FECAVA 2018 lecturers

There will be many specialists from different countries giving interesting lectures and carrying out the workshops at 24th FECAVA EuroCongress. Below you will find their short introductions. 




ALDO VEZZONIMed. Vet.,  S.C.M.P.A., Dipl. ECVS, Private practitioner, Cremona, Italy
Degree in Veterinary Medicine in 1975, University of Milan, specialisation degree in Small Animal Medicine (S.C.M.P.A.) in 1978, University of Milan. Board Certified by the European College of Veterinary Surgeon in 1993 in Cambridge. In 1976 founded his veterinary practice in Cremona where he is working as a referral specialist in orthopaedics. President of the Italian Small Animal Veterinary Association (SCIVAC) in 1989-1991, Secretary of the European Society of Veterinary Orthopaedics and Traumatology (ESVOT) from 1993 and President from 2006 to 2008 and again Secretary from 2012 to nowadays. Editor of OrthoVetSuperSite, the educational website of ESVOT since 2007. Secretary of SIOVET (Italian Veterinary Orthopaedic Society) from 2004 to 2007 and President from 2007 to 2012. Member of the Technical Commission of the Italian Kennel Club since 2000. President of Fondazione Salute Animale (FSA) and Chairman of the FSA Panel for Canine Hip and Elbow Displasia Official Control since 1995. Orthopaedic consultant at the Veterinary School of Vienna in 2010 and 2011, Associate Professor in Orthopedics at the Veterinary School of Milan since 2009. Speaker in several national and international meetings and Author on orthopaedics, radiology, surgery. His main interests are early diagnosis and treatment of Hip Dysplasia and Elbow Dysplasia and Joint Replacement. Recipient of the 2013 ACVS Merit Award in San Antonio, Texas, 24th October 2013, for his sustained and distinguished contributions to the art and science of veterinary surgery.

Dr. BARBARA SCHÖNING studied veterinary medicine and did her German doctorate (dissertation) at the University of Berlin, Germany. Afterwards, she did her MSc at the University of Southampton, UK (on behaviour ontogeny of Rhodesian Ridgeback puppies) and her Phd at the University of Bristol, UK (on dog aggression).
She is a board qualified specialist in behaviour counselling, animal behaviour and animal welfare. 
Since 1992 Barbara Schöning runs her own veterinary practice, specialised in clinical ethology and behaviour counselling (since 2000 together with her colleague Dr. Kerstin Röhrs), and a dog training school. 
Dr. Barbara Schöning ist the president of the German Association for Veterinary Behavioural Medicine (GTVMT) and the president of the European Society of Clinical Veterinary Ethology (ESVCE). She authored numerous books and articles on dog and horse ethology, behaviour problems, learning and training. She teaches nationally and internationally on seminars and gives presentations on congresses.


CECILIA ROHDIN graduated from the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences in 1993, worked with farm animals and horses a couple of years to then focus only on small animals, becoming a Swedish specialist in diseases of dogs and cats in 2000. Was fascinated by neurology, started a non-conforming residency program and became European diplomate in neurology in 2010. Now I am working at Anicura Albano Animal Hospital in Stockholm, part-time as a clinician part-time as a PhD student. My PhD project is a collaboration between the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences and Anicura Albano Animal hospital on the topic phenotypic classification of breed-related myelopathies in pugs.

INESE BERZINA graduated from Latvia University of Agriculture, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine in 2001, received a PhD in 2013. Has had training in clinical pathology in USA ( the University of Minnesota, College of Veterinary Medicine) and several countries in Europe (Ireland, Sweden, Spain, Switzerland). Professional interests include cytology and tick-borne diseases.


CLAUDIA HOCHLEITHNER was born 1964 in Linz/ Austria, Study University Veterinary Medicine in Vienna1983-1991, Married to Dr. Manfred Hochleithner-
* Since 1992- now Head of  Tierklinik Strebersdorf 
* Externships for Birds and Exotics in Germany, USA, The Netherlands and UK.
* Special training in Ultrasound for small animals and Exotics in Germany, USA and Austria.
* International lectures about Bird- and Reptile Medicine with special field Ultrasound in Austria, Brazil, Argentina, Poland, Israel, Thailand, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Bulgaria, Russia, Croatia, Thailand, Serbia and USA.
* Several scientific Papers.
* Book Chapter Ultrasound in 2nd Edition of Current Therapy in Reptile Medicine and Surgery  Mader & Divers. Book Chapter Ultrasound in Divers: Mader’s Reptile and Amphibian Medicine and Surgery
Private/ hobbies
* Since 1999 PADI Open water scuba diver instructor
* 2003 Founder and Vice-President conservation organization Endangered
* Coffee Table book: Underwater Universe Edition Reuss
Photo Exhibition Museum of Natural History Vienna: 29.3.2006-2.7.2006: Die Kunst ist in der Natur
* Photo Exhibition Museum of Natural History Vienna: 22.3.2007-7.5.2007: Ruanda Mit den Augen der Kinder
* Underwater filming documentary for Austrian television: Sea of creepy monsters


Veterinary Degree at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine in Lisbon. Master of Clinical Ethology and Animal Welfare at the Faculty of Veterinary from the Universidad Complutense de Madrid. PhD in Veterinary Science at the Institute of Biomedical Science Abel Salazar in O’Porto. Diplomate by the European College of Animal Welfare and Behavioural Medicine, in both subspecialties. Director of the Center for Animal Knowledge (Centro para o Conhecimento Animal). Professor of Animal Welfare, Behaviour and Training in Escola Superior Agrária de Elvas from Instituto Politécnico de Portalegre. Lecturer in different Faculties on Behavioural Medicine, Animal Welfare and Ethics. Trainer and speaker in Seminars, Conferences and Congresses national and internationally. Author, Co-author and Coordinator of several studies in animal behaviour and welfare in Portugal. Receive referral cases in Behaviour since 2003. President of the European College of Animal Welfare and Behavioural Medicine (ECAWBM) and Vice-President of the European Society of Veterinary Clinical Ethology (ESVCE).



