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Veterinary Record Open is a journal dedicated to publishing specialist veterinary research across a range of topic areas including those of a more niche and specialist nature to that considered in the weekly Vet Record. Research from all disciplines of veterinary interest will be considered. It is an open access journal of the British Veterinary Association.

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Editorial policy

Veterinary Record Open adheres to the highest standards concerning its editorial policies on publication ethics, scientific misconduct, consent and peer review criteria. The journal follows guidance produced by bodies that include the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE), the World Association of Medical Editors (WAME) and the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE).To view all BMJ Journal policies please refer to the BMJ Author Hub policies page.

We take seriously all possible misconduct. If an Editor, author or reader has concerns that a submitted article describes something that might be considered to constitute misconduct in research, publication or professional behaviour they should forward their concerns to the journal. The publisher will deal with allegations appropriately.

As an open access journal, Veterinary Record Open adheres to the Budapest Open Access Initiative definition of open access. Articles are published under a Creative Commons licence to facilitate reuse of the content and authors retain copyright; please refer to the Veterinary Record Open Copyright Author Licence Statement.

As the author you may wish to post your article in a PrePrint service, institutional or subject repository or a scientific social sharing network. For more information on author self archiving and rights to reuse content – which are dependent on the licence you have obtained – please refer to the BMJ author self archiving and permissions policies page.


Peer review

Articles submitted to Veterinary Record Open are subject to peer review. The journal operates single blind peer review whereby the names of the reviewers are hidden from the author; this is the traditional method of reviewing and is the most common. If your paper had previously been reviewed by Vet Record it may not need to be reviewed again for Veterinary Record Open. Reviewers will not be asked to judge importance or breadth of appeal of the research; readers can make these judgements for themselves. We aim to provide an initial decision to authors within 5 weeks of submission and accepted articles are published online approximately 30 days after acceptance – often quicker. For more information on what to expect during the peer review process please refer to BMJ Author Hub – your papers journey.

BMJ requests that all reviewers adhere to a set of basic principles and standards during the peer-review process in research publication; these are based on the COPE Ethical Guidelines for Peer Reviewers. Please refer to our peer review terms and conditions policy page.

BMJ is committed to transparency. Every article we publish includes a description of its provenance (commissioned or not commissioned) and whether it was internally or externally peer reviewed.

Plagiarism is the appropriation of the language, ideas or thoughts of another without crediting their true source and representation of them as one’s own original work. BMJ is a member of CrossCheck by CrossRef and iThenticate. iThenticate is a plagiarism screening service that verifies the originality of content submitted before publication. BMJ runs manuscripts through iThenticate during the peer review process. Authors, researchers and freelancers can also use iThenticate to screen their work before submission by visiting www.ithenticate.com.


Article publishing charges

Veterinary Record Open is an open access journal and levies an Article Publishing Charge (APC) of 1,350 GBP (exclusive of VAT for UK and EU authors). Charges for publishing a study protocol are 1000 GBP. There are no submission, colour or page charges.

No payment information is requested before an article is accepted, so the ability to pay cannot affect editorial decisions. Accepted articles will not be published until payment has been received. BMJ does not refund APCs once paid.

There is a 50% discount for articles where the corresponding author is a BVA member,  the code for which can be found on the BVA website here. For non-BVA members there is a 25% discount available, and the code is VRO25.  Where the corresponding author has reviewed for Veterinary Record Open within the previous 12 months, they can also claim a discount of 50%. These discounts cannot be combined.

For more information on open access, funder compliance, discounts and waivers please refer to the BMJ Author Hub open access page.


Reporting guidelines

The guidelines listed below should be followed where appropriate; please use these to structure your article. Completed applicable checklists, structured abstracts and flow diagrams of study subjects should be uploaded with your submission.

For reporting of randomised controlled trials: please use the appropriate extension to the CONSORT statement, including the extension for writing abstracts

For reporting guidelines for randomised controlled trials for livestock and food safety

For in vivo research

For reporting of diagnostic accuracy studies

For reporting of systematic reviews

For reporting of meta-analyses of observational studies

For reporting of gene-disease association studies


The Equator Network (Enhancing the Quality and Transparency Of health Research) provides a comprehensive list of reporting guidelines.

Submission guidelines

Veterinary Record Open follows the same style as Vet Record: manuscript formatting and style guide and its policies with relation to Welfare and ethics.

For further support when making your submission please refer to the resources available on the BMJ Author Hub. Here you will find information on writing and formatting your research through to the peer review process and promoting your paper.

Need help with your paper?


Article types

Veterinary Record Open considers any research paper, including systematic reviews and study protocols

There are no official word count limits but we recommend your article does not exceed 4000 words, with up to five figures and tables. This is flexible, but exceeding this will impact upon the paper’s readability. Supplementary material, including additional figures, tables and raw data can be placed online alongside the article or placed in a digital repository, such as Dryad, and we may request that you separate out some material into supplementary files to make the main manuscript clearer for readers. Authors are encouraged to submit figures and images in colour as there are no colour charges. We also encourage multimedia files to enhance your article.

At submission you will be asked to choose one main subject area that applies to your article as it will be published under this banner on the table of contents. You will also be asked to select specific keywords to help identify reviewers and collect the article with similar content online.