CenCan 2020

Join us in 2020!

Friday, February 7, 2020 to
Sunday, February 9, 2020
Victoria Inn
1808 Wellington Avenue
Winnipeg, Manitoba

2020 Speakers and Sessions

The CenCan conference is three days of exciting and enriching educational sessions for the entire veterinary team.

This is a joint event from the Manitoba Veterinary Medical Association (MVMA) and the Manitoba Veterinary Technologists Association (MVTA) with approximately 300 attendees annually.

The CenCan conference offers prime opportunities to connect face-to face with the Manitoba veterinary community.

The CenCan Expo features the latest innovations in veterinary products and services with a maximum of 45 booths.

check out the

Exciting Speaker Lineup

Planning for 2020 CenCan is well under way. You don’t want to miss what will be an exciting and informative weekend with top speakers from Canada.

Topics ranging from cytology, pathology, exotics, mental health, practice management, surgery, and transfusion medicine will be covered by knowledgeable, engaging speakers.

Speakers for 2020:

  • Tammy Owens DVM, MS, DACVN
  • Angelica Galezowski BSc, DVM, MVeSc, DACVP (Clinical Pathology)
  • Chris Clark BA, VetMb, MVetSc.
  • Chris Enright DVM
  • Cindy Adams PhD, MSW
  • Diego Moya Fernandez MSc, PhD, DVM
  • Jennifer Loewen DVM, DACVECC
  • Jolene Watson, RVT
  • Faith Banks DVM, CHPV, CCRT, CPLP
  • Kathy Stinson, RVT
  • Marie Claude Blaise DVM, Dipl. ACVIM
  • Paula Menzies DVM MPVM Dip. ECSRHM
  • Søren Boysen DVM, DACVECC
  • Thomas Gibson BSc, BEd, DVM, DVSc, DACVS-SA

2020 CENCAN Speaker Topics

Alternative Diets, the Changing Landscape of the Pet Food World.
Pet food selection is extremely complex. People may seek alternatives to conventional pet foods because of human-animal bonding, ideology and investment in the pet’s health. Alternative feeding trends will be discussed including natural, organic, human-grade, grain-free, home-made, plant-based and raw pet foods.

Obesity, Tipping the Scale
Treating obesity can be challenging in veterinary practice. Advising pet owners to “feed less” doesn’t work. This presentation will provide practical tips to design successful weight loss plans for dogs and cats and enhance client compliance.

Cytology Interpretation
The “how’s” with In-House Cytology: Sample collection, processing and evaluation of cytology samples – Part One

This interactive presentation will focus on the effective collection, processing and in-house evaluation of cytology samples. Various methods of sample collection and preparation will be reviewed along with a standard method of approach in evaluating and interpreting samples in-house.

Lesions Amenable to in House Cytology
The “what and where” with In-House Cytology: Lesions amenable to in-clinic cytologic evaluation– Part Two

Using high-quality digital images, commonly aspirated lesions that are amenable to in-house cytology will be reviewed on a case by case basis followed by an in-depth discussion on each case, including differential diagnoses, additional diagnostic tests and potential diagnostic dilemmas.

Test Your Hematology, Cytology and Urinalysis IQ
Test your hematology, cytology and urinalysis skills in this interactive presentation where various high-quality digital images are displayed and attendees need to make the diagnosis! Common, uncommon and “unusual” lesions will be showcased and differentials, diagnostic testing and other tips will be discussed with each case.

Clinical Pathology “Odds and Sods” – Issues Commonly Encountered in Clinics That Aren’t Readily Found in Textbooks

Clinical Pathology Tidbits: Answering some commonly encountered (and sometimes frustrating) “what the…” and “why does…” questions (which seems to occur in clinic when you can’t call a clinical pathologist to help you!)
What is that weird stuff on the blood smear? Why do I need to fill an EDTA tube with an appropriate volume? Why is there a discrepancy between my analyzer and my smear evaluation? Answers to commonly encountered clinical pathology related issues that can’t readily found in a textbook.

Roadside Emergencies
The session will discuss the role of the veterinarian in roadside veterinary emergencies and the options and practicalities of large animal euthanasia.
Why do bad things happen to good people?
With every animal that we treat there is the possibility of an adverse outcome.  While it is impossible to be truly prepared for a negative result thinking about how to react in advance can be truly beneficial.  This session will cover types of adverse outcome, how to react personally and as a team and how to deal with the clients after such an event.

