Equine Veterinarian Schools and Training Programs

Learn how equine veterinary schools and training programs can help prepare you for a career in this field. Find information on education and licensing requirements, job duties and salaries. Schools offering Animal Care degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What You Need to Know

Equine veterinarians are responsible for diagnosing and treating horses. Equine vets need to be comfortable working with horses in a variety of conditions. In most cases, these vets must travel to stables or farms to tend to patients. They must have a license and a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree.

Training Equine vets need a license and a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree
Programs Programs require hands-on experience in the form of internships and residencies
Median Annual Salary (2017)* $90,420 for all veterinarians

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What is an Equine Veterinarian?

As an equine veterinarian, you can work to vaccinate, diagnose and treat horses. You might also get the chance to participate in research, and you will typically be required to euthanize horses when necessary. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that nearly 80,000 veterinarians were employed in 2016, and the field was expected to grow 19% by 2026. It was estimated by the American Veterinary Medical Association that about three percent of veterinarians treat horses exclusively as of 2016.

How Can I Qualify to Work in this Field?

To become an equine veterinarian, you will first be required to complete an accredited Doctor of Veterinary Medicine program and obtain a license. There are 30 veterinary schools in 27 U.S. states which are accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). These include:

  • Auburn University
  • University of California
  • University of Florida
  • Purdue University
  • Iowa State University
  • Mississippi State University
  • Cornell University
  • The Ohio State University
  • Texas A&M University
  • University of Wisconsin-Madison

How Do I Get Into Veterinary School?

To enter a veterinary school, you will need a bachelor's degree, though there is no one pre-veterinary major which you must take as an undergraduate. You can instead take a pre-veterinary course track and work on a degree with a major in animal biology, microbiology, zoology, animal science, biochemistry or a related area. Veterinary schools typically require applicants to take the Graduate Record Examination (GRE), the Veterinary College Admission Test (VCAT), or the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT).

Coursework you can expect to take in a pre-veterinary track of study includes:

  • Animal science
  • Microbiology
  • Anatomy and physiology
  • Animal nutrition
  • Molecular biochemistry
  • Animal health and management
  • Genetics

What Equine Education Opportunities Can I Pursue?

If you want to treat horses as a veterinarian, you need to develop skills relating specifically to equine health. Either by the time you graduate veterinary school or soon afterward, you should have an extensive understanding of all aspects of working with horses, including examination, medication, surgery and husbandry. Some veterinary schools offer courses specializing in equine health to help you obtain these skills. To gain practical experience, organizations like the American Association of Equine Practitioners (AAEP) offer a wide variety of internships and hands-on workshops, which allow you to actually work with horses before you graduate from veterinary school. You can also sign up for mentorships where you will work with experienced equine veterinarians.

After graduating from veterinary school, earning your license and gaining professional experience, you can become a board certified veterinarian in the equine specialty. This would require completing the equine practice certification requirements of the American Board of Veterinary Practitioners, which is recognized by the AVMA.

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:
The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

Popular Schools

  • Grand Canyon University

    Grand Canyon University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Grand Canyon University:

    • Doctoral
    • Master
    • Bachelor Degrees

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  • Purdue University Global

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    Popular programs at Purdue University Global:

    • Master

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  • Herzing University

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  • The George Washington University

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    Popular programs at The George Washington University:

    • Master

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  • Regent University

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    Popular programs at Regent University:

    • Doctoral
    • Master

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  • Keiser University

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    • Associate Programs

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  • Penn Foster High School

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  • Southern New Hampshire University

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    Popular programs at Southern New Hampshire University:

    • Master

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  • Indiana Wesleyan University

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    Popular programs at Indiana Wesleyan University:

    • Master
    • Bachelor Degrees
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  • Northcentral University

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