The Case of the Missing Vets

What's happening to them?
What the experts are saying

Startling Evidence

What's happening to them?
Large animal vets are dissappearing and not being replaced. There are many reasons, and they are displayed below. Why do we want to know this? Remember: Knowing the                        problem(s) helps you find the solution(s).

Older vets
  • Half of large animal vets are ready to retire (if they ever do-most vets work to the end)
  • 1/3 of government vets are likely to retire in the next 3 years

Lack of interest
  • Only 2% of vet students plan to work with large animals
  • Most graduates of vet schools want to live in the city
  • Few students have a background in agriculture or experience with food animals
               - not many children know what a healthy animal looks like or acts like
  • Rural vets have physically demanding job and long, unpredictable hours
  • Large animal vets earn smaller salaries than small animal vets

Education problems
  • There are 28 vet schools in 26 states in the U.S.A.
  • There are only 5 in Canada.
  • Large animal vet students have an average college debt of $134,000
  • 2,500 vets graduate in the U.S.A. each year.
  •  U.S. vet schools have had no growth in size for 20 years
  • Federal funding to vets hasn't increased in 30 years
  • Economy related budget cuts resulted in a loss of $50,000,000 to veterinary education
  • Admission to vet school is highly competetive
                -There are 15,000 applicants per year for only 2600 spots in vet schools
Different types of vets in the U.S.A.