Practice Management

Veterinarians are experts in caring for animals, but they don't always get training on how to run a successful business. Here are some resources to help you establish and maintain an economically healthy veterinary practice.

Business Management

What to Do When You're the Only Practice in Town

Thinking about or already starting to set up practice in an area without existing veterinary practices? Our to-do list offers a handy guide to help you find the resources you need.

Business Opportunities

View available practices and facilities advertised in the classifieds section of JAVMA.

Client Services

Providing client services is a critical component of a running a small business. We have resources to help, from website widgets, to forms and certificates, to guidelines on proper specimen submission to avoid federal entanglements.

Telephone Hold Messages

For AVMA/ members only, our professionally produced hold messages can be downloaded for free to use in your practice. Topics change monthly, and each message is designed to enhance client loyalty and drive traffic to your business.

Website Widgets

Need good content for your website? We have free widgets that you can use to provide high-quality information to your clients. Just copy and paste our code into your website.

Social Media

Having a hard time finding good content to post in your social media feeds? AVMA can help. We write our social media with you in mind, so you can simply forward posts along to your followers to provide good value without a lot of effort. Check out all of our social media feeds to see what will work for you. With National Pet Week® right around the corner in May, we've also pre-written posts that you can copy and paste directly into your feeds for more easy content; don't miss these National Pet Week® posts (for AVMA members only).

Important Resources for Veterinarians (PDF)

Post this contact list in your back office or treatment room for the situations in which you most often need a phone number or web address that you don't have handy – from adverse event reporting to blood bank contacts, from disaster response to pet loss support. Our PDF flyer is updated every six months and available only to AVMA members.

Human Resources

In a veterinary practice, your staff can make or break your business. Finding and keeping the right staff is critical to your practice's success.


Veterinary clinics must comply with small business laws, laws regarding taxes, liens, loan repayment, and more.

Workplace Hazard Communications

You and your staff routinely work with hazardous substances. Our members-only reference guide on communicating about workplace hazards can help you make sure your workplace is compliant with the law.

Identity Theft and the FTC "Red Flags" Rule

On November 9, 2007, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) issued a rule that may affect your veterinary practice. The "Red Flags" Rule, 16 C.F.R. § 681.2, requires "creditors" and "financial institutions" to develop written plans to prevent and detect identity theft.

Record Retention: State Laws

To help you keep up with the rules on records retention, we've compiled a state-by-state listing of state laws governing the retention of veterinary records.

Confidentiality of Patient Records: State Laws

Make sure you're following the rules on confidentiality. This state-by-state listing summarizes statutory and regulatory provisions that AVMA research has found addressing the release of veterinary records.

DEA Requirements

Meeting DEA's Tramadol Requirements - Checklist

With the DEA's decision to make tramadol a Schedule IV controlled substance, you need to make sure your practice is in compliance. This checklist (PDF), available exclusively to AVMA members, can help. 

Drug Enforcement Administration Forms (DEA website)

Do You Need a DEA Registration?


Acclimation Certificates/Statements

Euthanasia Authorization (PDF)

Model Certificate of Veterinary Inspection (companion animal) (PDF)

USDA Veterinary Accreditation Application (USDA website)

More information on the USDA's National Veterinary Accreditation Program (NVAP)

Specimen Submission

Required Training for Packaging and Shipping Lab Specimens

Department of Transportation/ Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (DOT/PHMSA):

Transporting Infectious Substances Safely (PDF)

Training Requirements

A Guide to Developing a Hazardous Material Training Program (PDF)


Green Veterinary Practices

Being green isn't just the "in" thing; it's a responsibility connected closely with the One Health concept. It also can help your bottom line.

Waste Disposal by Veterinary Practices: What Goes Where?

Keeping up with all the rules, regulations, and best practices for waste disposal in your clinic can be difficult. Our reference guide aims to make the process easier.

Disposal of Unwanted Medications

We all know the importance of both prescription and over-the-counter medications. But when used, stored, or disposed of in the wrong way, they can become harmful to people, animals, and the environment.

Ergonomics Guidelines in Veterinary Practice

The AVMA policy "Introduction to Ergonomics" offers practical ergonomics guidelines for veterinary practices.

State Regulation of Veterinary Facilities

Veterinary facilities are generally regulated at a state level. Is your state among those with specific guidelines and requirements for veterinary facilities?