How Much Does a Veterinary Dentist Make a Year?

by Donald Harder; Updated September 26, 2017

Veterinary dentists are qualified veterinarians who have gained specialized qualifications to perform dentistry diagnosis and procedures on animals. Most veterinary dentists perform other veterinary duties in addition to dentistry so salaries earned by those with this type of specialized qualification are in line with salaries earned by other veterinarians according to MyMajors.com.

Average Salary

According to May 2010 data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics, the average salary for veterinarians is $82,040 per year. The lowest 10 percent earned an average of $49,910 in 2010, while the top earners received as much as $145,230 that same year.

Top-Paying States

Veterinarians, including those with specialized qualifications such as dentistry, living in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states, earn the highest average annual salaries. Top-paying states include Connecticut, New Jersey, the District of Columbia, Pennsylvania and Delaware. The average salaries in these states ranges between $112,070 and $126,550 per year.

Urban Versus Rural

Choosing to work in a metropolitan area can have a significant impact on the salary you can expect to earn. The average wages earned in top-paying metropolitan areas such as San Antonio, Texas, and Newark, New Jersey, range between $130,710 and $174,810 with Port St. Lucie, Florida, leading the country. Top-paying nonmetropolitan wages in areas such as the island of Kauai in Hawaii and eastern Wisconsin range between $101,960 and $119,410 per year.

Residency Program Salary

Veterinarians who wish to be board-certified must earn a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (D.V.M. or V.M.D.) degree from an accredited school of veterinary medicine. In addition, they must complete a three- to four-year residency program after graduation. Some veterinary schools, such as the University of Pennsylvania Veterinary Medicine, have residency programs available for those specializing in veterinary dentistry and oral surgery. The program available and the University of Pennsylvania pays its residents $27,000 per year. Check with a school to see whether it has a similar program available as not all programs are widely advertised.

About the Author

Donald Harder has been writing financial-related articles since 2000 when he founded the firm Securities Research Services. He has worked as a speech writer for the U.S. Department of Justice and written white papers and studies for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Harder holds a Master of Arts in international affairs from George Washington University.