Dr JERZY PAWEL GAWOR, DVM PhD, DAVDC, DEVDC, FAVD, (1966) graduated in April 1992. He received his PhD in 1996. Since January 2009 Fellow Academy of Veterinary Dentistry. In 2015 successfully completed requirements and became Diplomate of the American Veterinary Dental College and European Veterinary Dental College. His main field of professional activity is dentistry, head and neck surgery and oncology.  Published and presented over 120 publications in veterinary dentistry. 

JILL MADlSSON is currently Professor of General Practice at the Royal Veterinary College (RVC) and Director of Professional Development overseeing the college’s continuing education programmes. She is course director for the BVetMed and CertAVP programmes.

She is actively involved in undergraduate teaching and continuing professional development (CPD) at the RVC in the areas of clinical reasoning in small animal medicine and clinical pharmacology. She is the senior editor of Small Animal Clinical Pharmacology, the 2nd edition of which was published by Elsevier in 2008. She is also senior editor of Clinical Reasoning in Small Animal Practice published by Wiley-Blackwell in April 2015. She has lectured extensively around the world on clinical problem solving, small animal internal medicine and clinical pharmacology.

Jill is a coordinator for the main small animal clinical CPD streams at The London Vet Show. To keep in touch with the realities of private general practice she regularly consults at a local veterinary practice and at the RVC’s first opinion practice, the Beaumont Sainsbury Animal Hospital.

KATRIN HARTMANN, Prof., Dr. med. vet., Dr. habil. (LMU University of Munich, Germany) Diplomate ECVIM-CA (Internal Medicine)
Katrin Hartmann graduated from the College of Veterinary Medicine at the LMU University in Munich, Germany, in 1987, completed her doctoral thesis in 1990 and her habilitation thesis on the antiviral treatment of FIV in 1995. She stayed as a clinical instructor and Assistant Professor at the Clinic of Small Animal Medicine until 2001. From 2001 to 2003, she worked as Associate Professor of Internal Medicine at the Department of Small Animal Medicine at the College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Georgia, Athens, USA. Since 2003, she is Head of the Clinic of Small Animal Medicine at the LMU University in Munich, Germany, with the rank of Full Professor. From 2009 to 2016, she additionally was Director of the newly founded Centre for Clinical Veterinary Medicine at the LMU University in Munich.
Professor Hartmann is author or co-author of many papers, proceedings, abstracts, and book chapters. She has lectured at numerous international meetings and congresses. Katrin Hartmann is a Diplomate of ECVIM-CA (Internal Medicine) and past president of the European Society of Veterinary Internal Medicine (ESVIM). Her research is concentrated on infectious diseases in cats and dogs, with a special focus on virus infections in cats.


LAURENT FINDJI graduated from Paris’ vet school, the Ecole Nationale Vétérinaire d’Alfort, in France and was subsequently assistant instructor in the anatomy department for a year. He then qualified for a 2-year surgical internship in the same school and later completed a Master of Science in Biology and Physiology of Circulation and Respiration, as well as a university degree in Experimental Surgery and Microsurgery.
He completed an ECVS residency at the Centre Hospitalier Vétérinaire Frégis, near Paris and became a diplomate of the European College of Veterinary Surgeons in 2008. He was recognised as a specialist in small animal surgery by the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons in 2012.
Laurent worked at VRCC Veterinary Referrals in Essex, from 2006 to 2014, where he was one of the full-time soft-tissue surgeons and directors. He joined Fitzpatrick Referrals in October 2014, where he currently is a senior consultant surgeon and director of the Oncology and Soft Tissue hospital. His fields of interest include oncologic, reconstructive and general soft tissue surgeries.
Outside his clinical activities, Laurent gives presentations in many countries and is actively involved in continuous professional development for vets in Europe and Asia, contributes to scientific articles and book chapters and sits on various boards and committees, including the ECVS Examination Committee.

MAARJA URI graduated the curriculum of veterinary medicine from the Estonian University of Life Sciences in 2005. After this, she was enrolled in a rotating internship from 2005 to 2006 in the same institution. In 2006-2011, she continued with self-education and worked at the university clinic as a veterinarian with a special interest in veterinary dermatology.
In 2012 Maarja graduated from a one-year internship in veterinary dermatology at the North Carolina State University (USA).
In 2015 she completed a three-year residency program at the University of Liverpool (UK).
In 2015 Maarja returned to the Estonian University of Life Sciences to work as a senior veterinary dermatologist in the Small Animal Clinic. In 2016 she started giving veterinary dermatology consultations in the Small Animal Clinic of Männimäe in Viljandi (Estonia).
Currently, Maarja is involved in a healthcare project for guide dogs, pre- and post-graduate education, she is a research consultant for a PhD project, and continues preparations for the Diploma Exam of the European College of Veterinary Dermatology. 
Her professional interests include small animal hypersensitive disorders and their management, including otitis (external and media) cases; cutaneous adverse drug reactions, microbiology and auto-immune disorders.
Currently, she is a member of European Society of Veterinary Dermatology (ESVD), British Veterinary Study Group (BVDSG) and Estonian Small Animal Veterinary Association.
Apart from work, Maarja values the time with family and friends, enjoys hiking, water sports and relaxing in the sauna or doing yoga. 

Dr. MICHAEL LAPPIN, DVM, PhD, DACVIM, graduated from Oklahoma State University and then completed an internship, internal medicine residency, and PhD program in Parasitology at the University of Georgia.  Dr. Lappin is the Kenneth W. Smith Professor in Small Animal Clinical Veterinary Medicine at Colorado State University, is the director of the “Center for Companion Animal Studies” and he helps direct the shelter medicine program.  He is the Chair of the WSAVA One Health Committee. His principal areas of interest are the prevention of infectious diseases, the upper respiratory disease complex, infectious causes of fever, infectious causes of diarrhoea, and zoonoses.  His research group has published over 300 primary papers or book chapters concerning small animal infectious diseases.  Recent awards include the ACVIM Robert W. Kirk Award for Professional Excellence, the WSAVA Scientific Achievement Award, and the AVMA Clinical Research Award.  

