AGM 2016 Chairman’s report
As I enter the last year of my second term of office I can reflect on another 12 months characterised by significant achievement for the Council.
Our progress and growth during the past year has continued to the extent that I believe we are now firmly established amongst training and behaviour professionals and major stakeholders as the primary organisation responsible for leading the way on all issues associated with the sector. Those who do not share our ethos remain in evidence but have still yet to make any meaningful impact and as we grow and they remain static, proportionately their representation of the sector is shrinking. The irony of the situation is that our influence is such that virtually everyone is now attempting to apply some form of standards even if they do not match those of ABTC. This is a step forward in itself for the sector and evidence of our influence.
During the last year our advice and feedback has been in great demand, we have taken part in seven consultations indicating our active involvement in promoting our aims and confirming how well established ABTC is on the political landscape:
- Sentencing Council – Dangerous Dogs
- Welsh Assembly – Responsible Dog Ownership
- BVA – Welfare Strategy
- Defra – Licensing Review
- CEN – European Dog Trainer Competences
- Scottish Government – Electronic Training Devices
- Scottish Government – Tail Docking review
Specific and general goals for 2015/16 were all met:
- Launching of the course recognition process
- Achieving charity status
- More generally we should each consider how we can contribute to the continued growth and development of the Council and how that can translate into making a greater contribution to animal welfare in the field of training and behaviour.
Goals for 2016/17
- Every veterinary practice in the UK is made aware of our work.
- A presence at two or more major conferences
- Recruiting more Practitioner Organisations
- Developing our fundraising potential
- Registering as a charity in Scotland
Despite our incredible achievements and growing profile, we are still far from a household name and although each year brings us closer to that point we cannot afford to be complacent. Do not feel that simply being a part of ABTC is enough, every single person that derives a benefit from being associated with ABTC has a moral responsibility to give something back. Many already do and have worked hard to promote our cause but many could do more, I have yet to meet anyone in the member organisations of ABTC (and there are now thousands) that does not declare an interest in animal welfare in training and behaviour. All I ask of them is that each one informs at least two more who are currently unaware of our work safeguarding the physical and psychological welfare of animals and to ask them to do the same to two more.