Become a veterinarian

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Generally veterinarians diagnose, treat and help prevent disease and injury in animals. But this isn't limited to working in a clinic with small fluffy animals! Veterinarians play important roles in our everyday life – working to keep us, our pets, wildlife and stock healthy, protect our food and our environment.

How to become a veterinarian?

If you'd like a career as a veterinarian, you’ll need a Bachelor of Veterinary Science (BVSc) degree. This is five-years of study, and your starting point for an interesting and diverse future.

Massey University's Institute of Veterinary and Biosecurity Science (IVABS) is the only training institute for veterinarians in New Zealand. Find out more about studying a Bachelor of Veterinary Science degree at Massey University

Find more information about becoming a veterinarian, including entry requirements, recommended secondary school education and personal requirements, job outlook and pay scales on the Careers NZ website.

For overseas veterinarians wanting to work in New Zealand

If you have a veterinary qualification from an overseas university you’ll need to register in New Zealand. You can do this through the Veterinary Council of New Zealand (VCNZ).

Taster videos

Become a veterinarian and change the world!

Watch a Year 12 student find out what a day in the life of a veterinarian involves in both a small animal clinic, and on the farm.

Pets play a large role in our daily lives: we value them for company, fun, affection, and, in some cases, to provide disability assistance. Through keeping pets healthy, vets help keep the bond between animals and people strong. Watch now

Many veterinarians choose the veterinary profession because they have a desire to look after animals in our care (animal husbandry). This includes helping them to be born, be healthy, to grow stronger and also covers animal health and welfare. Watch now

Some veterinarians want to ensure our food is safe. This means implementing processes that check food all the way along the production chain, “from farm to fork”. Watch now

Some veterinarians' work involves the protection of human health through identifying and researching zoonoses, or diseases that can be transferred from animals to humans. Watch now

Some veterinarians choose to focus on preventing outbreaks and, when they do occur, controlling/limiting and further spread of disease to protect animals at risk and limit the impact on farmers, the economy and society. Watch now