2023 VVMA Summer Continuing Education Conference 
Saturday, June 10
9am - 4:30pm
The DoubleTree by Hilton, South Burlington

Register Online Here


Paper Registration Form


Conference Brochure


After-Hours Event:  Please join us in the Atrium immediately following the conference for a cash bar and light fare to honor Dr. Ron Veenema, retiring VVMA Treasurer, and Gail Veenema who have been outstanding volunteers for decades.  We are also celebrating VVMA's 125th anniversary.



Small Animal Program
-  Cardiology Update - 6 CE hours - Dr. John Bonagura

Large Animal Program –  Bovine and Small Ruminants
Field Necropsy and Emerging Infectious Diseases – Dr. Erin Goodrich
Small Ruminant Abortion Diagnostics and BVD and Border Disease – Dr. Elisha Frye


Cardiology Update with Dr. John Bonagura, DVM, DACVIM
Professor Emeritus, the Ohio State University
Adjunct Professor of Cardiology, Department of Clinical Sciences
NC State University College of Veterinary Medicine

John Bonagura is a graduate of the Ohio State University, was a rotating intern at the Animal Medical Center in New York, and completed residencies and specialty board certifications in Cardiology and Internal Medicine at Ohio State. For most of his career, John was Head of Cardiology & Interventional Medicine at Ohio State, where he achieved the rank of tenured Professor and where he is currently Professor Emeritus. Dr. Bonagura was visiting research fellow at Edinburgh University, Scotland and completed a five-year term as the Gilbreath-McLorn Endowed Professor of Veterinary Cardiology at the University of Missouri before rejoining the faculty at Ohio State in 2001. John moved to the North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine in 2019 where he is currently affiliated.

John served a three-year term as President of the ACVIM specialty of Cardiology and member of Board. He is the long-time Editor of Kirk's Current Veterinary Therapy and co-author of a Colour Atlas of Veterinary Cardiology and the recently published Ware: Cardiovascular Diseases in Companion Animals. He currently serves on the editorial board of the Journal of Veterinary Cardiology and the American Society of Echocardiography CASE. Dr. Bonagura has written or co-authored over 300 scientific publications and book chapters. He is the recipient of multiple college awards for teaching in the professional and graduate programs at Ohio State, as well as the OSU campus Award for Distinguished Teaching. Additional honors include the Bourgelat award of the British Small Animal Veterinary Association, Doctor Honoris Causa from the University of Barcelona, Kirk Lifetime Achievement Award from the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine, Faculty Achievement Award of the American Association of Veterinary Clinicians, and distinguished Alumnus awards from The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine and the Animal Medical Center. 

Core 4 hours:

Myxomatous Valve Disease in Dogs, Part 1 – Staging & Preclinical Disease: Myxomatous (degenerative) valvular disease is the most important cause of heart disease and cardiac failure in dogs. This session focuses on clinical recognition, practical approaches to staging, and "when to start" treatment.  

Objectives/Outcomes for participants

  • Offer an overview of the clinical, imaging and laboratory diagnosis and staging of acquired (myxomatous, degenerative) valvular heart disease in the dog.
  • Outline the ACVIM staging of myxomatous valvular heart disease in the dog.
  • Explain the diagnostic imaging findings (radiography, echocardiography) typical of mild to advanced myxomatous valve disease of the dog.
  • Describe the value and challenges of using blood natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP) concentrations in the assessment of myxomatous valve disease of the dog.           
  • Summarize the preclinical therapy of myxomatous valve disease of the dog and the criteria that justify starting treatment before the onset of clinical signs.  


Myxomatous Valve Disease in Dogs, Part 2 – Management Approaches: This (continuation) session focuses on the therapy of myxomatous valvular disease in dogs, emphasizing appropriate use of cardiac drugs and management of heart failure.

Objectives/Outcomes for participants:

  • List the three major classes of drugs used in the management of heart disease and heart failure in dogs with myxomatous valve disease       
  • List the direct vasodilator drugs sometimes used in treatment of myxomatous valve disease and their relative indications     
  • Outline an approach for treating acute left-sided heart failure in the dog.     
  • Outline an approach for treating and monitoring the canine patient with chronic congestive heart failure; indicate is the level of evidence supporting each treatment.
  • Discuss potential treatments for complications and comorbidities associated with chronic valvular disease, including airway diseases, arrhythmias, pulmonary hypertension, and chronic kidney disease.


