Types of Veterinarians

What comes to your mind when you think of a veterinarian?

Do you picture the friendly doctor that gives your dog extra belly rubs and a treat after each wellness exam? If you did, you may be surprised to know just how many different types of veterinarians there are.

Whether you’re looking for a veterinarian, or you’re exploring careers in veterinary medicine, keep reading our article! We’ve made a brief guide on the responsibilities among the different types of veterinarian.

The Different Types of Veterinarian

While there are many types of veterinarians, we’ve narrowed them down into a few specific categories. Each type of veterinarian can also be specialized in a particular specifies of animal, a type of treatment, and even other things. Here are the main types of veterinarians.

Companion Animal Veterinarians

Companion animal veterinarians are common pet doctors that treat dogs, cats, and sometimes small pets. Most companion animal veterinarians work out of a private clinic or an animal hospital, but some will offer house calls for an extra cost.

Even though these veterinarians are the most common, they’re still responsible for all of your household pets’ healthcare needs.

From wellness exams, prescribing medication, performing surgery and dental services, setting bones, and offering humane euthanasia at the end of your pet’s life, you likely won’t need another veterinarian for your dog or cat.

Large Animal Veterinarians

Large animal veterinarians typically work with livestock. These animals can include horses, cows, goats, pigs, sheep, and more.

Since it’s difficult and stressful to transport such large animals, many of these veterinarians will go to their client’s location to examine their animals. Some large animal veterinarians will continue to work in a regular practice and offer house calls for their large animal appointments.

Exotic Animal Veterinarians

Exotic veterinarians specialize in non-traditional pets. These can include reptiles, rodents, birds, and small mammals. These veterinarians are more knowledgeable and experienced in exotic animals, and typically have the special equipment to properly handle and restrain them.

Some animal companion vets will feel comfortable enough to treat exotics that they’re familiar with but will advise you to see a specialist if they’re not confident that they can treat your pet.

Veterinary Medicine Specialists

Just like in human medicine, veterinary medicine has plenty of fields that veterinarians and even technicians can specialize in. We’ve made a list below of some of the popular specialties among animal doctors:

  • Exotic Companion Animals
  • Reptile Amphibians
  • Canine and Feline
  • Equine
  • Avian
  • Animal surgery specialist
  • Cardiology
  • Neurology
  • Oncology
  • Internal Medicine

If you’re interested in these fields of veterinary medicine and want more information, check out the American Veterinary Medicine Association’s website for a list of veterinary specialties.

Keep Up With Your Pet’s Health

Your pet is part of the family, so it only makes sense that you want to do what’s best for their health. Sometimes that may mean finding a veterinary specialist to give them the best treatment options available.

Hopefully, our guide made you more familiar with the different types of veterinarian. If you found this article helpful, be sure to check out some of our other great content on your pets and their health!