DVM Curriculum: Food Animal Track

Exciting career opportunities

Did you know that food animal veterinarians are in high demand? There is a shortage of these professionals who play a crucial role in protecting the safety of our food supply and biosecurity of our country. There are national programs offering student loan debt forgiveness to assist veterinarians who pursue this career path and practice in underserved areas. Career options include:

  • Private practice & consultation
  • Specialization through board certification
  • Teaching and research
  • Regulatory medicine
  • Public health

Courses designed to develop excellent food animal specialists

Students in the food animal track gain additional pre-clinical and clinical skills and knowledge in food supply medicine, preparing them for roles as the nation’s future food animal specialists. The food animal track curriculum includes courses such as:

Food Animal Medicine and Surgery I & II

Advanced study of the in-depth information on the common disorders of the major body systems of cattle, sheep, goats, and pigs. Evaluate clinical signs, diagnostic tests, and treatments for disorders of individual animals with hands-on laboratories to emphasize medical and surgical skills needed for food animal practitioners. Engage in discussions regarding herd problems, preventive aspects of herd problems, and the regulatory and health aspects of herd management using clinical cases to emphasize major aspects of herd health programs.

Advanced Small Animal Surgery

Examine surgical principles and methods that are applicable to small animal practice, including identification of disease conditions treatable by surgical therapy, applicable surgical methods, and expected outcome.

Food Animal Clinical Problem Solving

Advanced study of food animal clinical cases in a problem oriented format. Although the majority of the problems presented will begin with the individual animal case, emphasis will be placed on control and prevention in the flock or herd. Examine aspects of outbreak/disease investigation, production medicine, economics, and epidemiology.

Food Animal Nutrition

Advanced study in the practical feeding guidelines for food animals. Special consideration given to the relationship of diet to nutrient excesses and deficiencies that result in clinical disorders. Explore diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of metabolic disorders of food animals.

Food Animal Theriogenology

Advanced study of the practice of theriogenology in a food animal or mixed animal practice. Examine reproductive management for herds of food animal species including cattle, sheep, goats, and swine with an emphasis on clinical aspects of reproductive management.

Advanced Dairy Herd & Beef Herd Management

These clerkships provide additional training and experience in understanding the herd based aspects of dairy and beef cattle medicine and management and the veterinarian's role in economically producing a safe, wholesome food supply. Engage in a combination of interactive discussion topics and herd visits to develop observational and decision making skills.