Veterinary Technician Jobs

If you’ve always dreamed of working with animals, then you might feel as though your options are limited—or that you’ll have to go to school for an eternity in order to get your foot in the door. But have you ever thought of studying to become a veterinary technician? Keep reading for some great, general info that will get you familiar with what’s involved with becoming a veterinary tech.

Veterinary Technician Job Description

Veterinary technicians can work in a wide variety of environments. They can work in animal hospitals such as the popular Banfield hospital, which is the environment that most veterinary techs find themselves working in. However, as a veterinary technician, you could also work at a zoo, emergency clinic, or research laboratory.

Veterinary technicians have a wide array of responsibilities and duties that they must be able to perform. Some of the most common tasks include:

  • Assisting with spaying and neutering
  • Recording patient histories
  • Helping out with euthanasia
  • Collecting specimens
  • Preparing instruments, equipment, and animals for surgical procedures
  • Providing assistance to the veterinarian when it comes to dental procedures, birthing, and physical examinations
  • Exposing and developing X-rays

And these are just some of the tasks that a veterinary technician may have to complete at one point or another in his or her career.

Training to Become a Veterinary Tech

Most establishments require that their veterinary technicians have an associate’s or bachelor’s degree in veterinary technology or a related field. While an associate’s degree is the minimum for most jobs, it’s best to pursue a training program that will best prepare you for the Veterinary Technician National Exam (VTNE) and to enter the workforce. Following are some of the subjects that you can plan on studying at a good, career-focused school:

  • Anatomy
  • Animal nursing
  • Parasitology
  • Radiology
  • Zoonotic diseases

The VTNE is a four-hour certification exam that covers these major areas:

  • Dentistry procedures
  • Pharmacy and pharmacology
  • Surgical prep and assistance
  • Animal nursing
  • Laboratory procedures
  • Anesthesia
  • Radiography and ultrasound

Each state has its own way of licensing veterinary technicians, so be sure to do the research for your own state.

Earning as a Veterinary Technician

The median annual salary for veterinary techs with associate’s degrees ranges from $24,480 to $36,300, while the average wages for a veterinary technician with a bachelor’s degree ranges from $33,000 to $42,500.

Resources for Hopeful Veterinary Techs

If you’re interested in becoming a veterinary technician, there are many different resources you can turn to including:

  • Magazines such as the Veterinary Technician Journal.
  • NAVTA, the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America
  • AVMA, the American Veterinary Medical Association
  • AAHA, the American Animal Hospital Association

At the time this article was written, there were 314 veterinary technician jobs available on CareerBuilder. As you can see, the demand isn’t incredible, so it’s essential that you get the necessary training and education to stand out among other job candidates.

If you love working with animals, want to help pets and their owners, and are looking for a career that you can feel good about at the end of the day, consider studying to take on the role of a veterinary technician.

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