2023: A year in review at the Animal Welfare Foundation

As 2023 draws to a close, we reflect on a transformative year at the Animal Welfare Foundation. From celebrating our 40 year anniversary at our annual Discussion Forum, to funding innovative research projects to engaging in impactful educational initiatives, our commitment to ensure animal welfare is at the forefront of the veterinary profession has never been stronger. 

Together, let’s revisit the highlights and milestones that have shaped a year of progress in animal welfare knowledge and understanding in the UK! 

RESEARCH

We launched 2 research calls

We launched 2 research calls

The Student Grant Scheme (ongoing) and the AWF Grant Research Call (15 applications received, funded projects will be announced in 2024)

5 research projects started in 2023, for a funding total of £208,838.80

5 research projects started in 2023, for a funding total of £208,838.80

5 species studied by AWF funded research projects:

5 species studied by AWF funded research projects:

Horses, Pigs, Rabbits, Dogs, Chickens

Welfare concerns addressed by research projects awarded funding:

Welfare concerns addressed by research projects awarded funding:

stress, harmful social interactions and conformation-related suffering.

STUDENT RESEARCH

1 award

1 award

Student Ellie Miller who won the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS) ‘Fellows of the Future?" student competition with her AWF-funded research on "Recognition of pain in calves and decisions around treatment among farmers in UK".

1 paper published

1 paper published

Madeline Heys, whose project was funded by AWF, published ‘Bowls are boring’: Investigating enrichment feeding for pet dogs and the perceived benefits and challenges.

1 student research project awarded funding

1 student research project awarded funding

treating stress in horses, Laura Simons, University of Bristol

AWF main research projects

4 Research projects kicked off

4 Research projects kicked off

1 overarching theme: Breeding for Better Welfare

1 overarching theme: Breeding for Better Welfare

Educational Initiatives

7 student talks

7 student talks

were conducted at 6 different institutions/universities and one was open to all online. A total of 205 students attended.

1 new student talk

1 new student talk

was developed covering animal boredom which means we offer 9 different topics in total

We organised

We organised

and hosted a session at BCVA Congress on calf welfare

Discussion Forum

183 individuals

183 individuals

attended this year’s Discussion Forum.

93% of attendees rated the Discussion Forum “Very Good” or “Excellent”.

93% of attendees rated the Discussion Forum “Very Good” or “Excellent”.

“It's by far the best event I attend annually, both for quality of content and networking” DF delegate 2023

We had one special retrospective session

We had one special retrospective session

celebrating 40 years of the animal welfare foundation, looking at how the charity has supported vets and influenced animal welfare for the past 40 years through research, education and conscientious debate

Funding and donations

We received a total of £17,000 in sponsorship

We received a total of £17,000 in sponsorship

from Agria, MSD, MWI, Pets at Home and Purina which helped us cover the cost of the Discussion Forum.

Malcolm Morley, BVA President and AWF Trustee

Malcolm Morley, BVA President and AWF Trustee

raised £758 by walking 20km along the Thames

Attendees at BVA’s Gala dinner

Attendees at BVA’s Gala dinner

raised an impressive £1,380 with their heads and tails fundraising game, a sum divided between AWF and VetLife

SPVS has selected AWF as their 2024 Congress' charity.

SPVS has selected AWF as their 2024 Congress' charity.

All charity raffle ticket purchases will benefit AWF & support our work in advancing knowledge in animal welfare.

£8,288 donation

£8,288 donation

from the Association of Veterinarians in Industry (AVI)

£200

£200

from the Northen Ireland Veterinary Association

£800

£800

donated from the merger of the Helen Grimwade Charitable Trust and South Square Trust

Media coverage

AWF's Puppy Contract

AWF's Puppy Contract

was recommended by vet Dr James Greenwood on BBC Morning Live when discussing pet scams

Extensive press coverage of the Discussion Forum

Extensive press coverage of the Discussion Forum

with 14 articles in 7 different publications