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Amount of Animal Experience required for vet school?

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snoopy69

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Hi everybody, I'm a senior biology major who is thinking about going back to pre-vet after being pre-med for a year. I started out being pre-vet, but I changed my mind for various silly reasons, and now I'm thinking that vet med is where my heart is. So....I know that animal experience is a must to get into vet school, but how much? Could you guys and gals that have been accepted to vet schools tell me what their experiences were? Here's my experiences so far:
-worked at a pet boarding place as a kennel technician for a few weeks during my senior year in high school
-worked in an animal behavior lab for a semester doing cognitive research on capuchin monkeys
-worked in the small animal teaching hospital as a patient care orderly for a semester at my school.
I feel so behind since I changed my mind and I missed out on some experience time. I'm currently trying to find a job in either a small animal hospital or the equine facility at my school. If I continue to work this full year, and throughout 2006, do you think I could be accepted to some schools in 2007?
My cumulative gpa is a 3.8 something, and I think my science gpa is around a 3.7. Do I have a good shot??
 

chris03333

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Sure you have a chance. You just have to do well on GRE and you will make a competitive applicant. I would have even suggested (if it wasn't so close to the deadline as now) to start applying now just to see how far you could have gotten (you never know).

Good Luck! :thumbup:

My experience:
3 years small animal hospital (only one day a week)
3 years in biomedical research on veterinary staff (1 1/2 yr full time of this)
2 years with large animals (only ~5 hrs per week)

BUT my classmates have huge variences in type and amount of veterinary experience. :rolleyes:
 

verbal_kint

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i think having lots of experience is important, but what you got out of each experience is more important. for instance, you could work in a research lab for 3 years, but if all you did was clean dishes and run an autoclave, that's not going to be as impressive as if you did a semester of independent research on a project, got results, and gave a talk on it. You won't have as many hours, but I dont think it's important.

Your GPA is good though, so I don't think your GRE will matter as much, but given you GPA, I'm assuming you'll get a decent score anyways.

My advice, don't stress about experience too much. If you really want to be a vet, you'll get the experience. That sounds silly, but it's true. I think admissions comittees are more concerned about whether you have a mature understanding of the veterinary field and have spent time really considering if it's the right fit for you and not something based on a whim. Having a kajillion hours will help, but you can more than make up for having fewer hours if your personal statement and interview shows them your level of maturity and understanding of the vet med.

I haven't been accepted yet, so I could be totally off. I'm applying for my first time this year, and I didn't really seriously consider vet med until a couple years ago, so I know how you feel.
 

medtechv79

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I can't give much advice either since I haven't gone through the admissions process but my cousin did. She was an engineering major and switched to pre-vet. I don't even think she had like fancy animal expereince in her application. She just had good grades and worked as a vet tech for 2 or so years and got accepted. So yeah, I Don't think animal experience is a huge part as long as you have some clinical experience and know what being a vet entails....Research could just be a small thing...but I think they look for more clinical experience in my opinion.
You can also call various schools to find out....some I spoke to didn't even emphasize experience that much....most comes down to grades and stuff....GRE etc. You seem to have a good shot...maybe get more experience at a vet hopstial though?
 

Sidney

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You're looking pretty good so far from where I'm sitting. I'm unfamiliar with the American school system, but looking at the amount of experience that you've racked up, I think that it would at least give you an edge over the competition. Good luck!
 

aubieRx

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in my opinion the gre is ******ed. lol. all standardized tests are....but it strikes me as being more pointless than the PCAT
 

StartingoverVet

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i think having lots of experience is important, but what you got out of each experience is more important. for instance, you could work in a research lab for 3 years, but if all you did was clean dishes and run an autoclave, that's not going to be as impressive as if you did a semester of independent research on a project, got results, and gave a talk on it. You won't have as many hours, but I dont think it's important.

Your GPA is good though, so I don't think your GRE will matter as much, but given you GPA, I'm assuming you'll get a decent score anyways.

My advice, don't stress about experience too much. If you really want to be a vet, you'll get the experience. That sounds silly, but it's true. I think admissions comittees are more concerned about whether you have a mature understanding of the veterinary field and have spent time really considering if it's the right fit for you and not something based on a whim. Having a kajillion hours will help, but you can more than make up for having fewer hours if your personal statement and interview shows them your level of maturity and understanding of the vet med.

I haven't been accepted yet, so I could be totally off. I'm applying for my first time this year, and I didn't really seriously consider vet med until a couple years ago, so I know how you feel.
<bump>

Here is a 10 year old opinion on the "experience" question... because some things never change!
 
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StartingoverVet

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How to know SOV was bored this morning: bumped threads and at one point he had the latest post in at least 7 threads
bored is not quite the right word.
Unmotivated after going to the ES and being very sleepy, but not willing to go back to sleep....
and unable to do something in a certain thread as well.
 
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