A sobering new video produced by Dr. Carrie Turnbull of the Staunton River Veterinary Clinic in Virginia might come as a surprise to many pet owners.

The suicide rate among veterinarians is significantly higher than the rate for the general population.  One study conducted by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that female veterinarians are 3.5 times and male veterinarians 2.1 times as likely to die from suicide than the general population.

Dr. Turnbull notes in her video that many veterinarians tend to be high-achiever, type A personality types, and they are strongly affected by the stressors inherent in their jobs, such as unsuccessful treatments and patient deaths.

She also notes that vets can experience financial stress and many carry a significant amount of debt for years after veterinary school.

Do you have friends or family in the veterinary profession?  Dr. Turnbull recommends checking in with them to see how they are doing and if they are getting the help and support that they need.

You can watch Dr. Turnbull’s video below and learn more about this issue on the American Veterinary Medical Association’s website HERE.  There is also a Facebook group called Not One More Vet that provides help for vets in need of support.


14 thoughts on “Video Outlines Mental Health Crisis Among Veterinary Professionals

  1. I can totally understand this. I lost one of my furbabies last year. She had issues that there was no way she could be saved. My vet was amazing and did everything she could and she was just as heartbroken and cried with me the day we did the right thing for my baby…it cant be easy having that kind of stress and pressure day in and day out on top of e erything else.

    1. Yes, totally. I’ve had some wonderfully compassionate vets over the years–which has been so helpful when the time comes to say goodbye to our fur kids…but “compassion fatigue” can defintely take a toll on vets.

  2. Thank you for posting this. Most of the vets I know are so very professional that they never would let show any signs that they are under duress. This will definitely stick with me, and will remind me to take more care when interacting with my vets.

  3. Wow, had no idea the stressors were so high with the vet industry. I know it’s rampant with dental professionals, but this was news to me. With a granddaughter in the biz, I’m going to send her texts more frequently to check in on her. Thanks for sharing!

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