Veterinarian shortage also affects Luxembourg

Like its neighbors, Luxembourg has always had a shortage of veterinarians. The profession is no longer attractive and it has even become difficult to provide daycare at night and on weekends.

Animal care

Pascal MITTELBERGER

Like its neighbors, Luxembourg has always had a shortage of veterinarians. The profession is no longer attractive and it has even become difficult to provide daycare at night and on weekends.

286 veterinarians today practice in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. For treatment, in the office, in the clinic and in the field, livestock or farm animals, or even horses. This number continues to decrease, complicating the situation.



At Grand Duchy, since December of last year, all domestic cats have been required to carry a chip: identification of animals is thus simplified.


Like its neighbors, Luxembourg is experiencing shortages. The report was prepared by Agriculture Minister Claude Haagen (LSAP) in response to questions from MP Martine Hansen (CSV). Dr. Josiane Gaspard, President of the College of Veterinary Medicine, confirms this.

Pandemic period acts as a revealer

This situation has existed for “several years. But it has become very topical with the covid-19 pandemic: it is increasingly difficult to find a veterinarian. Previously, every year, after exams in different universities, a large number of requests for licensure to practice in Luxembourg were sent to the Ministry of Health. Practices and clinics are capable of recruiting young graduates in all fields. ” Nowadays, the number of authorization requests to the Ministry of Health is declining sharply. As a result, it is increasingly difficult for veterinary practice and clinics to recruit.

Fresh graduates decide to change careers quite quickly.

Josiane Gaspard, President of the Veterinary College of Luxembourg

Is the phenomenon thus highlighted during the health crisis? “I don’t know, but that’s when we really noticed that the practices, the clinics, weren’t finding the vet they were looking for, in all areas, small animals or large,” commented Dr. Gaspard.

A tiring and demanding job

Once this observation has been established, it must be interpreted. The Dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine cites a few reasons. “The studies have been long and difficult. And once they start practicing, veterinarians quickly realize the hardships of the job: working hours, support and family management during complex times like the death of their animal. . However, this last aspect is taught during training, “but the reality on the ground is often different from the theory taught,” admits Dr.


Dr. Josiane Gaspard, President of the Veterinary College of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg.

Dr. Josiane Gaspard, President of the Veterinary College of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg.

Photo: Pierre Matgé / LW Archives

A more surprising, even disturbing phenomenon was revealed by students: “Students who have just left university decide to change jobs quite quickly.” The rhythm and overwhelming, exhausting work, especially with the bodyguards, led to this radical choice. And those who can afford to continue suffer “a high risk of burnout due to their constant availability in the field due to shortage.”

Financial constraints

And according to the Dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine, all these reasons cannot even be compensated by salary. “Compared to occupations with the same length of study and the same level, the salary of a veterinarian is not attractive.”



Veterinary chiropractic offers treatments whose effectiveness has been proven – if they are performed according to the rules of the technique. Meet Alexandre Chichery, osteopathic veterinarian and acupuncturist, to learn more.


Financially, the Luxembourg real estate market and the general cost of living constitute an additional obstacle to the emergence of new veterinarians who have studied abroad, often in the neighboring countries of the country. Luxembourgish.

Consequences for the guards

If in the short term, this shortage of practitioners does not affect the operation of practice facilities and clinics during the day, maintaining 24-hour service, 7 days a week will become complex. “We are currently in talks with veterinary associations to find a remedy for this problem. The Ministry of Health has also been informed of the situation. »

What solutions?

Finally, there remains an important question: how to solve this shortage problem? Wage leverage doesn’t seem to be a panacea. For Dr. Josiane Gaspard, “from the studies, we have to better prepare veterinarians for the current situation”. Because, let’s be clear, this shortfall won’t go away in a few months. “Above all, we must find solutions to improve work-life balance”a veterinarian’s work-life balance.

This could, for example, involve the creation of veterinary medical homes, similar to the medical home model that works in human medicine. An idea supported by the authorities. Another job: general analysis of the veterinary field, as well as the field of human medicine, to find solutions to all these problems.

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and sign up for our 5 p.m. newsletter.


About the same topic

A stork was attacked by a stork into its nest in Moselle on Saturday, a webcam footage that is popular with amateurs documenting the storks’ lives.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.