Meet the speakers

Kelly Eyre

Kelly Eyre

Kelly Eyre

Clinical Lead, Royla Canin Feline Healthy Ageing Clinic

Kelly is the Clinical Lead for the Royal Canin Feline Healthy Ageing Clinic, based at the University of Liverpool. This is a research project which aims to improve the length and quality of life of our ageing cats through research and education. Kelly is also studying towards a Masters in Anthrozoology, exploring how well owners can recognise dental pain in their cats. In addition to the day to day running of the clinic, Kelly provides education to vets, nurses and the general public on topics of feline behaviour, feline welfare and supporting the ageing cat, to include end of life and palliative care. Kelly is also a BSAVA congress committee member, and sits on the Cats Protection Connect board.

SESSION: Euthanasia: better a day too early than a day too late? 

Polly Taylor (Chair)

Polly Taylor (Chair)

Polly Taylor (Chair)

Independent consultant in veterinary anaesthesia

Polly graduated from Cambridge many years ago and worked in general practice then clinical academia in Cambridge University and the Animal Health Trust. Since 2002 she has been an independent consultant in veterinary anaesthesia, covering clinical anaesthesia, teaching, drug registration and research; numerous papers on anaesthesia and analgesia have resulted. Polly is a director of Topcat Metrology Ltd, developing bespoke nociceptive threshold testing systems for several animal species. She was a member of the Advisory Council for the Misuse of Drugs (2002-2010) and has continued to be an advocate for the veterinary profession regarding drug legislation. Her most recent activity putting her head above the parapet is to encourage the profession to understand that overtreatment of animals “just because we can” is often not in their best interests.

Session: Euthanasia: better a day too early than a day too late? 

Roxane Kirton

Roxane Kirton

Roxane Kirton

Head Vet – Equine, RSPCA

Roxane has a deep love of horses and is passionate about improving horse welfare. She has worked as a veterinary surgeon in the UK equine welfare sector for over 15 years and is currently the Head Vet – Equine for the RSPCA. Working with horses and ponies with backgrounds of cruelty and neglect led to roxane developing a keen interest in equine behaviour and subsequently obtaining a Masters in Clinical Animal Behaviour from the University of Lincoln.

Session: Euthanasia: better a day too early than a day too late?

Suzen Gregersen

Suzen Gregersen

Suzen Gregersen

DVM MBA CHPV MRCVS

Founder and Managing Director at Vets2Home

Dr Suzen Gregersen DVM MBA CHPV MRCVS is one of the first US-certified vet practitioners in the UK within the novel field of palliative and end-of-life care, known as Animal Hospice. She founded, owns and runs Vets2Home – Peaceful Pet Goodbyes in Sussex and has personally helped over 16.000+ families, since 2005, have a supported journey, saying goodbye to their pet at home.

Dr Gregersen served 5 years, as the first European member, on the Board of the International Association for Animal Hospice & Palliative Care (IAAHPC, 2018-2023). She is also the original Strategic Director of the Companion Animal Euthanasia Training Academy (CAETA), offering expert education in euthanasia around the world.

In 2015, Dr Gregersen co-founded the British Mobile Veterinary Association (BMVA); has been a regular animal hospice columnist for Cat World Magazine; is a veterinary business consultant in optimising end-of-life services in GP vet practice and is an executive program consultant for Compassion Understood, the first research-based online CPD training course in pet loss and end-of-life services for the whole vet practice team. It’s safe to say, Suzen has found her niche, her true calling, relieving both animal suffering as well as helping their families at an emotionally challenging time.

Session: Euthanasia: better a day too early than a day too late?

