How to become a Veterinary Assistant

A Veterinary Assistant is the first point of contact for the people, who seek service for their ill or injured animals. These professionals evaluate the exact needs, schedule the appointment, complete all kind of paperwork and assist the patients’ owners with care process. They work closely with the Veterinarian and other staff.

Veterinary Assistants perform multiple tasks. They receive the animals and direct them to proper examination room first. After the evaluation process and check-up of all vital information, they discuss everything in details with the patient’s owner. They also update charts and records, send invoices apart from answering phones, accepting deliveries and collecting payments. They assist the owners in in-store purchases (related to animals) too.

Veterinary Assistants are responsible for keeping the animals clean and safe when they are under their care. They also clean and disinfect animal cages, sterilize surgical equipment and perform daily care taking tasks such as feeding the animals.

Work Environment: They primarily work in veterinary clinics and animal hospitals. Some of them are also employed in laboratories located in research facilities. They work either full or part time and enjoy flexible working hours.

Education Requirements: No higher qualification is required for this job. However, a High School Diploma or GED is must. The aspirants can also earn a certificate through any non-degree program. But, this is not mandatory. Many reputed employers do prefer Veterinary Assistants with an Associate’s or Bachelor’s degree in animal science.

Salary Information: According to the U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median annual salary for Veterinary Assistants was $22,040 in 2010. Some experienced professionals used to earn $33,780 in a year. Employment for Veterinary Assistants is expected to grow at a rate of 14% during the 2010-2020 period.