Cabrera in Fiji for animal health training
Lauren Cabrera, who is the president of Guam Animals in Need and founder of Saipan Humane Society, is in Fiji for a World Organisation for Animal Health workshop training.
Cabrera, who now resides on Saipan, was invited by Guam’s territorial veterinarian, Dr. Mariana Turner, to represent Guam at the workshop, while also unofficially representing the CNMI.
According to Cabrera, the training, called PVS Pathway Orientation Training Workshop for the Pacific Islands, “conducts guidance and support for setting international standards of livestock health and production, animal legislation, animal welfare, and more. The conference is very livestock health specific, and focused on the Pacific Islands—basically, how can we maximize the health and production of our livestock given the limited resources of our islands.”
Cabrera said she is learning how to analyze gaps in animal health services, and how to work toward finding realistic solutions specific to the Pacific Islands. She said “eight other islands have no resident veterinarian and rely [on] trained animal health officers and “paravets” (veterinary technicians).”
While there, she is discussing the prospect of hosting a paravet training specific to livestock in the Pacific Islands in conjunction with Turner, “in efforts to support access to healthcare for our ranchers. This is only in the very beginning stages of discussion, but I hope to have more info soon.”
Overall, she said, she is meeting with international experts in animal health specific to livestock health and production. As to how the training is going so far, she said “It is super eye-opening and I am excited to not only help dogs and cats in the community, but also help ranchers as well in the future by filling gaps in animal health care in the region.”
The training is from March 28 to March 31, 2023. There are 17 islands represented, including host island Fiji, American Samoa, the Cook Islands, New Caledonia, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, the Marshall Islands, and more.
According to the WOAH website, their mission is to improve animal health and welfare worldwide.