PETER G.C. BEDFORD - A graduate of the Royal Veterinary College, London, Peter Bedford gained his PhD for studies on canine glaucoma and his RCVS Fellowship for work on aqueous dynamics in the dog. He was the GDBA Professor of Canine Medicine and Surgery at the RVC (1992 to 2002) and Head of its Department of Small Animal Medicine and Surgery (1996 to 2002). Currently, he is Professor Emeritus of Veterinary Ophthalmology (London University) and Visiting Professor in Ophthalmology at St. Georges University (Grenada). He has worked in referral practice since his retirement from the RVC in 2002. Peter is Past President of the BSAVA (British Small Animal Veterinary Association, 1982-1983), Past President of the ESVO (European Society of Veterinary Ophthalmology, 1987-1991), Past President of the WSAVA (World Small Animal Veterinary Association,1994-1996) and Past President of the ISVO( International Society of Veterinary Ophthalmology, 2011-2013). He is an RCVS Diplomate in Veterinary Ophthalmology (1982) and an RCVS registered Specialist in this discipline (2002). A Diplomate of the European College of Veterinary Ophthalmologists since 1993, he is currently its President, the past Chair of its Planning Committee and a member of its Hereditary Eye Defects Committee. He has been the course director for the ESAVS ((European School of Advanced Veterinary Studies) ophthalmology courses since their inception in 1996. He has received the BSAVA`s Simon (1977), Bourgelat (1986) and Blaine (1995) Awards for work in ophthalmology and was the ISVO`s Magrane Memorial Lecturer in 2009. In 2014 he received the UK Kennel Club`s International Lifetime Achievements Award for his work in the control of the hereditary ocular disease.  His interests include all aspects of veterinary and comparative ophthalmology, and current research include inherited retinopathies and canine primary open-angle glaucoma.



Prof. Dr.med.vet. RALF S. MUELLER, DipACVD, FANZCVSc, DipECVD graduated in Munich/Germany, completed his doctoral thesis in 1987, and worked in several large and small animal practices before completing a residency in veterinary dermatology at the University of California/Davis in 1992.  In 1992 he moved to Melbourne/Australia to work with his partner and wife Dr. Sonya Bettenay.  Together, they created the first, purpose-built specialist practice in Australia.  During that time, Dr. Mueller was concurrently consulting and teaching at the Veterinary Teaching Hospital/University of Sydney. Ralf and Sonya established (and continue to conduct) the Distance Education Program in Veterinary Dermatology of the Centre for Veterinary Education of the University of Sydney.  In 1999, Ralf became Assistant Professor in Veterinary Dermatology at the College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences/Colorado State University.  In 2004, he accepted a position as chief of the veterinary dermatology service at the University of Munich/Germany. His main research interests are allergies and ectoparasites.  He has published over 200 studies, articles, book chapters and books and given more than a thousand seminars, lectures and talks all over the world.  

SARAH HEATH, BVSc Dip.ECAWBM(BM) CCAB MRCVS, qualified from Bristol University and spent four years in mixed general practice before setting up Behavioural Referrals Veterinary Practice in 1992. She is an RCVS and European Veterinary Specialist in Behavioural Medicine. Sarah is an External Lecturer in small animal behavioural medicine at Liverpool University and a Certified Clinical Animal Behaviourist under the ASAB accreditation scheme. She sees clinical cases across North West England. In 2002 Sarah became a Founding Diplomate of the European College of Animal Welfare and Behavioural Medicine (formerly the ECVBM-CA) and served as President from 2002 to 2008. She is currently Treasurer of the College. Sarah has a special interest in the interplay between behaviour and physical illness in dogs and cats and particularly in the role of pain. Sarah promotes the recognition of emotional health issues in companion animals and the role of the veterinary profession in safeguarding the welfare of animals in this context. She lectures extensively at home and abroad on behavioural topics and is an author, co-author and editor of several books including Behavioural Medicine for Small Animals and Feline Behavioural Health and Welfare, both published by Elsevier.

STEFAN UNTERER, Priv.-Doz., Dr. med. vet., Dr. habil., DipECVIM-CA. Stefan Unterer is the head of the gastroenterology service at the Clinic of Small Animal Internal Medicine of the Ludwig-Maximilians-University of Munich/Germany. A 1997 graduate of the University of Vienna/Austria, Stefan Unterer completed his internship and residency in small animal internal medicine at the University of Zürich/Switzerland and University of Georgia/USA. From 2002 to 2003, he continued working at the University of Zürich as a clinical instructor. He became board-certified by the European College of Veterinary Internal Medicine in 2003. After one year in private practice, he returned to academia and became a faculty member at the University of Munich/Germany. He finished his habilitation thesis in 2016. His clinical research projects include the intestinal microbiome and acute hemorrhagic diarrhea in dogs.


SVETLANA BELOVA, DVM, DipECVD is graduated from the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Estonian Agricultural University in 1995 and worked in small animal practice before starting ECVD (European College of Veterinary Dermatology) residency programme at the Veterinary School in Zurich, Switzerland in 2007. After 4 years of training and successful examination in 2011 she became Diplomate of the ECVD. Svetlana is a lecturer in dermatology and involved in clinical teaching of veterinary students at the Estonian University of Life Sciences since 2005.
She gave more than 100 presentations and workshops in dermatology for veterinary practitioners in Baltic countries, western Europe, Russia and Ukraine. Se is a founder of Veterinary Dermatology School in Estonia. Apart from teaching she is providing referral dermatology service in small animal practice in Tallinn. In 2010 was awarded by the RSAVA (Russian Small Animal Veterinary Association) with “The Golden scalpel – lecturer of the year” and by the EVA (Estonian Veterinary Association) with the title “Veterinarian of the year”.


