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Dual Certification

Dual Certification is the process by which ACVS Diplomates in good standing can be certified as surgically trained experts in an additional animal emphasis to their current certificate. Diplomates who achieve Dual Certification are endorsed by the College to advertise and practice in an animal emphasis for which they hold a current certificate.


The Dual Certification program is outlined in the Dual Certification Requirements. The Dual Certification Requirements are linked to the corresponding version of the Residency Training Standards and Requirements (Standards). That is, Diplomates initiating retraining in July 2017 would refer to both the 2017-2018 Dual Certification Requirements and the 2017-2018 Standards.

The pathway to Dual Certification is based on the date of original certification.

Statement of Intent

Diplomates planning to pursue dual certification should submit a Statement of Intent to ACVS at the start of their retraining. Receipt of this form confirms the Diplomate as a candidate for dual certification.

Documentation of Retraining

Please download the appropriate files to document your requirements.

Option A - Small Animal

Option B - Small Animal

Annual Submission

If dual certification requirements cannot be completed in 1 year, documentation of progress should be submitted to the ACVS office by August 1 for review by the Resident Credentialing Committee. 

Application for Dual Certification

Diplomates who have completed all requirements must submit an Application for Dual Certification and pay the application fee on or before August 1 each year. Read the Dual Certification Application Guidelines for instructions on compiling your application packets.

  • Application material will be available in late April 2018.
  • Deadline for receipt of application materials and fees at ACVS:  August 1, 2018


Diplomates following Option B whose applications have been accepted must pass the Phase II Surgical Competency Examination. Registration opens in October and closes mid-December.

Maintenance of Certification 

Candidates who are certified by ACVS in 2016 or later will be issued a time-limited certificate for the alternate species. Learn more about the maintenance of certification process.


Please contact Kimberly Soehnlein, Director of Certification, at 301-916-0200, ext. 104 or ksoehnlein@acvs.org, if you have any questions.

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