Veterinarians diagnose, treat and prevent animal diseases, ailments and injuries.

A Bachelor Degree or higher is required and nearly all workers have a university degree. Sometimes relevant experience or on-the-job training is also needed. Registration or licensing is required.

Tasks

  • treating animals medically and surgically, and administering and prescribing drugs, analgesics, and general and local anaesthetics
  • determining the presence and nature of abnormal conditions by physical examination, laboratory testing and through diagnostic imaging techniques including radiography and ultrasound
  • performing surgery, dressing wounds and setting broken bones
  • rendering obstetric services to animals
  • participating in programs designed to prevent the occurrence and spread of animal diseases
  • inoculating animals against, and testing for, infectious diseases and notifying authorities of outbreaks of infectious animal diseases
  • performing autopsies to determine cause of death
  • advising clients on health, nutrition and feeding, hygiene, breeding and care of animals
  • may provide professional services to commercial firms producing biological and pharmaceutical products
  • may specialise in the treatment of a particular animal group or in a particular specialty area such as cardiology, chiropractic, dermatology or critical care

Job Titles

  • Veterinarian, or Veterinary Surgeon
  • Veterinarian, or Veterinary Surgeon

    Specialisations: Veterinary Parasitologist, Veterinary Pathologist

Fast Facts

  • $1,180 Weekly Pay
  • 10,800 workers Employment Size
  • Strong Future Growth
  • Very high skill Skill level rating
  • Average unemployment Unemployment
  • 81.8% Full-Time Full-Time Share
  • 39.6 hours Average full-time
  • 38 years Average age
  • 52.8% female Gender Share

The number of Veterinarians grew very strongly over the past 5 years and is expected to grow strongly over the next 5 years:
from 10,800 in 2017 to 11,900 by 2022.
There are likely to be around 6,000 job openings over this time from workers leaving and new jobs being created.

  • Size: This is a small occupation.
  • Unemployment: Unemployment was average in 2017.
  • Location: Veterinarians work in most regions of Australia.
  • Industries: Most work in Professional, Scientific and Technical Services; Public Administration and Safety; and Education and Training.
  • Earnings: Full-time workers earn around $1,180 per week (similar to the all jobs average of $1,230). Earnings tend to be lower when starting out and higher as experience grows.
  • Full-time: Most work full-time (81.8%, much higher than the all jobs average of 68.4%).
  • Hours: Full-time workers spend around 39.6 hours per week at work (compared to the all jobs average of 40.0 hours).
  • Age: The average age is 38 years (compared to the all jobs average of 40 years).
  • Gender: 52.8% of workers are female (compared to the all jobs average of 46.7%).

Employment Outlook

Number of Workers

Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, Department of Jobs and Small Business trend data to May 2017 and Department of Jobs and Small Business projections to 2022.
YearNumber of Workers
20077100
20088100
20097000
20108600
20119200
20127600
20138800
201410100
201510200
20168700
201710800
202211900

Weekly Earnings

Weekly Earnings (Before Tax)

Source: Based on ABS Characteristics of Employment survey, August 2015, Cat. No. 6333.0, Customised Report. Median earnings are before tax and do not include superannuation. Earnings can vary greatly depending on the skills and experience of the worker and the demands of the role. These figures should be used as a guide only, not to determine a wage rate.
EarningsVeterinariansAll Jobs Average
Full-Time Earnings11801230

Main Industries

Main Employing Industries (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2017, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Industries are based on the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC 06).
Main Employing IndustriesIndustry (% share)
Professional, Scientific and Technical Services77.7
Public Administration and Safety8.6
Education and Training5.1
Health Care and Social Assistance2.2
Other Industries6.4

States and Territories

  • NSW

  • VIC

  • QLD

  • SA

  • TAS

  • NT

  • ACT

Employment by State and Territory (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2017, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Share of workers across Australian States and Territories, in this job compared to the all jobs average.
StateVeterinariansAll Jobs Average
NSW26.031.6
VIC29.826.2
QLD20.719.7
SA5.26.7
WA10.210.8
TAS2.02.0
NT1.21.1
ACT4.91.8

Age Profile

Age Profile (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2017, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Age BracketVeterinariansAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
15-191.0-5.25.2
20-244.0-9.99.9
25-3432.3-23.623.6
35-4422.7-21.721.7
45-5416.3-20.820.8
55-5916.0-8.88.8
60-645.2-6.06.0
65 and Over2.6-4.04.0

Education Level

Highest Level of Education (% Share)

No data is available for the selected graph for this Occupation.

A Bachelor Degree or higher is required and nearly all workers have a university degree. Sometimes relevant experience or on-the-job training is also needed. Registration or licensing is required.

Before starting a course, check it will provide you with the skills and qualifications you need.

  • Compare undergraduate and postgraduate student experiences and outcomes on the QILT website.
  • Compare Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses, providers and student outcomes on the My Skills website.
  • You might be interested in Animal Care and Management VET training pathways on the AAPathways website.

The course listings on this page are provided by Good Education Group.

Employers look for Veterinarians who are caring and empathetic and can work well in a team, with the ability to communicate with a diverse range of people.

Knowledge

These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.

  1. Medicine and Dentistry

    94% Important

    Diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures.

  2. Biology

    91% Important

    Plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, how they rely on and work with each other and the environment.

  3. Customer and Personal Service

    87% Important

    Customer and personal services. This includes understanding customer needs, providing good quality service, and measuring customer satisfaction.

  4. English Language

    83% Important

    English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

  5. Mathematics

    71% Important

    Arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics.

Occupational Information Network
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
The importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 29-1131.00 - Veterinarians.

Learn about the daily activities, and physical and social demands faced by workers. Explore the values and work styles that workers rate as most important.

Activities

These are kinds of activities workers regularly do in this job.

  1. Making Decisions and Solving Problems

    92% Important

    Using information to work out the best solution and solve problems.

  2. Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge

    91% Important

    Keeping up-to-date with technology and new ideas.

  3. Performing for or Working Directly with the Public

    90% Important

    Performing for, or speaking with, the public. This includes speaking on television, serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests.

  4. Getting Information

    90% Important

    Looking for, getting and understanding different kinds of information.

  5. Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events

    89% Important

    Comparing objects, actions, or events, looking for differences between them or changes over time.

Occupational Information Network
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
The importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 29-1131.00 - Veterinarians.

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