TARJA JOKINEN-PÄÄKKÖNEN, DVM, PhD, DiplECVNAfter graduating from the Veterinary Faculty of the University of Helsinki, Finland, in 2000, Tarja Jokinen-Pääkkönen worked in general practice and small animal practice at different places for 3 years. In 2003-2006 she obtained a residency in veterinary neurology at the University of Helsinki, Finland and Referral Neurology Hospital Aisti, Vantaa, Finland and successfully passed the examination for the Diploma of the ECVN in 2007. She then went back to university to work at the Neurology Unit at the Department for Equine and Small Animal Medicine and Veterinary Teaching Hospital, University of Helsinki, Finland. In March 2016 she completed her thesis about self-limited juvenile epilepsy in Lagotto Romagnolo dogs. At the moment Tarja works as the head of the neurology unit at Department for Equine and Small Animal Medicine, University of Helsinki, Finland. Her main research interests are canine epilepsy and inherited neurological diseases in dogs. Tarja is an invited member of the International Veterinary Epilepsy Task Force (IVETF) since 2016.

Dr TIM NUTALL is an RCVS Specialist in Veterinary Dermatology. He did his residency and PhD at the University of Edinburgh. He then spent 12 years at the University of Liverpool before returning to the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies as Head of Dermatology in August 2013. Tim runs a busy referral dermatology clinic, with particular interests in atopic dermatitis and antimicrobial resistance.
Tim has written over 100 clinical and scientific publications, and has presented over 150 lectures throughout the world. In addition, Tim has served on RCVS, BSAVA, ESVD, WCVD and DEFRA scientific committees, the International Committee on Atopic Diseases in Animals, and is a scientific advisor to the Bella Moss Foundation and Veterinary Dermatology. In 2014 he was received the BSAVA Woodrow Award for outstanding contributions to veterinary medicine.
In his spare time Tim enjoys Munro-bagging (276 climbed and just 8 left to do), cycling and single malt whisky. 

VILHELMIINA HUUSKONEN, DVM, Dip. ECVAA, EBVS® European Specialist in Veterinary Anaesthesia and Analgesia
Vilhelmiina is a board-certified veterinary anaesthetist, who currently works as an Assistant Professor of Veterinary Anaesthesia in University College Dublin, supervising professional doctorate students and residents for the ECVAA diploma, and teaching undergraduate MVB and veterinary nursing students. In addition to the full-time lectureship, she is completing a PhD in veterinary pharmacology at Helsinki University, and, as necessary, anaesthetises animals in Dublin Zoo. Prior to a career in veterinary medicine, she soldered parts for remote controls in a TV factory, picked strawberries, washed dishes in a restaurant, proof-read newspapers and books, made cotton candy in a circus and cooked with Michelin-star chefs. Professionally Vilhelmiina’s major areas of interest include anaesthesia of critically ill patients (both large and small) and anaesthesia of giraffes. She also enjoys reading, cooking, travelling and learning new languages.
Vilhelmiina is a member of Association of Veterinary Anaesthetists (AVA) and European College of Veterinary Anaesthesia and Analgesia (ECVAA).

YVONNE VAN ZEELAND, (DVM, MVR, PhD, Dip. ECZM-Avian, Small mammal, CPBC) graduated with merit from the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine of Utrecht University in 2004. Having worked briefly in private practice, she returned to Utrecht in 2005 to complete an internship in companion animal medicine, residency in avian medicine and PhD on feather damaging behavior in grey parrots. Aside from her recognition as a European Specialist in Avian Medicine, Yvonne became de facto recognized in Small Mammal Medicine, and certified as a parrot behavior consultant. Yvonne is currently employed at the Division of Zoological Medicine in Utrecht, where she devotes her time to teaching, research and patient care of birds and small mammals. In addition, she is a frequent speaker at various national and international conferences and has published widely on avian and small mammal related topics. 

KAMIL TOMSA was born in Hradec Kralove, Czech Republic and completed his studies of veterinary medicine in 1995 at the Veterinary and pharmaceutical University (VFU) in Brno, Czech Republic. After a short post-gradual study at the Radiology Dept. of VFU, Brno and 6-month long stipendium at Small Animal Clinic of the University of Zurich, Kamil Tomsa entered a regular residency program in Internal Medicine of small animals at the same Department in 1997. He got his board-certification (ECVIM-CA) in 2002 in Dublin, while working for 8 months at the Small Animal Medicine at University of Georgia, USA. He co-founded and was the Head of Internal Medicine Dept. at EnnetseeKlinik für Kleintiere, in Cham and Hünenberg, Switzerland for 14 years. For last two years, he works for a small Swiss veterinary chain (VETtrust AG) as well part-time on his own account, providing internal medicine and imaging services (endoscopy, ultrasound) for various practices. Kamil Tomsa lectures regularly abroad on various topics in Internal Medicine, with special focus on urinary tract disease, hematology and endocrinology. Radiology and ultrasonography remain his passion. He published and still does in national and international journals and co-authored a chapter on feline nasal aspergillosis in one of the previous editions of Greene´s Infectious Diseases of Dog and Cat. He lives in Switzerland.    

SANDRA GOERICKE-PESCH, Prof., Dr. med. vet., Dr. habil. (JLU Gießen, Germany) Diplomate ECAR (Small Animal Reproduction
Sandra Goericke-Pesch graduated from the College of Veterinary Medicine at the Justus-Liebig-University in Germany, Germany, in Nov. 2001, completed her doctoral thesis in February 2005 on stallion semen and her habilitation in 2014 about "Downregulation of testicular function in the male dog and tom cat using GnRH agonist implants". She worked as a clinical and research assistant at the Clinic for Obstetrics, Gynecology and Andrology in Large and Small Animals under Prof. Hoffmann and Prof. Wehrend and completed her German specialisation for Reproduction in 2006 and her Diplomate ECAR in 2010. In 2008 she became responsible for the Small animal section of the clinic, still working on reproduction in all species in night and weekend shifts and as a supervisor. In October 2013 she became an Associate Professor in the Section of Reproduction and Obstetrics at the University of Copenhagen, Denmark. From February 2018, she will work as a full professor of Reproductive Medicine for dogs and cats at the Stiftung Tierärztliche Hochschule Hannover, Germany.
Sandra Goericke-Pesch is author or co-author of many papers, proceedings, abstracts, and book chapters. She has lectured at numerous international meetings and congresses in Europe, US and Australia. She was awarded the European Veterinary Award in 2011 and the Award of the Drs. Jutta & Georg Bruns Foundation for Innovative Veterinary Medicine. She was elected into the board of the European Veterinary Society for Small Animal Reprodution (EVSSAR) in 2013 and is the treasurer since 2016.

