Job Outlook

Employment of veterinarians is expected to grow 12 percent from 2012 to 2022, close to the average projected growth for all occupations:

Percent change in employment, projected 2010-20:

Veterinarians: 12%
Health Diagnosing and Treating Practitioners: 20%
Total, All Occupations (US Economy only): 11%
 Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Employment Projections program

Demand for private practice veterinarians is expected to grow due to the increase in pet owners bringing their pets for regular visits, as well as the advances made in modern veterinary medicine. Veterinary services today resemble health care offered to humans, such as cancer treatment and kidney transplants.

Employment is also expected to increase in fields such as food and animal safety, disease control, and public health. As the population continues to grow, veterinarians will play a key role in securing the nation’s food supply through caring for food animals.

Despite these demands, the veterinary services industry is beginning to slow overall, prompting slower employment gains than previously thought (just two years ago, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicted a 36% increase in veterinarians’ employment from 2010 to 2020).

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