Small Animal Surgery Internship

The University of Florida Small Animal Surgery Service offers a Small Animal Surgical Intern position.  This one year position is designed to help prepare the intern for a Residency in Small Animal Surgery.

The specific objectives of the Small Animal Surgery Internship Program are:

  1. To provide the intern an opportunity to acquire advanced training and skills in the diagnosis and treatment of surgical diseases in dogs and cats.
  2. To provide the intern an opportunity to acquire advanced training and skills in small animal surgery with exposure to triage and emergency medicine, dermatology, behavior, ophthalmology, cardiology, diagnostic imaging, oncology, anesthesiology, shelter animal medicine, zoological medicine, clinical pathology and neurology within the Veterinary Medical Center.
  3. To provide the intern an opportunity to develop teaching skills, which may include lecture techniques applicable to presenting high quality seminars, but more importantly interactive teaching skills necessary to educate veterinary students in a small group setting.
  4. To provide the intern exposure to research and scientific writing.
  5. To provide the intern an opportunity to prepare for a Small Animal Surgery Residency Program, and potentially graduate school.

Intern responsibilities consist of clinical assignments, which include patient care, participation in the clinical teaching of junior and senior veterinary students, participation in the intern and resident seminars series and possible participation in selected continuing education courses. Responsibilities also include rotating night and weekend surgical emergency duty. Interns are required to…

  1. assist and direct the admission, care, and monitoring of patients within the intern’s assigned service.
  2. supervise the care and treatment of referral cases as directed by the attending faculty member and communicate with referring veterinarians.
  3. attend rounds, seminars, and meetings as scheduled by the small animal surgery service; active instruction of students is expected.
  4. assist and supervise patient care provided by students.
  5. correspond with clients and referring practitioners by phone and/or letter, and complete medical records promptly.
  6. provide scheduled primary night time and weekend clinical triage and emergency service for cases transferred to the surgical service by the Emergency & Critical Care service.

The Small Animal Surgical Internship Training Program will utilize faculty members within the Department of Small Animal Clinical Sciences, specifically the Small Animal Surgery Faculty, as mentors. The clinical facilities of the University of Florida’s Small Animal Hospital will be the primary training location.

Intern Selection Procedure

Residents are recruited from internship programs or private practices. A Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree or equivalent is a prerequisite. Small Animal Medicine faculty and residents evaluate the application pool and final selection of the resident is done via the Veterinary Intern/Resident Matching Program (VIRMP).

Selection will be based on:

  • VIRMP Application
  • Veterinary School Official Transcript from University Registrar
  • Personal Statement
  • Curriculum Vitae
  • 3 – 4 Standardized Letters of Reference

In person interviews are not required, phone interviews may be arranged for interested candidates with a strong application.  Individuals interested in this position should contact Dr. Matthew Johnson via e-mail at

Email inquiries for an interview must contain answers to the following questions:

  • What is your favorite surgical instrument and why?
  • Which member of our faculty was the first resident to complete the VALS certification?
  • Provide a brief (100 words or less) concept for a follow up study based on a publication from one of our current faculty members on the Small Animal Surgical Service at the University of Florida.