The European College of Zoological Medicine (ECZM) is a European Veterinary Specialist College formed under the auspices of the European Board of Veterinary Specialisation (EBVS).  The College encompasses the following Specialist areas: Avian Medicine, Herpetological Medicine, Small Mammal Medicine, Wildlife Population Health, and Zoo Health Management.

The College grants recognition as a European Veterinary Specialist in Zoological Medicine to those who have successfully passed Specialist Diplomate examinations, after undertaken a rigorous minimum 3-year period of  training, supervised by a Specialist.

Specialist Training

The public, zoological institutions and wildlife agencies are encouraged to use recognised specialist veterinarians, who are qualified to fill a unique and specific role in the delivery of modern comprehensive zoological medicine.

The College oversees the establishment, recognition, and maintenance of approved residency training programs for Specialist candidates.


The primary objectives of the College shall be the promotion of study, research advancement and practice of zoological medicine in Europe and increasing the competency of those who practise in this field by:

i) Establishing guidelines for post-graduate education, training and experience as a prerequisite to become a Specialist in one of the specialties of zoological medicine.

ii) Examining and authenticating veterinarians as specialists in zoological medicine to serve the zoological patient, its owner and the public in general, by providing expert care.

iii) Encouraging research and other contributions to knowledge in all aspects of zoological medicine and promoting communication and dissemination of this knowledge.

iv) The development, supervision and assessment of continuing education programmes in zoological medicine.

v) Committing itself to the development of a culture, which recognises the importance of quality, and quality assurance, in its activities, and to this end, the College should develop and implement a strategy for the continuous enhancement of quality.

vi) Guaranteeing and maintaining the highest level of specialisation in zoological medicine according to European Qualifications Framework (EQF) level 8.

Further Objectives

i)Encouraging the public, zoological institutions and wildlife agencies to use veterinarians who are qualified to fill a unique and specific role in the delivery of modern comprehensive zoological medicine at the specialty level. 3

ii) Positioning the zoological specialist as a common source for referrals in the veterinary community.

iii) Improving and promoting the structure of health care for animals, thereby improving its perception and understanding by owners, veterinarians and those interested in introducing animal health insurance and supplying zoological health products.

iv) Providing an incentive and reward for achieving postgraduate education and experience in Zoological Medicine at the specialist level. The title Diplomate of the European College of Zoological Medicine shall be restricted to those persons working in the field who have reached the highest level of achievement in the respective specialty

v) Encouraging veterinary schools to establish in-depth instruction and high standards for training in zoological medicine and develop specific funding for areas of research.

vi) Promoting continued improvement of practice standards and knowledge in zoological medicine through continuing education and self-assessment.

vii) Supporting the preservation of zoological species and their habitats by promulgating the concept of wise use of animal resources and the breeding of endangered species in captivity. viii) Encouraging responsible management, husbandry and breeding of zoological species.

ix) Preventing the occurrence of zoonotic and allergic diseases in man originating from zoological species.

Information Updated July 7, 2019