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What's your favorite part of being a veterinarian?

I want to have a good idea of what the best experiences of the job will be.

#veterinary #veterinarian


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Christopher’s Answer

Veterinarians perform so many duties and have varying functions according to the area you are employed (academia, clinical practice, industry, research, food inspection, epidemiology, public health, etc).

As a clinical practitioner my favorite aspect of my job are:

*helping families with keeping their pets healthy and managing illnesses when they occur.
*using applied sciences to diagnose and treat illnesses.
*coaching/mentoring eager young students and newly graduate Veterinarians.
*serving as a professional resource for my local community for animal and human public health.

Christopher recommends the following next steps:

Research various jobs within the Veterinary industry

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Michael’s Answer

Thanks for this question, Malia. I haven't asked myself that question in a long time. When I finished vet school, and after a brief stint in small animal surgery referral center, I ended up in a non-practice-related career. I can tell you that I really missed the daily contact with animals and caring for animals. The actual touching them. Shortly before finishing vet school, I discussed this with a classmate and she agreed that the physical contact with the animals is such an important component of what we do as veterinarians and the satisfaction we get from it. In real life, of course, everyday practice life is challenging; you will always be challenged about focusing on patient care and the medicine and/or surgery aspects when more mundane tasks like balancing the books or double-checking employee time cars are also something a clinic must do well in order to survive and thrive in a competitive, customer-focused environment. But eventually I was able to rationalize that my work in the pharmaceutical field, though for me not actually in contact with animals, indirectly was very important for animals in the field, but really all kinds of animals, including research animals. Over the years, I realized how a veterinary education prepares you for a diverse set of challenges, both the more heady and the more mundane ones. After all, that's what we "have over" over physicians who only treat "one" species. We deal with domestic animals, in some cases wild animals, of many different species. There are some similarities between species, as you will learn if you go into this field, like how cats and horses have similar physiology in the blood; who would have thought that, one is tiny, the other so much bigger. One manifests aggression in a certain way; the other, when in pain, will tend to want to outrun it, respectively. So the veterinarian I am has dealt with this type of diversity and, through the work of my mentors, my colleagues, and at the end the owners and their animals, has learned how they are interconnected. There used to be this commercial on TV how tennis is the sport of a lifetime; well, it takes a life time and then some to be a veterinarian, and how over your entire career you continue learning is gratifying to me. At its most basic level, veterinary medicine is a science, and the amount of knowledge available, I think it is said, doubles every 10 years or so. That's exciting, too, but you have to be well equipped to follow, or be at the forefront, of such tremendous and accelerating change. I think a place to start to learn about veterinary medicine is in books like the Horse Whisperer because it treats this central difficulty/excitement we face when attending to a being that cannot tell us what they perceive to be wrong with them.

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