dcsimg

Veterinarian

Job Duties

Veterinarians provide healthcare to animals, from pets and livestock to zoo and laboratory animals. Some work to protect humans from diseases carried by animals, while others conduct research, broadening the scope of knowledge in the field as well as ways to use that knowledge. Most work in clinical private practices, and more than 50% treat only small animals, usually pets. 25% work in practices where they care for pets along with other animals such as pigs, goats, and sheep. A small number of veterinarians work with large animals, mostly horses and cows, traveling to farms or ranches to provide mostly preventive care. Veterinarians treat and dress wounds, set fractures, and perform surgery.

Veterinarians use a variety of medical equipment, such as stethoscopes; surgical instruments; and diagnostic equipment like radiographic and ultrasound equipment. Veterinarians who work in research use an even wider range of sophisticated equipment. Veterinarians also make significant contributions to human health by working with physicians and scientists. Veterinarians have helped conquer such medical problems as malaria, yellow fever, botulism, and they have developed treatments for heart disease as well as joint replacement techniques.

Job Skills

Veterinarians must have a passion for working with animals, as well as the ability to get along with pet owners. They should have good manual dexterity. Those who start their own private practice need to have good business and communication skills in order to promote their business and manage their employees.

Income

In 2002, veterinarians earned a median annual salary of $63,090. Earnings ranged from the lowest 10%, who earned less than $38,000, to the highest 10%, who earned more than $123,370. The following shows starting salaries for graduates of veterinary medicine by type of practice:

  • Large animals, exclusively -- $48,303
  • Small animals, exclusively -- $48,178
  • Small animals, predominantly -- $46,582
  • Large animals, predominantly -- $45,087
  • Mixed animals -- $43,948
  • Horses -- $34,273

Training and Education

Veterinarians must obtain a license to practice after graduating from an accredited 4-year program of veterinary medicine and earning their Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (D.V.M. or V.M.D.). Competition for entry into theses programs is very high. Many college programs do not require a bachelor's degree for admission, but do require a significant number of undergraduate credit hours, usually between 45 and 90. Preveterinary courses focus on the sciences, from organic chemistry to genetics to precalculus. Most include courses in English and literature, the social sciences, and the humanities. Applicants need to submit scores from either the Graduate Record Examination (GRE), the Veterinary College Admission Test (VCAT), or the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT), depending on the program. Formal work experience in the veterinary field receives heavy weight from some schools.

Veterinarians are licensed through individual States, and must pass the North American Veterinary Licensing Exam (NAVLE). Most States require veterinarians to pass a State jurisprudence examination that covers State laws and regulations. Once licensed, almost all States require continuing education for veterinarians to renew their licenses.

Employment

In 2002, veterinarians held about 58,000 jobs. About 28% were self-employed in solo or group practices. Most of the rest were salaried employees.

Job Outlook

Between 2002 and 2012, employment of veterinarians is expected to increase faster than the average. Pet owners are expected to spend more on advanced veterinary medical care. Employment opportunities are expected to be very good because the number of graduates from veterinary school is not expected to increase significantly.

For more information on becoming a veterinarian, please see our directory of Veterinary Schools.


Veterinarian Training

Refine School Matches
Hide filters
  • SUBJECT Clear All

  • DEGREE

    See More

  • PROGRAM TYPE

  • START TIME

    LOCATION
    Please enter valid US or Canada Zip.
            Results open in new window

            Searching Searching ...

