New Zealand Veterinarian Salaries

Salaries are annual unless otherwise stated.

Salary and wage information for New Zealand professions is compiled regularly by analysis of New Zealand jobs advertised in major publications. Job ads in New Zealand often do not mention remuneration. Salaries are generally negotiable, within limits.

Job titles in this occupation vary and some examples are veterinarian, vet and veterinary surgeon.

Veterinarians typically earn between $65,000 and $100,000 depending on their area of expertise, location and experience. A typical starting salary for a graduate veterinarian is $58,000 according to the New Zealand Veterinary Association. After three years a salary of $76,000 to $86,000 can be expected.

There is a shortage of veterinarians in New Zealand and this occupation is currently on New Zealand’s long term skills shortage list.

All veterinarians working in New Zealand must be registered with the Veterinary Council of New Zealand and hold a current practising certificate.

The number of registered veterinarians has been increasing steadily of the past few years. In 2017 there were 2,903 registered practising veterinarians in New Zealand compared to 2,275 ten years ago in 2007.

The University of Massey in Palmerston North is the only university in New Zealand offering a Bachelor of Veterinary Science degree. It is a five year course and is restricted to around one hundred students in each year.

Veterinarian Salaries / Wages in 2018 – 2019

PositionSalary / Wage $Location
Large Animal / Mixed Veterinarian85,000+Northland
Locum Veterinarian75,000 – 90,000Auckland
New Graduate Veterinarian55,000 -65,000Hawkes Bay
Dairy Graduate Veterinarian58,000Taranaki
Dairy Experienced Veterinarian75,000Taranaki
Experienced Veterinarian100,000+Wellington
Mixed Animal Veterinarian60,000 – 75,000Waikato
Veterinarian80,000 – 100,000Christchurch
Senior Veterinarian70,000 – 85,000Canterbury
Large Animal Veterinarian90,000 – 120,000Timaru

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  1. Harry Caldicott says

    These are wildly optimistic figures! New graduates are on $48-65k, and to get the top-end, you have to be working in the arse-end of nowhere as a cattle vet. A realistic amount would be $55k as an average. Look at the Vet Club Salary Scale for more info,

    • Isobel Heyward-Civil says

      Agree entirely with you Harry, so does the NZVA…
      Even after some experience, smallies GPs max out after about 5 years at ~$90k. To make more, you typically have to be a partner or specialist. 130k as a salaried GP, dreaming!

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