What does a Veterinarian do?What does a Veterinarian do?


It is required that an applicant to veterinarian medical school complete a Doctor of Veterinarian Medicine degree (D.V.M. or V.M.D.), with an accredited college of veterinary medicine. This typically takes about 4 years with the first 3 years completing programs in classroom, laboratory and clinical components. Many applicants get a bachelor's degree. The last year one normally receives courses in biology, chemistry, anatomy, zoology, microbiology and animal science.

Most studies also include math, humanities and science, but some veterinary schools are now including general business management and career development courses, so that, new veterinary graduates know how to manage a practice. All states require a license to practice. Admission into veterinarian medical school is very competitive and in 2012 fewer than one half of the applicants were accepted.

Job Description of a Veterinarian

Veterinarians examine, diagnose, and treat pets, farm animals, or other animals and often perform surgery. They are skilled at using modern medical equipment or surgical tools, similar to a physician in human health medicine.

Most people think of a veterinarian as the ones in private clinical practice that treats the illnesses or injuries of pets or other animals, and while this is true, there are specialized areas of this profession as well, such as, equine, food safety and inspection, research or others. Some become postsecondary teachers at colleges or universities. In the case of the typical veterinarian in private clinical practice, he or she would examine an animal and determine their medical needs, like, if surgery was required.

They care for animal's wounds and dress them, as well as, give vaccinations to animals and give tests for possible diseases, like heart worm or other illnesses. They use a variety of medical equipment, such as, X-ray and ultrasound machines or surgical tools. They prescribe medication for animals and educate people about the basic care and needs of their pet or animal, their medical condition or treatment plan. They must sometimes euthanize an animal.

The projected growth in 2012-2022 for this career field, according to The Bureau of Labor Statistics, is 12 percent.