Program Description

The University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine offers a four year conforming program in Small Animal Surgery which is specifically designed to fulfill all requirements established by the American College of Veterinary Surgeons while completing a Masters of Veterinary Science degree. The first year of the program is dedicated to pursuit of the MS degree and is designed to provide the resident with a sound foundation in research as well as small animal anatomy and the fundamentals of surgery prior to the commencement of the clinical training. Clinical training and experience is provided via case management and critical care of companion animals with surgical diseases. Clinical services are divided into a soft tissue and minimally invasive surgical service and an orthopedic service. Experience in oncologic, neurologic and exotic animal surgery is also provided. The surgery services are technologically current and are at the forefront of veterinary surgery. The soft tissue surgery service performs video laparoscopy and thoracoscopy, solid organ transplantation and microsurgery. The orthopedic service performs video arthroscopy, tibial plateau leveling osteotomy, total joint arthroplasty, minimally invasive fluoroscopic assisted fracture repair, and fracture fixation by means of linear, circular and hybrid external skeletal fixation, interlocking nails, as well as traditional AO techniques.  Residents have access to eight board certified small animal surgical faculty members.

During the first year of the program, the resident will be enrolled in graduate courses and will be actively involved in their thesis project research. The resident will function as a teaching assistant for the freshman Veterinary Anatomy Course in the fall and the sophomore Introduction to Surgery Course in the spring. The resident will also participate in the Advanced Small Animal Student Surgery Laboratory Course during the fall semester. Graduate students also participate in daily resident clinical rounds, journal club and seminars as well as surgical laboratories. Opportunities for clinically-related course work in other Health Science Colleges (e.g. College of Medicine) is also available.  The resident will begin the clinical portion of the program at the beginning of their second year.

Resident 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 from faculty members acquainted with the applicant’s clinical skills during internship or equivalent clinical training.

We encourage individual one day interviews for resident candidates, but will limit these interviews to candidate that we genuinely feel will be competitive for this position. Interviews are to be scheduled with advanced notice and will be granted based on a review of the candidate’s application packet. Interviews will be scheduled after we have received candidates’ applications from the AAVC, beginning in early December and continuing up until candidates have to rank programs in January; however, early inquires regarding scheduling an interview are encouraged. Please contact Dr. Dan Lewis, the program coordinator, by e-mail ( if you would like to request an interview. We would request that you send an e-copy of your CV and matching program application (including e-mail addresses of those providing references) as we try to coordinate your visit. Candidate’s packets will be screened prior to granting an interview as we do not want any candidate incurring the expense of traveling to Gainesville unless we feel a candidate will be strongly competitive for this position.