by Diana Naneva
Have you ever had that dream to be a vet one day, so you can help animals and be surrounded by them all day and every day?
Just imagine taking care of fluffy cats, dogs, birds, and bunnies and the rewarding feeling of making parents and kids happy, once their pet-member of their family is well. Doesn’t that sound heart-warming?
If you see yourself as someone providing clinical and surgical care for pets and giving advice to their owners, you definitely need to consider studying a Bachelor’s or Master’s in Veterinary Medicine. Here are additional reasons why you might want to become a vet:
1. You get to work with both people and animals
As a vet, you will have to think about the health and welfare of your patients, which might not be able to speak, but will definitely show gratefulness in some way.
Being a veterinarian is as rewarding as being a doctor — you relieve the suffering of animals that have experienced traumatic injuries or chronic illnesses and at the same time you see the happiness and appreciation of their owners. You will be their hero and have a positive impact on their lives.
What is more, having knowledge in the area of Veterinary Medicine is a great way for you to even take care of your own pet and not be told by someone else how to do it. With some research you will be able to help your furry friend out without creating additional stress when taking them to strangers. You can make sure your pet is healthy and happy and in good hands!
2. Veterinary Degrees gives you a broad choice of job opportunities
If you think that a Veterinary Medicine degree sounds appealing, but you don’t know exactly what you want to work as, we will present a few options to you. You can work as:
Working in government, organisations, biomedical research firms, or universities, research vets need strong scientific knowledge. Research vets work on:
- Improving methods for diagnosing health conditions
- Developing better treating and preventing illnesses methods
- Teaching veterinary students at educational institutions
Depending on the additional skills, certificates, and the number of years of experience, Research Veterinarians in the US earn on average 83,000 USD/year.
Companion Animal Veterinarians
The most common type of veterinarians, they are the ones who take care of cats, dogs, and some pocket pets. They are called General Practitioners and are responsible for activities that differ depending on the patient, same as your family doctor:
- Medical and surgical service for pets
- Diagnostics of illnesses
- Treatments of health conditions
Companion Animal Veterinarians in the US earn on average 110,000 USD/year.
Just like doctors, vets can specialise in more than 20 fields, including cardiology, pathology, dentistry, anaesthesiology and more. They can also choose whether to focus on certain species.
Specialists go through additional training to gain more knowledge and skills in a certain area and typically earn around 83,000 USD/year. In the USA, if they have additional certifications, they can earn up to 90,000 USD/year.
These vets focus on taking care of large animals such as horses, pigs, and goats. Their responsibility is to make sure that their patients (farm animals) are healthy and well, so that any meat produced is high quality, and is safe for people’s health. They also:
- Address issues connected to raising animals for humans’ food consumption
- Maintain sanitary conditions and treat illnesses in farms and ranches
- Spend quite a lot of time travelling and making sure the farm animals are taken good care of
Food-Animal Veterinarians earn 107,000–187,000 USD/year, depending on the certification they have.
Exotic Animal Veterinarians
These vets have special training and interest in caring for exotic animals such as amphibians, reptiles and some pocket animals, as people tend to adopt exotic birds and other species, not traditionally considered as pets.
Exotic Animal Veterinarians usually pay special attention to animals in zoos or other environments. The duties of these vets can vary from:
- Diagnosing and treating of diseases in wildlife species
- Issuing vaccinations
- Performing surgeries of exotic species
- Providing emergency care when necessary
Work in wildlife rescues facilities to treat wounded species
Exotic vets can work at aquariums or wildlife conservations, which is a great way for them to be close to nature and help animals out. Their average annual salary in the US is 64,000 USD/year, going up to 133,000 USD/year.
3. You never stop learning during your veterinary career
As a veterinarian, you will need to keep up with the development of technologies, new techniques, and treatments. If you are curious and enjoy learning new skills and obtaining more knowledge on a daily basis, you will fit in this area very easily. As vets are required to do annual courses for certification, you will be continuously mentored and guided.
Thanks to the vast knowledge background you can get from doing a Veterinary degree, you will be able to switch roles, work for different organisations, and have various tasks. You will do physical exams, lab tests and research based on the owners’ comments to make sure you can help the animals.
4. Vets can work independently
You can either choose to work for a big organisation or shape your own career. Once you are aware of your interests and strengths, you can start working independently and specialise in the area you like the most. You can become a partner of a well-known clinic, which will bring you good reputation and more loyal clients.
As an independent vet, you will have a flexible schedule and will choose how many pets you want to take care of. Thus, when you decide to renew your license and certification, you will determine when to study and will easily combine work with academic classes.
5. You contribute to the well-being of communities and create great connections
People tend to trust vets completely, knowing that the life and health of their precious pets are completely in the vet’s hands. A lot of veterinarians enjoy the interaction with the owners of their clients and can build strong relationships with them. Isn’t that a great way to make friends while working?
Also, knowing that you’ve helped an innocent pet and have made a family happy is a great reward at the end of the day after a lot of hard work. Of course, there are sad and tough moments such as putting very sick animals down, but every profession has its downsides, and you will learn how to deal with different experiences.
Another way for veterinarians to be part of a whole community is their opportunity to lead a team of people, specialising in different areas of Veterinary studies. Wouldn’t it be fun for you to work with people who have the same interests, and be able to advise, educate, and guide each other while doing something you all enjoy?
6. You can choose between online or on-campus Veterinary courses
Do you already consider starting a Veterinary Medicine course? One of the best things about this degree is that you have the opportunity to choose either a full-time or a part-time study, a traditional or an online programme. And we will help you out and show you some of the options that you have:
Universities offering online Veterinary degrees
There are other universities and colleges offering online Veterinary Medicine programmes. These are just a few examples to get you started:
- University of London, the UK
- The University of Edinburgh, the UK
- University of Missouri – Columbia, the US
- University of Queensland, Australia
- Massey University, New Zealand
Best Veterinary universities in the world
- University of California, Davis, the US
- Royal Veterinary College, University of London, the UK
- Cornell University, the US
- Utrecht University, the Netherlands
- University of Guelph, Canada
- The University of Edinburgh, the UK
- University of Cambridge, the UK
- Michigan State University, the US
- Vetsuisse Faculty Bern and Zurich, Switzerland
- University of Copenhagen (Denmark)
Check out the full Veterinary Medicine ranking created by TopUniversities.
Here are other universities we recommend for Veterinary studies:
- Washington State University, the US
- University of Lincoln, the UK
- Estonian University of Life Sciences, Estonia
If you are among the people who have always wanted to be veterinarians ever since they were kids, a Veterinary degree is the right choice for you. Follow your dream career path and don’t be afraid to always learn something new and make your living by taking care of animals!