In this career guide, you’ll learn everything you need to know about veterinary science as a career, from roles and responsibilities, to the work environment and roadmap to becoming a Veterinarian.

Who's a Veterinarian?

Do you find yourself petting and caring for stray cats and dogs you come across? Do you have a special connection with animals that makes you feel protective of them? Would you be interested in looking after their health? If you do, consider becoming a veterinarian!

More commonly known as vets, a veterinarian is a professional who serves as a doctor for animals. They are the ones you go to when your pets are feeling unwell. Vets provide medical care to animals through surgeries, physiotherapy and medicine. Most vets work with small clinics, emergency and speciality hospitals, universities, research facilities, NGOs, etc.

What will you do?

Understanding the cause of illness.

Just like humans, animals too require regular health checkups to monitor their health. This is where you come in. You will check animals for any signs of illness or diseases by using various diagnostic methods like an X-Ray, Sonography, Blood test, etc.

Example: If an animal is brought to you because of a limp in their walk, you will suggest an X-Ray to understand what is causing the limp.

Treating animals for various diseases.

Once the check-ups are completed and you’ve identified the cause of the disease or injury, you must offer the necessary treatment for them. You can prescribe medicines, administer vaccines and dress wounds, if required.

Example: If an animal is brought to you because they have a fever, you will try to understand the cause for it, and accordingly suggest treatments.


Performing surgery.

Many a time, the animal you are treating will require you to perform surgery on them for their well-being. This would involve checking their overall medical health, giving them an anaesthetic and then going ahead with the required surgery.

Example: If an injured animal is brought to you, you must determine its overall health – age, vitals, etc., and accordingly decide to go ahead with the procedure.

Inspecting their living space.

Animals could live in farms, human homes, parks, sanctuaries or even on the streets. You need to check these places to ensure they are safe and hygienic for the animal.

Example: If someone has a Husky (a breed of dog) who is feeling under the weather, you will check to ensure that the place has a cool temperature.

Promoting animal health.

You must advise animal caretakers on various sanitation and feeding measures, and also talk to them about the general medical care they should provide. From explaining the medical procedure to helping owners understand the cause of the diseases, you must do your best to help owners care for their animals.

Example: You would talk to pet owners about the various vaccines they can administer for their pets, food items they should and should not provide, etc.

Take the Mentoria career assessment test, to find out how well-suited you are as a Veterinarian.

Where will you work?


Most veterinarians work out of a clinic or a hospital. Here, you would be meeting with patients and performing surgeries. If you’re working in a hospital, you might have to work in shifts. And at times, you may end up working for long hours, in case of emergencies.


You could also work out of a laboratory where you would develop and test medicines and vaccines for animals. Here, you would conduct animal x-rays, blood tests, etc., and study different animals and their body functions. 

Farms/Zoos/Wildlife Sanctuaries

Some veterinarians also choose to work with farm animals for which they may work out of farms regularly. Some also work with zoos or wildlife sanctuaries. Your work timings here, depend on the timings decided by the management. 

How do you get there?

This stream won’t help you make an entry into this field.

This stream won’t help you make an entry into this field.

STEP 1: Class XI-XII/Junior College

You will have to take up the science stream after Class 10 and study physics, chemistry and biology in order to qualify for the necessary entrance exams.

STEP 2: Entrance Exam

To pursue a Bachelor’s in Veterinary Science and Animal Husbandry you need to opt for Physics, Chemistry and Biology in Class 12. Most veterinary colleges have their own entrance exams, of which the popular ones are Andhra Pradesh Engineering Agriculture and Medical Common Entrance Test (AP EAMCET), Kerala Engineering Agricultural Medical Entrance Examination (KEAM), and Karnataka Common Entrance Test (KCET), amongst others.

STEP 3: Graduation

Enrol for a Bachelor of Veterinary Science (BVSc), a three-to-five-year course from colleges like Veterinary College (Bengaluru), College of Veterinary and Animal Sciences (Kerala), etc. This course includes an internship and training at the teaching veterinary clinical service complex associated with your college.

STEP 4: Internship

Apart from your course-specified internship, look at interning/ volunteering with People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) or any other animal-welfare NGO to gain more experience in treating animals.

STEP 5: Registration

You will need to register with the State Veterinary Council and get a license to practice! Once you do, you can work at a veterinary hospital – either private or government – or try getting a job in the wildlife sector. You could also set up your own private clinic and work with domestic animals.