            Matching School Ads
            Veterinary Assistant
            • Founded in Southern California in 1998 by dog training expert Steven Appelbaum.
            • The largest independent dog training company in the United States.
            • Offers 11-stage programs that feature an in-home study component along with a hands-on training module.
            • A member of the MyCAA Financial Assistance program, which offers eligible military spouses up to $4,000 of tuition assistance that can be used towards any of their courses.
            • Helps graduates find employment and coaches those who are looking to start their own business.
            Show more [+]
            • Online Courses
            Certificate - Veterinary Assistant
            • Offers a program that translates work and military experience into college credit, transfers in credit from other college programs, and offers the flexibility of day, evening and online coursework.
            • Provides in-person tutoring, IT support, access to library resources, and job placement assistant for graduates.
            • Features a new blended-learning curriculum, which involves a mix of campus and online courses.
            • Has 11 campuses across Southern California, Washington, and Alaska, and online courses with campus support. 
            Show more [+]
            • Accredited
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Accelerated Programs
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Certificate - Veterinary Assistant
            • For more than 45 years, PMI has been dedicated to quality healthcare education
            • 17 campuses across 9 states including Arizona, California, Texas, Colorado & more
            • Accredited by the ABHES with multiple accreditations per specific program
            • Certificates, associates, and bachelor’s programs in leading healthcare fields
            • PMI offers financial aid to students who qualify for assistance
            Show more [+]
            Veterinary Assisting
            • A private, accredited distance learning college based in Norcross, Georgia founded in 1987.
            • Ensures that service members, their spouses and veterans can maximize their military education benefits.
            • Gives students the option to customize monthly payments to fit their budgets and lifestyle.
            • Offers all-inclusive tuition: textbooks, learning materials, and academic support are covered in the cost.
            • Allows alumni to enroll in any future program at a reduced rate.
            Show more [+]
            • Online Courses
            Master of Public Health
            MPH@UNC , Online

            MPH@UNC is the online Master of Public Health (MPH) program from the University of North Carolina’s Gillings School of Global Public Health, which is ranked the No. 1 public school of public health and No. 2 school of public health on U.S. News’ list, most recently published in 2015. The program offers a Leadership in Practice concentration and can be completed on a full-time or part-time basis. GRE, GMAT or MCAT scores are required.

            • Online Courses
            M.B.A.: Health Systems Management
            • There's still time to apply to Grand Canyon University and pursue your education. Learn more today!
            • Study on your schedule - GCU offers many programs 100% online to fit your busy lifestyle.
            • GCU offers a variety of opportunities to reduce the cost of furthering your education. Campus students may qualify for scholarships, while online students can take part in limited special offers.
            • A regionally accredited university, GCU also holds specialized accreditations and approvals for some of our core program offerings.
            • Degrees in business, education, nursing, humanities and social sciences, theology and more. Find the degree that fits you.
            • Talk to us today to learn more about financial aid and start dates!
            • Accredited
            • Online Courses
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Accelerated Programs
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Medical Assistant (10-Month Diploma Program)
            UEI College , San Marcos
            • Dedicated to providing  career training since 1975.
            • Has 13 campus locations in Southern California and a campus in Morrow, GA.
            • Provides flexible class times including weekends.
            • Offers curriculum that ranges from 8 month diploma programs to 16-month Associate of Applied Science degree programs.
            • Has admissions professionals available to help students decide which diploma or degree program they should pursue.
            • Gives job placement assistance strengthened by relationships with local employers.
            Show more [+]
            • Accredited
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            Master of Public Health Global Health
            • Liberty University's online programs ranked in the top 5 of more than 2,100 online colleges and universities for academic quality, affordability, and accessibility*
            • 100% online programs at associate, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral level**
            • No standardized testing if you meet admission requirements
            • Transfer up to 90 credits into an undergraduate degree program
            • Up to 50% of your master’s degree can be transferred in to help you get the most out of your hard work and maximize the credit you previously earned
            Show more [+]
            • Accredited
            • Online Courses
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            MSN - Nursing Leadership
            • Loyola gives you an edge for an exciting career & an education for a fulfilling life
            • Accredited by the SACSCOC with a 10:1 student-faculty ratio & 5 distinct colleges
            • #10 Best Regional Universities of the South U.S. News and World Report
            • Top 20 Fulbright Producer in 2015-2016 w/ a 20% application acceptance rate in 2017
            • Programs in musical theatre, digital filmmaking, chemistry, business, & more!
            Show more [+]
            • Accredited
            • Online Courses
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Accelerated Programs
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Medical Assistant
            • Offers a free trial period so students can attend classes before paying tuition.
            • Provides blended courses that combine traditional classroom instruction with online learning.
            • Lets students connect with peers at any time, and instructors during office hours with online chat rooms.
            • Gives students the chance to participate in externships and clinical training work under the general supervision of college staff.
            • Has accelerated programs that allow students to take the same coursework in a shorter timeframe.
            Show more [+]
            • Accredited
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits