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A Veterinary Technician Job - A Job Working With AnimalsThat Doesn't Require A Degree.

Updated on January 12, 2012

Although a career as a Veterinary Technician, or Technologist, may be demanding and often stressful, it is also highly rewarding for anyone who truly loves animals.

Even though the duties and responsibilities of Veterinary Technicians and Technologists may be described here, as similar, Veterinary Technologists have considerably more training, which increases the complexity of their specific duties and their level of responsibility.

Veterinarian Technician/Technologists must be dedicated to the health and welfare of all animals in their care. They both work under the direction of a licensed Veterinarian so they must be willing to take direction and work as part of a team. As they deal daily with pet owners, they must have good communication skills . They must be well organized, physically strong, and mentally and emotionally stable.

Technician/Technologists must often work under unpleasant, and stressful conditions. They must be able to respond calmly, quickly, and compassionately to distressed animals, as some patients, especially when in pain, may scratch, bite, and kick.

Technicians and Technologists admit patients, record histories, admit the pet into the facility and provide special nursing care as required. They assist in diagnosing many diseases as well as other conditions that may need medical attention. They vaccinate animals and administer medications and anesthetics. They may be required to restrain animals as the veterinarian administers care. They may perform blood tests and take urine samples. They must be familiar with the medical equipment on hand as, depending on their degree of education, they may assist the Veterinarian with dental and medical procedures.

Most Veterinarian Technicians/Technologists work in private clinics, pet hospitals, and zoos. They will work with a variety of animals both large and small. Prospects for employment in this field are increasing as more and more pet owners become aware that their pets medical care is just as important to maintain health and long life, as is their own.

Technicians and Technologists may also work in research facilities, which are a major part of the growing field of medicine. Here they work under the supervision of both Physicians and Veterinarians. The environment of a research facility may be too difficult for some animal lovers.

If you want a career as a Veterinarian/Technician, you must first complete High School. If you are still in High School, it would be wise to take all the science courses available, as well as mathematics. Any volunteer experience, related to animals and their care, would be an asset. After completing High School you must take an accredited training course. Your training will involve both academic and practical courses, which will take place in a medical facility. Technicians require two year of training and Technologists require four.

Upon graduation from formal training, you need to become certified by the American Veterinary Medical Association.  Although you may begin employment with a period of on-the-job training, certification will still be required. To obtain certification you must pass a State administered exam covering oral, written, and practical aspects of the profession. Although states may vary slightly in employment qualifications, all do require certification.

This profession, although at times a difficult and distressing one, would give great satisfaction to true love animals.


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      8 years ago

      Excellent article. Inspiring. I think I should change careers.


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