Ruminant neurology
Ruminant neurological cases can be frustrating.  It is hard to do a physical exam and there are very few practical diagnostic tests.  This session will review common causes of neurological disease and how best to practically confirm your diagnosis. 

Don’t just do something, stand there
We live in a world of instant results.  Lab tests are faster than ever, searches online can be done in seconds.  However, the practice of medicine takes time and thought and there are no actions that are free of risk.  This session will go back to the basics of what we do as veterinarians.  How do we make a diagnosis, how do we treat disease and how certain are we of our successes!

Diseases in Companion Parrots
Psittacines (parrots) are a family of birds frequently kept as pets.  From healthy bird examinations to differentials in a sick patient, this talk will cover common infectious and non-infectious conditions that may be encountered in companion parrots.

Reptiles – getting started with reptiles in practice
Reptiles are an entire class of animals with diverse husbandry and medical requirements.  This talk will cover the importance of environmental factors, as well as common areas of concern including analgesia, anaesthesia and select diseases.

Practical in Practice Communication
What do we gain by improving communication in veterinary medicine? What does the evidence show we get if we invest in enhancing communication?  This interactive session will examine how effective and intentional communication skills are essential for practice success. The growing body of research evidence that confirms a strong correlation between building a relationship with clients, getting to know and integrating their perspective throughout the interaction AND improved outcomes including client and veterinarian satisfaction, adherence, accuracy, efficiency and supportiveness will be reviewed. We will examine some of the most compelling science that points to the impact of interrupting clients, failing to build a relationship, failing to investigate the client’s perspective including their beliefs, concerns, needs and feelings. The most referenced communication frameworks for veterinary medicine will be explored. Participants will be invited to set 2-3 objectives for communication in practice going forward.
Core Skills of Veterinary Communication
Have you ever heard something like?: “Come on, communication is a personality trait, either you have it or you don’t”.  The truth is, communication is NOT a personality trait.  It can be taught and it can be learned. Communication is a series of learned skills. Personality may provide a head start but we can all learn from wherever our starting point may be. The key to learning a complicated skill is to break down the skills into their component parts. We often hear, for example, “She’s good with the clients” or “He handled that angry client so well” without quite identifying what he did, thereby making it difficult to repeat. We need to identify the actual skills that have been used, practice the individual components and put them together. During this session, we will practice and learn five core communication skills that will enhance communication in practice and everyday communication.
Why and how does it go wrong?
Given growing client expectations, knowledge gleaned from the internet, strong attachment or reliance on animals, there is a need for a shift in communication style from a traditional paternalistic approach to a collaborative partnership based on shared decision making. Many clients are less willing to take a passive role in their animal’s healthcare and want to take an active role in decision-making. In this session, we will explore both client-centred and relationship-centred approaches that promote collaborative partnership between the veterinary professional and all the other people who are involved in the care of the animal(s). We will explore the communication skills that veterinarians and others can employ to enhance their clients’ ability to become more involved in the consultation and to take part in a more balanced relationship. We will touch on the value of providing clients with skills to enable them to adopt a more active role in the consultation.
Communication in Veterinary Medicine: Mainstream Activity or Minority Sport?
For close to 20 years veterinary education has been working toward the inclusion of communication programs or courses in light of the recognition of its importance to practice success. More recently veterinary nurse education programs have been offering training to their students given the ever-increasing awareness about the importance of effective communication for all team members. If communication training is to result in a professional level of competence at the practice level there must be follow-through with effective communication modelling, coaching and protocols such as communication rounds in the practice setting. This interactive presentation will examine the why, what and how of communication coaching in practice.  We will discuss how to use particular teaching methods to structure coaching and rounds type sessions including how to engage in giving and receiving feedback. We will conclude with the preconditions that are necessary to initiate and sustain communication skills training in practice.
Current and future welfare issues of the beef cattle industry
The beef industry is challenged to meet the increasing demand for meat for an exponentially growing population while fulfilling consumer expectations for improved animal welfare standards, reduced use of hormones and antibiotics, and environmental sustainability. A better understanding of the interactions between animal behaviour, stress physiology, and disease pathogenesis is paramount to improve beef cattle health, reduce the use of antimicrobial treatments, and maximize the efficient use of resources.

The role of precision technologies in beef cattle production
The study of farm animal behaviour has evolved in the last decades from being an anecdotal observation overridden by performance parameters, to become a useful tool to evaluate animal health and welfare. As opposed to other livestock production systems, the beef cattle industry still heavily relies on the visual observation of a declining amount of pen checkers to evaluate cattle health and well-being. While peculiarities in farm logistics and profit margins could justify this gap, the improved versatility, functionality and pricing of the new generation of precision livestock farming technologies represent a great opportunity to study their applicability within the beef industry.

