Application deadline nears to certify for exotic mammal specialty

New group focuses on ferrets, rabbits and other small pets

December 16, 2008 (published)
By Jennifer Fiala

By the end of 2009, roughly 30 veterinarians will pursue certification in a new specialty — Exotic Companion Mammal Practice. 

That’s according to Michael Dutton, DVM, DABVP (CF), DABVP (Av), a regent for what last spring became the first new specialty to earn the American Board of Veterinary Practitioner’s (ABVP) provisional recognition in at least 15 years. 

The Exotic Companion Mammal specialty focuses on ferrets rabbits, guinea pigs, rodents and other small pet mammals. 

Applications for the November 2009 examination are being accepted until Jan. 15. Examination questions were being written at press time, and veterinarians who pass the test will become ABVP-boarded diplomates, certified in Exotic Companion Mammal Practice. 

The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) gave the go-ahead to create the new group during the Executive Board’s meeting last April, following review by the American Board of Veterinary Specialties (ABVS). 

ABVS is an arm of AVMA that recognizes veterinary specialties and specialty organizations. The new specialty, which falls under ABVP’s umbrella, can earn full recognition after a second petition for review is submitted between year four and year 10 of provisional recognition. 

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