Veterinary surgeons maintain the health and welfare of a wide range of animals, from personal pets to livestock, zoo specimens, or even injured wild animals.
Vets working in general practice are responsible for the medical and surgical treatment of a range of animals, including domestic, zoo and farm animals. They also work to prevent disease in animals and the spread of disease.
Employers of Veterinary Surgeons
- Private veterinary practices and surgeries
- Government organizations
- Pharmaceuticals manufacturers
- handling, examining and treating all species of animals, including domestic animals, farm livestock and horses;
- meeting and consulting with the owners and carers of various animals, including zookeepers;
- carrying out tests such as x-rays, blood samples and ultrasound scans;
- giving advice to farmers on issues such as nutrition, breeding and herd health;
- routinely visiting farms to check the health of livestock;
- immunising animals against different types of disease;
- euthanising old and terminally ill animals;
- performing surgery, including managing anaesthesia;
- working on out-of-hours emergency cases when on-call;
- providing suitable paperwork for animals travelling abroad, as well as inserting identification microchips;
- maintaining up-to-date records;
- liaising with, and referring to, other professionals within the industry;
- inspecting certain animal products to ensure they are safe for human consumption.
You can only become a veterinary surgeon if you have a degree in veterinary medicine/science.
- A love of animals
- Empathy, patience and sensitivity
- Rational objectivity
- A thorough, methodical approach
- Communication skills
- Scientific ability
- Calmness in pressurized or emotional situations