KosarPlayz
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Im a huge panda enthusiast, especially baby pandas, and im currently in year 12. I'm debating on becoming a cardiac surgeon/cardiologist or a vet and I'm currently leaning towards the cardiac field but if I can specialise just to pandas, then I'll most likely choose the veterinary route so could someone, with experience, please answer my question?
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KJ2003
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(Original post by KosarPlayz)
Im a huge panda enthusiast, especially baby pandas, and im currently in year 12. I'm debating on becoming a cardiac surgeon/cardiologist or a vet and I'm currently leaning towards the cardiac field but if I can specialise just to pandas, then I'll most likely choose the veterinary route so could someone, with experience, please answer my question?
I’m also in year 12 but I imagine it would be quite unusual to specialise in just pandas. I think it is more common to just be a zoo vet. Although I’m only in year 12 so I’m not sure.
Both things you have mentioned are very specialised I know most people change their minds throughout (vet) med school so keep an open mind.
There is also a very large pay difference I’d imagine you would get at least double if you were a cardiologist/ cardiac surgery.
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ReadingMum
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To qualify as a vet you need to learn to treat everything - fish to cows to dogs to guinea pigs to horses and so on. This will take 5 or 6 years to get qualified. After that you will need to find work. There simply aren't enough pandas in the world for that to be the only animal you work with.
It is not realistic to base your future job aspirations on a love of baby pandas.
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RambleAmple
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While I'm not 100% sure on the specifics as I'm not looking into exotics, I don't think being just a panda vet is massively realistic. As said above, you could become a zoo vet, and maybe specialising in bears in general would be more realistic. But thinking logically there is not that many pandas in the world, much less if you are only based in one area, and these pandas are unlikely to need vet attention every day, and even when they do it's unlikely to take up a whole day, so I can't imagine you'd have much work as a panda vet if it were possible. If you are truly only wanting to be a panda vet with little interest in other animals I would not advise becoming a vet, at uni I can't imagine there is a lot of specific panda content (though if going into exotics you can do work in zoos) and a lot of the learning is focused around domesticated animals, like dogs, cats, sheep, cows, etc for 5+ years.

If you really want a career with pandas I'd look more into a conservation or zoo keeper direction, though I can't advise much about those.
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KosarPlayz
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(Original post by RambleAmple)
While I'm not 100% sure on the specifics as I'm not looking into exotics, I don't think being just a panda vet is massively realistic. As said above, you could become a zoo vet, and maybe specialising in bears in general would be more realistic. But thinking logically there is not that many pandas in the world, much less if you are only based in one area, and these pandas are unlikely to need vet attention every day, and even when they do it's unlikely to take up a whole day, so I can't imagine you'd have much work as a panda vet if it were possible. If you are truly only wanting to be a panda vet with little interest in other animals I would not advise becoming a vet, at uni I can't imagine there is a lot of specific panda content (though if going into exotics you can do work in zoos) and a lot of the learning is focused around domesticated animals, like dogs, cats, sheep, cows, etc for 5+ years.

If you really want a career with pandas I'd look more into a conservation or zoo keeper direction, though I can't advise much about those.
Thanks a lot for your reply! I understand your points and having read the rest of the replies, I've decided to stick to the cardiology route but my love for baby pandas will never die
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KosarPlayz
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(Original post by ReadingMum)
To qualify as a vet you need to learn to treat everything - fish to cows to dogs to guinea pigs to horses and so on. This will take 5 or 6 years to get qualified. After that you will need to find work. There simply aren't enough pandas in the world for that to be the only animal you work with.
It is not realistic to base your future job aspirations on a love of baby pandas.
You seem like you know your stuff so do you know anything about, realistically speaking, how many years it would take to be a certified cardiologist because most sites have varying answers and it's all a bit confusing to me.
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Chief Wiggum
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(Original post by KosarPlayz)
You seem like you know your stuff so do you know anything about, realistically speaking, how many years it would take to be a certified cardiologist because most sites have varying answers and it's all a bit confusing to me.
After medical school: 2 years foundation training, 3 years internal medicine training, 5 years cardiology specialty training.

