The medical advances that have been made for pets in the recent decades are truly incredible. And we are thrilled to have several board-certified veterinary specialists on our team who can provide the most progressive care available, right here in Hampton Roads.
What’s the difference you may ask? Just like we may choose the most qualified individual to provide healthcare for our families, we also want that same level of expertise for our pets. Fortunately, a whole field of specialization has evolved where pet owners are now able to access advanced care by board-certified veterinary specialists for just about any condition or illness, similar to how you would be referred by your own family physician.
At The COVE, we offer specialized care by board certified specialists in Cardiology, Emergency & Critical Care, Surgery and will soon be adding an Internal Medicine specialist and others down the road.
To become a specialist, one must obtain a four-year veterinary degree and then pursue additional training in an accredited program. This typically includes a one-year internship, followed by a two to three-year residency in a particular medical discipline. Competition to be accepted into a residency training program can be quite difficult, therefore only those with the highest academic achievement gain entry. In addition to the clinical training, a veterinarian must also publish original research in a refereed journal and pass a series of rigorous examinations to earn this designation.
According to the American Board of Veterinary Specialties, there are currently 21 AVMA-recognized veterinary specialty organizations comprising 40 distinct specialties. Some specialties only have 100 or fewer veterinarians that have earned board certification making access to specialists in some areas quite challenging. However, only some specialists work in private practice such as at The COVE. Many others work in academic and/or research settings, or even for the government protecting our food supply. For more information on specialty care, please visit the American Veterinary Medical Association.