Vetting in Dubai – How did I get here?

I have been asked a number of times how to go about seeking employment as a vet in Dubai. I have endeavoured to set out the basic process as I understand it, but it is worth bearing in mind that the processes and requirements are very much subject to change, and may indeed change very suddenly. Any good potential employer will be able to assist you in getting registered properly, and you should perhaps be cautious if they suggest that you have to do it all yourself.

So, how did I go about getting a job out here? Well……

1. I found the job advertised on a UK veterinary job agency – the job sounded interesting, Dubai sounded fun and I wanted to do some more skydiving. So I enquired. Simples. Another option could have been to send an email with my CV to the vets in Dubai, enquiring about any potential vacancies, although unless they’re actively advertising

2. Interview via Skype – once my CV was reviewed by the clinic, a Skype interview was arranged so that we could have a bit of a general chat initially. The registration process was explained to me in addition to learning about the clinic and, probably most importantly of all, just a chance to get to chat to the clinic owners.

3. Offer – I obviously did something right during the Skype interview as I was offered the position (pending successful submission of the relevant registration documents) and so the whole process of moving to Dubai began.

4. Registration – in order to work legally as a fully registered vet in the UAE, I had to complete various steps, which took a few months to complete. The first criteria, however, was that I had to have a minimum of 5 year’s experience as a veterinary surgeon. The process was:

Notarise copies of my education certificates (from GCSE right through to degree), official university transcripts and letters from my previous employers over the past 5 years. This was done by my local solicitor.

– The documents above were then sent to the UK Embassy in London to be legalised by my home Government before being submitted to the UAE Embassy to do the same.

– Once legalised, the documents were sent to Dubai and I then traveled out to submit my education documents in person in Abu Dhabi. Once that was done, it was a case of waiting to hear that I was being granted my labour visa before flying out to start.

– After landing in Dubai, one of the first things I had to do was have a medical, which involved a blood test and chest X-ray. This is standard and was all ok.

– The final step in getting fully registered was to sit the ministry exam, a short hour long test sat in person at the ministry. Once this was passed then I was fully registered and good to go πŸ™‚

As I have already said, the process that I went through took several months and the rules are subject to change, so I would thoroughly recommend you check things with any clinic that you are looking to be employed by. Also, I was not expected to do any of the registration myself here in Dubai, which was good as it is quite a confusing process and can involve a lot of back and forth between various ministries, something that as a new arrival in Dubai would have been very very stressful. Thankfully, my employers handled everything on my behalf and were really supportive, and guided me whenever there was anything that I had to do in person. I would therefore be a little cautious of any potential employer who advises you to head over to Dubai before a lot of the pre-registration work has been done or who tells you that you need to go over and do it all yourself, as at least one person I know had to do. It took her months and a lot of headaches to finally get registered.

Anyway, hope this is of help and interest. Good luck and maybe see you in Dubai πŸ™‚

5 thoughts on “Vetting in Dubai – How did I get here?”

  1. Hi Chris,

    My name is Eduard. Very interesting blog, well done.
    Could I ask you something about your last post? Is there any possibility to work in UAE as a Vet without 5 years experience?

    Thank you very much in advance,


    1. My understanding is that no, not as a fully registered vet, unless you are a UAE national, in which case you need less experience. Thanks for your question Eduard.

  2. Hi Dr Pranesh. Thanks for your question. I have endeavoured to provide some additional information on the exam in a new post: Dubai Vet Exam. That should answer your questions πŸ™‚

  3. Hi Chris

    I am due to travel to the UAE with my husband who got a medical job there. I have worked in the UK for 5 years as a vet (BVetMed MRCVS) but not sure whether that will count as adequate experience, as I did not always do 40 hrs due to family reasons. Would I be able to work? I have no intention of working solo and would probably even opt for charity work. However I need to keep up my skills especially surgical. Can I thus work alongside a senior vet or do voluntary work? What is actually meant by veterinary assistant? I am a British citizen.

    Thanks for all your advice.

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