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C.r.e.a.m

Discussion in 'Pre-Veterinary' started by DOOMflow, Dec 1, 2008.

  1. DOOMflow

    2+ Year Member

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    Do vets make bank or are they mad poor? 4 years and a DVM seems like a lot of work if I'm gonna be struggling to be a baller. I love animals, I really do, and I think being a vet would be awesome but if I pursue a more financially rewarding career I'm sure I can have enough exotic pets to satisfy my zoological interests.

    I don't mean to look at the career from only one angle, but imo it's a legit consideration and any feedback would be greatly appreciated! Thanks in advance,

    DoomFlow
     
  2. cozycleo

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    Vet med is not a career you go into for money. I'd be willing to bet that very few people on this board are considering it for financial reasons. If anything, vet school vs. the salary doesn't make much financial sense. But really, I don't think any medical career should be considered based on salary alone, considering all the work and time that is put into it. It's more about passion than anything else.
     
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  3. kayakman28

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    cozycleo - I think you head the nail on the head with that response!

    I do not think there is any sort of a profession involving the care/treatment of animals that is financially lucrative - unless of course you are involved with a prized racehorse. As cozycleo said, the animal world - especially veterinary medicine - is one where passion trumps financial benefits. Worrying about whether or not you will be "a baller" isn't going to get you very far in this profession - let alone through an interview.

    I can appreciate your concerns and desire to live a "well-off" life, but I don't think the answer is veterinary medicine...but this is purely based on my beliefs and my passion.

    Best of luck with whatever career path you choose.
     
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  4. HopefulAg

    HopefulAg Texas A&M CVM c/o 2014!
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    I doubt a lot of people go into vet med for the money. Vets make a fair amount of money, sure, but no vet I have talked to says they went into it for the money.


    Now, that's not to say that money isn't an important criteria. It's certainly on my list of reasons why I want to be a vet, but it's not in the top 5.

    I would say if you want to be a vet just for the money, then you're in the wrong field. I don't know many 'baller' vets.
     
  5. tealamutt

    tealamutt WSU class of 2012
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    lmao hopefulAg (baller vets)

    I think if having exotic pets would satisfy your love for animals, then being a vet isn't for you. Because you don't go into vet med because you love having animals, you do it because you love science, you want to help people, you want to work in a certain environment, and you also get to be around animals and get to help them everyday. But mostly they crap and pee and puke on you... not really like having cool pets at all actually...
     
  6. HopefulAg

    HopefulAg Texas A&M CVM c/o 2014!
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    IMO that's a good summary. If you've not done so already then try working in a vet clinic. You certainly won't be a baller vet tech (I started at $7 an hour and am up to $10 an hour, whoo) but it'll let you know if it's for you.


    Personally, it's the science that draws me to the profession. The fact that I get to work with animals is the shifting point between vet med and other scientific fields. Then when you take into consideration the client interactions, the ever-changing days, etc. and you have my decision. Money just isn't a big factor unless you're wanting to and are good enough to specialize.
     
  7. GellaBella

    GellaBella Penn Vet V'14
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    Actually, I think you can make a very good living as a veterinarian. You might not be down at the club popping cristal with paris hilton every weekend but I think that depending on what kind of veterinary medicine you are in and where you want to practice, you can be well off and be a vet. The veterinarians in my area make a lot of money. I live in NJ though so there are a lot of people with pets, a lot of people willing to spend a lot of money on pets for good medical care, as well as racing tracks in the area. I also know veterinarians in florida who are fertility specialists and are involved in breeding show dogs that make a lot of money as well. But in general I guess my response is slightly similar to those above me, I'd say don't go into veterinary medicine if you just want to be certain you'll make at least xxx dollars a year-(then you'd be much better served (in my opinion) going into something like dentistry where the income is high ($100,000-$300,000) but insurance is not as high as human medicine). But I'd also say don't give up on veterinary medicine just because people say it isn't lucrative. I think it can be as long as you can provide excellent animal care to go along with a high price tag. That being said, I'm expecting (if I ever get accepted) to make about $70,000/yr, maybe that's high, maybe thats low, I'm not sure. What I do know however is that that is what I would make in another 6 months once I graduate with my PhD. So I will be taking out approximately $200,000 in student loans to go to vet school to make the same amount of money I could now. Is that a smart financial decision? I'm not sure. But I know I will be happier going to work every day as a vet than I would be going to lab every day as a research scientist. You just have to decide what is most important to you and go from there.
    Just my $.02
     
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  8. bunnyslippers

    bunnyslippers Purdue SVM Class of 2013
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    It is absolutely possible to make a good living as a veterinarian so try not to get too discouraged thinking that following your dream necessarily goes hand in hand with being broke.
     
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  9. OP
    OP
    DOOMflow

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    Thank you all for your excellent responses. My desire to be a "baller" was meant as a light-hearted way to describe a financial reality. If money weren't an issue, I would definitely pursue vet med ahead of other careers. My only concern is that, when you commit to something as expensive, both in terms of time and money, as Vet School it's difficult to change career paths. I just want to live a comfortable life, and if vet med can provide me with that I'm all for it.

