Australian Small Animal Veterinarians

Australia | Full Member

Dr. Geeta Saini

WSAVA Representative
Dr. Debbie Osborne

Unit 40, 6 Herbert Street
St. Leonards
NSW 2065, Australia
Fax: +612 9437 9068

Members: 1826



President – Dr Geeta Saini  

Honorary Treasurer - Dr Michael O'Donoghue

Southern Representative - Dr Caitlin Horwood-Skelton

Eastern Representative - Dr James Thompson

Western Representative - Dr David Mason

Northern Representative - Dr Michael O’Donoghue

General Committee Member – Dr Mark Kelman

General Committee Member – Dr Karen Jackson

General Committee Member – Dr Alistair Webb

ASAVA nominee to the AVA Board - Dr Julia Crawford



ASAVA Scientific Convenor – Dr Graham Swinney

ASAVA Representative to WSAVA – Dr Deborah Osbourne


ASAVA Annual Report to WSAVA for 2016


ASAVA is the largest special interest group within the Australian Veterinary Association (AVA). It focuses on small, companion animals. Companion animal veterinarians around Australia look to the ASAVA for services that maintain and increase their skills and knowledge. Continuing professional development in all areas of clinical veterinary medicine is a key service provided by the group. The advancement of veterinary science in relation to companion animal health and welfare is a key objective. The executive committee of the group is composed of elected representatives from all around Australia.

ASAVA initiated the formation of the Australian Companion Animal Health Foundation (ACAHF), the aim of which is to help fund investigative projects to further veterinary knowledge. It is active in raising funds for research into the causes and prevention of disease in companion animals. ASAVA continues to provide administrative support to thIs foundation.

ASAVA also administrates an Accredited Hospital Scheme, that provides a thorough and comprehensive inspection service requiring member hospitals to maintain uncompromised high standards of veterinary services. At present there are forty-two Accredited Veterinary Hospitals around the country, and ASAVA is working hard to increase this number each year. The benefits of membership of the Accredited Hospital Scheme include continuing self-assessment of hospital operations, staff pride in accreditation, ongoing improvement where needed and continuing critical assessment by independent assessors.

In addition to a vast array of continuing professional development opportunities, we also provide companion animal practitioners with clinical publications and resources to help them reach and maintain the highest levels of professional practice. Our flagship journal, the Australian Veterinary Practitioner, continues to publish case studies specific to the small animal veterinarian, and our membership magazine, The Companion, features association news and information of a less clinical nature. 

One of the major benefits of ASAVA membership, is free access to twelve webinars a year. These have been extremely well attended in 2016, with topics chosen based on member feedback in consultation with our Scientific Convenor, Dr Graham Swinney. ASAVA held its first live webinar at the end of 2014, at Charles Stuart University, and continues to offer this sponsorship to all Australian universities. We also sponsor a Practitioner in Residence program at the University of Melbourne, giving students information and tools to ease their transition into the veterinary workforce.

ASAVA is active in many capacities to promote the role of veterinarians in society and to assist the clinical veterinary surgeon in their daily role. We recognise the contribution of individuals to the profession with a variety of awards:

  • Small Animal Practitioner of the Year,
  • Distinguished Scientific Contribution Award
  • The John Holt Award for Distinguished Service

ASAVA also offers student scholarships and prizes. These awards and scholarships are presented each year at the annual ASAVA conference held each August.

The ASAVA conference is the second largest veterinary conference for the Australian calendar year, behind the AVA National conference. In 2016 our conference was held at the Gold Coast in Queensland for the fourth year in a row, and attracted nearly 300 delegates from around Australia and New Zealand. The fourth ASAVA annual Feline Conference was also held in October this year.

In 2017 we are proud and excited to be hosting the FASAVA (Federation of Asian Small Animal Veterinary Associations) annual conference at the Gold Coast from 11-14 August. THis event will be the premier companion conference in the region. Four conferences in one - FASAVA, the World Veterinary Dental Congress, UPAV Exotic Pets conference and the VNCA Advance Veterinary Nursing conference. There are eight streams, sixteen topic areas, more than sixty world class speakers and a number of Masterclasses. And the Gold Coast is one of Australia's premier holiday destinations. 

ASAVA is represented on the National Industry Advisory Group, the Therapeutics Advisory Committee, the Committee for Companion Animals in the Community and the AVA Policy Advisory Committee. ASAVA also retains an elected nominee to the AVA Board of Directors.


Geeta Saini – ASAVA President