The Carolinas, like many states, are suffering from a shortage of large animal veterinarians.
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North Carolina’s pork, poultry and livestock industries could face major challenges in coming years as the number of food animal veterinarians dwindles and a shortage looms.
Veterinarians are needed to care for and oversee food animals to ensure they remain healthy before being taken to the slaughterhouse. But fewer students nationally are going into food animal care, opting instead to go into companion animal practices.
North Carolina officials say there is not yet a shortage of vets within the Tar Heel State, but there are currently 18 counties with more than 25,000 food animals per veterinarian.