Interview

Dr.

Andrea Fascetti

Vet.M.B., Ph.D.
Professor of Nutrition at the Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital; Chief of the Nutrition Support Service; Science-in-charge at Feline Nutrition and Pet Care Center; Science-in-charge at Amino Acid Laboratory.
University of California - Davis, CA, USA
interviewed - Nov/2011

   
this interview in portuguese    

Dr. Andrea Fascetti is a veterinarian (University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia - PA, 1991) with Ph.D (University of California, Davis - CA, 1999). She is a Diplomate at the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine (ACVIM, 1994) and the American College of Veterinary Nutrition (ACVN, 1999). Secretary/Treasurer of ACVN Executive Board. Member, Scientific Advisory Board, Foods For Health Initiative, University of California, Davis. Member of the Cat Food Nutrient Profile Subcommittee at AAFCO Dog and Cat Expert Committee.


Dr. Fascetti was in Brazil giving lectures at the IV Symposium of Clinical Nutrition of Dogs and Cats in Nov/2011. Check out the following interview!


First Part
01: What did you know about Brazil?
02: What was your impression about the IV Symposium of Clinical Nutrition of Dogs and Cats?
03: How do veterinarians provide clinical nutrition at their offices in U.S.?
04: What is important in pet nutritional scientific research now?
05: Where should a Brazilian veterinary student go?
06: What is your opinion about homemade diet for pets?
07: What is your opinion about raw foods for pets?
08: What Congresses do you usually go?
09: What it takes to be diplomate at AACV and what are the consequences of it?

     

     

nutrição.Vet: 01- How many times have you been in Brazil? What did you know about what is done in nutrition of dogs and cats in Brazil?

 

 

Andrea Fascetti at IV Symposium of Clinical Nutrition Brazil

 

 

Dr. Fascetti: This was my second trip to Brazil. I was in Brazil last July [2011] to speak at the Animal Science Society meeting in Salvador.

 

Most of what I knew about nutrition research for dogs and cats in Brazil I learned by reading the papers from Dr. Aulus Carciofi’s research group.

 

During my most recent trip I got to see the extent of his research program but also learned a lot about how Brazilians view nutrition and feed their own pets.

 

 

 

nutrição.VET: 02- What was your impression about the IV Symposium of Clinical Nutrition of Dogs and Cats?

 

Dr. Fascetti: I had no idea what to expect with regard

to the symposium. It was really exciting and fun to attend this meeting. To have so many people that are so enthusiastic about nutrition at one event is unusual.

 

Most meetings I attend combine nutrition with other topics such as internal medicine or other veterinary lectures. It is a real treat to attend such a large meeting devoted fully to dog and cat nutrition.

 

The topics were very timely and addressed some very controversial subjects such as metabolic syndrome in dogs.

_____

"... It is a real treat to attend such a large meeting devoted fully to dog and cat nutrition.”

_____



(pg.01.) (continues). (back to the top).

 

     
     

nutrição.Vet: 03- How do veterinarians at their offices – not inside the University – provide the service of clinical nutrition in the United States? Do they do it themselves or refer to specialists in Clinical Nutrition?

 

Dr. Fascetti: I think for straight forward cases, many veterinarians feel comfortable selecting a diet for their patient.

 

We generally are contacted by veterinarians for help if their

 

 

IV Symposium of Clinical Nutrition Brazil

initial recommendation fails or the animal develops a secondary disease process.

 

So we get a lot of calls for trying to select diets for animals with multiple diseases – for instance kidney disease and pancreatitis or adverse food response and kidney disease.

 

We also get a lot of calls for formulating or evaluating homeprepared diets.

 

 

I consider nutrition to still be an emerging specialty in veterinary medicine.

 

I don’t think all veterinarians are aware of what we can do to support them in managing their patients. In our experience, once a practitioner has used our service, we often hear from them again. 


(pg.02.) (continues). (back to the top).

 

 

 

     
     

nutrição.Vet: 04- What is important in pet nutritional scientific research now?

 


IV Symposium of Clinical Nutrition Brazil

 

 

Dr. Fascetti: Given that approximately 40% of dogs and cats are overweight or obese, research in this área continues to be important.

 

Certainly the debate regarding the use of carbohydrates in pet foods (especially for cats) and raw food diets are driving some expanding

 

 

branches of research as well.

 

I also see a growing interest regarding the effects of food processing on nutrient availability as a growing área of research.

 

_____


"... Given that approximately 40% of dogs and cats are overweight or obese, research in this área continues to be important.”

_____

 

(pg.03.) (continues). (back to the top).


     
     

nutrição.Vet: 05- If a Brazilian veterinary student wants to know more about pet nutrition, if he/she wants to get an internship or training or maybe do a masters or a PhD, where in the world do you think this Brazilian student should go?

 

 

Dr. Fascetti: Actually a Brazilian student does not have to go far to receive excellent training in companion animal nutrition. There is a very active and exciting training program at Universidade Estadual Paulista - UNESP Campus de Jaboticabal under Dr. Aulus Carciofi. I think the number of student participants is one of the strengths of the program, in addition to the presence of an on-site animal facility and their ability to produce their own test diets at the same location. This program also offers residency training in clinical nutrition.

