Source: Altoona Mirror 

A shortage of large animal veterinarians in Pennsylvania and nationwide poses significant risks to the agricultural industry, with potentially catastrophic consequences during animal health emergencies. The shortage, attributed to various factors, including high education costs and lower pay compared to urban counterparts, is exacerbated by a high percentage of rural veterinarians nearing retirement.

Despite increasing Veterinary school enrollments, few students express interest in large animal practice, further widening the gap. Efforts to address the shortage include loan forgiveness programs and initiatives to improve rural living conditions. The State Department of Agriculture emphasizes the need for collaborative efforts to recruit, retain, and support large animal veterinarians to ensure a sustainable future for the profession and agricultural sector.

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