Dr Silke Salavati (Dipl.ECVIM-CA, PhD, MRCVS)

Senior Lecturer in Small Animal Internal Medicine


Dr. Salavati has graduated from the Justus-Liebig University in Giessen, Germany, in 2003 and has since specialised in Small Animal Internal Medicine with the particular focus on gastroenterology. She has worked in Germany, at the Royal Veterinary College in London and now at the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies Edinburgh. She has a particular interest in canine inflammatory bowel disease and the use of alternative treatments like probiotics and prebiotics. She also is member of the Comparative Gastroenterology Society and the president of the European Society of Comparative Gastroenterology 


Doctor in Philosophy, The Royal Veterinary College Investigations into the influence of probiotics in canine Inflammatory Bowel Disease Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, Justus Liebig University Giessen Validation of the 13C sodium acetate breath test to assess gastric emptying in dogs in comparison to 99m technetium scintigraphy.

Professional Qualifications

Diplomate of the European College of Veterinary Internal Medicine - companion animals, DipECVIM-CA National Specialist in Small Animal Internal Medicine (Germany)


I have been teaching since being a post-graduate doctoral student at the JLU university in Giessen, Germany, in 2003 (courses, seminars, single lectures of interesting cases). I have been responsible for the small animal gastroenterology lecture stream at that same university from 2013 to 2015 and give lectures regarding the same topic at the R(D)SVS from 2016 on. In addition, as I spent 50% of my time "on clinics", I teach undergraduates as well as Residents by assessing and working through real clinical cases. I spent a small amount of time in the hospital's Emergency & Critical Care service as well.

Clinical Expertise and Specialisation

Since I graduated from vet school in Germany in 2003, I have worked in environments and institutions specialising in small animal internal medicine. During those years, I have acquired clinical expertise through experience of simply "working in the field", but also by completing a rotating internship and being awarded the title of Diplomate of the European College of Veterinary Internal Medicine for Companion Animals (DipECVIM-CA). I am also holder of a German national specialisation title for Small Animal Internal Medicine. I have also acquired a PhD in canine gastroenterology/ gastroimmunology.


Responsibilities & affiliations

Secretary of the European College of Veterinary Internal Medicine – Companion Animals (ECVIM-CA) 2014 and 2015

Member of the Exam Committee of the ECVIM-CA since 2015

President of the European Society of Comparative Gastroenterology (ESCG) 2016/2017 (website escg.nu; also on facebook at https://www.facebook.com/europeansocietyofcomparativegastroenterology/)

Member of the following societies:

  • Comparative gastroenterology society (CGS)

  • ESCG (see above)
  • American Gastroenterology Society (AGA); 2010-2013

  • Deutsche Veterinärmedizinische Gesellschaft (DVG) - German veterinary society

  • Deutsche Gesellschaft für Kleintiermedizin der Deutschen Veterinärmedizinischen Gesellschaft (DGK-DVG), Arbeitsgruppe Gastroenterologie - German working group for gastroenterology of the German veterinary society

Research summary

I am interested in small animal gastroenterology, especially focusing of mechanisms of disease, clinical assessment and treatment of canine inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)/ chronic enteropathy (CE).

Current research interests

Research Interests Gastrointestinal motility and how to influence it with specific drugs Immunopathogenesis of chronic inflammatory conditions like IBD in dogs (and cats) and understanding the causes Probiotics and other ways to influence the gastrointestinal “microflora” in dogs with gut disease The interaction between environmental or luminal factors and intestinal cells (epithelial cells, immune cells) in chronic enteropathies in small animals Collaborative Activity Assessing the gastrokinetic effect of mirtazapine in dogs – in collaboration with the JLU Giessen, Germany Assessing the effect of probiotics, antibiotics or diet change on acute and chronic diarrhoea in dogs in a private practice setting – in collaboration with the JLU Giessen, Germany Determining the prevalence of hypomagnesaemia in dogs with chronic intestinal diseases and assessing the potential prognostic relevance – in collaboration with the JLU Giessen, Germany My research in a nutshell I am interested in understanding why dogs (and cats) suffer from chronic diseases associated with diarrhoea, vomiting and weight loss, which is very similar to human inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) like for example Crohn's disease. As there seem to be many factors involved I am trying to apply new treatment concepts, and investigate potential causes (for example the changes in the "flora" of the gut compared to healthy dogs). I am also keen to understand how to better gage clinical severity or "activity" of these disorders, by applying measures through questionnaires and clinical scores, specifically assessing behaviour and abdominal (tummy) pain. Our group is also keen to find a way of assessing causes of these diseases with regards to the gut immune system, which seems to be malfunctioning in a lot of these cases. This means that we look at a lot of different things in gut biopsies or might even be able to measure immune function "in the petry dish" to later apply this new information to a clinical scenario. Ultimately, all of this should lead to better treatment options in the future, by better understanding of causes of these chronic inflammatory gut conditions.

View all 33 publications on Research Explorer