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In addition to completing undergraduate training and four years of veterinary school, Board-certified veterinary specialists are similar to their human medical counterparts in that they have completed an internship and residency in their specialized field—an additional 3 to 5 years of training.
In addition to this extensive training, a Board-certified veterinary specialist must pass rigorous examinations to achieve Board certification from the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine or American College of Veterinary Surgeons. Specialists bring a greater understanding in the area of internal medicine, cardiology, ophthalmology, neurology, surgery and have a greater knowledge of the unusual, the uncommon, or rare in both large and small animals. A Specialist may also use diagnostic equipment not generally used by your family veterinarian.