Prof. RON OFRI was a member of the charter class of the Koret School of Veterinary Medicine, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel. Upon his graduation, he travelled to the University of Florida, where he spent the next 4 years undergoing clinical training in veterinary ophthalmology and obtaining his Ph.D. During this time Ron developed an interest in the physiology of vision, focusing on retinal electrophysiology and animal models of retinal diseases. Upon his graduation, Ron returned to Israel and joined the faculty of his alma mater, where he is currently a Professor in veterinary ophthalmology and winner of numerous Teacher of the Year awards. At the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Ron expanded his research interests to include comparative visual physiology in wildlife species, and gene therapy of retinal diseases, and to date has published more than 90 refereed papers. Ron is also a very popular international speaker, having been invited to talk in more than 30 countries and 6 continents, lecturing in continuing education seminars, national meetings and world congresses for general practitioners, including BSAVA, SEVC, WSAVA, WVC and NAVC. He also lectures frequently in advanced training courses for veterinary ophthalmologists, including lectureship at the Basic Science Course of the American College of Veterinary Ophthalmologists (where he has been speaking since 2002) and numerous other forums. Ron is a contributing author to the Gelatt's classic textbook Veterinary Ophthalmology (3rd, 4th and 5th editions) as well as a co-author of the popular textbook Slatter's Fundamentals of Veterinary Ophthalmology (4th, 5th and 6th editions). Ron is a Diplomate of the European College of Veterinary Ophthalmology (ECVO), a former ECVO Executive Board member and in 2002-2005 he served as President of the European Society of Veterinary Ophthalmology

Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM), 1990 (Vet Agro Sup, France).
Inter Veterinary School behaviourist diploma, 2001 (speciality diploma recognized by the NOCS).
Professional Associations
Member of GECAF (pet behaviour group), part of the French Association of Pet Veterinarians (AFVAC) for continuing education, since 2005. Current president.
Member of Zoopsy (European association of veterinarians specializing in behavior) since 2006. Current vice president.
Member of steering committee and teacher for the Veterinary Zoopsychiatry degree program, created in 2012 (University Lyon 1/ Vet Agro Sup/ Zoopsy).
Professional Activities
Self-employed in general practice and referred to for pet behaviour consultation.
Author publications and attend conferences about behavioural disorders targeted toward veterinarians, nurses, doctors, pharmacists and pet owners.
Participate in clinical trials in collaboration with several laboratories developing new psychotropic drugs for domestic carnivores.


Dr. MERJA LAITINEN is a diplomate of the European College of Veterinary Diagnostic Imaging. She earned her DVM in 2001 and her PhD in 2011 from the University of Helsinki. She conducted clinical work for her PhD at Kansas State University and the University of Illinois (2007-2009). She completed her radiology residency mostly in Scandinavia, travelling mostly between Helsinki, Finland; Uppsala, Sweden; and Oslo, Norway.
She worked for the University of Helsinki Faculty of Veterinary Medicine for almost 11 years, first as a hospital veterinarian (2004-2005) and since 2005 as a clinician-teacher in diagnostic imaging until early 2015. She currently works mainly in teleradiology, for VetCT consultants in telemedicine. Before joining to VetCT she worked also for Idexx Telemedicine consultants for almost 2 years.
She has a Nova Scotia duck-tolling retriever named Redi, with whom she loves to take long walks in the forest, especially early in the morning. Besides outdoor activities, she also loves to do yoga in its various forms, jogging, reading, training agility with Redi, skiing, downhill skiing, riding horses etc.. She is also certified RYT200h yoga instructor (vinyasa flow and yin) and certified Unnata aerial yoga instructor since 2015.

SIGITAS CIZINAUSKAS, DVM, EBVS® European Specialist in Veterinary Neurology. He is the head neurologist at the referral Small Animal Hospital Aisti in Vantaa, Finland. Sigitas has graduated from Veterinary and Pharmaceutical University of Brno, Czech Republic in 1995. Has been working as a general practitioner and emergency service vet at small animal clinic, Prague, Czech Republic 1995-1996. Has successfully completed residency in animal neurology at University of Bern, Switzerland in 1997-2000. Was working as clinical instructor in animal neurology at University of Bern, Switzerland in 2000-2001. In 2001 moved to Finland. Was head of the animal neurology service, University of Helsinki, Finland in 2001-2005. Has been running Referral Veterinary Hospital "Aisti", Vantaa, Finland since 2005 till now. Main interests of research are epilepsy, movement disorders and diagnostic imaging.


EBVS® European and RCVS Recognised Veterinary Specialist in Small Animal Cardiology.
Paul is an EBVS European and RCVS Recognised Specialist in Veterinary Cardiology. He qualified in 1997 from the Estonian Agricultural University (Currently: the Estonian University of Life Sciences), where he also completed his MSc in 2002. After a period in private small animal practice he returned to his University where he worked as a staff clinician and lecturer. 2010-2013, Paul completed his residency at the Royal Veterinary College in London, and was awarded Master of Veterinary Medicine degree.
Paul continued working at the Estonian University of Life Sciences as a staff clinician and a lecturer of cardiorespiratory medicine until 2015, when he returned to the UK to work as a cardiologist at the Anderson Moores Veterinary Specialists referral hospital. He also continues as a lecturer of cardiorespiratory medicine at the Estonian University of Life Sciences. He has been giving CPD courses internationally to train practicing veterinarians in cardiology. Paul has a strong interest in heart failure management, congenital and inherited heart disease and interventional cardiology.


