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Fossil Rim Wildlife Center Fellowship


Fossil Rim Wildlife Center

Address (City, Street, State/Province, Zip)

2155 County Road 2008

Primary Contact

Julie Swenson, DVM, Dipl. ACZM

Primary Contact Email, Phone

Number of Positions Available


Matching Program?


On what date will this position next be available?

July 1st of each year

Application Deadline

December 15th of the prior year

Application should include

Letter of intent, CV, and three letters of recommendation

Experience Required

Preference will be given to veterinarians with at least one year post graduate experience in zoo, exotic, or wildlife medicine. 

Accept International Applicants




Length of Commitment/Start Date

1 year, starts on July 1st of each year

Program Description

Fossil Rim Wildlife Center is pleased to offer a one year long Zoological Medicine Fellowship for graduate veterinarians interested in pursuing a career in Zoo and Wildlife Conservation and Medicine. This fellowship is designed to provide experience in nondomestic animal medicine with a focus on the application of veterinary principles to semi-free ranging species and conservation medicine. 


As a member of the Conservation Centers for Species Survival (C2S2), Fossil Rim Wildlife Center offers a unique experience to work with captive wildlife in a naturalistic environment. The majority of the hoofstock in the collection are housed in semi-free ranging conditions over the park’s 1800 acres, allowing for herd management and field immobilizations to be common principles here at Fossil Rim. In addition to this strong emphasis on exotic hoofstock, the facility focuses on propagation and care of several endangered species including black rhino, multiple species of wolves, Attwater’s prairie chickens, and many others. Fossil Rim is also a member of the Cheetah Breeding Centers Coalition, having produced over 180 cubs since the cheetah program began at this institution. These large scale programs allow veterinarians to participate in slightly different aspects of zoological medicine than are found in traditional zoo settings. 


The fellow will participate as a full member of the veterinary team, which oversees the veterinary care and management of 1,000+ specimens of over 40 species. Although all aspects of veterinary management will be included in the fellowship, the primary focus will be to improve the comfort level of the fellow with anesthesia, particularly of exotic hoofstock. Given the herd structure at Fossil Rim, anesthesia of exotic hoofstock is often part of the daily routine. Compared to most traditional zoos that may average around 5-10 per year, Fossil Rim averages more than 150 hoofstock immobilizations every year. This creates a unique environment for becoming competent and comfortable with hoofstock anesthesia. 


Responsibilities of the fellow will include case management, pathology, preventative medicine, breeding management, and record keeping, as well as training of final year veterinary students, staff, and veterinary technician interns. Research and publications are highly encouraged and the fellow will be expected to produce at least one publication for a peer-reviewed journal by the end of the fellowship. The position will also include opportunities for collaboration with the Fort Worth Zoo (about a 60 min drive from Fossil Rim), which may include the opportunity to visit and participate in specific procedures, spend an out rotation at the zoo, participate in joint journal clubs and rounds sessions, and / or collaborate on research projects depending on timing and resources. Collaboration with other institutions is also encouraged. 


Application requests include a letter of intent, curriculum vitae, and three letters of recommendation. Preference will be given to veterinarians with at least one year post graduate experience in zoo, exotic, or wildlife medicine. The deadline for application is December 15th of each year and the position will start on July 1st of the following year. This program is NOT in the VIRMP system.  However, in order to help applicants remain compliant with VIRMP requirements for other positions they may be applying to, the decision for the fellowship will be made either before the date for withdrawing from the match or after the match results have been released depending on the level of applications received.  Please see our website for additional information on our institution ( You can also send any additional questions or requests for further instructions on how to apply to (Julie Swenson, DVM, Dipl. ACZM).

Last Date Edited



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