Is there a certain number of hours that one should have for each type of animal/vet experience (ie small animal, wildlife, zoo, etc)?? IN other words, does it matter how long you spend shadowing/working/volunteering in one area?
There's no magic formula for the experience hours. Ideally, you would pursue breadth (a few hours in several areas) as well as a bit of depth (more hours in the field you're potentially interested in). I would imagine that every applicant should have some amount of small and large animal experience, but I'm sure that's not always the case.
I would think that you would need to put in at least 10 hours in one area to be able to show that you have any idea at all what's going on... but that's just my opinion. Most people probably end up with more than 10 hours anyway.
I think in addition to breadth of experience they want to see some consistency. So if you find an aspect of vet med that you realy like you should probably put in extra hours towards it, especially if you plan on telling them you'll likely pursue that field (large animal vs small vs lab etc...). I would assume at least 10-20 hours shadowing, observing or participating in different things would give you a good starting point until you find the thing you really like.
At NCSU's info session, they emphasized ~100 hours for depth, preferably across at least 3 different areas, with a minimum of 400 vet experience hours required. If you have schools you are interested in, might be easiest to ask what they prefer.
I've been working at small animal hospitals, emergency and non-emergency. I thought that working within those differences is enough diversity in my case; however, I guess it is a good idea to get experience with large animals. What type of experiences should that be, I haven't really found anything?