifically based veterinary medicine, founded the first veterinary school in 1762. In these footsteps, Great Britain established its first veterinary school in 1790 more than two decades later. The United States would wait almost a century to open its first public veterinary college with a 4-year degree from Iowa State University), which was later renamed AVMA in 1898.1

Currently, the demand for veterinarians continues to grow with the increasing incidence of zoonotic diseases around the world. These clinicians are an essential part in the maintenance, protection, and healing of diseases and conditions that affect the lives of animals, plants, and humans.

The Importance of International Veterinary Day

Every day, veterinarians work tirelessly to save their patients’ lives, regardless of any hurdles or obstacles that stand in their way. Between managing and dealing with customers, standing up for their patients, and completing a variety of day-to-day tasks, these employees deserve more credit and support than they are often given. While every day should be International Veterinary Medicine Day, here are 3 reasons to pay tribute to these hardworking people.

1. Animal health is linked to human health.

Several medical advances in the veterinary field have also helped improve human health care and treatment such as vaccines, organ transplants, and the robust therapeutic skills that many pets by nature have

2. Animal diseases are linked to human diseases.

Adopting a one health approach is key to preventing and controlling a wide variety of zoonotic and vector diseases that affect both animals and humans. Diseases like Ebola, Zika and SARS are all animal origin, underscoring the importance of keeping a close eye on animal welfare and health in order to ensure a healthy human population

3. Veterinarians deserve recognition.

Despite the defined relation to human health, veterinarians and veterinarians are not treated as equal or equal to human medicine. It is time to break that notion and recognize the critical role veterinarians play in the overall health sector


International Veterinary Day. Published November 1, 2021. Accessed December 9, 2021.