Requirements for registration as veterinarian: Veterinary Degree
19A. Requirements for registration
(1) Any applicant that applies for registration as a veterinarian shall -
(a) submit a certificate of competence in mathematics and physical science issued for school leaving purposes by a competent secondary level schooling authority of South Africa; or
(b) submit a certificate of equivalent status as approved by the Veterinary Council.
(2) The veterinary degree referred to in regulation 19 which entitles a candidate to register as a veterinarian shall -
(a) comprise of the completion of at least five academic years of study as a registered veterinary student; and
(b) be constituted of the subject courses specified in Table 6.
(3) A student shall spend a minimum period of six weeks under the supervision of a registered veterinarian at an institution or veterinary practice.
(4) Upon completion of a veterinary degree a registered veterinary student may, if the examining authority is satisfied that the provisions of the Act and these regulations have been successfully complied with, be registered as a veterinarian in terms of the Act.
19B. Curriculum requirements
(1) The curriculum of any university that offers a course of study for qualification as a veterinarian in terms of regulation 19 shall comprise of the subject courses specified in Table 6.
(2) Allocation, grouping and nomenclature of subjects or parts thereof shall be determined by the university: Provided that correlation of subject matter shall be done throughout the curriculum and that training is given in each field.
19C. Examinations
(1) The examinations for the degree shall include examination in all the subject courses specified in Table 6.
(2) Examiners shall take into account the documented records of work done by a candidate in a subject during the course of a year.
(3) At least two examiners, one of whom was not involved in the teaching of the subject to the candidate, shall participate in the evaluation of each subject.
(4) A candidate shall pass an examination in a subject if at least 50 percent, or the equivalent of 50 percent in the marking system employed by a university, of the maximum marks obtainable in the examination for that subject is obtained.

Subject course

Minimum academic year

Contents and instructions



Organic chemistry



Subject shall be presented in a manner which is applicable to the animal or human body.

Zoology and Botany*

½ each


1. Macroscopic Anatomy


2. Microscopic Anatomy (histology)

3. Developmental Anatomy (embryology)







Functional morphology of domesticated animals, including birds, the dissection of carcass material and demonstrations on living animals.

Study of the microscopic structure of tissues and organs and the identification thereof.

Embryonic development and related matters including genetic and developmental aberrations.


Physiological chemistry, physiology of animals and birds with the emphasis on understanding of body functions.



Use of medicines and related substances used in veterinary practice and the acts that govern the use thereof.

Para-clinical group:
1. Animal science group of subjects






2. Pathology group of subjects






Clinical group:

1. Medicine

2. Theriogenology

3. Surgery and anaesthesiology


4. Radiology


5. Livestock and poultry health

6. General clinical practice









(a) Theoretical and practical instructions in -
(i) genetics, breed characteristics, breeding, production systems, products, economics and production, breeding for disease resistance and related matters;
(ii) housing, management, care, handling and behaviour of animals; and
(iii) optimal nutriment and fee-ding of animals with emphasis on nutritional imbalances, deficiencies and the feeding of sick animals.
(b) Practically orientated know-ledge of veld and pastures, the management and utilisation thereof in the maintenance and promotion of animal health and production with the emphasis on environmental conservation.
(a) Macroscopic anatomical pathology including post-mortem examinations with emphasis on diagnosis and the general pathological principles of microscopic anatomical pathology.
(b) Infectious and contagious diseases including microbiology, immunology and diseases caused by bacteria, viruses, protozoa, fungi and other pathogenic organisms.
(c) Veterinary public health and food hygiene.
(d) Veterinary helminthology and entomology.
(e) Clinical pathology.
(f) Veterinary toxicology:
(i) identification of toxic plants, organic and inorganic compounds and the diagnosis, treatment and control of toxicosis in animals;
(ii) basic and applied epidemiology;
(iii) statutory obligations of veterinarians; and
(iv) the role of management in disease occurrence and disease control.
(g) With theoretical and practical instruction in the epidemiology and pathology group of subjects, special attention shall be given to the correlation of subject matter, the application of subject matter in preventive and promotive veterinary medicine and the relevance of subject matter to clinical practice under different husbandry conditions.


The principles and practise.
The principles and practise.
The principles and practise with the emphasis on those procedures more commonly encountered in general practise.
The principles and practise.
Integrated instruction in and experience of general clinical practice.
Training in the clinical subjects shall -
(a) emphasise on experimental study of inpatients and outpatients;
(b) include participation in herd health programmes;
(c) take place -
(i) in an animal hospital attached to the university for this purpose;
(ii) in outlying hospitals and clinics in rural and urban communities; and
(iii) on farms
(d) include training on curative, promotive, preventive and ethical aspects of veterinary practice; and
(e) during internship, give equal exposure to training in the regulatory fields of veterinary public health, animal disease control and state veterinary administration.

* Subject shall include basic principles required in the study of other subjects in the curriculum and practical instruction therein.
** Subject shall be taught with emphasis on clinical teaching and interrelation of structure and function.


Qualifications for registration as a veterinarian

Degree,  diploma or certificate University or other educational institution
1 2
University of Pretoria
Medical University of Southern Africa