Congratulations, you’re now officially a veterinarian!

STEP 6: Postgraduate Degree

If you want to specialise in a subject, pursue a two-year Master of Veterinary Science (MVSc) in subjects like surgery, gynaecology, pathology, medicine, etc. If you want to get into research and have interesting ideas on how to further the profession, you can also pursue a three-year PhD in Veterinary Science after your masters. Top institutes for postgraduate courses in veterinary sciences are the Indian Veterinary Research Institute (Bareilly) and National Dairy Research Institute.


Thinking of a career as a Veterinarian? Take the Mentoria assessment test & talk to our career counsellors to get personalized step-by-step guidance for your future career path.

How do you make it to the top ranks?

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As an intern, you will be taught to use different equipment, conduct surgeries, use vaccines, check animals, etc. You would also be a part of various animal-handlingworkshops that will guide you on how to handle sick animals with love and care.


Junior veterinarian

At this stage, you are officially a vet! Your job will be to assist senior vets with their work. You would perform small tasks such as explaining the tests and medical treatment procedures to the pet owners and you would advise clients on general animal health care and maintenance.


Senior Veterinarian

You will treat animals and provide them with healthcare. And will ensure that the treatment provided is in keeping with the animal welfare regulations. Depending on your specialisation, you will conduct surgeries and other medical treatment.


Veterinary Assistant

Alternatively, you could also work as a support to vets. Your job would involve helping veterinarians provide medical and health care for animals. You would take blood samples, administer medicines given to animals and also assist the veterinary manager when conducting examinations and surgical procedures.

Veterinary Manager

You would oversee the daily operations of the clinic/hospital and the work environment. Your job would include staff management, overseeing client relations, budget planning, ensuring medical procedures are conducted as per the law, etc.

Chief Veterinary Office

You’re the chief of the clinic/hospital, and you will work towards animal welfare and protection. You would supervise the veterinarians in your institution and oversee the implementation of various animal health and welfare measures.

Pursuing your career locally VS abroad

Studying veterinary sciences in India is beneficial right now because there’s a huge demand for vets owing to a lot of NGOs, hospitals and clinics set up in villages as well as in cities.

The duration for a veterinary course in India is five years and involves nine semesters. It is compulsory for you to undergo a six-month internship course. A graduation course in veterinary science would cost you anywhere between INR 30,000- INR 1,00,00 per year depending on the university you opt for. Top colleges from where you can pursue veterinary science in India are: Indian Veterinary Research Institute, Birsa Agricultural University, Veterinary College and Research Institute, etc.


If you are pursuing veterinary sciences abroad, you can always look for job opportunities in the country that you are residing in. Studying abroad will give you a broader understanding of the field and also introduce you to newer treatments and animals indigenous to those areas.

Veterinary courses abroad could cost you anywhere between INR 5,00,000- INR 25,00,000 depending on the course and university you study in. Top colleges from where you can pursue a degree in veterinary science abroad are: Cornell University, University of Guelph, University of Edinburgh, etc. Many universities abroad consider fee payment per semester basis and not on a yearly basis. To practice abroad it is important that you acquire a license from the medical board of the country where you plan to work.

How much would you get paid?

The exact number will depend on where you’re working, your education, skill-set and internship experience. But we can give you a general idea.

What are your career options?

Companion Animal

Companion animal vets generally work in private clinics and hospitals. You would work with companion animals (pets). You would carry out usual procedures like medicine and surgery, vaccinations, etc., and brief their owners about the health issues their pets/companions face.

Food-Animal Healthcare

Food animal vets usually work with animals such as cattle, pigs, sheep and others since they are raised to be food sources. You would have to ensure that the animals at the farms are not infected with any health problems or injuries. You would also vaccinate and conduct regular check-ups for them.


Here, vets are involved in developing state-of-the-art equipment and techniques. These equipment make it easier to test animal tissues and blood samples. It would be your job to ensure that these equipment deliver accurate, innovative, and timely services to the veterinary and animal health community.


As a dentist for animals, you would focus on providing healthy dental and oral care to a variety of animals. This involves conducting routine oral checkups and surgery procedures for animals. You will have to choose Dental studies as your specialisation when pursuing an MSc in Veterinary Sciences.



Veterinary dermatologists specialise in the diagnosis of skin, hair and nails problems among animals. You would have to identify external parasites, hormonal conditions, allergies, etc., that may impact the well-being of the animal.

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