The first World Congress was held in Dijon, France from the 27th-30th September, 1989. This attracted close to 600 delegates from 32 countries and was followed by Montreal (13th-16th May 1992), Edinburgh (11th-14th September 1996) and San Francisco (30th August – 3rd September 2000). Until then, congresses had alternated between Europe and North America. In response to a survey conducted at the San Francisco congress, it was decided to include other continents in the rotation. Thus after the highly successful fifth congress held in Vienna (25th-28th August 2004), and after much thought, and many visits, Hong Kong was chosen as the site for the Sixth World Congress. A record total of 1185 delegates attended from 52 countries. The Seventh World Congress was held in Vancouver from 24th-28th July 2012. With such a site and venue choice it was not astonishing that number of delegates attending broke all previous records. For 2016 the World Congress of Veterinary Dermatology will return to Europe and will be held in Bordeaux, France
The format and content of the congresses has developed over the years. The aim is to provide something appropriate for everyone – from the molecular scientist working in the field – to the newly qualified practitioner developing an interest in dermatology. Thus there are multiple concurrent themes including state-of-the-art lectures and supporting in depth reviews, supporting original studies allied to the same themes, free communications and two extensive programmes of continuing education suitable for general practitioners (comprehensive level) as well as for those with a special interest in dermatology (advanced level). Then there are workshops on a wide range of topics enabling informal discussions, special themes such as feline and equine dermatology, and wet labs usually including otology, cytology and dermatopathology – the latter with one session for practitioners, and one for those more expert in the field. Finally, a series of half-day company symposia is offered by our sponsors, covering a wide range of relevant material.
In the end, the goal is a simple one - each congress has to be better and more successful than its predecessor.