Veterinarians play an important part in the lives of most Australians. It’s estimated that there are over 25 million pets living in Australia, and if you own a dog or cat, you will need to consult a vet for advice or care at some point. Many Australians still have misconceptions regarding what vets are and what they do. We’ve decided to clear up some of these misunderstandings so that you can better understand the people responsible for your pet’s health, and build a relationship with them for your pet’s benefit.
- Anyone can become a vet – it’s easy!
Many people still believe that becoming a vet is easy and doesn’t require expert skill. This couldn’t be further from the truth. In Australia, becoming a vet requires a minimum of five years of gruellingtraining, followed by continuous veterinary education should you wish to specialise in a field or area of practice. Then you’ll have to register to obtain a licence with the veterinary registration board in the state you plan on practicing in. It’s a time consuming and challenging experience that weeds out anyone not serious about entering the field, as well as anyone without the aptitude and passion for it.
- All vets know everything about all animals
As mentioned above, it takes five to six years to get the foundational knowledge required to treat most pets on a basic level. This means that not every vet can offer you every single service required by every kind of pet. Your vet should be able to tell you if they are experienced in more niche areas such as treating exotic pets, or dealing with animal behavioural issues.
- Your vet can treat your pet from teeth to tail
Many television shows have given pet owners the idea that the average vet is always on call to assist with everything from general check-ups, to emergency surgery. The reality is that animal surgery requires a specialist facility outfitted with equipment, anaesthesiologists, and nurses on standby. It always helps to check what services your vet does and doesn’t offer.
We hope that we’ve cleared up the above misconceptions about veterinarians, and that you have a better idea of what your local vet can offer you. Remember that if you have any other questions, you can always contact your veterinarian directly and ask them.
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