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Requirements for Entry to AVDC

As the certifying organization for specialists in veterinary dentistry, the AVDC provides extensive support and information for applicants to the College during their training programs. Read the information on this and related pages before starting to put together a Training Program Registration application.

Available on this page

General Requirements

Applicable to All Training Pathways

Advanced Status Option

Applicable to All Training Pathways

Specific Training Pathways:

Alternate Pathway Training Program (AP)

Residency Program (RP)

DVM-DDS Dual-degree Program (DD)


 Available on other pages

Registering a Training Program

Information for Registered Applicants

General Requirements

Be a graduate of a college or school of veterinary medicine accredited or approved by AVMA; possess a certificate issued by the Educational Commission for Foreign Veterinary Graduates (ECFVG) or equivalent; or be legally qualified to practice veterinary medicine in some state, province, territory or possession of the United States, Canada or other country.
Training Program
Successfully complete one of three training programs described below (AP, RP, DD).
Diplomate Supervision

A. All applicants must have identified a Mentor or a Residency Supervisor who is a Diplomate of AVDC. Read Mentee and Mentor Manual for more information.

B. Complete the Mentor Visitation (AP and DD pathway) or Diplomate Supervision (RP pathway) requirement.

Case Load
The minimum total number of cases and the Minimum Required Case Load (MRCL - specified minima for certain categories) are stated and defined on the Case Log page. All cases on the MRCL list must have been reviewed by the Program Supervisor.
Case Log
A case log is to be kept, conforming to the AVDC case log requirements current on the date of the procedure. A dental chart must be available for all logged cases. See Case Log Requirements.
Case Reports
Approval of four case reports. See Case Report requirement.
Radiograph Sets
Approval of two radiograph sets. See Radiograph Set requirement.
Dental Charts, Equipment List
Approval of Dental Charts and Equipment List. (Note: A complete Credentials Application set of equipment and supplies is not required at the time that a training program is registered. A recommended Initial Equipment List is available).
Related Specialty Training
Complete 40 hours of training in each of the following disciplines: Anesthesia, Surgery, and Radiology, supervised by Diplomates of the relevant specialty colleges.
Annual Report
An Annual Report of training activities is to be submitted to AVDC.
Payment of a Training Program Registration Fee and annual fees is required of all applicants (AP, RP, DD) during the training period. A credentials application fee is required at the time of submission of a completed credentials application packge.
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For detailed information on any of these general requirements, view the the links in individual items above, or visit the Information for Registered Applicants page.

Training Pathways

Alternate Pathway Training Program (AP):

The AP program is designed for veterinarians who desire to complete the training requirements while working mostly in their own practice. The minimally acceptable AP is four years following a one-year internship or one year in clinical veterinary practice. The purpose is to permit part time training that is equivalent in total experience to the two years of full time training in veterinary dentistry required of residents at approved sites. There is no maximum time permitted for completion of an AP program, except that the caselog submitted for credentialing can only include cases seen during the most recent six years.

Every AP trainee has a Mentor, an AVDC Diplomate who supervises the trainee during the training program. For information on the Mentor-Mentee arrangement, click Mentee-Mentor Manual. To alert AVDC Diplomates to your interest in locating a Mentor, click Mentee Listing.

Visitation Requirement:: A minimum period of 12 weeks of direct supervision by the applicant’s Mentor or other AVDC Diplomate is required during an AP training period. This may include time spent at the Mentor’s or the applicant’s places of business. This 12-week period does not include the required time in related disciplines (anesthesia, surgery, radiology).

The AVDC case log and all other AVDC credentialing requirements must be met.

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Residency Program (RP):

A two year full-time residency program at an institution or facility approved by the Training Support Committee of the College. Both the residency program and the residency site must be approved by AVDC prior to the starting date of the residency. Click Residency Programs for a list of currently-approved AVDC residency training program sites.

The AVDC case log and all other requirements must be met.


Human Dental Degree and Veterinary Degree Program (DD):

Hold a degree in human dentistry (DDS, DMD, or equivalent) from an American Dental Association-approved program or equivalent, and a veterinary degree, plus satisfactory completion of a one-year general medicine/surgery internship or equivalent in clinical veterinary practice followed by a minimum of one year of veterinary dental clinical practice.

Visitation Requirement: A minimum period of 12 weeks of direct supervision by the Mentor or other AVDC Diplomate is required during a DD training program. This may include time spent at the Mentor’s or the applicant’s places of business; this 12-week period does not include the required time in related disciplines (anesthesia, surgery, radiology).

The AVDC case log and all other requirements must be met.

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Advanced Status Option

Applicants in any training pathway who have successfully completed relevant forms of other extensive, formal, full-time training (e.g. an ACVS or ACVIM residency program, or training that has led to RDH certification) may petition AVDC for partial reduction of the AVDC training program time requirement.

Other activities completed prior to registration of the training program with AVDC will not be accepted by AVDC, unless an exception to this rule was recommended by the Training Support Committee and granted prior to the starting date of the training program by the Board of Directors of the College.

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