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Veterinary salaries in the UK are stagnating or in decline, surveys show

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By Adele Waters and Matthew Limb

Veterinary salaries in the UK are either stagnating or in decline, according to two UK-wide surveys of the vet professions.

This week we reveal the findings from both surveys – one by CM Research, an agency that specialises in the veterinary and pet sector, and the second by The Society of Practising Veterinary Surgeons (SPVS) (see story below).

The first analysis by CM Research found no or little year-on-year growth in practice salaries since the last data collection in 2015-16.

Market researchers collected 2016-17 salary data from 810 vets across the UK. It then analysed mean and median salaries by year and type of practice or vet, eg, full or part time.

Analysis of median salaries show there has been no or very little salary growth. A typical practice owner today earns £50,000 per year – the same as in the previous year (see Table A). A typical full time vet earns an annual salary of £41,000 but in 2015/16 this was £41,475 – a 1.2 per cent drop. A part time vet’s earnings has typically risen by £1000 per year (3.7 per cent).

View this table:
TABLE A: 2016-17 and 2015-16 data show no growth in vet salaries

Analysis of average (mean) salaries show they are generally in decline. Annual earnings of a typical practice owner today at £61,614 per year compare unfavourably with last year’s average of £65,694 – a £4,080 or 6 per cent drop.

Full time employed vets average £42,661 per year, compared with £43,189 in 2016 – a £528 or 1 per cent drop.

While part time vets have seen a pay boost, nurses have seen a slight pay drop. On average, part time vets now earn £28,110 per year – a £1495 increase on the 2016 average of £26,615, representing a 6 per cent rise. Today’s vet nurses average £19,556 – but this …

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