What are veterinary specialties?

15 June 2021

You’ve loved animals since you were a child, so you’re confident working with animals as a veterinarian is your ideal career choice.

dog lying on its back
Learn more about studying veterinary medicine

But there’s a lot more to veterinary medicine than small- or large-animal practice, more than kittens and cows! There are many different types of veterinary specialties. Currently, there are 22 organizations recognized by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), and some of them have several subspecialties:

Anesthesia & Analgesia
Animal Welfare
Behavioural Medicine
Clinical Pharmacology
Emergency & Critical Care
Internal Medicine, including

  • Cardiology
  • Large animal internal medicine
  • Neurology
  • Oncology
  • Small animal internal medicine

Laboratory Animal Medicine
Preventative Medicine
Species-Specialized Veterinary Practice, including

  • Avian practice
  • Beef cattle practice
  • Canine and feline practice
  • Dairy practice
  • Equine practice
  • Exotic companion mammal practice
  • Feline practice
  • Food animal practice
  • Reptile and amphibian practice
  • Shelter medicine practice
  • Swine health management

Sports Medicine & Rehabilitation
Theriogenology (reproductive health)
Zoological Medicine

Australian Veterinary Degrees

OzTREKK represents three Australian universities that feature professional veterinary degrees. You can become a veterinarian by completing one of the following degrees:

Melbourne’s and Sydney’s Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) programs are offered only to students who have already obtained an undergraduate science degree.

UQ’s Bachelor of Veterinary Science (Honours) and Sydney’s Bachelor of Veterinary Biology/Doctor of Veterinary Medicine programs are suitable for students who wish enter into a professional veterinary program directly from high school or with college or university studies.

Are Australian Veterinary Degrees AVMA Accredited?

The veterinary science programs at the University of Melbourne, the University of Queensland and the University of Sydney hold full American Veterinary Medical Association AVMA accreditation, which is the North American standard for vet accreditation. You can find the each of these universities listed on page 3 of the Accredited Colleges of Veterinary Medicine published by the AVMA.


Do you have questions about studying veterinary medicine? Contact OzTREKK’s Veterinary Admissions Officer at vet@oztrekk.com for more information.