For many people, becoming a veterinarian would be a dream come true. However, more than a love for animals is required if you want to thrive in this field. Being a Vet is Often very tiring, can present challenges, and can sometimes be devastating. If you really want to know if it's the right job for you, read ahead to learn 5 tips that everyone wanting to become a vet should know.
1. It's more than Puppies & Kittens
As an aspiring vet your first thoughts may be of nursing adorable puppies and kittens back to good health. In reality though you may get all kinds of different animals that visit. You may even get animals that some are not so fond of, such as rodents, lizards, snakes and other exotic pets.
True, Vets may refer exotic animals to specialists for some things, but general care, wellness exams and even emergency visits will in many cases be all up to you. This means you need to be comfortable or at the very least confident enough to handle all kinds of animals.
2. There are Messes to be made
Does seeing blood make you uneasy? If so, you may really want to think about having a career in the veterinary medicine field. Veterinarians perform surgeries, treat infections and bleeding, see a lot of vomit and other bodily fluids, and even assist in birthing. These kinds of things don't scream "fun" by any means, but as a vet you need to be able to at least stomach such things in order to get the job done.
3. Its not just about the animals
Vets may spend all day treating animals, but you can't forget the individuals that bring them in the first place. As a Veterinarian you must have good communication skills and of course be friendly at all times. This is especially important if providing care instructions to an owner or sadly breaking bad news to a pet's family. You will be working with vet techs as well so you must treat them with respect as you're delegating responsibilities to them.
4. Math & Science are part of the Job
In order to become a vet, you need to study a range of advanced mathematics and science. You can't just expect to pass your exams and be done with it either. Those math and science skills will come into play every day while working. It is also important to become familiar with ultrasounds and other pieces of veterinarian equipment as they are a vital part of the job.
5. There Will Be Tough Days
You will no doubt have many great experiences being a vet, but you have to also be aware of the challenges and just plain bad moments you will face as well. What kind of challenges may be involved? Well, you may have to face animals that are aggressive. You may also have to deal with owners who don't listen to the instructions given. Sadly, this could lead to the worsening of an animals condition and in worst cases could even lead to euthanasia.
One of the hardest calls a vet has to make is putting an animal down. True, it does get easier to do in time, but not being able to save every animal that is entrusted to you is something you will have to acknowledge and accept if you wish to become a vet.
How to become a great veterinarian
So just what does it take to break through and become a great veterinarian? Yes, communication skills, confidence and a passion for the field of veterinary medicine are crucial, as is being able to cope with the stress involved. However another important key is to never stop learning. You will have to learn to become forgiving towards the animals, owners and eventually yourself too. Become fascinated with the subject material for this field in order to provide the best possible care for your patients.
Do you feel like some of these traits aren't quite you? Don't be so quick to give up! If becoming a veterinarian is truly your dream, then use your passion as a way to improve on any weak areas and be fully committed to reaching your goal.