Safari4u Vet Student Internship
This internship was designed for students who have completed at least 1 year of a veterinary course. The internship structure is an equal mix of small animal, large animal, and wildlife aspects, as in the Vet Experience program, however, the Vet Student Internship has more advanced skills and procedures, a smaller group size, and a full-time, highly qualified mixed-practice South African vet. Vet Student interns work alongside the vet, seeing a wide range of species, working through clinical cases, and participating in focused discussion groups. This internship has a limited number of sessions but vet students are also welcome to join our Vet Experience program!
3-week session: $3,500 USD
DepartureJune 12-July 12 | July 12-Aug 2 | Aug 2-Aug 23
Departure TimeSmall Animal | Large Animal | Wildlife
Return TimeVet Students | Vet Techs & Nurses | Vets
Dress CodeInterns receive a welcome packet on arrival with a full program itinerary, guide to local culture and t-shirt. Training is provided for all activities. The program fee supports our non-profit clinic as well as volunteer activities, transportation and accommodation. Limited to 6 interns per session.
IncludedAccommodationAirport TransfersLaundry FacilitiesMealsOn-Site SupportPre-Departure SupportWi-fi
Not IncludedFlightsFree-time ActivitiesTravel InsuranceVisa Fees (if applicable)
- Cattle pregnancy testing & vitamin injections (Large Animal)
- Reptile handling (Wildlife)
- Non-Profit Small Animal Clinic (Small Animal)
- Dart gun introduction & training
- Game capture (wildlife)
- Small Animal Spay Day (Small Animal)
Saturday & Sunday:
Chintsa East is the “home base” of the program. Vet Student and Vet Experience volunteers share the volunteer house. The house has 2 bathrooms, 6 bedrooms (2-8 volunteers per room), kitchen, living room, front yard and deck/braai area. Chintsa East is a beach town near many villages, farms and game reserves, which provide access to a wide range of animals and activities. Volunteers stay at one of our Community Project sites 1-2 nights per session. Bedding is provided (sheets, pillows, blankets) and we guarantee safe and comfortable accommodation at all sites. Meals are simple and nutritious. Breakfast consists of cereal, fruit, eggs, toast, tea, and coffee. Volunteers pack a sandwich lunch at the beginning of each day- options include meat & cheese, peanut butter & jelly, or tuna mayo, along with fruit and juice. Dinner includes a protein, a starch, and at least 1 vegetable. We try to accommodate all dietary preferences- our vegetarian menu has gotten rave reviews!
Vet/Animal Activities:Learn about all the animals you'll be working with here.
- Assisting at our non-profit small animal clinic (1-2 days per week)
- Clinical exams, basic wound care, and treatment
- Community education
- Discussion Topics: in-depth clinical case discussion, aggression, tick-borne disease, TVTs
- Cattle (beef & dairy): Pregnancy testing, dehorning, routine checks, wound care, treatment
- Sheep & goats: Pregnancy scanning, tail docking & castrating lambs, routine checks, wound care, treatment
- Pigs: Artificial insemination, tail docking (piglets), routine checks, wound care, treatment
- Horses: Lameness exams, dental exams, routine checks, wound care, treatment
- Discussion topics: in-depth clinical case discussion, abattoirs, disease control
- Game Capture: Vet Students work closely with the wildlife vet and their capture team to locate, immobilize, transport, and release wildlife, a process also known as “Game Capture”. As with the Vet Experience Program, there will be at least 1 game capture per week but working in a smaller, more experienced group you can expect to be more hands-on and more involved in the clinical aspects.
- Game counts & wildlife identification: Learn about land caring capacity and identify exotic species
- Parasite control: Darting with parasiticides (firearm handling & safety training provided)
- Discussion group topics: conservation, hunting, Five Freedoms
- Animal Experience (hours/week): 30-40
- Vet Experience (hours/week): 40-50
- Clinical Experience (hours/week): 20-30
- Surgical Experience* (hours/week): 0-10
Weekend Activities and Trips include:Stay Local: Our motto is “work hard, play hard!" Weekends and evenings are free time for volunteers on all programs to unwind from the excitement of the week. Some students head to the beach or hang out at the local cafe for a laid-back atmosphere, but those looking for more excitement can certainly find it in and around Chintsa. All bookings can be made on arrival.
- Horse Riding - Take a leisurely ride from the bush to the beach and support our local equine rescue and rehabilitation center (3 Hours).
- Surf Lessons - Learn to ride the waves on the beautiful Chintsa Beach with a qualified instructor (3 hours).
- Elephant Interaction - Visit the Elephant Sanctuary and have an interactive and educational experience with the world’s largest land mammal (1 hour)
- Quad Bike Safari Tour - Ride through the game reserve on your own ATV and see wildlife from a whole new perspective (1 or 2 hours)
- Zipline Tours - Fly through the game reserve over 10 zip lines up to 153m long and 70m high (2 hours)
- Kayaking/Canoeing - Take a leisurely paddle through the game reserve and enjoy the scenery (half day)
- Abseiling - Repel down the cliffs of the Areena game reserve to really get your adrenaline pumping (1 hour)
- Spa Treatments - Think you deserve some pampering after running around in the bush all week? Head to Crawford’s Spa to release that tension and start the next week rested and refreshed.
- Brewery Tour - Visit our local brewery, learn about the brewing process and even stay for lunch.
- Volleyball - Join the locals in a friendly game or grab some friends and start your own match.
Want to see more of South Africa? Use the weekend to explore the Eastern Cape, Wild Coast, or even Cape Town by rental car or Baz Bus. All bookings can be made on arrival.
- Addo Elephant National Park - Visit the third largest National Park in South Africa and see some of the country’s most amazing creatures in their natural habitat.
- Hogsback Mountain Village - J. R. R. Tolkien’s inspiration for The Lord of the Rings’ fantasy world “Middle-earth”.
- Shark Cage Diving - Get up close and personal with some great white sharks for a once-in-a-lifetime experience that’s sure to get your blood pumping.
- Bungee Jumping - If you’re an adrenaline junky, head to the Bloukrans Bridge for the tallest commercial bridge bungee jump in the world.
- Sky Diving - There’s no better place to jump out of a plane than over the beautiful Garden Route.
- Cango Caves - Walk and climb through this natural landmark to experience one of South Africa’s most popular tourist destinations.
- Sandboarding - When in Africa… ride the dune!
- Cape Town - Climb Table Mountain (or take the cable car) | See Nelson Mandela’s prison cell on Robben Island | Take a wine-tasting tour | Experience night life on Long Street | Waddle down to the penguin colony | Have breakfast and shop at the V&A Waterfront | And a lot more!