How to become a Veterinarian

Veterinarians diagnose, treat and help to prevent disease and injury in animals. They advise on measures to prevent the occurrence or spread of diseases and on ways to improve the health and productivity of animals, and supervise safety standards on food supplies.

Personal requirements of a Veterinarian

  • Interested in the health and welfare of animals
  • Observant
  • Good analysing and problem-solving skills
  • Good communication skills
  • Aptitude for science
  • An inquiring mind
  • Organisational and supervisory skills

Education & Training for a Veterinarian

To become a veterinarian you usually have to complete an accredited veterinary science degree at university. Alternatively, you can complete a relevant degree such as science, animal science or veterinary bioscience, followed by a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine. To get into these courses you usually need to gain your Senior Secondary Certificate of Education. Prerequisite subjects, or assumed knowledge, in one or more of English, mathematics, biology, chemistry and physics are normally required. Universities have different prerequisites and some have flexible entry requirements. Contact the institutions you are interested in for more information. For further details, visit www.gooduniversitiesguide.com.au.

Avg. weekly wage:

$1,243

Future growth:

strong growth

Employment by state:

ACT 0.5%

NSW 27.6%

NT 1%

QLD 19.5%

SA 8.8%

TAS 2.2%

VIC 22.7%

WA 17.6%

Hours worked:

43.6

Unemployment:

below average

Gender split:

Male 22%

Female 78%

Education level:

Not completed Year 10: 0%

Not completed Year 12: 0%

Highest qualification is secondary school: 0%

Highest qualification is a Certificate 3 or 4: 0%

Highest qualification is a Diploma or Advanced Diploma: 0%

Highest qualification is a Bachelor degree: 66.7%

Highest qualification is a Postgraduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate: 33.3%

Age bracket:

Below 35 years: 37%

Above 35 years: 62%

*The data above is sourced from the Department of Employment’s Job Outlook website.




Additional Information
Veterinarians abide by a code of practice put in place by the Australian Veterinary Association. They must re-register annually with the Veterinary Surgeons Board or Veterinary Practitioners Registration Board of each state or territory in which they intend to practise.
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