Medical Director/Veterinarian

Tuesday, October 24, 2023

Do you have a desire to make a difference in the lives of animals while doing so with a great work/life balance? Friends of Strays, located in sunny St. Petersburg, Florida, is seeking a shelter veterinarian/medical director to join our team.

You would serve as lead veterinarian of the hospital, supported by a medical manager and 6 vet techs. The selected candidate will join the Friends of Strays leadership team and will have substantial input on the direction of the medical department/program within the organization and future growth.

Friends of Strays is the first no-kill animal shelter in St. Petersburg and just celebrated our 45th anniversary in September, 2023. We are growing and caring for more animals than ever with almost 2,000 adoptions a year and providing services to community cats through our RTF and TNVR programs. We have an outsized impact on our community and are looking for an experienced vet to join our team to help us save even more lives.

St. Petersburg, Florida, located in Pinellas County, is close to beaches, has a strong arts and music scene, and has a community that loves their animals. Friends of Strays prides itself on our friendly and welcoming culture and we encourage our employees and volunteers to bring their true selves to work with them each day.

Interested in joining our team? Reach out to CEO Dara Eckart at [email protected] start the conversation.

Essential Job Duties:

Coordinates and directs shelter medical operations and ensures sound veterinary medical practices

  • With the Medical Manager, leads the evaluation and establishment of shelter medical protocols
  • Continually improves the medical management program and ensures high-quality medical care and services for shelter guests including those temporarily in foster care, focusing on identification, treatment and prevention of health problems thereby increasing adoptions and decreasing adoption returns
  • Makes recommendations and collaborates with the CEO, Medical Manager, and Shelter Director in the formulation of shelter medical objectives, practices, plans and decisions that influence operations to ensure optimal health of sheltered animals
  • Oversees the maintenance of shelter drug and supply inventory while meeting and maintaining DEA requirements
  • Actively participates as a member of the leadership team; attends applicable meetings
  • Fulfills commitments to sponsors and donors, as needed, in a manner that will support FOS needs. Supports events, fundraising, and media spots as needed
  • Performs duties in a manner which encourages attainment of goals, contributions, and business for FOS and its programs

Provides leadership to FOS personnel

  • Maintains effective communication with staff through daily contact, in scheduled meetings, informally or in writing, as needed to coordinate and direct medical functions of the shelter
  • Provides guidance to staff for situations requiring immediate medical problem solving
  • Participates in interviewing and hiring decisions for shelter medical staff
  • Oversees that appropriate shelter medical personnel are certified in euthanasia
  • Communicates directly with the Medical Director, Shelter Director, and CEO with regard to care of all shelter animals
  • Identifies and helps to resolve ethics issues
  • Treats people and animals with respect; contributes to effective teamwork; promotes intra- and inter-departmental cooperation; and fosters public relations beneficial to Friends of Strays

Performs the duties of a staff veterinarian, including but not limited to

  • Evaluates and determines the disposition of incoming animals
  • Provides medical services to all shelter animals, including physical examinations, diagnostics, medical rounds, and treatments
  • Performs sterilization surgeries and other surgical procedures for shelter animals, rescue partner animals, TNVR and RTF cats
  • Ensures appropriate medication is administered by shelter veterinary staff as directed
  • Advises, performs or oversees euthanasia performed within the shelter
  • Provides on-call services for shelter animal emergencies
  • Provides professional credibility to FOS’s endeavor to help all domestic pets
  • Maintains appropriate licensing and completes required continuing education courses. Adheres to state regulations and organizational protocol regarding animal care, treatment, advocacy, and the mission of FOS
  • Takes immediate action to address any safety concern or noncompliance of safety rules that could put an employee, volunteer, client, animal, or the organization at risk


  • DVM/VMD degree from an AVMA accredited Veterinary School
  • Active, non-restricted FL state license or ability to obtain one
  • Work experience in developing, managing, and motivating a team
  • Demonstrated expertise in shelter operations, disease control and animal behavior
  • Preferred experience with HQHV Spay/Neuter surgery
  • 3-5 years experience in shelter medicine preferred
  • Ability to create and implement protocols and procedures and mentor staff in collaborative work environment
  • Must be computer literate and experienced with Windows based software, PetPoint, and Clinic HQ or an equivalent integrated shelter software case management system
  • Empathy and compassion for the animals under our care


  • Full-time Staff Veterinarian - 8 hour shifts/5 days a week
  • Competitive yearly salary ($125,000)
  • Health benefits (medical, dental, vision, maternity/paternity leave)
  • Discounts on medications and medical care for own pets
  • Retirement plan (401 K)
  • 11 paid holidays, and unlimited PTO after 90 days
  • Continuing education and license reimbursement ($2000 annually)
  • As a 501(C)(3) organization, this position would be eligible for the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program
  • No overnight work - GREAT WORK LIFE BALANCE
  • Make a difference in the community by providing lifesaving medical and surgical care

Job Type: Full-time

Pay: From $125,000.00 per year


  • 401(k)
  • Dental insurance
  • Employee discount
  • Health insurance
  • Paid time off
  • Parental leave
  • Professional development assistance
  • Vision insurance


  • 8 hour shift

Supplemental pay types:

  • Bonus opportunities

Ability to commute/relocate:

  • Saint Petersburg, FL 33714: Reliably commute or planning to relocate before starting work (Required)

Work Location: In person

Interested in joining our team? Reach out to CEO Dara Eckart at [email protected] to start the conversation.