The British Small Animal Veterinary Association (BSAVA) PetSavers awarded 13 grants amounting to £145,000, had four peer-reviewed papers published, and launched a brand-new Research Fellowship during 2021.
These are just some of the highlights of its work during the year as it continued towards its goal of achieving excellence in veterinary practice to improve the health and welfare of small animals. One of its major projects, Old Age Pets (OAP), is being run at the University of Liverpool with £110,000 of funding and aims to help veterinary professionals and owners provide the highest standard of care to senior dogs.
Details of the work of BSAVA PetSavers are outlined in its first impact report, in which it also announces the intention of increasing its annual research budget to £220,000 and raising the value of individual grants. The report can be viewed online and will become an annual publication.
BSAVA PetSavers is the grant awarding division of the British Small Animal Veterinary Association (BSAVA) and funds proposals focused on small animal clinical research in three main categories:
- Student Research Projects (£3,200 with a ticket and travel bursary to attend BSAVA Congress)
- Master’s Degrees by Research (up to £40,000 including university fees and a student stipend)
- Clinical Research Projects (up to £20,000)
In addition, the newly launched Research Fellowship aims to support the development of veterinary academics in the early stages of their career, helping them to gain financial independence. This funding will be increased to £70,000 to cover a two-year period in the 2022 grant call.
Rosie Godfrey, Chair of the BSAVA PetSavers Management Committee, explains: “We are a small charity, but we make a big difference and have the ambition to do much more.
“Since we were founded, we have awarded more than £2 million in diverse and clinically-impactful research grants. Our grant recipients’ research findings are helping to strengthen the evidence-base of small animal veterinary practice, ultimately enabling pets to live longer and healthier lives.
“We are proud of the variety of projects we were able to support in 2021. We hope our new impact report will highlight the value of what we do – and show how a BSAVA PetSavers grant can open the door to a scientific career for the recipients, as well as changing how BSAVA members treat their patients every day in practice.”
She added: “2022 is an exciting year as we await the findings of the OAP project, launch our Alumni Group, and increase the value of our grants. To help us achieve our plans, we’re calling on all members of BSAVA and other members of the profession to join our growing community, whether by donating, fundraising for us, or getting directly involved in the running of BSAVA PetSavers. More details are available at the website and by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
“Applications for the 2023 grants will also open later this year so we encourage those with an interest in research to start thinking about the project they would like BSAVA PetSavers to support.”
She added: “In the meantime, I’d like to thank our wonderful volunteers, particularly members of the BSAVA PetSavers Management and Grant Awarding Committees and our fundraisers for their commitment and dedication. We hope to welcome more members to our volunteer and support communities this year.”