Dr. BROOK NIEMIEC is a Board Certified Specialist in Veterinary Dentistry by the American Veterinary Dental College as well as the European Veterinary Dental College.  He is also a Fellow in the Academy of Veterinary Dentistry.
He is Chief of Staff of Veterinary Dental Specialties & Oral Surgery with 14 offices throughout the United States.
He is a regular speaker on the local, national, and international levels, and was elected as the Clinical Instructor of the Year for the 2016 Western Veterinary Conference.
He has authored many articles, chapters, and books and founded the premier veterinary dental telemedicine website vetdentalrad.com.
Finally, he coordinates the San Diego Vet Dental Training Center with 3-4 meetings a year covering basic and intermediate veterinary dentistry.   


THOMAS SPILLMANN graduated with a diploma degree from the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Leipzig, Germany in 1990. After being an assistant in a small animal clinic in Magdeburg, he was staff member at the Department of Small Animal Internal Medicine, Justus-Liebig-University, Giessen, Germany from 1991-2002. There he received a doctoral degree in 1995 and became specialist in veterinary internal medicine (German degree) in 1996. He finished his habilitation thesis about the laboratory diagnosis and imaging of canine acute and chronic pancreatic diseases in 2002 and became private docent at the Justus-Liebig-University, Giessen.
From 2002 to 2004, he was research fellow at the Department of Clinical Veterinary Sciences, University of Helsinki, Finland. He received the status of a docent at the University of Helsinki in 2003. He became diplomate of the European College of Small Animal Internal Medicine - Companion Animals (ECVIM-CA) in 2009.
From 2004 to 2005, he was Hill’s professor of gastroenterology and clinical nutrition at the School of Veterinary Medicine Hannover, Germany. Since 2005, he has been professor of small animal internal medicine at Department of Equine and Small Animal Medicine, University of Helsinki.
His main research interest is small animal gastroenterology and endoscopy. He was board member of the Gastrointestinal Study Group at the German Society of Small Animal Medicine 1998-2005 and president/past president of the European Society of Comparative Gastroenterology from 2003 - 2011. Currently he leads the Finnish Small Animal Gastroenterology (FIN-SAGAS) research group at Helsinki University (http://helsinki.fi/fin-sagas). 

MARCUS VINICIUS CANDIDO was born on 06.04.1976 in Curitiba, Paraná, Brazil. He graduated with a diploma from the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Federal University of Parana (UFPR), Brazil, in 1999, having taken several courses and externships on wild and exotic animals, both in Brazil and in the USA.
After working at small and exotic companion animals clinics in Curitiba, he practiced as a zoo veterinarian  between 2000 and 2010. He was the head veterinarian at Zoo Pomerode, Brazil, between 2.2002-11.2010.
He obtained a degree of specialist in biology lato sensu at the Federal University of Lavras (UFLA) in 2006 and a Master's degree in Veterinary Science with emphasis on veterinary pathology at UFPR in 2008, working in the interface of nutrition and clinical pathology in cracids (neotropical fowl). He was also staff (lecturer) at  the Department of Veterinary Medicine at the Regional University of Blumenau (FURB), Brazil 2009-2012.
After initial training on veterinary endoscopy at the University of Georgia in Athens (UGA), USA (Zoological Medicine Service), he has become increasingly involved with small animal endoscopy. Since late 2015, he is a PhD student at the Doctoral Program of Clinical Veterinary Medicine at the University of Helsinki, working on a project on canine gastrointestinal endoscopy at the department of Small Animal Internal Medicine, where he also acts as a consultant for the Exotic Animal Clinic.



NATHALIE MARLOIS, Doctor of Véterinary Medicine (DVM)  (Vet AgroSup France) 1985 and Veterinary Behaviorist Dilploma (diploma of the French veterinary schools) 2000.
Current president of ZOOPSY (Europeen association of veterinary behaviorists).  Member of ZOOPSY’s board since 2001. Member of GECAF (pet Behaviour group within AFVAC (French Association of Pet Veterinarians for continuing education since 1987.
Member of steering committee and teacher for the University Diploma of  Veterinary Psychiatry (Lyon 1 University-VetagroSup-ZOOPSY). Training for veterinarians, nurses, shelter staff, owners… Lectures and posters  in congresses :  ZOOPSY- AFVAC-ESVCE – Human Psychiatry.
Member of the scientific council of ZOOPSY of the scientific council of Canidea (Confederation of Dogs Assistance Association. Member of an expertise group  in ANSES (National agency of health security for food, environment and work) about the behavioral assessment of dogs  likely to be dangerous.
Self – employed in general practice and referred to for behavioral consultations. Referal behavioral consultation in veterinary hospital and other practices.
Co-author of a book on Behavioral pathology in dogs (2013) and in cats (2017).


Dr. EDOARDO AURIEMMA graduated from Parma University (Italy) in 2003. In 2003 he worked at the Department of Internal Medicine, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine-Parma University. Edoardo visited the Department of Diagnostic Imaging and Cardiology of the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Uppsala University (Sweden) in 2004. He enrolled in a Residency program in Diagnostic Imaging at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Utrecht University (The Netherlands) from 2004 to 2008. In September 2008 he successfully achieved the Diploma of the European College of Veterinary Diagnostic Imaging (ECVDI). From September 2008 to November 2009 worked as “Junior Teacher” at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Utrecht. He currently works as radiologist at the referral private practice “Istituto veterinario Novara” in Italy. He is author and co-author of papers published in international peer-reviewed journals.


Prof. DAVID CHURCH (BVSc PhD MACVSc FHEA MRCVS). Deputy Principal, Professor of Small Animal Studies. The Royal Veterinary College. David is currently Professor of Small Animal Studies at the Royal Veterinary College. He has spent over 30 years in small animal specialist practices and is the author of over 180 peer-reviewed publications on companion animal endocrinology and small animal medicine. He has been a long standing advocate of the benefits of veterinarians developing a logical approach to clinical reasoning to complement their pattern recognition skills. As a co-founder of VetCompass, he is also passionate about developing mechanisms to define and understand the disorders encountered in general practice and how to optimise their management.