Euthanasia Part 1: The Ultimate Good Death Experience
Abstract: If you’ve ever asked yourself, “Could I be better at this?”, the answer is yes, you can. We often get caught up in the old way of doing things, especially when it comes to euthanasia. It can be a little scary trying new things during such an emotional time. But societal demands and the risk of compassion fatigue are rightfully advocating for a ‘Good Death’ revolution. In this session, we will discover how to partner and guide caregivers through such a difficult, emotional time. We will explore necessary appointment parameters and map out the most impactful ways to ready the team and setting, including use of a euthanasia attendant.

Learning Objectives:
1. Apply client communication techniques for increased clarity
2. Better assist clients preparing for the euthanasia appointment
3. Offer more empathy and support for the bereaved
4. Be prepared for all manner of requests

Euthanasia Part 2: Protocols and Techniques; Getting it right the first time
Abstract: In euthanasia, there are no do-overs. We have one chance to get it right. It’s time we really understand how to choose the best protocols and techniques to match all settings and patient health. Together in this session, we will examine pre-euthanasia sedation/anaesthesia protocols, including dosing and handling unexpected reactions. We will learn the 5 most common injection types for small animals, including intrarenal injections, and consider the best approach to challenging cases. This session is designed to set your veterinary team up for success each and every time. And we will address the new concept of dysthanasia.

Learning Objectives:
1. Determine when to reach for a sedative protocol versus an anaesthetic
2. Explain unexpected physical changes to clients
3. Quickly modify protocols to meet the patient’s unique needs
4. Effectively administer euthanasia solution using each technique

CPR can be very stressful when it needs to be performed. In the past 10 years, there has been a RECOVER initiative to help standardize CPR in the veterinary community. This lecture will go over recognizing when an arrest occurs and the steps of basic and advanced CPR. It will provide practical tips to help you feel more in control during a CPR by outlining the roles that should be filled, the basic technique as well as drugs that can be given.

Reproductive emergencies
Reproductive emergencies are often problems that happen infrequently with a lot of our pet population being spayed and neutered in Canada however can be extra stressful as there may be multiple lives at jeopardy. In this lecture, we will review common reproductive emergencies including dystocia, pyometra and eclampsia with case-based examples.

Trauma Assessment
When an animal is involved in a traumatic event there are a lot of body systems that can be affected and that should be evaluated in a timely manner. This lecture will review triaging the patient, emergent therapies that may need to be considered, longer-term management with the use of case examples.

Jolene Watson’s ‘Stress Management & Creating Resilience’ full-day session will focus on understanding personality type in relation to acute and chronic stress reactions. The majority of veterinary teams are introverted, and this can cause unique challenges in terms of sales, building rapport and handling conflict & stress. Understanding how to utilize strengths and recognizing opportunities for growth is the key to decreasing workplace and personal stress. You will explore personality type in areas including but not limited to stress management, appreciation styles, time management, overall wellness and navigating through organizational changes. Jolene will give practical stress management tips and strategies that she has learned throughout her 19-year career as a Registered Veterinary Technologist, Office Manager and Entrepreneur.
Charge What You’re Worth 

Understanding fees and discussing them effectively with clients is critical in client compliance, patient care, and your clinic’s financial success.  Fee-related discussions take place in your clinic every day-they don’t have to stressful.

This in-house interactive workshop is designed to get everyone on your team on the same page when it comes to your fees and having the confidence necessary to thrive.

Topics Covered:

Fee Setting

  • Understanding the logic behind a suggested fee guide and how to use it effectively
  • Setting your fees for success based on your clinic’s values and goals


  • The effect of discounting on your practice

Overcoming Barriers

  • Addressing what holds you back from succeeding

Leadership Fundamentals

For most veterinary practice owners and managers leadership remains somewhat of a mystery yet strong leadership has never been more important in veterinary medicine.  This lecture will teach you critical leadership skills such as

  • Keeping staff engaged and invested long term
  • Tapping into the entire team’s full potential
  • Valuable insights into what to do when things go wrong.

Creating Culture of Choice

Even the best of teams can fall victim to the day-to-day stresses in a veterinary clinic at times and morale can suffer.

