How to Become a Veterinarian in Louisiana

It is hard enough to become a veterinarian in Louisiana, even with an understanding of the requirements for launching such a career in the state. Those who need a clear picture of what this process entails from the start are setting themselves up for a great deal of frustration.

Thankfully, anyone who consumes the content on this page will fall among the well-prepared category, with a clear understanding of the key requirements needed to become a veterinarian in Louisiana.

They will know the basic prerequisites to begin the process, the major educational requirements, and the final steps to become licensed and certified while taking advantage of career growth opportunities.

Steps to Become a Veterinarian in Louisiana

Louisiana requires candidates to follow the steps below to start their careers on the right track.

Excel in High School

In Louisiana, aspiring veterinarians who excel in high school typically have an easier time fulfilling other requirements concerning postsecondary education. For instance, candidates who maintain a high GPA and are sound in extra-curricular activities will typically be able to get placement into the best colleges, leading to more straightforward chances during and after vet school.

Choose a College Major

Before they can enroll in a veterinary school where they’ll cultivate the skills required to become a full-fledged veterinarian, future vets in Louisiana are expected to first graduate from a regular college program.

Most people choose to major in animal science and zoology just to get as comprehensive a preparation as possible.

Complete Vet School

Veterinary schools are the destinations where candidates learn how to carry out their duties as veterinarians. There are only 33 accredited veterinary programs in the entire country.

In an upcoming section, we explore some of the most popular accredited programs for candidates in Louisiana to consider.

After completing veterinary school, students would have acquired the necessary skills to carry out their duties. However, to become professionally sound in an actual work environment, they are expected to participate in hands-on training arrangements, ideally during their final year in school.

They may also participate in residencies following graduation.

The North American Veterinary Licensing Examination

The North American Veterinary Licensing Examination (NAVLE) is a professional examination veterinarians must complete nationwide. The examination is administered in a multiple-choice fashion on a computer.

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Licensure and Certification Requirements

The state of Louisiana, through the Louisiana Board of Veterinary Medicine, requires veterinarians to apply for state licensure before they can start practicing professionally. The requirements above are all needed to obtain this license.

In addition, candidates must also pay an application fee of $100 and a licensing fee of $250.

They may then participate in a state board jurisprudence exam.

The state veterinary license in Louisiana is valid for a year, after which candidates must participate in 20 hours of continuing education to maintain and reactivate their licenses.

Licensed veterinarians coming to Louisiana from other states must submit documentation and verify active practice.

Top Veterinary Schools in Louisiana

Below are a few top-quality, accredited training programs for future veterinarians in Louisiana to consider.

Louisiana State University

Baton Rouge, LA Online + Campus

Louisiana State University currently has the only AVMA-accredited veterinary medicine program in Louisiana, courtesy of its School of Veterinary Medicine. The school offers strong research opportunities along with the possibility of advanced training.

Read more
$11,954 - $28,631
  • (225) 578-1175


Neighboring Options

Since only one accredited program exists in Louisiana, candidates who desire more options may look to neighboring alternatives. For example, Texas A&M University’s College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences offers a DVM program accredited by the AVMA.

Mississippi State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine also offers an accredited DVM program.

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Salary & Career Outlook

The average salary that a veterinarian takes home at the end of the year varies according to factors such as how long they’ve been in their positions, their areas of specialty, where they work, and their locations within the state.

In Louisiana, those who are in the average category, according to these factors, take home an annual average salary of $127,735. In contrast, those on the favorable end of the factors can earn as high as $181,849 (good enough to be among the top 10%.

Conversely, at the bottom 10%, the annual average salary of veterinarians in Louisiana is still as high as $89,725.

The top locations by salary include Monroe and Crawley, with annual average salaries of $161,409 and $142,302, respectively. These are followed by Lafayette, Baton Rouge, and Hammond, with annual average salaries of $121,099, $120,593, and $116,417, respectively.