How to become a veterinarian in Australia

Lynbrook Vet: Veterinary Clinic and Consultation in Lynbrook, VIC

Like a lot of children I spent my childhood days dreaming of what I would be when I grew up. For me that dream never changed; I always loved animals and could imagine nothing greater than helping them feel better, so I decided I wanted to be a vet. If this sounds familiar to you, you may be wondering ‘how do I become a vet in Australia?’ If so then this article is for you.

Decide if it is the right career for you

Being passionate about your job is so important in life and it makes all the hard work worth it. Veterinarians are involved in diagnosing, treating and trying to prevent illness and injury. They will sometimes have to make difficult decisions and help support clients through sad times.

However, that is more than offset by all the rewarding moments you will experience when you get to help an animal. Also an aversion to blood is probably not the best trait for a future vet to have! However, don’t worry if you feel squeamish the first time you see it or watch surgery. I know I sure did.

A good way to determine if you would enjoy being a veterinarian is to undertake work experience in vet clinics and visit open days at vet schools. These are usually advertised on their websites and happen annually. You can start by giving your local or family vet a call.

Get Qualified

There are 7 universities in Australia that run courses that allow students to qualify as vets. Each university has its own specific entry requirements (click on the hyperlinks below to view these) but generally studying English, Mathematics and Chemistry in the final year of school are required.

Some universities may also require Biology or Physics. Most veterinary courses are 6 years in length and usually require 1-2 years of general science study within that. The universities in Australia that run veterinary courses are:

University of Melbourne (Victoria)
University of Sydney (NSW)
Charles Sturt University (Wagga Wagga, NSW)
University of Queensland (Brisbane)
James Cook University (Townsville, QLD)
Murdoch University (Perth)
University of Adelaide (South Australia)

Do not be put off by the very high ATARs that the courses require. Usually only a handful of students achieve this rank each year and receive guaranteed entry to the veterinary course . Most students, like me, instead are accepted into general science or animal or biomedical science courses first and then by achieving good marks in these courses they can get accepted. Many students have also come into veterinary courses having completed other courses or having had whole other careers (Dr Kunal is an example!). If becoming a veterinarian is your goal then you can achieve it.

Extra tips

Getting a part time or casual job as a veterinary nurse can be really helpful for developing practical skills, making contacts and also learning to appreciate all the hard work that our veterinary nurses do. Keep an eye out for jobs at If you cannot get paid employment, volunteering with animals is a great place to start. I worked at my local RSPCA during university and the experience I got there was invaluable. Visit to look for opportunities.

Life after graduation

Once you have completed the course, congratulations! At that point you are eligible to register as a vet and start work. A veterinary course can take you in many directions. Most new graduates start out in general practice working in a vet clinic. As your career progresses some people will train to become specialists in a wide variety of fields. An interest in horses could lead to working with racing horses. A passion for surgery could enable you to pursue a career as a highly trained surgeon. An interest in working in the lab could lead to a job as a pathologist. Vets are also employed by the government to manage quarantine and by veterinary pharmaceutical companies to develop and test products. Wherever it takes you though it is sure to be very rewarding and getting your qualification as a vet is only the start. So get started to make your dream a reality and get in touch with us if you have any questions about becoming a veterinarian!


What universities run veterinary courses?

University of Melbourne (Victoria), University of Sydney (NSW), Charles Sturt University (Wagga Wagga, NSW) ,University of Queensland (Brisbane), James Cook University (Townsville, QLD), Murdoch University (Perth) ,University of Adelaide (South Australia)

How long is a veterinary course?

Most veterinary courses are 6 years in length and usually require 1-2 years of general science study within that.

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Lynbrook Vet IconLynbrook Vet

14A/10-30 Northey Road, Lynbrook

4.9 450 reviews

  • Avatar Sarah ★★★★★ in the last week
  • Avatar Rosie Kawala ★★★★★ a week ago
    My 5 y.o. dog just had her first health scare with some tumours, and Lynbrook Vet helped us through the testing and removal process so kindly.They laid out all our options and were transparent about probable outcomes, minimising costs where … More they could.They checked-in with me throughout her surgery day with phone calls, texts and photos (non-surgical!) and patiently answered all of my questions at pick-up.I have taken my dog to Lynbrook Vet since adopting her 3 years ago, and continue to go there after moving further away because they are so wonderful.The staff in reception are always friendly and helpful and happily assist with all of our needs.It's nice to attend a clinic with a great culture, where the animals, and their humans' peace of mind, are their top priorities.
  • Avatar Alfatihah Sateria ★★★★★ a week ago
    Very kind n friendly staff , very helpful and help my little one get solve
  • Avatar Claire Mooney ★★★★★ a week ago
    I could not recommend both Lynbrook Vet and their sister vet Berwick/Clyde Vet any more. It is the best vet you will ever experience. We were desperate to find a vet to look after out little boy (he's a ragdoll cat who stopped eating … More and is also dealing with CKD) after being unhappy with our previous vet. We were recommended by our local community to take him to Jess who is working now full time at Berwick/Clyde Vet which has recently opened and her care (along with all the other nurses there), love, how switched on they are was one of the greatest experiences we've ever had. We thought that maybe something bad had gone wrong with his kidneys, but it was immediately picked up that one of his tooth was infected which explains the no eating (this wasn't picked up by the previous vet). Our little boy had to stay over night with a drip before going under and having 4 teeth removed. He's about to be 13 so this was a stressful situation with him going under. We were sent frequent updates with photos in the morning, during the day and just before we picked him up. They called me right before the procedure, during the procedure and right after to confirm everything was okay and if there were any updates. They knew exactly what to do and how to best keep him safe during this procedure. When we picked him up we were taken through all his blood work, x-rays and documents in elaborate detail so that we understood what everything meant and what was going on. They have even put us on a 6 month plan to get him to be as happy and as healthy as he can be when we return a week later for a free dental check up to see how his mouth is healing. We were given an aftercare plan. Pain medication that they had already been pre made!! I got a Toutube link texted to me that explains what exactly happened during the procedure. We were also given a tooth fairy certificate!!! (this vet is so extra I can't deal). This vet goes above and beyond, we saw a HUGE improvement the following day (he is SO MUCH HAPPIER) it felt like our little angel was at daycare and I could not recommend going to this vet enough! THANK YOU so much. We are eternally grateful for looking after Oscar so thoroughly.
  • Avatar Alex Farani ★★★★ 2 weeks ago
  • Avatar Jade Scullard ★★★★★ 3 weeks ago
    1000% recommend!!!! This is such a stunning vet, everyone is so friendly and forthcoming, we have been seeing them for the past 4 months with our little staffy boy Stitch! He loves it there as everyone loves him and gives him all the attention … More he needs, we have had nothing but incredible service from all the staff there. Stitch went in today for a procedure and we felt so happy and safe leaving our boy there, everyone cares for your pet, like they are family. It’s truly the best experience we have ever had with a vet.It’s a definite must, as when your little ones aren’t feeling the best they make you feel better because they keep you in the loop every step of the way!We also did puppy pre-school through them which is incredible as well as he now associates the vet with such a happy feeling we never have him worried about the vet visit… and besides that all the love and care he gets when he walks through the Lynbrook vet doors!Truely amazing

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