That's the "minimum" though, since people may not get into the training programme straight away, or may choose to take time out for research etc.
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KosarPlayz
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(Original post by KJ2003)
I’m also in year 12 but I imagine it would be quite unusual to specialise in just pandas. I think it is more common to just be a zoo vet. Although I’m only in year 12 so I’m not sure.
Both things you have mentioned are very specialised I know most people change their minds throughout (vet) med school so keep an open mind.
There is also a very large pay difference I’d imagine you would get at least double if you were a cardiologist/ cardiac surgery.
I'm always interested to see what otherr people have decided to choose so what A levels have you chosen? And you're very right so I'll stick to the cardiac pathway for now. On top of that, the point you made about the pay difference is very valid so I'll most likely stick to the medicine route in general. I'd love to work with baby pandas though because they're JUST SO CUTEE!
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KosarPlayz
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(Original post by Chief Wiggum)
After medical school: 2 years foundation training, 3 years internal medicine training, 5 years cardiology specialty training.

That's the "minimum" though, since people may not get into the training programme straight away, or may choose to take time out for research etc.
That's all on top of the 5 year medicine course right? Damnn, that's a lot of years lmao. I assume you don't get paid through those years too so you have to live off student loans and bursaries until you're 33? That doesn't seem too nicee. Thanks for the answerr
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ecolier
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(Original post by KosarPlayz)
That's all on top of the 5 year medicine course right? Damnn, that's a lot of years lmao. I assume you don't get paid through those years too so you have to live off student loans and bursaries until you're 33? That doesn't seem too nicee. Thanks for the answerr
In additional to what @Chief Wiggum said, feel free to read my thread about what happens post-grad (for medicine) here: https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/sho....php?t=6026828

(This includes the salary of how much you'll be paid after medical school - you get a salary after the 5 years!)
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Chief Wiggum
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(Original post by KosarPlayz)
That's all on top of the 5 year medicine course right? Damnn, that's a lot of years lmao. I assume you don't get paid through those years too so you have to live off student loans and bursaries until you're 33? That doesn't seem too nicee. Thanks for the answerr
Yeah, on top of the medicine course. Yeah you are paid after medical school, and you are a qualified doctor, treating patients.
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KosarPlayz
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(Original post by ecolier)
In additional to what @Chief Wiggum said, feel free to read my thread about what happens post-grad (for medicine) here: https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/sho....php?t=6026828

(This includes the salary of how much you'll be paid after medical school - you get a salary after the 5 years!)
heyy, thanks a lot, ill give this a readd. thanks so muchh
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Theloniouss
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Your best bet for working with pandas exclusively would be to get a job at a Zoo - unfortunately there aren't many pandas so you'd likely end up working with lots of other animals as well
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KosarPlayz
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(Original post by Chief Wiggum)
Yeah, on top of the medicine course. Yeah you are paid after medical school, and you are a qualified doctor, treating patients.
Oh that makes loads more sense, thanks so much for the quick repliess
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Kerzen
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(Original post by KosarPlayz)
Im a huge panda enthusiast, especially baby pandas, and im currently in year 12. I'm debating on becoming a cardiac surgeon/cardiologist or a vet and I'm currently leaning towards the cardiac field but if I can specialise just to pandas, then I'll most likely choose the veterinary route so could someone, with experience, please answer my question?
I love pandas and once went to San Diego Zoo for their Black and White weekend all about the panda. I've since been to the Smithsonian Zoo too in Washington DC and have seen their pandas.

The new cub in Washington has had a lot of media coverage and his check ups are shown on the internet.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FlK6QX1-AnE

https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/n...iao-qi-ji-move

https://nationalzoo.si.edu/news/gian...edia-resources

The two vets who I have seen taking part in these are the Chief Vet, Dr Don Neiffer and Dr James Steeil, whose qualifications allow them to look after all the animals in the Zoo, as far as I can tell.
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TheWannabeFarmer
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Short answer: No

You will also not make it through veterinary school or the application process if this is what you want to do.
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