international veterinary forensic sciences association


11th annual
veterinary forensic sciences conference
May 16-18, 2018
Hilton Portland Downtown
Portland, Oregon.  USA

Conference AGENDA

Download or view the conference agenda here.


Conference Registration

IVFSA members who are current on dues payments can register at a discount until April 12, 2018. The member registration link will be sent with your paid dues receipt.

All other individuals can register here.


Hotel Information

Hilton Portland Downtown/The Duniway
921 SW Sixth Avenue
Portland, Oregon 97204
United States
TEL: +1-503-226-1611
FAX: +1-503-220-2565

To book your room online:

To book your room via telephone: 1-800-HILTONS

Use group code UOF for contracted room rates. The group rate is $199 per night and is available from Monday, May 14 – Saturday, May 19, 2018.


When booking your room online, the link will take you to the registration page for The Duniway. This is not a mistake! Both the Hilton Portland Downtown and The Duniway are part of the same establishment; they are not connected physically but the buildings are owned and run by the same people. Basically, it is the same property but just split between 2 buildings.  For the conference, The Duniway is where the sleeping rooms will be, but the Hilton Portland Downtown is where the meeting space will be; they are across the street from each other.

To see hotel amenities, check in/out times, etc. click here.


Half-Day Workshop – Tuesday, May 15, 8:00AM-12:00PM

Surviving the Courtroom

While the investigation of animal cruelty cases is generally considered the exclusive purview of law enforcement, the successful prosecution of such cases can often depend upon the testimony of a veterinarian.  Whether called to examine animals at a crime scene or to simply review previously generated medical records, a veterinarian’s testimony can establish essential elements in the case, such as the cause, severity and duration of an animal’s injuries (or death), or the extent to which an animal suffered pain.   Providing such assistance can be daunting to even the most experienced veterinarian.   It is with that in mind that this workshop aims to demystify the criminal process and address some of the common challenges that veterinarians and humane law enforcement involved in criminal cases can expect to encounter.  Topics covered will include tips to improve your curriculum vitae, the structure and substance of an effective veterinary or law enforcement statement, as well testimony dos and don’ts.  The workshop will also include a mock direct and cross examination, where attendees can see first-hand not only the types of questions commonly asked by both prosecutors and defense attorneys, but various ways to answer those questions and how to avoid common pitfalls. The workshop will also include a presentation by Randall Lockwood, PhD, ASPCA Senior Vice President/ Animal Cruelty Special Projects entitled “What Prosecutors Want for Successful Prosecution of Animal Cruelty: Results of a Survey”.

Instructor: Elizabeth Brandler, Esq. – Legal Advocacy Council, ASPCA

Register for the Half-Day Workshop Here



There are many things to do while you are in Portland.  Check out  a list of things to do.


Post-Workshop Event

Join us for a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity!

Tour the National Fish and Wildlife Forensics Laboratory in Ashland, Oregon! The Monday following the Veterinary Forensic Sciences Conference (21 May) at 1:00pm, NFWFL will open its doors to tour registrants. The Lab comprises the forensic science part of the US Fish and Wildlife Service and provides forensic analysis of wildlife crime to the entire United States. Laboratory capabilities include pathology, genetics, morphology, and criminalistics. Each section will show participants how their work helps federal law enforcement agents pursue crimes against wildlife. The group is limited to 20 participants. To find out more about the lab:


A block of rooms has been reserved at the Ashland Hills Hotel, which is located 2 miles from the Lab and 3 miles from downtown Ashland. The group rate is $99 plus tax and guests enjoy complimentary breakfast, parking, and Wi-Fi. This special rate is good until Friday, 20 April 2018. You may register online at or by calling 541-482-8310. The rooms are listed under the “Veterinary Forensic Sciences Conference” or group ID number 184736. Reservations must be guaranteed with a major credit card and deposit, but individual reservations may be cancelled 72 hours in advance without penalty. All rooms are non-smoking; a $200 cleaning fee will be charged for guests that smoke in the rooms.

To register for the National Fish and Wildlife Forensics Lab tour, click here

If you will be driving and would be willing to offer rides to others, sign up here


Ashland is located a 5-hour drive south of Portland in the Rogue River valley. There are short flights daily between Portland and Medford, OR, which is a 25-minute drive from downtown Ashland. Alternatively, drive along the Oregon coast in your leisurely trek to town.    Ashland itself is very walkable and bike friendly. While in town, take in a play at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival (- psst-it’s not just Shakespeare!), wander through Lithia Park, or tour the shops and art galleries downtown. We’ve got all of the culture and opportunities of Portland, just on a smaller scale.


2018 Conference Special Soiree

Thanks to a generous sponsorship from the Oregon Zoo, our annual conference soiree will be held this year at the Oregon Zoo! Please come and join us for appetizers, drinks, and networking with colleagues and make sure to spend some time before the soiree exploring the zoo. Located only 3 miles from the hotel, the Oregon Zoo is inside Portland’s Washington Park, and includes the 2 ft 6 in (762 mm) narrow gauge Washington Park & Zoo Railway that runs only within the zoo. Opened in 1888 after a private animal collector donated his animals to the City of Portland, the 64-acre (26 ha) zoo currently holds more than 1,800 animals of more than 230 species, including 19 endangered species and 9 threatened species. The zoo also boasts an extensive plant collection including native plants of the Pacific Northwest’s temperate rainforests and over 1,000 species of exotic plants throughout its animal exhibits and specialized gardens. Admission is only $9.95 for adults and $4.95 for children ages 3-11. Tickets can be purchased online or in person at the zoo. Click here to visit the Oregon Zoo’s webpage.


IVFSA Business Meeting

The business meeting, which will be held Thursday, May 17 from 5:30-6:00PM, is open to all conference participants who wish to learn more about the International Veterinary Forensic Sciences Association, how to become involved, or who wish to meet other members. Please join us!


Bring Your Own Slides!

This annual event is a great chance for conference participants to present PowerPoints of interesting or challenging cases, seek advice from peers or just have fun! Think of it as a scientific/legal/law enforcement open mic night. BYOS will occur on Thursday, May 17 from 7:00-9:00 PM.