A new research focus at the Ontario Veterinary College (OVC) will advance evidence-based health care for pets by answering important questions about nutrition and health in cats and dogs.

In partnership with Banfield Pet Hospital, the OVC has created a two-year post-doctoral position in companion animal epidemiology that will expand the scope of the college’s renowned work in veterinary epidemiology.

Dr. Chika Okafor, a veterinarian from Michigan State University College of Veterinary Medicine, is the recipient of the post-doctoral position. “Because we analyze populationbased data over time, epidemiologists can answer questions about health outcomes that cannot be answered in smaller studies of individual animals,” Dr. Okafor says. He will have the opportunity to use OVC’s expertise in epidemiology to synthesize information from Banfield’s proprietary electronic medical records system that collects data from its network of veterinary hospitals.