Wellbeing

Wellbeing resources for veterinarians
In this article: 
  • Discover AVMA tools and resources that support personal and professional wellbeing.
  • Learn steps you can take at work and home to support a culture of wellbeing.
  • Learn how to find a wellbeing program or peer assistance contact in your state.
     

 

Get help now

If you believe that you’re in crisis, please get help immediately by calling 1-800-273-8255 or contacting the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline’s Crisis Chat team.

Find more resources here


 

Woman and man taking care of cat

After a suicide

Get critical tools to help veterinary workplaces and veterinary college communities recover after a suicide. Download these toolkits developed by experts in veterinary medicine, suicide prevention, and survivors of suicide loss in the veterinary medical community.


 

Tips to help protect and maintain your wellbeing during COVID-19

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Wellbeing resources for veterinarians

Your health matters

The wellbeing of veterinary professionals is one of the most important issues facing our profession, and a critical focus of the AVMA. Improving wellbeing is a shared responsibility that requires a committed effort by all members of our community. Practice teams, business owners, veterinary colleges, organizations, and individuals all have important roles to play.

Self-care for veterinary professionals

As veterinary professionals, we spend our working days caring for others—patients, clients, and our teammates. It’s crucial that we take time to care for ourselves, too. In fact, our mental and physical wellbeing depend on it. So does our ability to care for patients. Wellbeing is a choice that requires prioritization and accountability. Committing to self-care, and recognizing what we must do to protect and improve our wellbeing, are key steps in taking ownership of our health. 

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Begin here: Assess your wellbeing

Start your journey to improved wellbeing with the Professional Quality of Life (ProQOL) assessment. This test helps you measure your current balance of positive and negative personal and work-related experiences. Use the results as a starting point to create a self-care plan and pinpoint areas to incorporate health and wellbeing improvements into your life.

Take the self-assessment

Workplace wellbeing

Wellbeing in the workplace is crucial—not only to team members' individual health and happiness, but also to our practice's success. A healthy and supportive work environment can boost productivity, increase job satisfaction, and help everyone focus on the important work of caring for patients. It also can make individual practices stand out to potential job candidates, making it easier to secure top talent as we grow our businesses.

Wellbeing events, trainings, and CE opportunities

Live your healthiest and most fulfilled life at work and at home, and help colleagues do the same. From online webinars and trainings to certificate programs and in-person events, AVMA empowers you to take ownership of your wellbeing and make health-centered decisions at work and home.

CE webinars
Workplace Wellbeing Certificate Program
QPR suicide prevention training

Training for veterinary educators

AVMA’s groundbreaking Train the Trainer workshop empowers veterinary professionals to become educators in workplace communication skills that support wellbeing. Participants learn valuable strategies to promote workplace wellbeing, and the confidence and skills to pass your expertise on to others. Learn more

Compassion and work fatigue: Know the risks

Do you feel emotionally numb or drained at the end of the day? Do you enjoy your work but feel like you have nothing left to give? If so, you might be suffering from compassion fatigue – and you’re not alone if that’s the case. Veterinary professionals are very much at risk for compassion fatigue, which can lead to serious health problems—both psychological and physical. Learn the symptoms of compassion fatigue and how to combat it.

Help when you need it

Knowing when to reach out for help – and doing it – might be the most important part of your wellbeing plan. No one can do everything alone, and this is especially true where mental health is involved. If you believe that you’re in crisis, please get help immediately by calling 1-800-273-8255 or contacting the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline’s Crisis Chat team. Find more resources here.

100 Healthy tips to support a culture of wellbeing


Get 100 practical suggestions to support healthful living at work and at home. AVMA’s guide offers steps for both individuals and organizations to take in nine dimensions of wellbeing.

Download tips

Tools to strengthen your veterinary team


Our teams are the lifeblood of our practices. Learn how to build a more cohesive and collaborative staff unit while helping your team communicate more efficiently, overcome challenges, and grow together.

Get tools

Cyberbullying and how to handle it


Being bullied online has become a real cause for concern among veterinary professionals. Cyberbullying can be both emotionally distressing and disruptive to our lives and businesses. If you or your practice are being cyberbullied the AVMA has resources to help.

Learn more

International statement: Veterinary mental health and wellbeing

Working together to improve wellbeing across the veterinary community, AVMA and the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS) joined forces under the umbrella of Mind Matters International (MMI) to draft and approve a joint statement on mental health and wellbeing. It has been adopted by seven organizations:

AVMA (July 2018)
RCVS (July 2018)
Canadian Veterinary Medical Association (August 2019)
Federation of Veterinarians of Europe (August 2019)
World Small Animal Veterinary Association (August 2019)
American Association of Veterinary State Boards (December 2020)
Veterinary Council of New Zealand (April 2021)

View statement

Join the MMI community

Would your organization like to sign onto the MMI initiative? Get started with this application