MSD Animal Health Announces First WSAVA Michael J. Day Scholarship Recipient

Winning veterinary student sets out to examine canine tick-borne diseases in Nepal

MADISON N.J., February 23, 2023 – MSD Animal Health, a division of Merck & Co., Inc., Rahway, N.J., USA (NYSE:MRK), today announced the inaugural recipient of the World Small Animal Veterinary Association (WSAVA) Michael J. Day Scholarship, Somnath Aryal. Aryal, a Nepalese veterinary student at the Agriculture and Forestry University in Chitwan, was selected as the winner out of the numerous submissions. His winning study proposal will examine the frequency of canine tick-borne diseases in Nepali dog populations, with the goal of improving and promoting the diagnosis and treatment of canine tick-borne diseases in Nepal. As the recipient of this scholarship, Aryal will receive a $15,000 grant provided by MSD Animal Health to fund the study’s research.

“We’re honored to support Somnath’s research goals and his chosen veterinary studies in memory of Michael J. Day,” said Ingrid Deuzeman, director, Global Companion Animal Vaccines Marketing, MSD Animal Health. “So many brilliant minds applied for the WSAVA Michael J. Day Scholarship in its inaugural year, and we’re excited to provide more opportunities such as this to other veterinary students in the future.”

In honor of Emeritus Professor Michael Day, chair of the WSAVA’s Vaccination Guidelines Group (VGG) from 2009 until March 2020, WSAVA created The Michael J. Day Scholarship, which provides a selected recipient with research funding for studies in companion animal infectious diseases, clinical vaccinology, or immunology. The scholarship invited veterinary students studying towards a veterinary degree in an accredited veterinary establishment to apply. The winning study’s results are expected to become available near the end of 2023.


The WSAVA represents more than 200,000 veterinarians worldwide through its 115 member associations and works to enhance standards of clinical care for companion animals. Its core activities include the development of WSAVA Global Guidelines in key areas of veterinary practice, including pain management, nutrition and vaccination, together with lobbying on important issues affecting companion animal care worldwide. 

About MSD Animal Health

At MSD, known as Merck & Co., Inc., Rahway, N.J., USA in the United States and Canada, we are unified around our purpose: We use the power of leading-edge science to save and improve lives around the world. For more than a century, we’ve been at the forefront of research, bringing forward medicines, vaccines and innovative health solutions for the world’s most challenging diseases. MSD Animal Health, a division of Merck & Co., Inc., Rahway, N.J., USA, is the global animal health business of MSD. Through its commitment to The Science of Healthier Animals®, MSD Animal Health offers veterinarians, farmers, pet owners and governments one of the widest ranges of veterinary pharmaceuticals, vaccines and health management solutions and services as well as an extensive suite of connected technology that includes identification, traceability and monitoring products. MSD Animal Health is dedicated to preserving and improving the health, well-being and performance of animals and the people who care for them. It invests extensively in dynamic and comprehensive R&D resources and a modern, global supply chain. MSD Animal Health is present in more than 50 countries, while its products are available in some 150 markets. For more information, visit and connect with us on LinkedIn and Twitter.