A Veterinary Surgeon is responsible for the prevention of disease and for the medical and
surgical treatment of animals including household pets, zoo animals, farm animals and horses.
To become a vet, you will need to obtain a veterinary degree from university. There are six
universities in the UK which offer veterinary degrees. These universities are found at Bristol,
Cambridge, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Liverpool and London. The course lasts for five to six years,
depending on the university.
Entrance requirements are very high and differ at each university. Usually three 'A' levels are
expected in subjects such as Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Maths - the grades expected are
very high - A's and B's. A broad range of GCSE's will also be expected, with particular attention
paid to Science, Maths and English. All of the universities require applicants to have work
experience before their application, e.g. in a Veterinary Practice, or on a farm handling
All veterinary courses cover the major species of animals encountered in practice (e.g. cattle,
sheep, pigs, horses, dogs, cats and birds). It is not possible to specialise in one particular
species until the veterinary degree is obtained.
Once you have a veterinary degree and would like to start practicing, you must be registered
by the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS). The RCVS is the governing body for vets in
the UK and ensures that standards within the profession are maintained, safeguarding the health
and welfare of animals and the interests of the public. Once registered, the individual has
the right to use the letters MRCVS after their name, which signifies Membership of
the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons.
Veterinary Schools in the UK
Senate House
Madingley Road
Bristol BS8 1TH
Cambridge CB2 0ES
Tel: 0117 928 7679
Tel: 01223 337600
Faculty of Veterinary Medicine
Veterinary School
Bearsden Road
Edinburgh EH9 1QH
Glasgow G61 1QH
Tel: 0131 650 6178
Tel: 0141 330 5705
Faculty of Veterinary Science
Royal College Street
Liverpool L69 3BX
London NW1 0TU
Tel: 0151 794 4281
Tel: 020 7468 5000