Feline Cardiomyopathy Part 1 – Diagnosis of Feline Cardiomyopathies: This session details the relevant pathology, causes and clinical outcomes of feline myocardial diseases. Diagnostic tests used for recognition and staging of cardiomyopathies are reviewed. A diagnostic approach to assessment of asymptomatic feline heart murmurs is emphasized. The practical use of cardiac biomarkers and key aspects of clinical examination and diagnostic imaging are discussed.

Objectives/Outcomes for participants:

  • Draw a picture of the left ventricle in the main types of feline cardiomyopathy and indicate the fundamental functional problems with each form.
  • List the differential diagnosis of systolic heart murmurs in cats and rank these based on likelihood in kittens (cats <6 months), mature cats, and cats >7 years of age.
  • Describe the clinical use of ELISA-based and reference laboratory tests for NT-proBNP in cats with heart murmur or signs of respiratory distress.
  • Conduct a diagnostic workup for cardiac murmurs in cats.
  • Discuss an overview of the benefits and limitations of echocardiography and thoracic radiography for assessing cats with preclinical cardiomyopathy and those with heart failure.

Feline Cardiomyopathies, Part 2 – Outcomes & Management: This session considers outcomes, prognosis and different approaches used to manage feline cardiomyopathies. Considered are cats with asymptomatic hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, acute and chronic congestive heart failure, and arterial thromboembolism in cats. Case vignettes are used to emphasize clinical relevancy.

Objectives/Outcomes for participants: 

  • Discuss the relevant issues related to managing asymptomatic feline hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.
  • Outline an approach for recognizing and managing acute congestive heart failure (CHF) in cats with cardiomyopathy.
  • Outline an approach for the chronic management (treatment and follow-up) of congestive heart failure (CHF) in cats with cardiomyopathy.
  • List the clinical signs of arterial thromboembolism and the related clinical laboratory findings.
  • Discuss the prevention and potential treatments for arterial thromboembolism associated with feline cardiomyopathies.



ECG Reading Session (1 hour)

This session involves the presentation of unknown canine electrocardiograms with the emphasis on correct diagnosis and management issues in bradycardias, atrial tachyarrhythmias, and ventricular rhythm disturbances. Audience participation is encouraged!

When available, clickers or other audience response units can be included in the presentation.
(1 hour – can expand to 2 hours for a more advanced presentation).


  • Draw and explain the diagnostic features of atrial and ventricular premature complexes.
  • Draw and explain the diagnostic features of atrial tachycardia/flutter/fibrillation.
  • Distinguish supraventricular from ventricular tachycardias.
  • List the diagnostic tests useful for evaluation of patients with heart rhythm disturbances.
  • Outline treatment strategies for common cardiac arrhythmias.


Cardiac Imaging (2) – Echocardiography - What Should I Learn First?

This session emphasizes entry-level echocardiography for the diagnosis of acquired canine and feline heart diseases. The general approach to diagnosis, tips and pointers for creating useful measurements, and essential imaging features of common diseases are emphasized


  • Distinguish the different types of cardiac ultrasound imaging.
  • List the essential Echo 2D ultrasound findings of valvular, myocardial, pericardial diseases & pulmonary hypertension
  • Draw 2D images showing key cardiac measurements of the left heart.
  • Explain the benefits and limitations of 2D imaging of acquired cardiac diseases.
  • Appreciate some common pitfalls of 2D echocardiographic diagnosis.


Small Animal Program Generously Sponsored by






Dr. Erin Goodrich, DVM, Associate Professor of Practice, Cornell University,

Department of Population Medicine and Diagnostic Sciences

Dr. Goodrich is a 2008 graduate of the College of Veterinary Medicine at Cornell, and a 2004 Animal Science graduate of the Cornell College ofAgriculture and Life Sciences. She practiced veterinary medicine in two mixed animal practices in central New York prior to joining Cornell’s Animal Health Diagnostic Center in December of 2013 as a member of the Veterinary Support Services (VSS) team. She became board-certified by the American College of Veterinary Preventive Medicine in 2017. Now serving as the Director of VSS, she works to provide diagnostic support to veterinarians in their daily encounters with disease outbreaks, control, and surveillance.

