What Does a Veterinary Technician Do?
Do have have compassion for animals and want to devote your career to helping them? If caring for sick and injured pets is your natural calling in life, a veterinary technician can be the career for you.
Vet Tech Career Outlook
Vet techs are enjoying great demand for their specialized skills and training. The veterinarians who rely on them are increasingly hiring technicians to perform patient care and lab work, replacing less skilled veterinary assistants. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, between 2014 and 2024, 17,900 new vet tech jobs will be created. This field is growing at a rate of 19 percent, much faster than that of the average occupation.
Where would I find work as a vet tech?
You might work in a small-animal practitioner’s office where most of your patients are cats, dogs, rabbits, and mice, or you could work in a practice that treats large animals, including horses, cattle, and pigs. Some veterinarians specialize in exotic pets, such as birds, ferrets, fish, turtles, snakes, and frogs.
While most vet technicians work in private animal clinics, you can find employment in an after-hours emergency hospital or a research laboratory, depending on your specific area of interest and pet-related passion. Vet techs in research-related jobs, such as biomedical research or food safety, ensure that laboratory animals are treated humanely.
What would my day as a vet tech include?
Under the supervision of a licensed veterinarian, you perform duties related to the diagnosing of illness and injuries of animals:
- Record patients’ case histories during office visits and observe behavior
- Restrain animals during exams or procedures
- Administer medications and vaccines
- Clip animals’ nails or claws, bathe and brush them
- Collect laboratory samples needed for tests, including urine, blood, stool, and tissue
- Perform laboratory tests, such as urinalyses and blood counts
- Take and develop X-rays
- Conduct dental cleanings
- Administer anesthesia and monitor animals’ responses
- Prep animals for surgery and assist during the procedure
- Provide postoperative and nursing care or emergency first aid to recovering or injured animals
- Discuss a pet’s condition with the owner; demonstrate how to administer medications
What certifications and education do I need to be a veterinary technician?
Veterinary technicians need a two-year associate’s degree from a veterinary technology program. This prepares you to take a credentialing exam called the Veterinary Technician National Examination, or VTNE. This exam is administered by the American Association of Veterinary State Boards and is used to determine veterinary technicians' competency to practice and to be credentialed. You may need to be registered, licensed, or certified, depending on the requirements of the state in which you plan to work.
If you’d like to learn more about our program that can prepare you to care for four-legged animal patients as part of a skilled and compassionate veterinary team, then put your skills to use as a vet tech.
To learn more about our Regulatory Information: https://www.brownmackie.edu/policies/social-media-overview Brown Mackie College does not guarantee third-party certification/licensure. Outside agencies control the requirements for taking and passing certification/licensing exams and are subject to change without notice to Brown Mackie College.