Peter Sandoe

Peter Sandoe

Peter Sandoe

Professor, University of Copenhagen, Department of Veterinary and Animal Sciences & Department of Food and Resource Economics

Peter Sandøe is originally trained as a philosopher at the University of Copenhagen and at Oxford University. He has been professor of bioethics at the University of Copenhagen since 1997, presently with his chair divided between the Department of Veterinary and Animal Sciences and the Department of Food and Resource Economics. Since 2020 he has been director of the Centre for Companion Animal Welfare. He is committed to interdisciplinary work combining perspectives from natural science, social science and philosophy. For more information about his research in the field of animal ethics, animal welfare, human-animal relations, and veterinary ethics see www.animalethics.net. Peter is also an active participant in public outreach and debates, both nationally and internationally.

SESSION: Euthanasia: better a day too early than a day too late?

Jo Hockenhull

Jo Hockenhull

Jo Hockenhull

Head of Research, The Donkey Sanctuary

Jo Hockenhull is an animal welfare researcher with a particular focus on the influence of human perceptions and attitudes on decision-making and welfare. She has an undergraduate degree in Zoology, a masters in Applied Animal Behaviour and Welfare and a PhD in equine welfare. Her PhD investigated the behaviour of leisure horses in the UK, and the management, feeding and training practices associated with this facet of the UK equine population. Her research focuses on domestic species, primarily equids and farmed livestock.

SESSION: Animal behaviour: not just a problem

Carrie Tooley

Carrie Tooley

Carrie Tooley

Veterinary Surgeon at Behavioural Referrals Veterinary Practice

Carrie has worked in referral behavioural medicine for 8 years. She completed an MSc in Clinical Animal Behaviour, is a Certificated Clinical Animal Behaviourist (CCAB), an RCVS Advanced Practitioner in Companion Animal Behaviour and a resident of the European College of Animal Welfare and Behavioural Medicine (BM). She sees canine and feline clinical cases, teaches veterinary undergraduate students, mentors CCAB candidates and delivers CPD lectures to veterinary professionals. Her research areas include the role of sleep and the importance of gut health in emotional health and behavioural responses. Whilst she has undeniably become a bit of a behaviour nerd, Carrie is still involved with general practice on a locum basis and has a particular passion for the importance of incorporating emotional health and cognitive health treatment alongside physical health treatment within general practice.

Session: Animal behaviour: not just a problem 

Marian Dawkins

Marian Dawkins

Marian Dawkins

Professor of Animal Behaviour, Dept. Biology, University of Oxford

Marian Stamp Dawkins is Professor of Animal Behaviour in the Department of Biology at the University of Oxford and Fellow Emeritus in Biological Sciences at Somerville College, Oxford. Her research interests are in animal welfare, animal communication and animal consciousness and she has a particular concern with the process of putting welfare research into practice. She has worked on the welfare of poultry for many years in collaboration with various industrial partners in both Europe and the United States and is currently engaged in developing an automated system for assessing the welfare of broiler chickens using image processing of flock behaviour (OpticFlock). In addition to publishing many research papers, she is the author of Animal Suffering: the Science of Animal Welfare (1980), Through Our Eyes Only? The Search for Animal Consciousness (1993), Why Animals Matter: Animal Consciousness, Animal Welfare and Human Well-Being (2012) and The Science of Animal Welfare: Understanding What Animals Want (2021). With Aubrey Manning, she co-authored An Introduction to Animal Behaviour (4th-.6th editions). She was awarded the Niko Tinbergen Medal by the Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour in 2009, the Robert Fraser Gordon Medal by the World Poultry Association 2011, the Universities Federation for Animal Welfare Medal in 2012 and the Patrick Moore Award by the RSPCA in 2014. In 2014 she was made a Fellow of the Royal Society and awarded the CBE for services to animal welfare. In 2018 she was made an Honororary Fellow of the Society for Applied Ethology.

