Holistic Animal Care Schools and Colleges in the U.S.

Those interested in a holistic animal care career often complete a regular Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) program at an accredited school, while also studying holistic healthcare practices, such as acupuncture, mind-body healing and homeopathy.

No schools in the United States currently offer degree or certificate programs specifically in holistic animal care; however, some universities do offer accredited veterinary programs that allow students to pursue further educational opportunities in the field of holistic health.

Top 10 Veterinary Programs

According to the 2016 rankings of U.S. News and World Report, these are the ten best veterinary schools in the country:

College/University Location Institution Type Tuition & Fees (In-state, 2015-2016)*
University of California - Davis Davis, CA 4-year, Public $31,324 to $35,307 (depending on year in program)
Cornell University Ithaca, NY 4-year, Private $33,732
Colorado State University Fort Collins, CO 4-year, Public $57,766
North Carolina State University Raleigh, NC 4-year, Public $18,516
Ohio State University Columbus, OH 4-year, Public $31,148 to $46,573 (depending on year in program)
University of Wisconsin - Madison Madison, WI 4-year, Public $22,762
Texas A&M University - College Station College Station, TX 4-year, Public $22,224 to $24,842 (depending on year in program)
University of Pennsylvania Philadelphia, PA 4-year, Private $55,798
University of Minnesota - Twin Cities St. Paul, MN 4-year, Public $31,420
Tufts University North Grafton, MA 4-year, Private $47,010

Source: *School websites

School Selection Criteria

Here are some things to remember when choosing between veterinary schools:

  • Students interested in studying veterinary medicine and holistic health might consider looking for a university with a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine that also has a student chapter of the American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association (AHVMA).
  • Students may want to look for schools that offer research opportunities, where students may have the chance to conduct investigations in holistic care-related topics.
  • Find out whether the program offers students the opportunity to attend conferences and lectures related to holistic veterinary medicine.
  • Some schools may offer financial assistance or sponsorship for their programs, so consider this if program costs are a concern for you.

Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) Programs

After completing pre-veterinary undergraduate coursework and earning a bachelor's degree, aspiring veterinarians may enroll in a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) program. These programs take four years to complete. The first three years are spent on advanced biomedical coursework that combines lecture courses with laboratory training. Topics of study include animal anatomy, disease prevention and clinical care procedures. During the fourth year of the program, students participate in clinical rotations in veterinary clinics or hospitals. Graduates are prepared for licensure exams, and they may choose to pursue a residency in a specialized topic within the field.

Despite the rarity of holistic animal care programs, aspiring veterinarians who are particularly interested in holistic animal care can look for well-respected veterinary schools that have strong academic and extracurricular offerings in holistic medicine.

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