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Jobs with Animals

Updated on October 12, 2012
There are several options if you are seeking a job working with animals.
There are several options if you are seeking a job working with animals.

For many, working with animals is a dream they have held since childhood, but rarely do they make that dream a vocational reality. Far too often, the dream is abandoned due to the misconception that the only way to make a good living with animals is by becoming a veterinarian. The reality is that there are many options for interesting jobs with animals that don’t require higher education. Regardless of your skill set, expertise, or education, there are jobs with animals in which your knowledge coupled with your love of animals will allow for you to enter a profession you love. Here are 10 great examples of jobs with animals that are waiting for you to fill:

1. Animal Sanctuary

This particular job is one that allows incredible flexibility. If you have a favorite animal, you will be very likely to find one that specializes in it specifically – there are sanctuaries for monkeys, turtles, elephants, penguins and even sloths! One of the most exciting things about this career path is that it can lead to travel in some amazing countries in the animal’s natural habitat. If you fancy the potential to live abroad, this is one that will certainly open up the options.

2. Pet Grooming

This is a unique job with animals that is sure to provide you with many great anecdotes. You will get to meet animals of all shapes and sizes that need a tidy up. The profession is traditionally geared toward dogs, but animal owners are expanding their use of groomers to include other species. You will have the opportunity to allow your creative side to flourish and you may even be responsible for the grooming of show animals.

3. Animal Trainer

As with grooming, animal training is largely focused on dogs – but depending on your expertise, you could branch out into horses or even dolphins. This is a job that requires a lot of patience, but will become very rewarding. You will get to interact with numerous dogs and puppies, and are bound to have a very sociable, fun time every day of work. For a job working with animals that is also socially conscious, training dogs for the disabled (blind and deaf) is incredibly rewarding.

4. Dog-Walker

This is a great option for those who love walking, love animals, and have a lot of upper body strength. You will be helping out families who do not have enough time to take the dog out, and also ensuring that the dog lives a happy, healthy life. This will be all year round so be prepared for extremes when it comes to weather. As an entrepreneurial endeavor, this is a low cost startup that you can begin anytime.

5. Animal Protection/Advocacy

There are many companies and charities that are focused upon the protection of animals – these could be within the US looking out for stray cats or dogs, or it could mean the protection of endangered animals on another continent. You can apply skills to many different areas in these organizations, so no matter what experience you have, you will find somewhere to use it and make a difference. You could be working with the animals, or working further away to protect them – it is up to you!

6. Park Manager/ Ranger

As a Park Manger or Park Ranger, you will be In charge of protecting wilderness, be ensuring a safe habitat for thousands of creatures. If you love exploring the outdoors while finding managing the land many animals call home, then this is the perfect job for you. The beautiful national parks require lots of managing, and you can commit to looking after them while enjoying the beautiful environment.

7. School Teacher

Although some may consider that working with children is very like working with animals, this is an option that can allow for working with animals a few times a year. If you go into Science then you will take field trips of all different types that are likely to involve animals of some sort. The children need someone to help them become comfortable with animals, and you can play that role.

8. Veterinarian

As mentioned, of all of the jobs with animals, a career as a veterinarian immediately springs to mind. This is a highly regarded job insures that you will never face two days alike. Not only will you will be making a difference in the lives of the animals, but you will have enormous impact on the owners as well. The career requires a big heart, significant education and the desire to really make a difference.

There are plenty of jobs working with animals at your local zoo.
There are plenty of jobs working with animals at your local zoo.

9. Working in a zoo or Animal Sanctuary

A zoo opens so many different options for working with animals. Even if you take an administrative job, you can spend your lunch breaks enjoying the company of the animals. A zoo is such a positive and happy environment in which work and you will gain tremendous knowledge from time spent there.

10. Marine Biologist

Working with animals can also extend to working with sea life. This is a very unique job, as you will experience things that most others will never see. You could be an expert in anything ranging from coral or whales – there is an abundance of possibilities when it comes to the ocean. However, this profession does generally require you live near the sea, so relocation may be required.

There are but a sample of a few potential animal careers. Others include animal behavior specialist, animal research scientist, aquarium tour guide, underwater photographer, wildlife photographer among others. The point is that the opportunities are many, and you passion is the surest way to find a path that will allow you to realize the dream of working in a profession with animals.


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