Dr. MANFRED HOCHLEITHNER. Born in Vienna Austria. Study University Veterinary Medicine  in Vienna1980-1985. Married to Mag. Claudia Hochleithner

  • +40 publications scientificc papers
  • 7 book contributions
  • International lectures: USA, S-Afrika, Japan, Israel, Netherlands, Germany, GB, Bulgaria, Argentinia, Sweden, Spain, Brasil, Csech Republic, Slovakia, Poland, Thailand, Turkey, Croatia, Serbia, Russia

1986-1992: University Veterinary Medicine Vienna  - Department internal medicine small animals, horses and poultry
1992 - now: Head of  Tierklinik Strebersdorf (http://www.kleintierklinik.at/)
Diplomate European College of Zological MedicineEuropean College Zological Medicine / Avian
1990 – now: recognized specialist for small animals/Fachtierarzt für Kleintiere
2012 – 2016: President Vereinigung Österreichischer Kleintiermediziner VOEK
2016 – now: Vize President Vereinigung Österreichischer Kleintiermediziner VOEK
2012 – now : Member of the Assembly of Delegates of the Austrian Veterinary Chamber – Dellegiertenversammlung
2017 – now: President of the Vienna Veterinary Chamber

  • generally sworn and court-certified expert small animals and exotics /allgemein beeidedt und gerichtlich zertifizierter Sachverstaendiger


  • Since 1999 PADI Open water sucba diver intructor
  • 2003 Founder and President conservation organization Endangered (www.endangered.at)
  • Coffee Table book: Underwater Universe Edition Reuss
  • Photo Exhibition Museum of Natural History Vienna: 29.3.2006-2.7.2006:
  • Die Kunst ist in der Natur
  • Photo Exhibition Museum of Natural History Vienna: 22.3.2007-7.5.2007
  • Ruanda Mit den Augen der Kinder
  • Underwater filming documentary for Austrian television: Sea of creepy monsters
  • (http://www.viewster.com/movie/1189-15416-000/sea-of-creepy-monsters/)





LINDA TORESSON graduated from the Swedish University of Agricultural Science in 1995. Since 1996, she has worked at Evidensia Specialist Animal Hospital, Helsingborg, Sweden, focusing on small animal gastroenterology. In 2001, she became a Swedish Specialist in diseases of dogs and cats and in 2007 a Swedish Specialist in Small Animal Internal Medicine. She has collaborated with prof. David Williams, Jörg Steiner and Jan Suchodolski at the Gastrointestinal Laboratory at Texas A&M University in several research projects. Linda served as the Medical Director at Evidensia Specialist Animal Hospital, Helsingborg during 2007-2013. She quit that position to become an external PhD-student in gastroenterology at Helsinki University. She is at present juggling her PhD with her position as a senior consultant in gastroenterology at Evidensia Specialist Animal Hospital in Helsingborg.

MARGRET CASAL graduated from VetSuisse, University of Zürich, Switzerland in 1984 and received her Master’s Degree from the University of Bern, Switzerland in 1988. Thereafter, she spent three years in the Department of Reproduction at VetSuisse in Zürich, where she developed her skills in small animal reproduction, specializing in canine and feline pediatrics. From 1991 – 1994, she honed her skills in pediatrics and genetics at the University of Pennsylvania as a resident in the Section of Medical Genetics, Pediatrics and Reproduction at the School of Veterinary Medicine. This was followed by graduate studies at the University of Pennsylvania after which Dr. Casal received her PhD in the field of pathology and gene therapy. She received diplomate status with the European College of Reproduction in 2000. She has been a faculty member at the School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Pennsylvania since 1999 and is currently a professor of Medical Genetics, Pediatrics, and Reproduction.


Dr. CLAUDE BEATA (21/11/1959) is a veterinarian specialist in behavior medicine.(DVM, Dipl ECVBM-CA.
He has two children Adrien 30 yrs and Arthur 26 yrs, two dogs, three cats, and one African Grey parrot.
He graduated in 1985 and has since 1998 a specialized activity around behavior of companion animals. He runs referrals on the South Coast of France.
He also runs a consulting company (CETACE llc.) for pharmaceutical firms involved in the behavior field as promoter and monitor of scientific trials.
He is since February 2016 Associate Research Director at Jagger & Lewis, a start-up company dedicated to the development of a connected collar.
He is teaching in private and public continuing educational programs in pets behavior and participates at numerous national and international conferences in French, English and Spanish.
Actually Vice-President of biggest national continuing education association (AFVAC), Past President of GECAF(AFVAC) and ZOOPSY. his main task about education is to be the Coordinator of the University Diploma in Veterinary Psychiatry organized by University Claude Bernard Lyon 1 (Faculty of Medicine), VetAGro -Sup Veterinarian Campus (Vet School of Lyon) and Zoopsy (behaviourist veterinarian association)

SILVIA JAUERNING (DECVS, Dr. med. vet. Fachtierärztin für Kleintiere) finished her studies of Veterinary Medicine at the Justus-Liebig University of Giessen with graduation as Dipl- med. vet. In 1994 and the german doctorate (dissertation) 1998. She completed the Residency for Small Animal Surgery at the University of Berne, Dep. For small Animal Orthopedics and Surgery (1996-1999) and got a Diplomate of the European College of Veterinary Surgeon in 2000 (board certified)
She worked internationally in her profession as the specialist for small animal surgery in several referral clinics, as in the Netherlands (11 years until 2011), in Finland (until 2015) and since 2,5 years in the referral clinic Anicura Dyresykehus Oslo, in Norway.
Beside Orthopedics is she interested in minimal invasive surgeries as laparoscopy and thoracoscopy. Since more than 10 years is she regularly speaker at international and national meetings, congresses and workshops.



