dcsimg

Veterinary Technician

Job Duties

Veterinary technicians are the nurses of the veterinary world, providing many of the same types of assistance to veterinarians that a nurse would to a physician. They usually work for a veterinarian in a private practice, treating and diagnosing pets and other animals. They perform a wide variety of tests, including urinalysis and blood counts. While some duties are performed in a laboratory, many are performed in close contact with animals and their owners, such as exposing x-rays and providing nursing care. They may supervise or train other employees, or they may discuss the condition of an animal with its owner.

In smaller practices, veterinary technicians typically work with dogs and cats, although they sometimes work with smaller animals, such as mice, fish, and birds. Some may work in research facilities where they administer medications to animals, prepare laboratory samples, and monitor animals' physical condition. Some provide support to veterinarians during surgery and post-surgery recovery. Others are required to vaccinate or even euthanize ill animals.

Job Skills

Veterinary technicians need to be skilled communicators, because they are often required to discuss sensitive issues with pet owners who have developed a strong emotional bond with their pets. They should be able to work well in a team setting. They also should be organized and detail-oriented.

Income

In 2002, veterinary technicians earned a median annual salary of $22,950. Earnings ranged from the lowest 10%, who earned less than $16,170, to the highest 10%, who earned more than $33,750.

Training and Education

For entry-level veterinary technician jobs, a 2-year associate degree in veterinary technology is required. Some positions either require, or favor applicants who have earned, a 4-year bachelor's degree in veterinary technology. There are more than 80 veterinary technology programs in the United States that are accredited by the American Veterinary Medial Association (AVMA). Veterinary technicians are regulated by each State in a different way, but all States require applicants for registration or licensure to pass a written, oral, and practical exam. These exams are regulated by the State Board of Veterinary Examiners or a State agency. Most States use the National Veterinary Technician (NVT) test.

Veterinary technicians seeking work in research laboratories must become certified by the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science (AALAS) in one of three areas: animal husbandry and welfare, facility administration and management, and animal health. Certification requires work experience, education, and an examination. Veterinary technicians usually begin work by training under the direction of a veterinarian. Those who have had more hands-on training do not usually have to be trained for as long a period. As experience is gained, veterinary technicians move on to more responsibility and less supervision. They may eventually become supervisors.

Employment

In 2002, veterinary technicians held about 53,000 jobs. Most worked in veterinary services, while the rest worked in boarding kennels, animal shelters, stables, grooming shops, zoos, and local, State, and Federal agencies.

Job Outlook

Between 2002 and 2012, employment of veterinary technicians is expected to increase much faster than the average due to the growing affluence of pet owners and their increasing willingness to spend more money on their pets. However, job competition is expected to be very fierce because of an expected slow growth in zoo capacity, low turnover in the occupation, the limited number of jobs, and the attractiveness of the occupation.

For more information on becoming a veterinarian, please see our directory of Veterinary Schools


Veterinary Technician Training

Refine School Matches
Hide filters
  • SUBJECT Clear All

  • DEGREE

    See More

  • PROGRAM TYPE

  • START TIME

    LOCATION
    Please enter valid US or Canada Zip.
            Results open in new window

            Searching Searching ...

            Matching School Ads
            Fitness & Nutrition
            • Provides students the opportunity to train at home in their spare time to get their high school diploma, train for a new career, or enhance current skills.
            • Offers programs in psychology/social work, business management, medical billing, criminal justice, and more.
            • Member of the United States Distance Learning Association (USDLA), the Canadian Network for Innovation in Education (CNIE), and the International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE).
            • Features a fully flexible schedule with no classes to attend, leaving the study pace up to the student.
            Show more [+]
            • Online Courses
            Nursing (Post-licensure) - Bachelor
            • Average class size is 25, allowing for more one-on-one time with instructors.
            • Has a 97% employment rate among available graduates.
            • All  graduates receive Lifetime Employment  Assistance—free and forever.
            • Michigan's largest independent college.
            • Most instructors are working professionals in the fields they teach.
            • Programs are continuously updated to ensure classes are career-relevant and in sync with what's needed in the industry
            Show more [+]
            • Accredited
            • Online Courses
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Accelerated Programs
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Medical Assistant Program
            • Offers training in various types of massage therapy, physical therapy/sports rehab, and personal fitness training & wellness.
            • Teaches in an environment that promotes learning and encourages empathetic and compassionate therapists.
            • Career service professionals work directly with students from the start of their program, and help them pursue employment in day spas, luxury hotels, cruise ships, and other locations.
            • Students can work in the SOCHI Massage Clinic to gain experience and build their career skills.
            • Financial aid representatives help students develop a personalized financial plan to finance their tuition.
            Show more [+]
            • Financial Aid
            MSN - Family Nurse Practitioner

            Nursing@Simmons, the innovative, online nursing degree program from Simmons School of Nursing and Health Sciences prepares Registered Nurses for the next stage of their careers.

            You need to have a Bachelor’s degree and RN license to be qualified for this school.

            • Online Courses
            Veterinary Assistant
            • Founded in Southern California in 1998 by dog training expert Steven Appelbaum.
            • The largest independent dog training company in the United States.
            • Offers 11-stage programs that feature an in-home study component along with a hands-on training module.
            • A member of the MyCAA Financial Assistance program, which offers eligible military spouses up to $4,000 of tuition assistance that can be used towards any of their courses.
            • Helps graduates find employment and coaches those who are looking to start their own business.
            Show more [+]
            • Online Courses
            Veterinary Technology Alternate Route - Certificate
            • A Los Angeles-based private college offering programs in medical sciences, legal studies, and graphic design since 1985.
            • Has weekend programs, including certified  veterinary technology, nurse assistant, and hemodialysis technician.
            • Showcases visual communication students’ artwork and design through campus magazine.
            • 3 campuses in Southern California.
            • Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).
            Show more [+]
            • Accredited
            • Online Courses
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Accelerated Programs
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Certificate - Veterinary Assistant
            • Offers a program that translates work and military experience into college credit, transfers in credit from other college programs, and offers the flexibility of day, evening and online coursework.
            • Provides in-person tutoring, IT support, access to library resources, and job placement assistant for graduates.
            • Features a new blended-learning curriculum, which involves a mix of campus and online courses.
            • Has 11 campuses across Southern California, Washington, and Alaska, and online courses with campus support. 
            Show more [+]
            • Accredited
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Accelerated Programs
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Veterinary Assisting
            • A private, accredited distance learning college based in Norcross, Georgia founded in 1987.
            • Ensures that service members, their spouses and veterans can maximize their military education benefits.
            • Gives students the option to customize monthly payments to fit their budgets and lifestyle.
            • Offers all-inclusive tuition: textbooks, learning materials, and academic support are covered in the cost.
            • Allows alumni to enroll in any future program at a reduced rate.
            Show more [+]
            • Online Courses
            MSN Nurse Educator

            About University of North Carolina Wilmington

             

            To meet today’s high demand for nursing professionals UNCW is offering an accredited Bachelor of Science in Nursing program completely online. The University of North Carolina Wilmington School of Nursing has been educating exceptional nurses for over four decades, as demonstrated by its accomplished alumni.

            • Online Courses
            Dental Assisting
            • Offers a free trial period so students can attend classes before paying tuition.
            • Provides blended courses that combine traditional classroom instruction with online learning.
            • Lets students connect with peers at any time, and instructors during office hours with online chat rooms.
            • Gives students the chance to participate in externships and clinical training work under the general supervision of college staff.
            • Has accelerated programs that allow students to take the same coursework in a shorter timeframe.
            Show more [+]
            • Accredited
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits