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Membership Information

​​​Membership in the ACVS is limited to those individuals who have achieved board certification from the ACVS. Requirements for admission to the College can be found in the ACVS Constitution & Bylaws.

The members of the College are referred to as:

  • Diplomates of the American College of Veterinary Surgeons;
  • Diplomates of the American College of Veterinary Surgeons, Large Animal; or
  • Diplomates of the American College of Veterinary Surgeons, Small Animal

These titles indicate that the individual has successfully completed a veterinary surgery residency program, have had their credentials application approved, have successfully completed the certifying examination and are members in good standing. Specialization in Large Animal Surgery or Small Animal Surgery was officially recognized for members board certified in 2004 and later.  

Membership Categories

  1. Charter Diplomates: Recognized leaders in veterinary surgery who were invited by the organizing committee to become charter members.  
  2. Active Diplomates: The ACVS Board of Regents approves these individuals after they have fulfilled the prescribed requirements and passed the certifying examination. Active Diplomates must be “members in good standing.” A member in good standing is an ACVS Diplomate whose dues payment is current and who has not, for other reasons, had his/her membership status changed.
  3. Emeritus Diplomates: A charter or active member in good standing who meets either criterion (a) or criterion (b) is granted Emeritus status and is not required to pay dues:
    1. Reaches the age of sixty-five (65) years
    2. Reaches at least sixty (60) years of age, has paid dues for twenty-five (25) consecutive years and has retired from the active practice of surgery.
  4. Honorary Diplomates: Honorary members are nominated by the members and elected by the Board of Regents and the membership. The nominees must have unusual eminence in veterinary surgery or the allied professions.

Membership Dues for ACVS Diplomates

  • Dues are determined by the Board of Regents.
  • Membership is renewed on a calendar-year basis for all active Diplomates and expires December 31.
  • ACVS bills members starting in November each year.
  • Annual dues must be paid by, or mailed with a postmark no later than, January 31.  After the January 31 postmark deadline, dues will increase by a set amount. 
  • If dues are not paid in full and postmarked by March 1, the following will occur.
    • Individuals certified prior to 2016 will lose active Diplomate status, but maintain board certification. Reinstatement requires payment of a reinstatement fee and dues for the current year.
    • Individuals certified in 2016 or later will lose active Diplomate status and board certification. Reinstatement requires payment of a reinstatement fee and completion of the applicable reinstatement process as detailed in the Maintenance of Certification Policies and Procedures.

Diplomates currently engaged in a graduate program leading to the PhD degree, or equivalent are eligible for a reduced dues rate.  To be eligible, the Diplomate’s mentor must submit a statement verifying this status, with the dues payment. 

Dues are prorated for the remainder of the year for new members. The ACVS office will convert active members to Emeritus members each year as part of the dues renewal process if year of birth is known. 

All fees are non-refundable after the receipt deadline.  Additional questions regarding dues should be addressed to the ACVS office.

Membership Benefits

Active members receive the following benefits:

Emeritus Diplomates receive the same benefits as Active Diplomates with the exception of the annual subscription to Veterinary Surgery, which they can purchase through ACVS at the discounted member rate. The ACVS office will contact Emeritus Diplomates each year regarding the print subscription to the journal.

Resources for Publicizing Diplomate Status

The ACVS provides resources for Diplomates to promote their status as ACVS board-certified veterinary surgeons to the public and referring veterinarians. View Marketing Resources