SESSION: Animal behaviour: not just a problem

Nikki McLeod

Nikki McLeod

Nikki McLeod

Consulting Registered Veterinary Nurse at Albavet Dunfermline

A confessed study geek, Nikki has been a RVN since 2000. With her fingers in many pies, she splits what little time she has between working as the Cat Advocate and consulting nurse for a small animal practice in Fife Scotland, and studying for multiple certificates. Not satisfied with gaining her first undergraduate degree at 50, she is now studying Clinical Animal Behaviour at University of Edinburgh, with a view to becoming a practice-based Clinical Animal Behaviourist. She is also keeping a BVNA Council seat warm for three years, and is a Trustee with the ABTC. When work doesn’t consume her brain, her husband and kids fry it quietly and keep her on her toes.

Session: Animal behaviour: not just a problem

Meghan Barrett

Meghan Barrett

Meghan Barrett

Assistant Professor of Biology at Indiana University Indianapolis & Director at Insect Welfare Research Society

Meghan Barrett is an Assistant Professor of Biology at Indiana University Indianapolis and Director of the Insect Welfare Research Society. She researches insect neurobiology, thermal adaptations, and the welfare of insects farmed as food and feed.

SESSION: The minds of insects and why they matter

Jonathan Birch

Jonathan Birch

Jonathan Birch

Professor of Philosophy at LSE & Principal Investigator (PI) on the Foundation of Animal Sentience Project 

Professor Jonathan Birch is a Professor of Philosophy at the LSE and Principal Investigator (PI) on the Foundations of Animal Sentience project. In 2021, he led a “Review of the Evidence of Sentience in Cephalopod Molluscs and Decapod Crustaceans” that led to invertebrate animals including octopuses, crabs and lobsters being included in the UK government’s Sentience Bill. In addition to his interest in animal sentience, cognition and welfare, he also has a longstanding interest in the evolution of altruism and social behaviour. His first book, The Philosophy of Social Evolution, was published by Oxford University Press in 2017.

Session: The minds of insects and why they matter

Dr Benjamin Kennedy (Chair)

Dr Benjamin Kennedy (Chair)

Dr Benjamin Kennedy (Chair)

BSc. MSc. BVetMed MRCVS Mem.RES

Veterinary Surgeon

Benjamin is currently practicing in the Midlands as a locum small animal and exotic vet. He is the director and Founder of Invertivet Bearded Vets, a company focused on providing and researching the application of clinical medicine to invertebrate species and providing exotic veterinary services. Through this he has a growing caseload of invertebrates from zoological, private, and commercial collections.

In addition to his veterinary medicine degree Benjamin has a bachelor’s in biochemistry and genetics and a master’s in molecular biology and pathology of viruses. He is the co-editor of the Veterinary Invertebrate Society Journal and part of its steering committee. He is also a member of the Royal Entomological Society, British Veterinary Zoological Society, and the British Tarantula Society. Benjamin regularly publishes articles and presents his research at conferences to raise awareness of invertebrate medicine.

Session: The minds of insects and why they matter

Dr Angus Nurse

Dr Angus Nurse

Dr Angus Nurse

Professor of Law and Environmental Justice, ARU Law School, Anglia Ruskin University

Dr Angus Nurse is Professor of Law and Environmental Justice at Anglia Ruskin University. He was previously Head of Criminology and Criminal Justice at Nottingham Trent University and prior to that was Associate Professor, Environmental Justice at Middlesex University School of Law. Angus has research interests in green criminology, criminality, critical criminal justice, environmental law, animal rights and human rights law. He is a member of the Wild Animal Welfare Committee (WAWC) and has previously worked in the environmental NGO field and as an Investigator for the Local Government Ombudsman. His books include Policing Wildlife (Palgrave Macmillan, 2015), Animal Harm: Perspectives on why People Harm and Kill Animals (Ashgate, 2013). Miscarriages of Justice: Causes, consequences and remedies (Policy Press, 2018) co-authored with Sam Poyser and Rebecca Milne, The Citizen and the State (Emerald, 2020) and Wildlife Criminology (Bristol University Press, 2020) co-authored with Tanya Wyatt.

