Being a vet can be dangerous, and the hazards go beyond the everyday scratches and bites! While allergens and zoonotic diseases are concerning, the stress of caring for patients and running a business often results in more danger to a veternarian that anything.
· Allergens: dander, latex and dermatitis
· Zoonotic Infections
· 30% of vets will contract an animal disease during career (Jeyaretnam & Jones, 2000)
Mental & Physical Stress
· 73% of Finnish veterinarians report being “rather stressed” (Reijula et al., 2003)
· Studies of average week: 44 to 56 hours at work
· Highly dedicated professionals – motivated by work
· On-call, emergency cases
· 3 out of 4 veterinarians are employed in a solo or group private practice (BLS, 2008)
Often times veterinarians work in these conditions with limited safety training in veterinary school. Increasing fatigue results in carelessness, especially in young doctors without a great deal of on-the-job safety experience.