    Thanks again to you all!
     
  10. justinpaws

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    I really agree with that, and I always think about human med as an example. I go to a school where everyone around me is pre-med, but I HIGHLY doubt that even half of them care about people and science as much as I would like my own doctor to. They just want to be a doctor because it's a science career, they have a science major, and they hear the pay's good.

    But of course there are vets I know of (I work at a very large, VERY expensive hospital) who don't seem to care very much about the animal itself. Oftentimes patients will come in and the first thing the vet says to the receptionist is "MAKE SURE THEY HAVE $1000, I'M NOT DOING ANYTHING UNTIL YOU GET THE MONEY IN HAND," while the dog is writhing and seizuring and the owners are outside crying. And then I know a vet who's extremely experienced and knowledgeable, and compassionate, but he makes very little doing what he does at where he works (two jobs!).

    Anyways I guess I didn't make my point very clear, but to sum it up...you can definitely make bank if you find your way to the right place. But I feel like we have a big responsibility to care more about the animal and less about the $$, which is not always the case.
     
  11. Emio

    Emio Fudge Bane
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    Thank you GellaBella!!

    no, not everyone lives superbly well as veterinarians. but to say you can't make money in it? cockamamie.

    yes, you have to work hard, and the first few years may be even harder, but i absolutely believe you can be quite comfortable, dare i say even lucrative, as a veterinarian (and i mean well over the aforementioned $70k/year). depends what your goals are.
     
  12. tealamutt

    tealamutt WSU class of 2012
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    you can definitely make a living, a good one even. Unfortunately to make real money, you'd most likely need to become boarded in a specialty area (requiring residency and internships- several extra years of low paid training) and even then that doesn't guarantee any particular salary. You also have to consider where you want to live and work, whether you want to go into practice, industry, research, etc.


    The bottom line is that the field is what you make of it, but no matter what there will be many kinds of sacrifice before you get what you want. So if having lots of money and free time are your top priorities, maybe it's not the field for you. On the other hand if 10 + years of hard work and poverty doesn't sound daunting and this is your dream (for many reasons) go for it!
     
  13. littlecaitling

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    To be fair, its not purely mean spirited for a vet to be wary of treating a difficult case without first looking for some insurance that the fees will be paid. I work at a one-doctor clinic and my vet has been burned more than a few times by people who bring their animals in to be whisked away for extensive (and expensive) treatments only to have the client later inform them that they never had any way of paying for any of it. One example that readily comes to mind is a dog brought in after being hit by a car. The poor thing was in terrible shape, but after a series of surgeries and a fairly long hospitalization he was doing great. The doctor had talked to the owner on the phone many times throughout the hospitalization (got the phone number from the tag on his collar), constantly giving estimates and working out payment plans, and was always given the green light to continue treatment. When it finally came time to send the dog home, the receptionist gave the owner the final price (to the tune of several thousand dollars) as a tech went downstairs to get the dog. When the dog was brought into the waiting area, he was so incredibly excited and happy to finally see his owner. The owner looked straight at the dog, flatly denied that it was his, and left the dog at the clinic, all to avoid paying the bill. :(

    I'm not saying that an animal should be left to die in the waiting area until the client can provide proof of payment, but refusing to put money into a patient when theres a decent chance that the client won't end up paying for it doesn't necessarily mean that the vet doesn't care about animals. It's just sound business practice.
     
  14. KKibo

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    Pretty much everyone here has hit the nail on the head.

    Yes, you can make good money as a vet (my family vet from where I grew up made around 150,000 and his wife worked with him making a comparable salary...granted they ran a fertility center, SA and LA clinic as well as offered several emergency services.)

    However, the career is expensive. Equipment isn't cheap if you want to own your own practice...if your good, charismatic, and willing to take a lot of financial risks you really can come out on top.

    The vet I currently work with brings home around 90,000...he runs a popular SA and exotic clinic, its a small place and hes very financially strict (probably the reason he makes what he does). His associates make anywhere from 60,000 (our recent Grad) to 75,000 (our emergency surgeon).

    It really is more for the passion, if you want the money for the same or less schooling go to med, PT, or dental school :). If you want to bring a higher quality of life to the many animals and their owners in this world, give it a shot. If you don't like clinical work...there are many, many other things you can do with a DVM degree.
     
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  15. rachroo

    rachroo OSU CVM c/o 2013
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    littlecaitling, I totally agree with you.

    This is a little different situation, but I am flabbergasted when people come in for a regular checkup and then say to the receptionist, "Oh...I don't have any money to pay" and expect for the services to be free.

    Can any one of us walk in to a store to buy a suit for an interview and then tell the casheir, "Oh, I don't have any $, so I'll just take this suit anyway...thanks, bye." :eek:

    As much as veterinarians want to help animals, it is a business. How can we pay off our future loans (or pay for anything for that matter concerning a practice) if we give everything away for free?
     
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