Shelter Medicine Residency

Tufts University Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine, is located in North Grafton, MA, about 40 miles west of Boston. The Foster Hospital for Small Animals is a full service hospital with a total annual hospital caseload of 27,927. The hospital is equipped to support all the veterinary medical specialties with facilities for surgery (5 suites), anesthesia , special procedures (endoscopy, bronchoscopy), blood banking, neurology, radiology (including ultrasonography, fluoroscopy, CT, nuclear scanning and MRI) cardiology, nutrition, pain medicine and an oncology wing with a linear accelerator, an intensive care unit (ICU) and a separate emergency room . There is also an onsite diagnostic laboratory and pathology service. The school includes six other teaching hospitals: the Hospital for Large Animals, The Tufts Wildlife Clinic, Tufts Ambulatory Hospital in Woodstock Connecticut, Tufts Veterinary Emergency Treatment and Specialties in Walpole MA, The Luke and Lily Lerner Spay Neuter Clinic and the Tufts@Tech Community Veterinary Clinic.

The Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine has an existing Shelter Medicine Program which has been focused on offering veterinary students exposure to Shelter Medicine as a career path as well as on the surgical training of all veterinary students at the school. The program runs an on-campus spay neuter program which provides over 2000 spay neuter surgeries each year. There are one full-time and two part-time faculty involved in the program which is also supported by three licensed veterinary technicians. The program offers three elective courses to pre-clinical veterinary students, clinical rotations in shelter medicine and behavior at regional shelter partners as well as special courses such as a one week elective in Disaster Animal Medicine. The program is supported by a Steering Committee which includes representation from regional partners- The Animal Rescue League of Boston, the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and Merrimack River Feline Rescue. The Massachusetts Animal Coalition is another partner which hosts three training meetings each year on the Grafton campus.

This residency is designed to meet the anticipated requirements of the proposed Shelter Medicine residency program under the American Board of Veterinary Practitioners. Shelter Medicine has been provisionally accepted as a new ABVP specialty but final approval is pending. The goal of this residency program is to prepare a resident to take the certification exam for Shelter Medicine once it is offered. The program is designed to be completed over 3 years.

Requirements Include:

  • 75 weeks Shelter-based clinical work
  • 4 weeks of HQ /HV (spay neuter surgery)
  • 15 out rotation weeks:
  • 2 Dermatology
  • 1 ophthalmology
  • 6 weeks of animal behavior
  • 2 weeks with board certified veterinary behaviorist
  • 4 weeks with a shelter based behavior program
  • 2 weeks avian/exotics
  • 2 weeks internal medicine
  • 1 week clinical pathology
  • 1 week anatomic pathology
  • 6 weeks of vacation (2 per year)
  • 2 weeks orientation
  • 2 weeks orientation
  • 3 weeks CE (1 week per year)
  • 50 weeks at the Com m unity Practice Clinic (Tufts@Tech)

Additional requirements:

The resident will be expected to visit a large number of animal shelters throughout North America and to participate in a significant number of shelter consults. The resident will keep track of shelter visits and consults in a case log which will be periodically reviewed with the resident’s advisor. The resident will also be expected to lead and participate in weekly shelter medicine rounds and to give one lecture in the Shelter Medicine Course per year. The resident will receive training in statistics and epidemiology and also disaster response. Participation and presentation at national and regional meetings is also required. Residents are also expected to prepare at least one grant proposal, conduct a research project and submit at least one first author publication in addition to publication in lay publications. Limited funds are available to assist with resident research projects.

The applicant should submit his or her application through AAVC's Veterinary Internship and Residency Matching Program.

For further information contact Dr. Emily McCobb (Program Director), email Emily [dot] McCobb [at] tufts [dot] edu.

Tufts University is an affirmative action, equal opportunity employer.