Making the decision to dedicate your professional working life to helping, and in a huge number of patients you treat, actually saving the lives of all different types of animals, from reptiles and birds to bunnies, cats, and dogs, is one of the best things you could possibly do.
It could be, however, and for one of a wide variety of reasons, that you think it may be time for a change of direction in your career, but you still want to help animals and utilize your wealth of knowledge, expertise, and experience.
If this does indeed sound like you, then look no further and continue reading to discover a comprehensive guide to career options for qualified veterinarians looking for a fresh challenge.
Table of Contents
Open Your Own Surgery
After working as a professional veterinarian for many years, an exciting, albeit brave, move would be to move on to opening your own veterinary practice in your local area.
Even if you always keep constantly updated on everything, from procedures and policies to legal compliance and new and innovative treatments for animals, you will still need to at least understand the fundamentals of business should you wish to proceed.
Arguably the best possible way to guarantee, as much as is feasibly possible, success in launching your very own veterinary surgery would be to partner with the established and expert vetcelerator.com, which can help you with everything from supplies and sourcing staff to setting up the physical components of your new surgery.
Change Your Specialism
Another exciting challenge within the field of veterinary work is to go back to your studies, either on a part-time basis while still working or by taking a year out and moving into another specialism within veterinary science.
There are, as you would expect, a myriad of different veterinary specialisms, the most notable of which include the following:
- Behavioral medicine
- Domestic pets
- Zoo animals
- Exotic animals
- Internal medicine
- Animal welfare
- Large animal &livestock
It would be pertinent to note in this particular conjecture that while it is a relatively smooth transition from a domestic pet veterinarian role to that of an equine or marine one, moving into more general practice from such specialisms is much more difficult and requires even more years of study.
Work to Help the Environment
One of the largest areas, and indeed one of the most popular for qualified and experienced veterinary surgeons to move into once they have been working in a traditional practice setting for many years, is that of environmental and conservation work.
You could work in either local or national government sectors, working to design, improve and enact new drives, policies, and campaigns for environmental conservation, sustainability, and animal welfare. Climate change is also a huge area that is proverbially crying out for educated and driven individuals to try and help regular people understand how important it is to live an eco-friendlier life.
Another exceedingly viable career move would be to enter the world of environmental consultancy, namely advising, educating, and assessing external companies on conducting a more environmentally-friendly day-to-day business.
Enter the World of Academia
Your vast wealth of knowledge and years of experience as a practicing veterinarian stand you in incredibly strong proverbial stead to publish your own reading material to inform both trainee vets and other people who are interested in the better care of animals.
For this pursuit, it is strongly advisable to successfully acquire an MSc (masters of science) degree in veterinary science and immerse yourself in the academic research aspects of the program. Aside from taking your veterinary career in a new and exciting direction, studying at the postgraduate level will also afford you the following additional benefits:
- A renewed sense of purpose and energy as you pursue your own goals
- A way to sensibly and lucratively invest in your personal development
- A greater number of senior job opportunities available to you
- A way to pursue your new specialism while still working in your current role
Become a Wildlife Biologist
If you would like to move from treating smaller animals and domesticated pets, such as dogs, cats, rabbits, and guinea pigs, to larger wild animals, then the best possible career move of all would be to become a wildlife biologist.
Essentially, wildlife biologists work by studying and collecting the behavior of various animals and looking into their biology in their natural habitats. More often than not, wildlife biologists either work in the private sector for a specific organization or within an academic organization.
Typical roles and responsibilities of a wildlife biologist include the conduction of censuses, the study of different ecosystems, research into viral activity and diseases in the animal kingdom, and presenting studies and findings to academics and the general public.
Support Animal Charities & Animal Welfare
Within the field of animal welfare, there is a myriad of different roles that you would be perfect for in terms of either promoting and marketing various charity drives to help large endangered animals or to better educate people about how to look after their pets at home.
Perhaps one of the most hotly contested roles within the field of animal welfare is that of advocacy, be that as the spokesperson for a particular animal charity or as a kind of lone ranger campaigning for better knowledge and care for an animal species. Usually, it is only qualified veterinarians who are even considered for such a role, so this may well be an interesting line of inquiry to pursue.
Become a Research Scientist
Finally, another exceedingly challenging yet incredibly rewarding new direction for qualified veterinarians is to enter the field of scientific research.
Studying animal clinical pathology, histology, and hematology, research scientists work to create new treatments and find innovative new methods of helping animals, and moreover, sometimes even find ways to use what they learn with animals to assist the medical care and treatment of humans too.