American College of Veterinary Surgeons




Founded in 1965, the American College of Veterinary Surgeons (ACVS) is the American Veterinary Medical Association specialty board which sets the standards for advanced professionalism in veterinary surgery.

The objectives of the American College of Veterinary Surgeons are to advance the art and science of surgery and the protection of the public against incompetence by:


The development of methods of graduate teaching in veterinary surgery with particular reference to the resident system.


The establishment of a certifying agency to qualify members of the veterinary profession as specialist in surgery.


The encouragement of its members to pursue original investigations and to contribute to the veterinary literature.

Only veterinarians who have successfully completed the certification requirements of the ACVS are Diplomates of the American College of Veterinary Surgeons and have earned the right to be called specialists in veterinary surgery. Candidates seeking Diplomate status in the ACVS must have (a) received a degree in veterinary medicine from a school accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association, (b) served a one-year rotating internship, and (c) completed a three year surgical residency program. The residency program consists of closely supervised training during which the resident works with recognized specialists to acquire additional knowledge and skill in veterinary surgery. Qualified applicants must submit extensive credentials to the ACVS documenting their training, clinical competency, and scientific contributions to veterinary surgery. Finally, they must pass a comprehensive oral, written and practical examination to earn Diplomate status.

By fostering the highest standards of excellence in veterinary surgery, the ACVS is helping the veterinary profession achieve its goals of providing outstanding service to the public and care to animals.




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