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Canada: Subject Guides

The top veterinary science universities in Canada

Canada is home to some of the world’s top-rated universities. It’s also home to some highly-rated universities for veterinary science. We take you through the institutions that excel in this field.

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Canada plays host to over 600,000 international students each year who attend one of the 97 universities in the country. Canada is feted for the quality of its higher education, placed in the top 10 worldwide by Universitas 21 in 2020. This makes it an ideal study destination to pursue the popular STEM degree of veterinary science. We’re here to help you make sense of which universities in Canada rate the best for this degree, what you’ll study and a little of what you can expect. 


University of Montreal 


The University of Montreal, or Université de Montréal as it is also known, enjoys the enviable position of a number one rating for veterinary science in Canada by the Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2022 (THE). In addition, the institution is ranked as a global top 100 university by THE. 


Located in the city of Montreal, the university is a bi-lingual institution providing instruction in both English and French. The university has a student population of just under 70,000 with 27 per cent of students pursuing postgraduate studies. You won’t be alone as an international student either, with 8,500 students from around the world part of the student community. 


The Faculty of Veterinary Medicine is both a teaching and research unit based in the heart of Quebec. The faculty offers degrees across all levels and has a thriving professional degree programme, with over 400 students pursuing a doctoral programme. There is a sharp focus on preparing students for clinical practice and professional accreditation


Discover more about what you can expect when studying veterinary science


University of Alberta 


The University of Alberta is ranked in the top five best universities in Canada by the QS World University Rankings 2022 and is in the number two spot for veterinary science teaching as per THE. Both QS and THE rank the university in the top 200 institutions globally. Located in the city of Edmonton, the university is spread over five campuses, offering 200 undergraduate programmes and over 500 postgraduate programmes. 


The university is a Canadian top-five institution for research and received over CAD 500 million in research funding in 2019. It’s also a dynamic and multicultural institution, with students coming from over 156 countries making up the 40,000 strong community. There’s also plenty to do, with 425 student clubs on offer and a wider city with a population of one million people to explore. 


If you chose to study veterinary science at the University of Alberta, you’d be enrolled at a university with the second-highest rating for graduate employment in Canada. Key to the veterinary science offering at the university is its pre-veterinary qualifications that prepare you for your professional degree. 


Your studies can include pursuing a degree in animal science, animal health or agriculture as a major. You’ll be equipped with the knowledge to go on to further your professional studies at one of the dedicated veterinary science institutions in Alberta, including the Western College of Veterinary Medicine and the University of Calgary Veterinary College. 


Explore the five traits that every veterinarian needs


University of Calgary


Another of Alberta’s top universities is the University of Calgary. The institution claims a top 250 world university ranking as per THE and QS. According to the QS World University Rankings by Subject 2021, the university boasts the second-best veterinary science qualifications in Canada. 33,000 students call the university their home away from home, with about 10 per cent coming from an international background. 


The Faculty of Veterinary Medicine was established in 2005 to produce skilled veterinary graduates. These skills are instilled using a curriculum centred on applied research and innovative methodology. The university currently only accepts international students with a bachelor’s degree in a closely related STEM subject. You’ll also need an IELTS score of 7.0 to be considered for the programme. 


Read more about the top student cities in Canada


University of Guelph


Guelph is a city in the Canadian state of Ontario, located not too far from Toronto. It is the home of the University of Guelph, which holds the distinction of number one spot on the QS World University Rankings by Subject for veterinary science. It is also rated a top 600 university globally by QS. 


The university has a vibrant and diverse student community of over 29,000, with 1,700 international students from 130 countries. There is also an active alumni community of 185,000 across the globe. Seven colleges are spread across three campuses, with the Ontario Veterinary College being the oldest in both Canada and the USA. 


The college is rated top in Canada, number three in North America and the top five worldwide. The qualifications you can pursue include a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM), Master of Biomedical Science, Master of Science in Clinical Studies, and even an MSc in Pathobiology, to name a few.  


Gaining entry onto a graduate programme requires the equivalent of a 2:1 bachelor’s degree or an undergraduate degree with an average above 70 per cent in a related subject. There are some pre-requisite modules or subjects you will need to have taken to qualify for the DVM degree, including:


  • Statistics 
  • Cell biology 
  • Chemistry 
  • Biochemistry 
  • Biological science 


Remember to check all entry requirements for international students with the university. You can also ask about any scholarships and funding that may be available. 


Hopefully, you now have a better idea of your study options for veterinary science in Canada. You can also review some other universities in Canada, find your ideal degree with our course matcher, or talk to an education counsellor for some guidance


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