 

If you would like to get some experience living outside of Brazil, there are also residency training programs in nutrition that prepare one to be come certified by the American College of Veterinary Nutrition (ACVN – www.acvn.org) or the European College of Veterinary and Comparative Nutrition (ECVCN, listed through the European Board of Veterinary Specialists - www.ebvs.org).

 

 

There are also a number of excellent graduate training programs all over the world if you are interested in getting a Master’s or Doctoral degree. If there is a particular area of nutrition that interests you, a literature search may turn up some potential programs and mentors. You should also

consider seeking recommendations from your mentors at your current institution. There are also two organizations that may also be helpful.

 

The first is the American Academy of Veterinary Nutrition (AAVN – www.aavn.org) and the second is the European Society of Veterinary Comparative Nutrition (ESVCN – www.esvcn.eu). Members of each of these organizations are interested in veterinary nutrition. They often post educational opportunities on their web sites and both organizations sponsor an annual meeting. Membership also comes with an active listserv where you can ask questions, or get insight into what individuals and possible training opportunities.


_____

"... American College of Veterinary Nutrition (ACVN – www.acvn.org) or the European College of Veterinary and Comparative Nutrition (ECVCN ...”

_____



(pg.04.) (continues). (back to the top).

     
     

nutrição.Vet: 06- What is your opinion about homemade diet for pets?

 

 

Dr. Fascetti: There are numerous reasons that owners want to prepare diets at home for their pet. They include distrust of commercial pet food manufacturers, wanting to embrace a particular feeding philosophy or wanting to feed a specific ingredient.

 

Some owners feel it is a great way to bond with their animal. A home-prepared diet can be invaluable in cases where an animal will not eat the appropriate veterinary therapeutic diet or has multiple diseases where the right diet for one problem is contraindicated for another problem the animal has.

 

I would strongly recommend that if an owner is going to cook their pet’s meals at home that they consult a trained veterinary nutritionist for assistance. Although extremely well-meaning, many pet owners create recipes or meals that are missing required nutrients for dogs and cats and when fed over time can result in a nutritional deficiency.

 

Common problems we see include, calcium deficiency as well as deficiencies in many vitamins and trace minerals.

 

 

IV Symposium of Clinical Nutrition Brazil

 

 

I would also caution against using recipes found on the internet or in publications for pet owners. Our experience has been that they often do not meet all of the animal’s requirements or in some cases provide some nutrients in excess amounts that may lead to a toxicity. The Nutrition Support Service at the University of California, Davis has a web page with a list of frequently asked questions regarding home-prepared diets that may be of interest. The link to the web site is this.

(pg.05.) (continues). (back to the top).

     

nutrição.Vet: 07- What is your opinion about raw foods for pets?

 

 

Dr. Fascetti: I think we have a lot to learn about feeding raw food diets to domestic dogs and cats. Currently there is no scientific evidence to support that feeding a raw diet has any long-term health benefits compared to commercial or home-prepared diets. This, combined with the real potential for zoonotic disease, is the reason I do not recommend them.

 


_____

"... there is no scientific evidence to support that feeding a raw diet has any long-term health benefits ...”

_____


 

 

nutrição.VET: 8- What Congresses do you usually go to keep yourself up to date on pet nutrition? What Meetings and Congresses do you recommend ?

 

Dr. Fascetti: I try to attend the American Academy of Veterinary Nutrition (AAVN) half-day

symposium directly before the start of ACVIM’s Annual Forum.

The ACVIM Annual Forum is a very good meeting with a variety of topics including nutrition and clinical nutrition.

 

 

The European Society of Comparative Veterinary Nutrition (ESVCN) has a several day meeting every year covering basic and clinical nutrition in a variety of species. The AAVN and ESVCN symposiums are a great way to connect and interact with other nutritionists in academia, industry and private practice.

 

 

I also like to attend the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB) which includes organizations with interests not only in nutrition but physiology, biomedical engineering etc.

 

 

Overall, the science and research tends to be more directed toward human health and contains a lot of basic work, but it is a great meeting to be exposed to new ideas, technologies and ways of thinking.

 

 

(pg.06.) (continues). (back to the top).

 

     
     

nutrição.Vet: 09- What it takes to be diplomate at AACV and what are the consequences of it?

 

 

Dr. Fascetti: There are several routes to becoming a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Nutrition (ACVN). One way is a two-year training program, like many other traditional clinical, specialty training programs.

 

 

Some individuals combine their clinical training with an advanced degree, while others develop a training program while simultaneously working another job (referred to as an alternative track training program). ACVN outlines all the options and requirements in a

 

 

 

IV Symposium of Clinical Nutrition Brazil

 

training program document found on their web site.

 

Becoming a Diplomate of ACVN then allows you to then train other veterinarians in this specialty. Specialty certification also designates you as an expert in whatever area that you train, in this case veterinary nutrition.

 

 

Diplomates of our specialty college (ACVN) participate in various market segments such as academia, industry (not only the pet food industry but also the pharmaceutical industry), private consulting, private veterinary practice and the government.

 

 

nutrição.Vet: thank you!

Dr. Fascetti: It has been my pleasure – thank you for the opportunity!!


(pg.07.)(back to the top).

 

 

 


see also

 

 



[ Como anunciar ]