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In this week’s episode of The Vet Blast Podcast, Doug Aspros, DVM, Chief Veterinary Officer of Veterinary Practice Partners, spoke with our host Adam Christman, DVM, MBA, about the shortcomings in veterinary dental education. He emphasized the importance of providing dental care as a general practitioner and how procedures can be broken down into smaller time blocks to provide better care and accurate estimates for clients.

Below is a partial transcript.

Doug Aspros, veterinarian: It’s clear that (veterinary students) are graduating without adequate training, certainly not adequate, day-one training. And there are a lot of reasons for that. One is that the curriculum has expanded to include a lot more things than you and I might have gotten when we were in veterinary school. That’s all good, but it also leaves gaps. And because a lot of veterinary hospitals, teaching hospitals, or tertiary care hospitals don’t do a lot of routine dental care, and so there’s not a lot of opportunities for graduates to get that basic training.

Then add to that the fact that new graduates are reluctant to do the first one. I think you develop expertise over time, you become an expert by doing enough reps, but if you don’t do the first rep, you can’t do the second, you can’t do the third, you can’t do the fourth. You can’t build on your experience to become an experienced and appropriate provider, and so I think employers, particularly employers of new vets, of younger vets, need even more of that to provide that care and fill those gaps in the back, so that they can build expertise and become appropriately great practitioners.