Veterinarian training programs in Canada

Animals have always been an important part of human life. If your passion is caring for the lesser brothers, veterinary medicine programs will be the best option for your future career.

Animals have always been an important part of human life. If your passion is caring for the lesser brothers, veterinary medicine programs will be the best option for your future career.

Colleges in Canada offer a wide range of training programs for future veterinarians, many of which are available to international students. Predominantly these are diploma or certificate courses. After graduation, graduates must pass a test and be accredited by the province to be eligible to work in the industry.

Veterinary Medicine Programs at OLDS College of Agriculture & Technology

College of Agriculture & Technology is one of Canada's leading colleges specializing in the training of agricultural, veterinary, and agri-cultural professionals. The college offers the following programs.

Diploma in Veterinary Technology

In this 16-month accelerated program, students learn skills in handling, treating and caring for cats, dogs, horses, sheep and cattle in the new Animal Health Education Center and Smart Farm. They gain current knowledge of diagnostic laboratory procedures, animal diseases, anatomy and physiology, surgery and anesthesia, diagnostic imaging, dentistry and client communication.

As part of this program, students complete a six-week industry internship, working directly with industry professionals.

After earning a diploma in veterinary technology, they are eligible to take the Veterinary Technician National Examination (VTNE) and the provincial licensing exam to become a Registered Veterinary Technologist (RVT).

Career Opportunities:

Olds College has a solid reputation among industry employers. Graduates can work in:

  • veterinary clinics;
  • diagnostic/research laboratories;
  • animal husbandry;
  • industry/sales;
  • wildlife rehabilitation centers;
  • zoos;
  • educational programs.

Certificate of veterinary surgeon-registrar

In this program, students learn office administration, customer service and veterinary medicine skills from certified veterinary technologist instructors, they learn all the skills needed to work in the profession.

As part of this program, students complete a three-week industry internship, working directly with professionals.

Career Opportunities:

  • Veterinary practice;
  • animal shelters;
  • animal care organizations.

Veterinary Medicine Programs at the University of Guelph

According to the QS World University Rankings, this university is a leader in veterinary education in the country. It includes the Ontario Veterinary College, the oldest veterinary college in North America, which offers advanced training programs for veterinarians and technicians.

Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM)

In the Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) program, students have a variety of opportunities for hands-on learning and interdisciplinary training. DVM students are trained in the OVC Health Sciences Center, which includes facilities for domestic animals, large animals, cancer treatment, fitness and rehabilitation, and ruminant field service.

As part of the program, students take the following courses:

  • animal anatomy;
  • animal physiology and biochemistry;
  • histology and general animal pathology;
  • Art of Veterinary Medicine;
  • Developmental Biology;
  • Health Management;
  • Clinical Medicine and many others.

Veterinary Medicine Programs at Algonquin College

This college has a special Veterinary Learning Center where future veterinarians and their assistants are trained. Students are also trained directly in the veterinary clinic.

Veterinary technician

Student training takes place in the 10,100 square foot Veterinary Training Center and Clinic. This facility includes a reception area, exam rooms, animal area, surgical suite, dental office, radiography room and more.

Ontario's two-year veterinary technician diploma program prepares you to work in the veterinary profession. Students gain real-world, hands-on experience through off-campus trips to partner facilities and animal care clinics, as well as a 240-hour final practicum.

Graduates are eligible for registration with the Ontario Association of Veterinary Technicians and the Canadian Association of Laboratory Animal Sciences.

Students are trained in:

  • Medical examination and patient care;
  • preparation and administration of medications;
  • sample collection and analysis;
  • surgical care and anesthesia;
  • preparation of diagnostic radiographs;
  • providing nutritional support.

Career Opportunities:
  • Small, large, or mixed animal veterinary practices;
  • animal shelters;
  • veterinary pharmaceutical companies;
  • medical device and food sales;
  • zoological parks and wildlife facilities;
  • research centers;
  • provincial and federal government agencies;
  • institutions of higher education and regulatory agencies.

Veterinary assistant

The Ontario College of Veterinary Assistant Certificate Program, is a one year to two semester program. Areas of study include animal handling and restraint, surgical training, common diseases, animal behavior, laboratory procedures, nursing techniques, business practices, and customer service.

The focus is on the care of companion animals, with additional information on the care of large animals, shelter animals, and laboratory animals.

Students receive extensive hands-on practice in simulation labs in the first semester, and in the second semester, they complete laboratory exercises in handling and caring for live animals with our own patients.

Students complete a 100-hour internship at the end of the final semester working in industry, practicing and improving their practical skills in their chosen field.

Career Opportunities:

  • veterinary clinics,
  • animal shelters and rescue organizations,
  • wildlife sanctuaries,
  • research centers,
  • pet care and grooming facilities.

Veterinary medicine programs are also offered by Sheridan College, University of Alberta, University of Montreal, University of Saskatchewan and many other universities in Canada.


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