Job Post

Chief Shelter Veterinarian

Company Name: City and County of Denver
Company Website:
Location: Denver, CO
Job Type: Full Time
Job Category: Operations

About Our Job

We encourage you to apply as soon as possible because this posting may close without advanced notice.

Denver’s Department of Public Health and Environment (DDPHE) is dedicated to advancing Denver’s environmental and public health goals. DDPHE works collaboratively with city, state and community partners to conduct education, community engagement, and enforcement to promote healthy people, healthy pets, and a sustainable environment. DDPHE oversees a number of services related to public health and the environment and is comprised of six divisions: Shared Services and Business Operations; Community & Behavioral Health; Public Health Investigations; Denver Animal Protection; the Office of Medical Examiner; and Environmental Quality. For more information on DDPHE’s programs and services, visit the DDPHE website at: Denver Department of Public Health and Environment.

Denver Animal Protection (DAP) protects the safety and welfare of Denver’s animals and residents by fostering the human animal bond. DAP emphasizes public and animal safety and health, encourages responsible pet ownership through education and enforcing compliance with animal-related municipal code requirements, and cares for animals at the Denver Animal Shelter (DAS). More information can be found at: DDPHE: Denver Animal Protection.

Denver Animal Protection has an opening for a Chief Shelter Veterinarian. This position will serve as the primary veterinarian surgeon and will oversee shelter management and operations. The veterinary clinic at DAP is one of the two shelter clinics (and the only municipal shelter) in Colorado that is American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) accredited. We see a variety of patients, including dogs, cats, small mammals, farm animals, fish, poultry, and reptiles. We are well equipped with dental radiographs, digital radiographs, oxygen cage, ultrasound, and cautery.

Given the expanse and nature of our work, you will have the opportunity to work on a variety of cases in a high-paced and exciting environment.

  • Cases include lacerations, ear infections, dental disease to more traumatic cases such as toxin ingestion, foreign body obstruction and polytrauma
  • Rare cases of animals as patients include snapping turtles, chameleons, other reptiles, and farm animals
  • Oversees the management and operations of Denver’s AAHA-accredited municipal shelter clinic

Our clinic operates 7 days per week with rotating on-call work for emergency consultation. The schedule for this position is 4 (10 hour) days per week, which will include at least one weekend day.

Additionally, the Chief Shelter Veterinarian:

  • Provides high quality medical care to shelter animals, oversees the health management of shelter animals, and provides for the medical and surgical needs of animals.
  • Performs traditional duties of a veterinarian which includes health assessment, diagnosis, spay/neuter, other soft tissue surgery, dentistry, and treatment of various medical conditions.
  • Implements medical protocols and standard operating procedures for medical evaluations and treatment of animals including disease control, sterilization, improvement of health and quality of life issues, and the alleviation of suffering. This also applies to managing animal flow through transfer and foster programs.
  • Investigates possible cases of zoonotic diseases and reports confirmed cases to state and federal officials when needed or requested.
  • Administers and promotes rabies immunization programs.
  • Trains division staff on shelter related topics that include euthanasia and euthanasia certification, animal evaluation and treatments, disease control, and other pertinent topics.
  • Oversees the medical work of shelter veterinarian, veterinary technicians, intern, and assistants and monitors staff to ensure correct treatment and handling of animals.
  • Writes medical reports, processes cruelty cases, and presents cases in court.
  • Assists in volunteer programs for the animal shelter and educates the public regarding zoonotic diseases and pet ownership.
  • Performs Euthanasia when needed or required.
  • Build relationships with community veterinarians and local veterinary technical colleges
  • Presents in local and national conferences
  • Helps to coordinate and to participate in public vaccination clinics organized by DAP
  • Manage clinic administrative duties including inventory, budget, and paperwork
  • Responsible for managing personnel including time keeping, compliance with CSA rules, performance reviews
  • Maintain AAHA accreditation
  • Procure DEA license as a condition of this position
  • Along with all department staff, this position will actively participate on an emergency preparedness and response team to support DDPHE’s responsibilities outlined in the City’s Emergency Operations Plan.  This may require being ‘on-call’ from time to time to help respond to emergencies.  Additional training commensurate with assigned duties will be provided.
  • Other duties as assigned or requested.

About You

Our ideal candidate will possess the following preferred experience, skills, and/or education:

  • Interest in orthopedic surgeries or willingness to learn
  • Previous shelter experience
  • High-Volume High-Quality surgery experience
  • Soft tissue surgery experience
  • Internship-trained, preferably in shelter medicine
  • Currently practicing veterinarian
  • Experience managing an annual budget

We realize your time is valuable so please do not apply if you do not have at least the following required minimum qualifications:

  • Education requirement: Doctor of Veterinary Medicine accredited by the Council on Education of the American Veterinary Medical Association.
  • Experience Requirement: Seven (7) years of experience of professional veterinarian experience in general practice or shelter environment including the control, diagnosis, and treatment of animal diseases.
  • Education/Experience Equivalency: No substitution of experience for education is permitted.
  • Completion of a shelter medicine internship may substitute for three (3) years of experience.
  • License/Certifications: By position, requires a valid Driver’s License at the time of application.
  • Requires possession of a license to practice veterinary medicine issued by the State of Colorado by the time of hire.
  • Must be registered with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration for the use of controlled substances in the State of Colorado prior to completion of the probationary period.
  • Licenses and certifications must be kept current as a condition of employment.

**Please attach a copy of your license to practice veterinary medicine issued by the State of Colorado** (Upload the attachment(s) to the Resume/CV section on the My Experience tab.)


About Everything Else
Job Profile
CO3349 Shelter Veterinarian Chief

To view the full job profile including position specifications, physical demands, and probationary period, please visit the website.

Position Type

Position Salary Range
$99,162.00 – $163,617.00

Starting Pay
$110,000 – $135,000 per year

Dept of Public Health & Environment

The City and County of Denver provides equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, genetic information, age, or any other status protected under federal, state, and/or local law.