Average salaries for new graduates in private practice range from $50,000 to $70,000 depending upon practice type and species focus. Over the last decade increases in the cost of education have far outpaced starting salaries of veterinarians.
Most veterinary graduates expect to be repaying their student loans over a 20 to 30 year period. Borrowing from private lenders is not advised for those needing to finance the majority of their cost of attendance.
Although the options and rules can seem complex, federal student loans offer income-driven repayment (IDR) options enabling veterinary graduates to live a reasonable lifestyle while meeting their repayment obligations. These programs are evolving and do not apply to private loans. Information about IDR options (IBR, PAYE, REPAYE), other government student loan and forgiveness (PSLF) options can be found at the Federal Student Aid website and the VIN Foundation website.