What is the Job Description of a Vet Tech?

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Humans need medical care as well as animals, that brings us to the importance of a vet. tech. Just before that, what is the job description of a vet tech?

Normally, we all know  veterinary doctors to be the ones who take care of animals or rather pets.

But, most times, veterinary doctors also need assistance. 

And that’s where a vet tech comes into play.

Since you are reading this article, I guess you are a volunteer or job seeker, who has interest in animals and want to know what it takes to become a health care provider to them.

The job description of a vet technician may differ depending on your location.

However, this article has what to expect irrespective of your location. 

In addition, you may encounter little variation depending on your country’s law.

job description duties and responsibilities of a vet tech.

What does are the duties and responsibilities of a vet tech?

A vet tech is to an animal what a nurse is to humans.

In other words, they perform several nursing duties to animals, under the supervision of a veterinary doctor.

They also perform any task allocated to them by the veterinarian under whose supervision they work.

But, there are exceptions. Some of these exceptions include:

  • Diagnosis
  • Surgery
  • Drug prescription

The job description of a vet tech is similar to that of a registered nurse. 

But in this case, animals are the patients.

According to the United States bureau labour statistics, the job opportunities for vet techs should increase by 16% in 2029.

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What are the duties and responsibilities of a vet tech?

A vet technician usually takes orders form a veterinary doctor. As such does what ever task he or she is ordered to do.

Here are some of the duties and responsibilities to expect.

  • carry out diagnostic tests, scans and x-rays.
  • Carry out a physical examination of pets.
  • Administer drugs and vaccines to animals.
  • Provide first aid or emergency treatment to animals.
  • Evaluate and also record the state and behaviour of animals
  • Prepare animals as well as necessary equipment and Instruments for surgery.
  • Train animal owners on what they need to know about pet home care.
  • Keep animals stable during examination or treatment.
  • Work as a team with a vet assistant and or technologist.

Volunteering or taking a job as a vet tech may be a good start point into a full blown career in veterinary science.

Usually, the passion for this job is born out of love for animals.

What qualifications do I require to become a vet tech?

The qualifications required to become a vet tech may differ depending on your location.

But in general a good knowledge of maths and biology is advantageous.

The job description of a vet tech requires a certification, license or registration.

A four years bachelor’s degree program or a two years associate degree are the common routes to becoming a veterinary technician.

Online education is also available but you will also need a level of clinical practice.

The academic curriculum of veterinary technician may include:

  • Animal nursing
  • Use laboratory instruments and handling procedures
  • Handling surgical instruments and procedures

Just in case you decide to undertake an online program, ensure to look out for one that has AVMA accreditation.

But such online courses require a lot of data and time to accomplish.

As a veterinary technician prospective student, here are some things to look out for:

  • Obtain high quality education.
  • Earn a certification that will gain the confidence of an employer.
  • Obtain scores or credits that can be transferred to other accredited institutions.

What skills or personality suits a veterinary technician?

Passion is the major thing every good vet tech should posses. True love for animals makes a good vet tech.

In addition, some of the skills a vet technician should posses are as follows:

1. Communication skills

A good vet tech should be able to properly communicate necessary information.

Good communication skills is very important especially for training pet owners.

And also for communicating animal condition and behavior to veterinarians.

2. Compassion

Compassion for animals is also a skill that makes a good vet technician.

As a good vet tech, you should always be kind to pets.

3. Strength

A good vet technician should be physically strong in order to  restrain animals for examination or treatment.

What are the areas of expertise of a veterinary technician?

The National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America recognise 11 veterinary technician areas of expertise.

These areas of specialization include:

  1. Clinical practice
  2. Clinical pathology
  3. Emergency and critical care
  4. Equine
  5. Internal medicine
  6. Behavior
  7. Surgery
  8. Dentistry
  9. Anesthesiology
  10. Nutrition
  11. Zoo

Before a students can become a certified vet tech, he or she must have obtained a degree and acquired a good level of experience.

How much do veterinary technicians make?

The salary of a veterinary technician is determined by factors like location, qualifications, experience and employer.

On the average, a veterinary technician earns about $35,569 per annum.

In order to improve your pay as a vet tech, you may have to improve your qualification as well as gain more experience.

Veterinary technician work schedule and environment

The work schedule of a vet tech depends on the requirements of the veterinary clinic.

Sometimes, they are required to work in the evening as well as at weekends.

Veterinary technicians may work for private corporations and laboratories.

Due to the working environment of a vet tech, they must always take necessary precautions, in order to avoid injury and possible transfer of disease.

What is the difference between a veterinary technician and a veterinary technologist?

A veterinary technician and technologist work together in assisting a veterinarian.

The major difference between the two is that a vet tech may only require a two year associate degree, but to become a technologist, you require a 4-year bachelor’s degree.

In addition, the veterinary technologist shoulders more duties and responsibilities assigned by the supervising veterinarian.

But on a general note, they all perform the same duties and responsibilities, depending on the country’s law.

Although a vet technician and a veterinary technologist may perform the same duties, having more education may put the technologist at a better position.

What is the difference between a veterinary technician and a veterinary assistant?

Vet assistants do not require a formal education training, therefore, vet technicians are better authorized to perform more clinical duties.

As a result of the little or no training required to become a vet assistant, they perform more of clerical duties.

Some of such duties include:

  • Feeding animals
  • Maintaining the work environment
  • Help animals exercise
  • Schedule meeting appointments
  • Keep instruments and equipments ready for use.
  • Provide necessary support to vet technicians and veterinarians.

However, different countries provide different specifications for the job description of a vet tech and a veterinary technician.

Conclusion: vet tech job description guide

Veterinary technician is a good job for any one with love for animal care.

It is also a good start into veterinary science

This article on the job description of a vet tech should guide you when creating a portfolio.

Other job descriptions:

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