Session: Animal welfare, ethics and rights

Sean Wensley

Sean Wensley

Sean Wensley

Senior Vet for Animal Welfare and Professional Engagement, PDSA

Sean Wensley is Senior Vet for Animal Welfare and Professional Engagement at the UK veterinary charity, PDSA. He was President of the British Veterinary Association (BVA) and chaired the Animal Welfare Working Group of the Federation of Veterinarians of Europe (FVE).
Sean is a Fellow of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons, a founding director of Vet Sustain and is an Honorary Lecturer in animal welfare at Queen’s University Belfast and the University of Nottingham. He has contributed to animal welfare and conservation projects around the world and in 2017 he received the inaugural World Veterinary Association (WVA) Global Animal Welfare Award for Europe. In 2023 he received the J.A. Wight Memorial Award from the British Small Animal Veterinary Association (BSAVA) for his outstanding contribution to pet welfare. His first book Through A Vet’s Eyes: How We Can All Choose a Better Life for Animals was selected as one of the Financial Times’ Best Summer Books of 2022.

Session: Animal welfare, ethics and rights

Steven McCulloch

Steven McCulloch

Steven McCulloch

Senior Lecturer in Human-Animal Studies – University of Winchester 

Steven McCulloch is Senior Lecturer in Human-Animal Studies at the Animal Welfare Research Group, University of Winchester. Steven qualified as a veterinary surgeon from the University of Bristol and holds a BA in Philosophy from Birkbeck College, University of London. He has a PhD from the Royal Veterinary College, University of London, for his thesis “The British animal health and welfare policy process: accounting for the interests of sentient species”. He is a diplomat of the European College of Animal Welfare and Behavioural Medicine and a recognised European veterinary specialist in Animal Welfare Science, Ethics and Law. Steven’s research is focused on the science, ethics, and policy of animal protection.

Session: Animal welfare, ethics and rights 

 

Madeleine Campbell (Chair)

Madeleine Campbell (Chair)

Madeleine Campbell (Chair)

Professor of Veterinary Ethics at Nottingham School of Veterinary Medicine

Madeleine is a EBVS and RCVS Recognised Specialist in Animal Welfare Science, Ethics and Law. She currently Chairs Defra’s Animal Welfare Committee (which provides independent expert advice to the English, Scottish and Welsh Governments), the BVA’s Ethics and Welfare Advisory Panel, and the British Equestrian Federation’s Ethics and Welfare Advisory Group. Amongst other appointments, Madeleine is also a member of the British Horseracing Authority’s Ethics Panel and an Independent Director of The Greyhound Board of Great Britain.

Session: Animal Welfare, Ethics and Rights

 

Siobhan Abeyesinghe

Siobhan Abeyesinghe

Siobhan Abeyesinghe

Associate Professor in Animal Behaviour & Welfare Science at the Royal Veterinary College

Siobhan is Associate Professor in Animal Behaviour & Welfare Science and Head of Group RVC Animal Welfare Science and Ethics at the Royal Veterinary College. Her research interests cover animal behaviour and welfare, with a focus on poultry and how they perceive commercially relevant environments, social conditions, and husbandry. She graduated from University of Newcastle with a BSc in Animal Science, completed a MSc in Applied Animal Behaviour and Welfare at University of Edinburgh and subsequently undertook a PhD in chicken behaviour and welfare at University of Bristol with Professor Christine Nicol and Christopher Wathes.

Session: Research update

Andrea Doeschl-Wilson

Andrea Doeschl-Wilson

Andrea Doeschl-Wilson

Acting Head of Genetics & Genomics Division at The Roslin Institute

Prof. Andrea Doeschl-Wilson holds a Personal Chair in Animal Disease Genetics and Modelling at the Roslin Institute and R(D)SVS at the University of Edinburgh, and leads the Roslin Institute Strategic Programme on the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases. Prof. Doeschl-Wilson is passionate about animal health and welfare. Her research group uses mathematical modelling to assess and predict how genetic and non-genetic factors influence the spread of infectious disease and harmful behaviour in farm animals.

Session: Research update