What is the ACVD?

The American College of Veterinary Dermatology (ACVD) is the official specialty organization accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association in 1982 and charged with maintenance of high standards of postgraduate training in veterinary dermatology. The purpose of the ACVD is to advance and promote excellence in veterinary dermatology, oversee postgraduate training in veterinary dermatology, sponsor research, and organize scientific and educational programs for both veterinary dermatologists and general practitioners.

The ACVD is empowered to examine qualified candidates and confer Diplomate (board certification) status in veterinary dermatology. Board certification requires completion of a 2-3 year approved residency training program, an original research project, publication in a scientific journal, and successful completion of the certification examination. Currently there are only a few hundred ACVD board-certified dermatologists worldwide who work in private specialty practices, academic positions, and industry.

Veterinary dermatologists recognize, diagnose and treat diseases of the skin of animals. Many veterinary skin diseases are similar to conditions in humans and training in comparative medicine is important. However, most veterinary skin disorders are unique and may occur in only one of the many types of animals a veterinarian cares for. These diseases range from skin cancer to allergies and treatment options vary tremendously. Skin disease can also present as a manifestation of an underlying internal disease process. Thus, in addition to dermatology, veterinary dermatologists are also trained in internal medicine, immunology and allergy.

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