Ask Lafeber


October 11, 2022

Avian Vet Shortage?

A general question here. Why are there so few vets specializing in Avian Medicine. It is a real concern for pet owners?


Hi Heidi,

This is a great question and yes, pet bird owners should be concerned. There have never been enough avian or exotics Vets, but it has become a crisis lately. There is very little taught on exotics in Vet school, so a student has to have a real interest in them to specialize in avian and exotics. Unfortunately, for whatever reason, there has not been as much interest lately. Many of the corporate owned clinics are making their Vets treat exotics and this is not going well more times than now. For a new bird exam and a wellness visit, it is fine, but for anything more challenging, the knowledge is lacking. There may be more interest than Vets because a student has to take extra classes at their own expense to pursue exotics medicine. We have two webinars that give a much better view of why it is so hard to be an exotics Vet, which partly explains the shortage. One is by Dr. Lamb, and the entire webinar is on this topic. Then last week, Dr. Joerg Mayer discussed his path to earning three exotics specialties, which took about 14 years! You can view both webinars below.


Thank you for asking Lafeber,


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