Learn to:

  • Set clear expectations of workplace conduct
  • Create a culture of accountability, not blame
  • Problem solve in a positive and productive manner
  • Consistently bring your best selves to work
  • Protect against burnout
Clinical approach to immune-mediated hemolytic anemia:
IMHA is one of the most common causes of anemia in dogs, yet treatment regimens remain non-standardized and, in some cases, controversial. Based on a case presentation, this session will focus on the importance of making an appropriate diagnosis, common and novel treatment options, as well as the benefits and risks of transfusions.

Canine blood transfusion in my practice: is it realistic?
In the last decade, the demand for veterinary blood products has grown tremendously. Using a case-based approach, the goal of this presentation is to demystify blood transfusions by emphasizing clinically relevant steps to safe and effective blood transfusions in dogs, from the selection of the appropriate blood product to its proper administration.

Iceberg Diseases of Sheep and Goats – What are they are what can we do about them?
Adult small ruminants often suffer from many infections which cause disease in a few but often a significant proportion of the flock/herd is actually infected.  This presentation will review the common diseases associated with chronic weight loss in small ruminants and measures to diagnose and control them.  It will focus on paratuberculosis, Maedi-visna (AKA OPP), caprine arthritis encephalitis (AKA CAE), enzootic nasal tumour of sheep, scrapie, caseous lymphadenitis and will mention some of the sporadic causes that occur commonly as well.
Abortion in Small Ruminants – What every practitioner should know
Abortion outbreaks are common in both sheep and goats.  This presentation will review the most common causes of abortion, how they are diagnosed and controlled.  Because many of the causes are zoonotic, we will touch on zoonotic risks and how to protect you and your clients.
Keeping Lambs and Kids Alive
Lamb and kid mortality rates are often very high, as are effects from diseases such as pneumonia, diarrhea and coccidiosis. This presentation will cover conditions that affect neonatal lambs and kids, how to treat and to control.  I will also touch on how to measure lamb/kid rearing success.
Gastrointestinal Parasitism – How do we stop the worms from killing our sheep and goats?
Successfully pasturing small ruminants in Canada is a challenge.  One of the biggest challenges is preventing losses due to GI nematode parasites and in particular Haemonchus contortus.  This presentation will review the epidemiology of GI parasites in Canada and techniques to lower the risk of disease.
The 5-minute abdominal ultrasound anyone can use to answer simple binary questions!

And, The 5-minute pleural space and lung ultrasound anyone can use to answer simple binary questions!

Is it possible to diagnose a uroabdomen or hemoabdomen in a dog suffering trauma within 5 minutes of presentation? How fast can pericardial effusion be consistently diagnosed and differentiated from pleural fluid with confidence? Have you ever struggled with trying to figure out why a patient is dyspneic (aspiration pneumonia vs. pleural effusion vs. heart disease) and you cannot obtain thoracic radiographs for fear of decompensation? Should you give prokinetics or place a nasogastric tube in the ICU patient that is regurgitating or not eating for 48 hours? Is the cat that ate lilies (and we can’t get a urinary catheter into) producing adequate urine? Veterinary point of care ultrasound (VPOCUS) can help you manage these patients with confidence! VPOCUS techniques are rapid, easy-to-learn and practical ultrasound skills that ANY practitioner can apply in everyday practice. The first of these two lectures will focus on rapid simple binary abdominal questions that can be answered in small animal patients presenting to the clinic. The second of these two 90 minute lectures will focus on ultrasound the pleural space and lungs: making confusing definitions (Bat sign, Gator sign, B lines, lung rockets, glide sign, lung point etc.) and key anatomic structures of the lung and pleural space easy to understand and apply to diagnose pulmonary and pleural pathologies (edema, pleural effusion, pneumothorax). These lectures will be interactive and will use case examples to emphasis key findings.

Management of Cranial Cruciate Disease -Medical? Surgical?
An update on the current literature discussing the most current thoughts on management of cruciate ligament rupture in our canine patients.

Reducing Surgical Site Infections
Surgical site infections can have a devastating effect on our patients and our practice. Preventing and reducing these infections is our best strategy. A discussion of what can be done on a daily basis.

Maximizing success with lameness examinations
A discussion of how to approach lameness. A methodical approach to the lameness and orthopaedic examination and getting the most out of our diagnostic tests.

Obesity and OA
Obesity is one of the most common medical problems seen in our veterinary patients. Discussion of the medical, mobility and orthopaedic issues associated with obesity on or pets can have a profound effect on the health and well-being of our patients.