Veterinary Salary Estimator for Early Career Veterinarians

Use this tool to guide salary negotiations or map out different earning scenarios if you’re considering a position or career change.

What it is

Are you planning to ask for a raise? Are you thinking of moving to a new practice or making a career change? The AVMA Veterinary Salary Estimator for Early-Career Veterinarians can provide possible salary ranges that you can use as a guide for pay negotiations, budgeting and financial planning, based on historical data trends.

Who should use it

The salary estimator is the perfect tool for veterinarians in their first six years after graduation from veterinary school. Unfortunately, salaries among veterinarians who have been in the workforce longer than that are simply too variable to be analyzed and estimated accurately in this manner. Veterinary students should use the student salary estimator, and those who have just graduated can use the new veterinarian salary estimator.

How it works

Using the AVMA's economic data, we've identified several key variables that statistically correlate to differences in salaries for veterinarians with 1-6 years of experience in the workforce. This estimator allows you to easily calculate possible earning ranges from different scenarios. It's designed to help you address the spectrum of decisions you may encounter—Where do you want to live? What type of job do you want? Are you interested in pursuing more formal education? We encourage you to calculate multiple scenarios.

Note: For the scenarios to yield statistically accurate results, you must input all variables in each calculation.

This information is based on historical averages. The critical word here is averages. An important part of any salary negotiation or career change is to pinpoint your unique skills or experience, determine their value, and include them in your discussions with your current or potential new employer. Remember also that because it is based on historical data, this is a tool that indicates what has been, rather than what should be. Actual salaries must be negotiated between the employer and the veterinarian, in light of all relevant factors. A salary may be more or less, given the facts of the particular situation.

For more information on the veterinary salary estimator check out our FAQ.

Get started by answering 6 quick questions.

Please input the year of your graduation.

Graduation Year:

Geographic region is correlated to higher or lower starting salaries. Regions are defined by the starting number of the ZIP code. Living expenses vary greatly between and within regions. Research the cost-of-living in your desired areas so that you are adequately informed.


What is your practice type?

Select the practice type in which you are currently employed in or the practice type in which you are looking for employment.


  • Companion Animal Exclusive: >90% of species contact is canine, feline, or exotic (including non-poultry avian)
  • Companion Animal Predominant: >50% of species contact is canine, feline, or exotic (including non-poultry avian)
  • Equine Practice: >90% of species contact is equine
  • Food Animal Exclusive: >90% of species contact is a combination of bovine, porcine, ovine, caprine, cervid, camelid, or poultry
  • Food Animal Predominant: >50% of species contact is a combination of bovine, porcine, ovine, caprine, cervid, camelid, or poultry
  • Mixed Practice: species contact includes at least 25% companion animal and 25% either food animal or equine


  • College or University (employed by a college, i.e. professor or researcher)
  • Federal Government (employed by the U.S. Government)
  • Industry (veterinary or pet industry companies, such as pharmaceuticals)
  • Not-For-Profit (i.e. 501c3 or 501c6)
  • Advanced Education (pursuing an advanced degree, internship or residency and not currently in full time employment)
  • Business Consultant (persons who offer consulting services to any entity)
  • Research Contractor (contracted to do research for an entity)
  • State or Local Government (employed by a state or local government)
  • Uniformed Services
  • Other public practice (any public practice not listed above)
  • Non-Veterinary Employment

Practice Type:

Have you completed residency?

Indicate whether you have successfully completed a residency program, regardless if whether you have passed your specialty boards.



Are you board-certified?

Indicate whether you have a board certification.



Are you a practice owner?

Indicate whether or not you are an owner of a practice.



Based on the information provided, the following is the estimated salary:

You can expect to fall within the salary range of .

For the data available, this range is a 95% confidence interval. This means that for the inputs you used, you can expect to fall within this salary range 95% of the time.

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