Skip to main content

About the British Veterinary Zoological Society

A specialist division of the British Veterinary Association.

About the Society

The British Veterinary Zoological Society (BVZS) is a specialist division of the British Veterinary Association (BVA) dealing with the interests of free-ranging and captive wildlife, zoo animals and non-traditional companion animals (NTCAs). The Society has several hundred active members, including registered veterinary surgeons, veterinary nurses, students and other interested individuals in related academic fields.

The BVZS supports and promotes veterinary knowledge and scientific advancement in the health, welfare and conservation of free-ranging and captive wildlife, zoo animals and non traditional companion animals and encourages veterinary input and support for the health and welfare of these species by those individuals and organisations responsible for their care.

Where it all began 62 years ago

The BVZS originally started with an inaugural meeting at the Zoological Society of London at 10.00am on July 14th 1961.

This first meeting was called by Oliver Graham Jones the then Veterinary Officer of London Zoo. He had previously announced his intention in the Veterinary Record of calling a meeting of all Veterinary Surgeons interested in the “Veterinary attention of Captive Wild Animals and Exotic pets”. Some 36 Veterinary Surgeons attended this first meeting (listed below). Dr Ian Keymer acted as recording secretary for the meeting.

It was agreed that the main function of the Society was to encourage Veterinary Surgeons in the development of knowledge and experience of handling and treating Wild animals and to foster research into diseases of non-domesticated animals in captivity and the wild state. The Society should collect, correlate and disseminate information on the subject. At least one meeting a year should be held, preferably at a Zoological Gardens. The meeting agreed to draft out aims of the Society, establish a Constitution which when accepted by the members the Society would then apply to become a Non-Territorial Division of the British Veterinary Association(BVA). After initial discussion the following Officers were elected.

Explore more

Our Council

The British Veterinary Zoological Society is run by volunteers. These volunteers are voted onto a council by the membership at the Annual General Meeting (AGM) held at the conference.

Awards & Honorary Members

BVZS has an awards system for a number of achievements, from Honorary Membership Awards to Best Scientific Paper.

The Zebra Foundation

The Zebra Foundation is a registered charity, funded by the European Association of Zoo and Wildlife Veterinarians (EAZWV), the British Veterinary Zoological Society (BVZS) and public donations.

Thank you to our sponsors for their ongoing support

Join the BVZS

Become a member today

Memberships available for vets, nurses and students.