DAVID WILLIAMS founded the “GI Lab” in 1985 at the University of Florida, when he introduced assay of serum trypsin-like immunoreactivity (TLI) in the dog to the United States. His research has been focused on the development and application of new tests for gastrointestinal diseases, particularly those affecting the pancreas, small intestine, stomach and liver of dogs and cats. Students and staff working in his other GI Laboratories at Kansas State, Purdue, and most recently Texas A&M Universities established several other novel tests for gastrointestinal diseases for use by veterinarians internationally. These included feline serum TLI, canine and feline serum pancreatic lipase (PLI), canine and feline fecal alpha1-proteinase inhibitor, unconjugated serum bile acids, canine thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH), and canine and feline serum cobalamin and folate assays.
He received his veterinary degree from the University of Cambridge and his PhD from the University of Liverpool (where he first developed the canine TLI assay). He was an intern and resident at the University of Pennsylvania, and has held Faculty positions at the University of Florida, Kansas State University, Purdue University, Texas A&M University (where he served as Head of Small Animal Clinical Sciences), and currently at the University of Illinois (where he served as Head of Veterinary Clinical Medicine). He continues to work as an Adjunct Professor and consultant with the GI Lab at Texas A&M University, providing telephone consultations with veterinarians regarding management of patients diagnosed using the GI Lab services. His current research is focused on utilization of metabolomic and microbiomic techniques to investigate the enteropathy that leads to malabsorption and weight loss in aging cats, and the etiology of canine pancreatic acinar atrophy.

KADRI KÄÄRAMEES (DVM) graduated the curriculum of veterinary medicine cum laude from Estonian Agricultural University (now Estonian University of Life Sciences, EULS) in 1999.  After graduation, she worked as a staff veterinay clinician with teaching responsibilities in the Small Animal Clinic of the University, followed by a period in private practice, from where she returned in 2013 to the position of senior veterinary clinician in the EULS Small Animal Clinic. She fell down the rabbit hole of small animal veterinary dentistry in the  beginning of 2000s and has been since working on improving her skills and knowledge in the discipline via numerous courses, including European Advanced School of Veterinary Studies Dentistry I-IV (2012-2015) and is currently enrolled in ESAVS Certificate of Small Animal Veterinary Practice in Dentistry program.  She has been responsible for teaching basics of small animal dentistry within the veterinary curriculum in the EULS since 2006; her clinical practice is presently comprised of approximately 80% of dental patients, the rest being emergency shifts.
In her free time, she enjoys reading and the tremendous luck of owning a bullterrier without a malocclusion.



ANNA - MARIAM KIVIRANTA, DVM, Dipl.ECVN. Anna-Mariam Kiviranta graduated from the Veterinary Faculty of the University of Helsinki in 2004, and has since worked in small animal practice. She started working at the Emergency Service of Veterinary Teaching Hospital of University of Helsinki in 2007 and joined the Neurology Unit in 2008 to start a neurology residency. She successfully passed the examination for the Diploma of the ECVN in 2014. She continues to work at the Neurology Unit as a neurologist. Her main research interests are inherited neurological diseases, like syringomyelia and epilepsy in dogs, and she is completing a PhD about syringomyelia and craniocervical junction abnormalities in small breed dogs. She is part of the examination committee of the ECVN since 2016.

GERT TER HAAR (DVM, PhD, DECVS; Europees Specialist
Chirurgie Gezelschapsdieren, KNO en brachycephalie-gerelateerde ziektes Oncologische en reconstructieve chirurgie)

Gert ter Haar is from the Netherlands and studied veterinary medicine at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine in Utrecht, where he graduated in February 1997. After an internship and surgical residency in Utrecht, he became a Diplomate of the European College of Veterinary Surgeons in 2002 and Head of the Department of ENT at the University of Utrecht in February 2003. His research on hearing in dogs led to his PhD thesis, a 220-page book entitled “Age-related hearing loss in dogs” in 2009. On the same day he became President of the International Veterinary Ear Nose and Throat association (IVENTA). He joined the surgical team of the Royal Veterinary College in London, United Kingdom, in 2011 as a senior lecturer in soft tissue surgery and got promoted to associate professor in soft tissue surgery and head of the ENT department and ENT, Audiology and Brachycephaly clinics at the RVC in 2015. In March 2017 he joined the team of the SDU (specialistische dierenkliniek Utrecht), the largest European specialist referral center in the Netherlands. He is author and co-editor of three surgical books and has published over 30 peer-reviewed articles in his field of interest. He gave over 300 national and international lectures on ENT medicine & surgery, hearing research in dogs and soft tissue/reconstructive surgery in dogs and cats. His current research involves hearing loss in dogs and cats and brachycephalic obstructive airway syndrome.




Dr Kersti Seksel is a boarded veterinary specialist in behavioural medicine in the Australian, American and European Colleges and Adjunct Associate Professor at Charles Sturt University, Wagga Wagga NSW. She is a Fear Free Certified Professional.
She is fascinated by animals and why they do what they do. She is passionate about helping people understand animals better so she can improve the lives of people and their pets.
Kersti pioneered Puppy Preschool® and Kitten Kindy® classes, teaches the distance education course in Behavioural Medicine for CVE (University of Sydney). She presents at conferences nationally and internationally, runs webinars, writes text book chapters, has written a book Training Your Cat, is a regular presenter on radio and TV and is a consultant on VIN.


VIRGINIA LUIS FUENTES graduated from the Cambridge Vet School and then spent 5 years in small animal practice, before joining the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies, where she obtained the RCVS Diploma in Veterinary Cardiology and a PhD. She then moved to the USA, working as an Assistant Professor in Cardiology at the University of Missouri-Columbia, and then the Ohio State University. She has worked at the Royal Veterinary College since 2004, where she is a Professor of Veterinary Cardiology, and is currently Chair of the ECVIM Cardiology Specialty. Her principal research interests are in feline cardiomyopathy and canine mitral valve disease. 

More information coming soon!