Do you want to become a vet tech? This rewarding career is an excellent option for those who love animals and want to work with them. Demand for qualified and certified veterinary technicians is on the rise, so now is a great time to think about enrolling in a vet tech program or making that career change you’ve always been thinking about! If you’re interested in knowing a little bit more about what it takes to become a vet tech, keep reading.
The first thing you’ll have to think about is whether or not becoming a vet tech is right for you. The occupation can be very rewarding and fulfilling, because you are improving the quality of life for animals on a daily basis. It’s very easy to see the positive effect you’re having, so you’ll never be in doubt. On the other hand, if you become a vet tech you should prepare yourself for a lot of heartbreak and stressful times as well. Animals can’t always be saved, and they aren’t always friendly. You may also have to deal with difficult situations like distressed pet owners, severely injured animals, and euthanasia. But overall, most vet techs report that overall they are very happy with the nature of the the job.
So if you become a vet tech, what will you do? That answer depends on the type of environment you’re working in. However, there are a lot of basic duties you can expect to be responsible for: things like analyzing lab tests, patient restrain, vaccinations, and surgical assistance are some of the most common. As your career develops you may have bigger and more varied responsibilities.
Most people who want to become techs wonder how much money they can expect to make. The bottom line is that if you’re looking to get rich, you should not become a tech! The median salary for techs in 2008 was under $30,000, and most techs find there is not much room for advancement, even with experience. This is one of the biggest obstacles that steer people away from this career choice. Of course, there are ways to make more money as a tech, such as specializing in a certain discipline, moving to a larger city, gaining experience, or working in higher-paying settings like research laboratories.
So how exactly does one become a vet tech? Most techs are board-certified and have obtained a 2-year (or sometimes 4 year) Associate’s degree. This career is also one of the few that you can earn your degree online for. Keep in mind that most online degree programs require a lot of clinical practice, and therefore you will need a vet who is willing to let you work hands on at their practice in order to complete portions of your coursework.