Top 10 Reasons to Become a Vet Tech

Veterinarian giving bulldog a shot
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Veterinary technicians are highly visible members of a veterinary team. Ten of the best reasons to consider pursuing a career as a vet tech include:

1. Strong Demand

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects that the job market for veterinary technicians will expand at a rate of more than 20 percent over the decade from 2016 to 2026. This extremely strong rate of growth is nearly triple the average for all professions surveyed. Qualified vet techs should have no trouble finding employment as the veterinary industry continues to expand.

2. Two-Year Degree

Veterinary technicians can complete an associate’s degree in just two years through traditional college programs. There also are American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA)-accredited distance learning programs that allow students to work full- or part-time at a veterinary clinic while completing their formal degree.

3. Many Specialty Certification Areas

There are many specialty certification areas for vet techs including clinical practiceclinical pathologyemergency and critical careequinezoo, internal medicine, behaviorsurgeryanesthesiologydental care, and nutrition. Certification is achieved through documentation of experience (usually 3 to 5 years), case logs, continuing education credit hours, and a formal exam. Specialists may enjoy higher earning potential after achieving a certification that officially recognizes their advanced skill level.

4. Variety

No two days are alike, with many different patients and cases each day. You will treat a variety of injuries, assist with emergencies, and use many different diagnostic tools to assist veterinarians with an overall treatment plan. You never know what sort of case will come through the door.

5. Varied Responsibilities

Vet techs are responsible for a wide variety of tasks in a clinic environment, as you will prepare animals for surgery, clean and organize surgical tools, collect samples, run lab tests, take x-rays, administer anesthesia, perform dental cleanings, clean cages, update client files, fill prescriptions, interact with owners, and assist a veterinarian with any other duties that may be required. Large animal vet techs often ride along on farm visits, assisting with animal restraint and treatment in the field.

6. Professional Options

You can use your veterinary technician experience to transition into a variety of roles with veterinary pharmaceutical sales companies, laboratories, animal production facilities, zoos, public health organizations, and more. The veterinary technician career path does not limit you to private practice.

7. Help Animals on a Daily Basis

Technicians are active participants in the treatment process. You can help animals every day by treating injuries, catching problems early by running routine lab tests, performing dental cleanings, and other routine activities. It is very satisfying to see an animal make a full recovery under your care.

8. Work With Other Animal Lovers

Vet techs get to work closely with others who have devoted their lives to helping animals. Veterinarians, techs, kennel staff, receptionists, and other staff members have the opportunity to do what they love and become valued parts of the veterinary team. Additionally, you get to interact with different pet owners every day who love their pets just as much.

9. New Technology

Modern vet techs must stay abreast of new developments in the field of veterinary technology. Clinics are continually upgrading their computer-based record systems, digital x-ray machines, and diagnostic test procedures. You’ll never stop learning.

10. Community Interaction

Vet techs have a particularly high level of interaction with clients, and you may provide advice on a variety of topics from flea control products to pet food and when it is requested. You have opportunities to make connections with a wide cross section of the community during their appointments. This level of interaction makes it a great career path for those who like working with both pets and people.