PIERRE, S.D. (AP) – State Veterinarian Dustin Oedekoven says he doubts that South Dakota has an overall shortage of veterinarians, but there is a shortage of veterinarians willing to work in rural areas.
Oedekoven met Tuesday with the state Legislature’s Government Operations and Audit Committee, which asked him for a report on which areas of South Dakota are short on veterinarians.
Oedekoven says 765 veterinarians are licensed to practice in South Dakota. He says 381 of them live in the state, with many of the rest living in nearby states and crossing the border to work in South Dakota.
Oedekoven says farmers and ranchers tell him they are able to get veterinary services.
Other officials say the biggest problem is that young veterinarians have trouble paying off their student loans.
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