The Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies
Royal Dick School of Veterinary Studies Bicentenary

Vet students host landmark ethics event

Students and leading ethics experts are to co-host an event highlighting difficult moral challenges facing vets.

Ethical issues around euthanasia and welfare concerns associated with breeding animals for attractive physical traits will be discussed by prominent expert speakers, including TV vet Emma Milne.

The conference will explore how these key ethical dilemmas can impact vets wellbeing and will aim to better prepare students for working life, organisers say.

Compassion fatigue

The event follows research showing that stress caused by moral dilemmas is the top reason for vets’ compassion fatigue, which is common in caring professions and can lead to feelings of hopelessness and anxiety.

How best to tackle suspected animal abuse by clients and the extent of surgical intervention are further topics to be discussed.

Notable speakers

The event – set to attract 150 participants – has drawn notable speakers including Chief Vet at the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, James Yeates, and specialist surgeon, Romain Pizzi.  

Ethical dilemmas are a really common issue for vets and significantly impact vet wellbeing. We hope that by encouraging dialogue about challenging animal welfare issues, vet students will be better prepared for these issues in practice.

Morgan BrownEvent organiser and vet student, Edinburgh’s Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies

The 2017 Veterinary Ethics and Welfare Conference will be held at the University of Edinburgh’s Easter Bush Campus from September 30th - October 1st, 2017.

Related links


Event website