These Are The 10 Highest Veterinarian Salaries By State

Chris Kolmar
by Chris Kolmar
Best States For Professions, Rankings - 2 years ago
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Without fail, in surveys across basically every demographic, the number one most important aspect of a job for most people is the salary — how much do veterinarians get paid where I live?

And while there are many things to go into how much you, specifically, can expect to make, there’s really good data for average salaries for veterinarians by state across America broken down by seniority level. So while your city may be slightly different than the state average, these averages give you a rough sense of what to expect for your salary.

To better understand how veterinarian salaries change across America, we decided to take a look the most recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics on average pay for veterinarians by state.

Additionally, we wanted to adjust the salary based on the cost of living in a state — because your salary goes further in North Carolina than it does in California.

The state with the best salary for veterinarians after this adjustment? That would be Oklahoma. Here’s a quick snapshot of the top ten states for veterinarian salaries:

  1. Oklahoma
  2. Hawaii
  3. Wyoming
  4. Pennsylvania
  5. Texas
  6. Virginia
  7. Michigan
  8. North Carolina
  9. New Jersey
  10. Rhode Island

Let’s take a look at how we got here and a full ranking of all the states.

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How we determined veterinarian pay by state

As we mentioned earlier, we took the average annual salary data for veterinarians from the 2015 Bureau of Labor Statistics — specifically their “Occupational Employment Statistics”.

To make the comparison of salaries apples to apples across states, we also took into account the cost of living in each state.

We then created an index by dividing the average wage for a state by the cost of living relative to average. As an example, the cost of living index in California is 135.9 and the average pay is $114,870, so our index value would be:

$114,870 * (100 / 135.9) = $84,525

We then ranked every state on this criteria with the state with the highest salary index ranking as highest average salary for veterinarians.

Here’s a look at the full ranking for all states.

Detailed List Of Veterinarian Salaries By State

Rank State Adjusted Salary Average Wage Cost Of Living
1 Oklahoma $119,091 $106,230 89.2
2 Hawaii $118,284 $198,600 167.9
3 Wyoming $115,664 $106,180 91.8
4 Pennsylvania $111,390 $112,950 101.4
5 Texas $110,121 $99,880 90.7
6 Virginia $106,964 $107,820 100.8
7 Michigan $106,651 $94,920 89.0
8 North Carolina $105,985 $99,520 93.9
9 New Jersey $104,290 $127,130 121.9
10 Rhode Island $103,728 $125,200 120.7
11 Indiana $103,664 $92,780 89.5
12 Delaware $101,360 $102,780 101.4
13 Idaho $100,206 $92,290 92.1
14 Mississippi $99,476 $85,450 85.9
15 Iowa $98,923 $90,020 91.0
16 New Mexico $98,601 $95,150 96.5
17 Connecticut $98,379 $125,630 127.7
18 Florida $97,711 $96,050 98.3
19 Missouri $97,621 $88,250 90.4
20 Arkansas $97,278 $84,730 87.1
21 Kentucky $96,044 $86,920 90.5
22 Arizona $94,591 $92,700 98.0
23 Georgia $94,573 $86,440 91.4
24 Tennessee $94,519 $84,500 89.4
25 New York $94,389 $123,650 131.0
26 Ohio $94,339 $88,490 93.8
27 Illinois $94,270 $89,180 94.6
28 Utah $93,989 $87,410 93.0
29 Wisconsin $93,326 $90,340 96.8
30 South Carolina $92,207 $91,470 99.2
31 West Virginia $90,438 $84,470 93.4
32 Maryland $90,143 $113,130 125.5
33 Louisiana $89,462 $84,810 94.8
34 Nevada $89,012 $91,950 103.3
35 Washington $86,986 $91,510 105.2
36 Maine $86,850 $96,230 110.8
37 North Dakota $85,824 $85,310 99.4
38 Alabama $85,526 $78,000 91.2
39 South Dakota $85,159 $88,310 103.7
40 California $84,525 $114,870 135.9
41 Nebraska $84,508 $77,410 91.6
42 Massachusetts $83,988 $112,040 133.4
43 Colorado $83,930 $87,120 103.8
44 New Hampshire $83,324 $97,490 117.0
45 Minnesota $82,331 $82,990 100.8
46 Kansas $80,322 $72,210 89.9
47 Vermont $76,110 $92,170 121.1
48 Montana $72,628 $73,210 100.8
49 Alaska $71,746 $94,060 131.1
50 Oregon $69,238 $80,040 115.6

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