May 23, 2024

Guide to Immigrating to Canada as a Veterinarian

Discover Canada's appeal to professionals, including those in veterinary medicine. Explore abundant opportunities and plan your relocation to Canada effectively.

Canada is celebrated for its exceptional healthcare system, quality of life, and dedication to animal welfare. Nonetheless, the veterinary field in Canada confronts notable hurdles. According to the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association, clinic owners and employers encounter difficulties in recruiting and retaining veterinary professionals. This scarcity is anticipated to persist, as the Canadian Occupational Projection System forecasts a deficit of veterinarians from 2024 to 2031. Throughout this period, around 5,000 veterinarian positions are projected to be available, but only approximately 4,300 qualified candidates are expected to fill these positions.

With such high demand and restricted supply, now presents an opportune moment for veterinarians to contemplate immigrating to Canada. The demand for proficient veterinary professionals implies abundant prospects for career advancement across diverse provinces. Recognizing the optimal immigration pathways is pivotal for ensuring a seamless transition.

Allow us to navigate you through the various routes for Canadian immigration as a veterinarian, providing a comprehensive understanding of your options to commence your career in Canada.

Express Entry system

The Express Entry system is an online immigration application platform utilized by the Canadian government to manage and streamline permanent residency applications from skilled workers. Introduced in 2015, this system encompasses various economic programs and stands as an optimal avenue for veterinarians aspiring to immigrate to Canada due to its efficiency and seamless process. Among these economic programs is the Federal Skilled Worker Program, enabling eligible candidates to swiftly secure permanent residency based on factors like work experience, education, language proficiency, and more. This system holds particular appeal for veterinarians as it prioritizes applicants with in-demand skills, facilitating the acquisition of an Invitation to Apply (ITA). Moreover, the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) employed in Express Entry awards points for factors such as Canadian job offers and provincial nominations, further bolstering a veterinarian's chances of successful immigration. With its expedited processing times and transparent points-based structure, Express Entry offers veterinarians a straightforward and accelerated pathway to embark on their careers in Canada.

For in-depth guidance on navigating the process, it's essential to explore the following resources:

  • Familiarize yourself with the specific Express Entry requirements to understand the qualifications needed.
  • Assess your Express Entry score using Our CRS Calculator to gauge your current standing.
  • Determine your eligibility by completing our Free Online Assessment here.

These resources offer crucial insights and assist you in proceeding towards immigrating to Canada as a veterinarian.

Prince Edward Island's Provincial Nominee Program (PEI PNP)

PNPs of Prince Edward Island presents a favorable pathway for veterinarians aiming to immigrate to Canada. The province's notable demand for veterinary professionals is evident, with just 241 registered veterinarians as of 2023, emphasizing the considerable need for skilled individuals in this sector, as per the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association.

Veterinary professionals have two pathways to explore: they can either apply through the Skilled Workers Outside Canada stream or pursue a diploma in veterinary medicine within the province. After obtaining a valid Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP), they can then apply under the International Graduates stream. The Prince Edward Island Veterinary Medical Association (PEIVMA) serves as the regulatory authority for veterinarians in the province. To practice, professionals must become members of and be licensed by the PEIVMA.

The transparent regulatory structure, coupled with the considerable demand for veterinarians, positions Prince Edward Island as an appealing destination for individuals seeking to build their careers and secure permanent residency in Canada.

Ontario's Immigrant Nominee Program (OINP)

PNPs of Ontario stands as an advantageous choice for foreign veterinary workers aiming to immigrate to Canada. Its specialized streams and tangible benefits make it an appealing option.

The OINP provides two distinct streams tailored for veterinarians: the Foreign Worker Stream, designed for skilled foreign workers with a permanent full-time job offer in Ontario, and the International Student Stream, catering to recent graduates of veterinary schools with a permanent full-time job offer in Ontario. A significant advantage for both employers and applicants is the absence of a requirement for a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) to support applications under any of the OINP Employer Job Offer streams. Moreover, upon nomination from the OINP, nominees receive a work permit support letter, enabling them to reside and work in Ontario while applying for permanent residence through federal streams. These avenues prove beneficial for veterinary professionals, including technicians, possessing educational credentials such as a graduate degree or diploma from an eligible Canadian institution, or a university or college graduate certificate from an eligible Ontario institution.

It's essential to highlight that veterinary professionals must obtain licensure from the National Examining Board to practice in the province. According to the Government of Canada, the employment outlook for veterinarians in Ontario is highly favorable for the 2023-2025 period, with new positions emerging from employment growth and additional opportunities due to retirements. This underscores the OINP as a strategic pathway for veterinarians aiming to advance their careers in Ontario.

For further details on Ontario's PNPs, explore our dedicated guides:

  • Employer Job Offer: Foreign Worker Stream
  • Employer Job Offer: International Student Stream

Canada offers several appealing avenues for veterinarians looking to immigrate and establish their careers. The Express Entry system is known for its efficiency and straightforward, points-based process, making it a swift and transparent option for eligible candidates. The Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program (OINP) features specialized streams for foreign workers and recent graduates, with the added advantage of not requiring a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA). Similarly, the Prince Edward Island Provincial Nominee Program (PEI PNP) addresses the pronounced demand for veterinarians in the province, presenting options for both skilled workers and international graduates.

Prospective veterinarian immigrants should conduct comprehensive research on each program to identify the one that aligns best with their qualifications, career objectives, and personal aspirations. It's crucial to obtain all necessary credentials and licenses, such as those from the College of Veterinarians of Ontario (CVO) or the Prince Edward Island Veterinary Medical Association (PEIVMA), depending on the province of interest.

Navigating Immigration Pathways with Pelican Migration Consultants

Pelican Migration Consultants can provide invaluable assistance to veterinarians navigating the complex process of immigrating to Canada. Our team offers personalized guidance tailored to your specific qualifications, career goals, and personal circumstances. We can help you explore the various immigration pathways available, such as the Express Entry system, Ontario's Immigrant Nominee Program (OINP), and the Prince Edward Island Provincial Nominee Program (PEI PNP). With our expertise, you can streamline your application process, ensure compliance with regulatory requirements, and maximize your chances of success in establishing a fulfilling veterinary career in Canada.

Advance your journey by completing a free online assessment to determine if your profile meets the criteria for Canadian immigration. Receive tailored insights to assist you in charting your course towards a prosperous veterinary career in Canada!