Veterinarians are at higher risk of mental health issues and suicide than the general population, according to a 2015 Canadian study. Anxiety is one of the most common mental health issues among veterinarians—with 1 in 3 reporting they experience it, and another 1 in 3 who are borderline.
Student loan debt is a major source of stress, says a 2018 Merck study, with 67 percent of participating veterinarians rating it their top "critical concern." More than half said high stress levels (53 percent) and suicide rates (53 percent) also weighed heavy on their minds.
According to a CDC study, 24.5 percent of men and 36.7 percent of women in veterinary medicine have experienced depression—about 1.5 times the national average. As a result, 14.4 percent of males and 19.1 percent of females have considered suicide, which is three times higher than other professions.