Equine Dentistry Schools and Certification

Equine dentistry is emerging as a specialty within established veterinary schools. A number of veterinary colleges offer programs focusing specifically on equine health, and may offer paths for specializing in dental care for horses. Learn about the requirements for becoming a veterinarian and focusing on equine dentistry. Schools offering Animal Care degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What You Need to Know

Veterinarians who want to provide dental services to horses will need to complete veterinary school and earn a license. Although equine dentistry is not currently a formal, recognized specialization in the field, interested veterinarians can train in equine health and veterinary dentistry to prepare to treat patients.

Degree Doctor of Veterinary Medicine
License Required to practice
Salary $90,420 per year (median salary for veterinarians)*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (May 2017)

Where Do I Start?

You need a veterinary license to work in equine practice, which can be achieved after you earn a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (D.V.M.). The American Veterinary Medical Association offers accreditation to 30 veterinary schools in the U.S. where you can earn a D.V.M. You can then take coursework in equine studies or pursue internships or residencies that focus on equine care.

How Do I Get Into a Veterinary School?

To enter one of these schools, you need to take one of a wide range of tests, including the Graduate Record Examination (GRE), the Veterinary College Admission Test (VCAT) and the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT). You do not need to be a pre-vet major, according to the AVMA, but you do need to complete specific courses in order to meet admission requirements at veterinary schools. You will need to have completed undergraduate coursework in:

  • Biology
  • Biochemistry
  • Zoology
  • Microbiology
  • Animal science

Which Schools Offer D.V.M. Programs with a Focus on Equine Health?

Some D.V.M. programs offer coursework in equine health and surgeries, while others provide large animal internships in which students can work hands-on with horses and other large animals. A few schools contain equine centers focusing on research, care and teaching opportunities. AVMA-accredited programs that offer equine studies and/or internships are found at the following schools:

  • North Carolina State University
  • University of Georgia
  • University of California-Davis
  • The Ohio State University
  • University of Pennsylvania

Where Can I Become Recognized as an Equine Dentist?

You need a very specialized skill set to work in equine dentistry. Veterinarians work in a variety of settings, including zoos and laboratories, but only a minority work in equine health.

The AVMA recognizes 41 veterinary specialties in which you can earn accredited training courses at veterinary colleges. This list of programs does not include equine dentistry, but does include both veterinary dentistry and equine health. For the time being, you can find courses focusing on this area within existing veterinary schools. Many veterinary colleges also offer equine health programs and courses. Some organizations, such as the International Association of Equine Dentistry and Equine Dental Providers of America, offer certification in this area.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
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