MSC positions Orsel 26 Barkema Sept 2012 by srH59X9


									                     Graduate Student Positions on Dairy Cattle Lameness
                                Faculty of Veterinary Medicine
                                    University of Calgary

The Department of Production Animal Health of the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Calgary (UCVM) in
collaboration with other partners, is seeking two Master of Science students with an interest in the dairy cattle industry for
a project on hoof health, with a focus on digital dermatitis.

Project description:
Lameness and injuries have been identified as a major concern for animal welfare and also has a negative impact on a
cow’s productivity and longevity, thereby reducing the overall efficiency of dairy production. Recent surveys in Canada
have revealed an alarmingly high prevalence of lameness and injuries such as hock or neck lesions among dairy cows
that can markedly affect production and longevity. Reduced cow comfort associated with poor flooring, lying stall and
feeder design and management are important risk factors for a high prevalence of lameness and injury. Many
recommendations are now available to Canadian producers about good facility design and management, but there is a
lack of information about the extent that these recommendations are being followed or about the extent that they are able
to contribute to increased cow longevity. We have formed an expert group to identify and rank risk factors for cow comfort
and develop a scoring system that can be used on farms. This study has revealed digital dermatitis as one of the most
prevalent hoof lesions in dairy cattle in Alberta. Within our research project we would like to focus on occurrence,
prevalence and prevention of digital dermatitis in dairy cattle.

What are we looking for:
Two graduate projects are available; one focused on data mining of available hoof lesion and farm data and one with a
focus on a clinical field trial. Applicants with a DVM degree; degrees in animal science or a related field will be considered.
Candidate(s) should be a good team player with excellent communication skills, within both academic and non-academic
settings. Experience with the dairy cattle industry and basic knowledge (or the ability and interest to learn) of hoof health
and data analysis is an asset. The graduate program will help the successful candidate develop strong skills in
epidemiology, biostatistics, and production animal health. The salary will be commensurate with the level of education and
experience, but a minimum of $20,000/y will be guaranteed. For additional information please contact Drs Karin Orsel
( project 1) or Herman Barkema ( project 2).

UCVM is a new and dynamic veterinary faculty in Western Canada that is committed to strengthening the connections
between animal health, public health, and the environment. UCVM faculty work across disciplines and departments,
fostering collaborative research, teaching and service. Descriptions of the Faculty and its departments can be found on
the UCVM website ( The University of Calgary is a research-intensive, comprehensive university
that supports innovation in research, education and service to the community. Calgary is a vibrant, multicultural city with a
population of just over a million people. It is located near the Rocky Mountains, Banff National Park and Lake Louise, and
offers an enormous opportunity for outdoor activities both in winter and summer.

Review of applications will start ASAP, but will be finalized mid October 2012. Interested individuals for both projects
should submit a current curriculum vitae and an outline of research interests along with the names of three referees to:

                                Dr. Karin Orsel,, +1 (403) 210-6127
                                    Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Calgary,
                                     3330 Hospital Drive NW, Calgary, Alberta, Canada

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