What Do Veterinarians Do?
Veterinarians are responsible for the well-being of animals, and when someone’s furry friend is sick or injured, they will be grateful you have the expertise to treat them. You may be tasked with diagnosing diseases and determining what the best treatment option would be. You will regularly conduct research to stay up-to-date with the latest practices, and you will also likely be conducting your own research. Veterinarians are always going to be needed, and the demand for these professionals is going to increase in the coming years. 3,100 job openings are projected to occur annually for the next decade. That accounts for 12% growth a year, so getting the education and training you need now can prove to be helpful.
Veterinarians Skills and Abilities
Naturally, a background in dentistry and medicine is going to be invaluable. You should know all about the various techniques of diagnosing an animal’s condition and then coming up with the best solution. You need to be familiar with properties of various medications so that you know what an animal can and cannot take. You should also be well-versed in preventative health measures to ensure an animal remains healthy. Aside from this, your education should also include courses in biology and mathematics. Outside of the skills obtained through a traditional education, you should also be capable of solving complex problems and knowing what courses of actions to take.
A large portion of your responsibilities will include examining animals to determine what is wrong. Part of this process may include collecting tissue samples or bodily fluids. Once the problem has been discovered, you may need to prescribe medication or recommend surgery. If an animal has a contagious disease, then you may need to quarantine it to ensure other animals in the facility do not become infected. You will also need to communicate with the animal’s owner about what should be done to ensure a pet does not get sick again. Unfortunately, some animals may need to be euthanized, and you will be the one tasked with that procedure. You will need to talk with the pet’s owner about why this is necessary and help him or her get through this time. There are numerous other responsibilities veterinarians will need to perform, and some of them include:
- Inoculating animals.
- Training additional staff members.
- Scheduling appointments.
- Attending seminars to remain current on industry standards.
- Developing treatment plans.
- Conducting postmortem analyses.
Veterinarians Tools and Technology
Although you will need to know how to input data into a computer, you will mostly be utilizing tools for direct use on animals. For example, you should know your way around husbandry equipment and X-rays. You should know how to efficiently handle forceps and suction equipment. It can also come in handy to be familiar with nail trimmers and other devices used for cosmetic purposes.
Education and Training for Veterinarians
A doctoral or professional degree will need to be obtained in order to have any shot of being a veterinarian. While you are in school, you will need to take numerous courses in related programs such as:
- Animal Medicine
- Veterinary Dentistry
- Veterinary Anesthesiology
- Veterinary Dermatology
- Veterinary Physiology
- Zoological Medicine
Since veterinarians are experienced professionals, they can make a good salary just starting out. The lowest paid vets still make over $50,000 a year. As you become more proficient in your craft, you can expect to make a lot more. The highest paid veterinarians in the country make as much as $157,000 a year.
Veterinarians Jobs by Geography
Vets are needed all over the country, but the states with the highest concentration of veterinarians within the state population are Vermont, Idaho and Colorado. Plenty of industries depend on vets, so pursue the necessary education if this is your professional calling.