Field Necropsy Tips for the Large Animal Practitioner
This talk will discuss tips for getting the most out of a field necropsy.  Specifically, it will focus on appropriate samples to collect in cases of abortion, respiratory disease, neurologic disease, and gastrointestinal disease. I'll also cover tips for laboratory submission of samples, appropriate test selection, and some of the common pitfalls.


Learning Objectives:

☐     Understand how to collect proper diagnostic specimens from a field necropsy
☐     Identify important factors relevant to sample integrity
☐     Become confident in obtaining the correct sample for Rabies testing

Emerging Infectious Diseases
This lecture will focus on newly emerging pathogens relevant to large animal practitioners in the Northeast. Some of the specific pathogens that will be discussed include Salmonella dublin, Theileria orientalis, Epizootic Hemorrhagic Disease, and Strongyloides papillosus. The clinical presentations, appropriate diagnostic testing strategies, and various control or prevention measures will be described for each.

Learning Objectives:

☐     Recognize the clinical presentations of the various emerging diseases discussed
☐     Become familiar with the samples required for diagnosis of each
☐     Understand some of the prevention and management strategies for each pathogen

Dr. Elisha Frye, DVM
, Assistant Professor of Practice, Cornell University,
Department of Population Medicine and Diagnostic Sciences

Dr. Elisha Frye is a veterinarian in Veterinary Support Services at the Cornell Animal Health Diagnostic Center (AHDC) within the Cornell University College of Veterinary medicine, providing diagnostic consultation for clients of the laboratory. She graduated from the Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine in 2010, and then worked as mixed animal veterinarian for 8 years in central New York. Her passion was large animal ambulatory practice, with a focus on dairy cattle. Dr. Frye joined the AHDC in 2018 and became board certified in the American College of Veterinary Preventive Medicine in 2021. Dr. Frye is interested in infectious diseases affecting cattle, sheep and goats, and the interface between public health, agriculture, and wildlife.

Small Ruminant Abortion Diagnostics and BVD and Border Disease
Learning objectives:

☐     Recognize the top infectious causes of small ruminant abortions in the northeastern US 
☐    Identify the proper samples and testing strategies to work up an abortion storm  

BVD and Border Disease
Learning objectives:

☐   Understand the pathogenesis of pestiviruses
☐   Identify clinical presentations for each disease
☐   Confidently diagnose and manage BVD or Border disease in a herd/flock setting

Large Animal Bovine and Small Ruminant Program Generously Sponsored by



Registration Fees
Includes breakfast, lunch, breaks, parking

                                        If you would like to join the VVMA and receive the reduced Member registration rate, call us at 802-878-6888 or join online at vtvets.org                                              
  Register by 5/27 Register 5/28-6/8
Members $250 $275
Lifetime Members, Recent Grads $200 $225
Non-Member Veterinarians $350 $385
Non-Veterinarians $200 $225
Retired (Use Discount Code Retired S23) $200 $225
Printed Speaker Notes $10 $10


The VVMA has a block of rooms at The DoubleTree by Hilton at a special rate of $199.00 plus tax. The DoubleTree is PET FRIENDLY, has free parking, and is within easy driving distance (less than 10 minutes) of downtown Burlington shops and restaurants. This reduced rate is available on a limited number of rooms and the deadline for reservations expires on May 19, 2023. The special rate is good for 2 days prior to and 2 days after the conference.  Reservations can be made by calling their Central Reservations line at 802-865-6600 and mentioning the VVMA to get the special rate. You can also make your reservations online using this link:  https://www.hilton.com/en/attend-my-event/vvma-23-summer-meeting-23/

Refund Policy

By May 27, a full refund minus a $25 per person processing fee. After May 27, a 50% refund. No refunds will be given after June 8.  No credits will be given for future registrations however if you are feeling ill on the day of our in-person conference, we will do our best to change your registration to on-demand. 

CE Certificates 

Certificates confirming your participation in the CE program will be provided in a digital format and will be emailed to you the week after the conference concludes.  If you need a paper copy, please let us know and we will include it in your registration packet on-site.  Please note that we will also include a transcript in your CE locker on the VVMA website.

 Questions? Call VVMA Executive Director Linda Waite-Simpson at 802-878-6888 or email [email protected]org


We look forward to seeing you at our Summer Meeting!