Veterinary medicine is the branch of medicine that deals with the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of disease, disorder and injury in animals. Veterinary medicine is a diverse field that includes everything from preventive care to emergency surgery. It also covers a wide range of specialities, such as cardiology, oncology, ophthalmology and neurology. Veterinarians may work in private practices, zoos, shelters, racing stables or research facilities. They may also serve as public health officials or food inspectors.
Veterinarians complete an accredited five-year veterinary medical school program, followed by a three-year residency in a chosen speciality. They must also pass a rigorous set of national exams in order to become licensed. To keep their licenses current, veterinarians must complete continuing education requirements on a regular basis.