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AAHA referral standards

Referral accreditation

AAHA’s unparalleled experience in evaluating thousands of animal hospitals also includes specialty practices through our referral accreditation program.

Practice benefits

Referral accreditation provides general practitioners with additional confidence that you follow the same high principles they live by, and that you understand the importance of communication throughout the referral process.

In addition, clients and their pets benefit from having both an accredited primary veterinarian and specialists working together to ensure optimal care.


To receive AAHA referral accreditation, practices must have a board-certified specialist on staff in the specialty being pursued. Additionally, AAHA membership is required for practices seeking referral accreditation.

Referral accreditation is available for most specialties, including:

  • Anesthesiology (DACVAA)
  • Avian (DABVP)
  • Behavior (DACVB)
  • Canine and Feline (DABVP)
  • Dentistry (DAVDC)
  • Dermatology (DACVD)
  • Emergency and critical care (DACVECC)
  • Exotics and companion mammal (DABVP)
  • Feline (DABVP)
  • Internal Medicine: Cardiology (DACVIM)
  • Internal Medicine: Neurology (DACVIM)
  • Internal Medicine: Oncology (DACVIM)
  • Internal Medicine: Small Animal (DACVIM)
  • Ophthalmology (DACVO)
  • Radiology (DACVR)
  • Radiology: Radiation Oncology (DACVO)
  • Reptile and amphibian (DABVP)
  • Surgery (DACVS)

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